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How To Connect Your Fertilizer System With A Hose Bib

Today we’re talking about how to install an automatic fertilizing system into our drip system.  Why fertilize and water separately when you can do both at the same time!

Adrian Sanchez here, for SPRINKLER WAREHOUSE.  Let’s get started.

Fertilizer injection systems, also known as “fertigation,” works great with drip systems.  You could also install them on a sprinkler system, but it’s not something I’d recommend for homeowners.  With sprinklers, much of the fertilizer can blow off.  The mist from a sprinkler system that contains fertilizer, could be toxic to breathe. 

It’s also possible that the fertilizer could be rough on the paint of nearby cars.  Imagine having to buy your neighbor a paint job on his new car.  Yikes.  If you can somehow control all that, well then knock yourself out.

It’s incredibly important to avoid any runoff when fertilizing.  Fertilizer can be environmentally damaging to lakes and rivers and cause serious health hazards if it leaches into the drinking water supply.

Keeping all that in mind…using fertilizer in a drip system can confine the fertilizer to the right where it’s needed, reducing excessive use of fertilizer and helping to eliminate contamination of nearby bodies of water.

Let’s talk about EZ Flo Lawn and Garden Feeder

Now, this is incredibly important:  You must have a hose vacuum breaker when using this system and it does not come with one.  The Hose Vacuum Breaker prevents the fertilizer from backflowing into your water system and contaminating your drinking water.   If you are attaching this system to an existing drip system, chances are you already have a hose vacuum breaker on your drip system.  If not you really should, even when not using fertilizer. 

Replace Your Vacuum Breaker If It’s Old

If your vacuum breaker is old, please purchase a new one.  They can and do go bad.  It’s not worth risking your health over a few bucks.

I’ve got three different sizes of Fertilizer Drip Tank.

This is the three-quarter gallon.

This one is the 1 gallon.

And this is the 2 gallon.

All three of these work the same and use similar connections. 

One thing that’s different for each of the tanks is the Maximum Static Pressure PSI.  They each have a sticker indicating the maximum PSI.

On the three-quarter gallon tank and two-gallon tank, it’s fifty P.S.I.

On the one-gallon tank, it’s Eighty P.S.I.

On the top of the tank is an adjustment knob that will let you adjust the flow rate of your fertilizer.

You’ll notice the inlet and outlet are color-coded.  Blue for in and Green for out.

Unscrewing the top there should be a large O ring.  It may be hiding out in the lid or it may be sitting on the tank rim.  Either is fine.

These are your dip tubes.  This is your agitator.  Some folks say I’m an agitator.

And this is your screen fitting for your outflow.

This is your hose bib connector.  This one is brass.  You may receive one that’s plastic.  Either way, they’re built the same and perform identically.

Let’s attach the tubing.  Your fertilizing system arrives with black and clear tubing.  Use the black tubing for the inflow side.  We’re connecting blue to blue.  I’m going to wiggle the black tubing onto the blue barb on the hose bib connector. 

The kit comes with two in-line shutoff valves.  Cut off a small section of black tubing.  Wiggle in the online shutoff valve.  Wiggle in the other side.  You don’t have to use all the tubing if you don’t want to.  You can cut it to the size you need.  Personally, I prefer to use the entire length, to give me the most flexibility with where I place the tank and when I’m filling and etc. 

The tubing is inserted into the blue thing here.  The blue thing is called a “collet” according to the instruction booklet.  I had never heard the word “collet” before, so I had to look it up; it means socket.  “Collet.”  Learn it, use it, love it.

Push the tubing gently into the collet until it stops.  Slight tug to make sure it’s secure.

Now let’s do the outflow side.  Use the clear tubing to connect green to green.

 I’m going to install a shutoff valve on the outflow side as well.

The reason why there’s clear tubing for the outflow side is so you can monitor the fertilizer.  You NEED to use a colored fertilizer.  You run the system until the outflow turns clear so having colored fertilizer is important.  You may use food coloring if your fertilizer is not colored.

Now that we’ve installed the tubing into the lid let’s uninstall it, to make it easier to screw on and off the lid.

Press on the Collet.  Pull out the tube. 

Your fertilizing system arrives with three of these colored rubber washers called flo – discs. 

You need to estimate the flow rate for your system.  If you have less than one hundred twenty gallons per hour, you’ll need to use one of these flow discs in order for your system to work properly.

To estimate your flow rate count how many emitters you have, separated by flow rate.  Multiply the number of emitters by the flow rate and add them all together.

For example:  If you had twenty-one gallon per hour emitters.   Twenty-two gallon per hour emitters and twenty half-gallon per hour emitters. 

Twenty times one equals twenty.

Twenty times two equals forty.

Twenty times one-half equals ten.

Twenty plus forty plus ten equals seventy.

Far less than one hundred and twenty gallons per hour.  So I’ll need a flow disc.

The White one is for sixty to one hundred and twenty. 

The Black disc is for thirty to sixty gallons per hour.

And the Red is for seven and a half to thirty gallons per hour.  Since my example system uses seventy gallons per hour, I’ll need to use the white flow disc.

The disc gets installed in the hose bib adapter.  On the inside of the swivel end of the adapter, there is a hose washer. Pull that out.  You can use a flat-head screwdriver if you can’t grab it with your fingers.

Then shove this little disc down inside until it sits next to the lip in there.  It’s okay that it wiggles around a bit.  Once the water starts flowing the disc will be held in place.

Once you have placed the appropriate Flo Disc, which may be no Flo Disc, you’ll attach your Hose Bib Connector to your drip head assembly.  Specifically, you’ll attach it inline after all other components of your drip head assembly.  You don’t want to run the fertilizer through any filter, pressure regulator, timer, et cetera. 

You’ll know if your system is working by seeing the colored fertilizer water flow in the clear tube.

What if you have no earthly idea what your water flow rate is?

Well then, you’re going to use the trial and error method.  Start with no Flo-Disc in place and see if your system works.  If it doesn’t drop in a white disc.  If that doesn’t work, try the black.  And last if it still won’t work then go to the Red disc. 

Now.  Adding Fertilizer.

IF you are using one of the flow discs, you will need to dilute your fertilizer product.  Four parts water to one part product. 

If you’re not using a flow disc, you do not have to dilute the water, and you shouldn’t have to premix it either. 

So add your product.  And then top off the tank with water.  There should be no air in the tank. 

Screw the tank lid on. 

Push the tubing into the Collet.  Remember, black goes into the blue or inflow side, and clear goes into the green or outflow side. 

Add your fertilizer.  This fertilizing system uses any liquid or water-soluble powders. You don’t even have to mix the powder first.  The EZ Flo mixes the product for you. 

In your “Installation and Operating Guide,” there are some charts to help you determine the feed rate and how many gallons of water are necessary to use all the fertilizer in the tank.

Always top off with water.  You need to get all the air out of the tank.

When you start your system, you should see color flowing through the clear line.  If you don’t make sure that your shut-off valves are open.  If you still don’t have any color, you may need to switch to a smaller FLO-disc.

Sprinkler Warehouse Has Everything For Your Irrigation Needs

So your trees, lawn, flower beds, and gardens are lush and beautiful.

If you have any questions about our products chat with one of our superb customer service agents on Sprinkler Warehouse dot com. They really know their stuff and they’ll get you squared away.

Subscribe to our Youtube channel for helpful tips, tutorials, and general sprinkler instruction.

For Sprinkler Warehouse, I’m Adrian Sanchez.  Later irrigator.

Related Products For This Video: 

  • hose vacuum breaker
  • 3 Fertilizer tanks
  • Fertilizer