There is a saying that “time is more valuable than gold.” Watering your yard can bring relaxation and time to enjoy the beauty of creation. But, for people with larger yards and those who are too busy to devote hours each week to watering, an automated irrigation system can be just what they need to save that precious time.

Automated sprinkler irrigation systems are great for lawns and meadows, and automated drip irrigation systems are perfect for all other plants, including trees. Both systems are handy devices that can provide remarkable benefits if they are properly designed, installed, and maintained:

  • Aesthetic Benefits: an automated irrigation system is one of the best ways to keep your landscape beautiful and healthy because it can provide the right amount of water at the right time. This is especially important during the summer months when the sun’s intensity can dry out the soil and damage your turf and other plants.
  • Save Water = Save Money: even though there is an upfront cost for installation of an automatic irrigation system, it will work to ensure the most efficient use of water for your specific landscape. This means more money will stay in your pocket with lowered water bills.
  • Improved efficiency: Different plants have different watering needs and individual zones of an automated irrigation system can allow for delivering the right amount of water with the most effective irrigation method.
  • Flexibility: An automated irrigation system can include a Water Sense Smart Irrigation Controller, which can take the guesswork out of scheduling. These typically run between $200-$400 if professionally installed, or $100-$200 if you install it yourself. Rebates are available!
  • Reduce Weeds: automated drip irrigation systems can be extremely efficient at providing water to a targeted area. This reduces the number of weeds in your yard since it will deprive them of water and instead direct that water towards desirable plants, trees, and shrubs.
  • More time to sleep in:  the best time to water your yard is early in the morning when the sun is down because water does not evaporate as quickly, meaning your plants will have the maximum amount of time to absorb the water. This means you will use less water than if you water during the day because your sprinkler system will not be competing against the evaporating power of the sun.
  • More time for camping: just like a programmable thermostat, automated irrigation systems allow you to customize your watering schedule. Once programmed, the system will turn on and turn off automatically, so you do not need to be present when your yard is watered. For that reason, automated irrigation systems are popular among happy campers!

An automated irrigation system for your home offers many benefits ranging from financial to aesthetic and convenience. If you are wondering where to start, send us an email at

Author: Carlos A. Bustos, Water Conservation Program Manager with the Water Resources Division for the Water Authority.  Have a question about the article?