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How to Add Sprinkler Heads to Your Lawn Sprinkler System

By Lisa Larsen ; Updated September 21, 2017

As time goes on, the original design for your lawn sprinkler system may need to be updated. Perhaps you’ve added a new flowerbed, or more sod to your yard. Or maybe you’ve put an addition on your house, widened your driveway, or installed a pool. All of these changes require the addition of sprinkler heads, or relocation of heads. Add sprinkler heads to the system without hiring a professional service. The tools you need are inexpensive and readily available.

Determine the layout of the existing PVC piping, and then decide where you want to add new sprinkler heads. Mark the position of the new heads with a flag.

Dig up the area where a new head is to go, until you have exposed a 3-foot section of the PVC pipe.

Remove enough pipe to accommodate a tee fitting, using the PVC cutter.

Sand the ends of the cut pipe until they are smooth. Clean them with PVC cleaner.

Lift one of the cut ends of the PVC pipe slightly, and apply PVC cement to the final inch of the pipe.

Apply PVC cement to the inside of the slip fitting on the tee. Slide the slip fit end of the tee over the end of the PVC that has the cement on it. Rotate the tee so that the threaded section is pointing straight upward.

Lift the other PVC pipe several inches from the ground, and apply PVC cement to the final inch of the pipe.

Apply PVC cement to the inside of the remaining slip fitting on the tee, and gently raise that end of pipe several inches.

Line up the pipe with the tee with the other pipe, and slide the two together firmly while lowering the entire assembly to the ground.

Screw the proper-sized riser into the threaded portion of the tee.

Screw the proper-sized sprinkler onto the riser.

Turn the system’s water on and check for leaks, and then replace the dirt over the pipe.

Continue on to the next flagged spot, and follow the same steps until all the new sprinklers have been added.


Things You Will Need

  • Landscape marking flags
  • PVC tees with two slip fittings and one threaded fitting
  • Various-sized threaded risers
  • Pop-up sprinklers
  • PVC cement
  • PVC cleaner
  • Sandpaper
  • PVC cutting tool
  • Shovel


  • Use a helper to make the job easier.


  • Don't allow the PVC cement to come in contact with your skin. If it does, follow the directions on the container for proper removal.

About the Author


Lisa Larsen has been a professional writer for over 18 years. She has written radio advertisement copy, research papers, SEO articles, magazine articles for "BIKE," "USA Today" and "Dirt Rag," newspaper articles for "Florida Today" and short stories published in "Glimmer Train" and "Lullwater Review," among others. She has a master's degree in education and is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars.