How to Build a Sprinkler System

Sprinkler System
Sprinkler System (Image: Personal Collection, freerangestock)

It can get aggravating to constantly have to move the water sprinkler around to get everything watered in a vegetable or flower garden. A portable water sprinkler system is an ideal solution to this problem. Made in one long section with several sprinkler heads and attached to a water hose enables the user to put the system where he wants it and just leave it. No plumbing or electrical work is required. It can also be customized by how many sprinkler heads are needed.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • PVC pipe, 1 inch in diameter
  • 2, 1-foot sections of 1-inch PVC pipe
  • 1 elbow
  • 1 flat 4-way connector
  • Several T connectors
  • Sprinkler heads
  • 2 threaded 1-inch PVC pipe connectors
  • 2 end caps
  • PVC pipe glue
  • Watering hose

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Determine how long you will need for the sprinkler system. This length will also determine how many sprinkler heads you will need, as a sprinkler head needs to be every 2 feet.

Sprinkler system
Sprinkler system

Have the lumberyard cut the PVC pipe into 2-foot lengths for a total of whatever length you need. For example, if you need 20 feet of sprinkler, you will need to have the pipe cut into 10 2-foot lengths. You will also need 2 1-foot lengths of pipe cut for the brace.

Dry fit this project first without the glue, because once you apply the glue, it will be permanent, and if you have missed part of a step, you will not be able to take it apart when the glue is applied. The glue will be applied in Step 8. Lay out the 2-foot sections on the ground, one after the other. In between each section, place a T-connector with the top hole facing up. This is the connector for the sprinkler head in a later step. Do not put T-connectors on the ends of the sprinkler system itself. Determine where the leg brace needs to go for stability. It should be somewhere close to the middle of the pipe length. Do not put a T-connector there. Instead, attach the pipe sections with a flat 4-way connector.

Flat 4-way connector
Flat 4-way connector

Attach the 1-foot sections to the flat 4-way for the leg braces. Place the end caps on each leg.

Flat 4-way connector
Flat 4-way connector

Attach an elbow in one end of the sprinkler system. This will be the end of the sprinkler system. At the other end, attach a threaded connector to connect to a water hose.


Attach a 2-foot section of pipe into each T-connector along the sprinkler system. This is the sprinkler attachment. At the end of each pipe, place a threaded connector with the smooth side. The threaded end will hold the actual sprinkler head.

Threaded connector
Threaded connector

Screw the sprinkler heads onto each threaded connector. Do not tighten at this point.

Sprinkler heads
Sprinkler heads

Disassemble the sprinkler and repeat Steps 3 through 7, but use glue this time to complete the sprinkler. Lay the disassembled pieces on the ground at the approximate position where they go so you can reassemble quickly. Apply the glue according to package directions. Use the glue on the threaded sections also. Tighten all connections to prohibit leaking. Allow to dry for approximately 20 minutes.

PVC glue
PVC glue

Attach the water hose to the sprinkler system. Place the sprinkler system in the desired spot to ensure complete coverage area. Turn the water on anytime watering is needed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make more than one section and use a Y connector for the water hoses.
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