City of Santa Monica
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Sustainable Landscaping Contact:
Water Resources Specialist
Irrigation - Installation
Before you begin
Contact all appropriate utility companies prior to beginning installation, to locate underground pipes, wiring or cables.
DigAlert : Underground Service Alert of Southern California
, or call their hotline by dialing 8-1-1
Southern California Edison : Call Before You Dig
SoCal Gas : Contractor Safety Info
Time Warner Cable contact info
City Water and Sewer Contact info
Plans and Inspections
Prepare for the required open-trench inspection by city staff prior to covering below grade pipes, laterals and mains.
Installer must test the irrigation system to verify that it meets the approved design and specifications. Landscape irrigation audits, inspections and reports may be generated to document verification.
Note changes on an as-built set of plans. Provide a complete As-Built set of plans to the property owner.
Final inspection by city staff is required prior to certificate of occupancy to ensure that the system was built to approved plans and specifications.
Phone the Office of Sustainability and the Environment: (310) 458-8405.
Lateral pipes ready for inspection
Materials and Technical Specifications
Weather-based irrigation controllers (WBIC) are required, and must be programed by the installer. To help determine your irrigation schedule, consult the
lacoastalgardens.com watering guide
. Some WBIC’s also have an establishment feature for early plant development.
Pipe laid in the same trench must be laid side-by-side and not overlapped. Provide 3 inch vertical and horizontal clearance between irrigation lines and 6 inch clearance between lines of other work. Do not install parallel lines directly over any other line.
PVC fittings must be of the same chemical compound as pipe on which they are installed.
PVC cement must be of an appropriate chemical compound for the pipe on which it is used.
Weather based controller
To avoid drip-tubing malfunctions in drip irrigation systems, use compression fittings when installing above-ground drip tubing. For below ground systems, use insert barbs. Do not use twist-lock fittings or multi-outlet emitters.
Wire stakes every three feet will keep above-ground drip tubing securely in place.
Converting Sprinklers to Drip
(Overview) fact sheet has photographs that show how simple it is to make the conversion. On the
, you can see the type of equipment you need.
Detailed instructions in Spanish :
How to Install an On-Surface Drip Irrigation System
(for informational purposes only--City does not endorse this product).
How to Install Sub-Surface Drip Irrigation
(for informational purposes only--not an endorsement).
Drip-tubing with stakes
Sprinkler to Rotary Nozzle Conversion
The latest improvement in sprinkler technology is the so-called rotary nozzle. This inexpensive innovation can improve efficiency by 20%, and cuts down on water being blown where you don't want it by the wind.
Spanish version :
Last updated: Thursday, 12/10/2015
City of Santa Monica © 2016
Santa Monica Office of Sustainability and the Environment
1685 Main St., Santa Monica, CA 90401 · (310) 458-2213 · TTY (310) 917-6626