The Best Lawn Sprinklers

There's a lot more to watering a lawn than turning on the water. Buying the right sprinkler determines how efficiently and cheaply the lawn gets watered.

Rotary Square Pattern

When shopping for a sprinkler, look for a good rotary that will deliver a square pattern and water evenly. This sprinkler is suitable for most soil types. The adjustments allow you to reduce the water volume for slower watering of poorly absorbing heavy-clay soils, or increase the volume for faster absorbing soils. The lawn should absorb all the water and not run down the sidewalk or driveway.

Pulsating Rotary

Another efficient sprinkler, the rotary-impact or pulsating sprinkler uses a water-driven flapper that hits an anvil and drives the nozzles in a circular pattern. These models are adjustable; change the circle diameter and water a portion of the circle, or change the droplet size. If you have a large garden with tall plants to water, choose a 72-inch-tall pulsating sprinkler.


Of the two, the rotary sprinkler with the square spray pattern is best. This sprinkler will fit smaller flower beds, and if you buy one on wheels, it makes moving it easier. The pulsating-rotary sprinkler, though effective, isn't as efficient because of some water wastage, but it does keep the water close to the ground to minimize drift and evaporation.

Expert Advice

According to Allyn Paul, "A rain gauge should be used to find out how long it takes to lay down 1/2 inch of water based on your water output and sprinkler adjustment. You can get one at any garden center. Place it in the path of the sprinkler and check it often until it is up to the 1/2-inch line."

Keywords: good lawn sprinklers, efficient lawn sprinklers, water-saving sprinklers, water efficient sprinklers

About this Author

Brenda Reeves started writing in 1979. Specializing in gardening topics, her articles appear on numerous Web sites, including eHow. Reeves has a Bachelor of Arts in English and creative writing from California State University, Northridge.