If you are installing your own solenoids then do it with a view to one day having to service them – or with a view to someone having to service them! The more serviceable they are the less it will cost you if they need replacing – and of course the opposite is true too.
So to that end when you install a solenoid:
a) Always try to allow at least 150ml gap between the T joint and the solenoid and also between it and the next closest solenoid. That way they can be dismantled and replaced easily and without having to pull a whole ‘manifold’ of solenoids apart.
b) Ideally use ‘jar top’ solenoids where the whole assembly can simply be unscrewed and replaced if it is faulty. If you need to use solenoids that are not easily dissasembled then be sure to leave space between them so that they can removed and a new solenoid installed.
c) Consider also their physical location. This week I visited a home where the master solenoid had been placed between 2 large Norfolk Pines and over the time since it was installed it had become completely encased in tree roots. I imagine the trees were planted and no one considered that one day their roots would present a massive problem, but now that there is a leak between the ball valve and the solenoid a huge amount of work is required to complete a relatively simple task.
In addition it (generally) makes more sense to locate solenoids together in a manifold arrangement rather than dotting them all over the property. That way they can be easily located.
d) Keep a plan of where you installed the solenoids. I know… you will remember… but you’d be surprised how easily we can forget! If you draw a small diagram then not only do you have it but you can pass it on to the next owner.
Having said all of that I have no idea where the front solenoids are on my own home… I have a horrible feeling they are located under a large bush and would now be a pain in the butt to service, but then I didn’t do that installation!
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