How much is an irrigation system?

Irrigation systems are tailored like each garden. But there are type plans for houses the gardens belong to them show similarity. We don’t want suggest that the written estimates below can be pulled on your garden because the costs are affected by several factors but it can give a good overview to count on them if you consider on irrigation system.

Let’s erect an average terraced or semi-detached house on our imaginary outdoor table. In front there are shrubs and/or perennials in one or more beds.

Same can be found in the back garden all around along the fence, and there is a multifunctional lawn area in the middle. There is a power socket (either indoor or outdoor, depending on the area) near place of the prospective controller.

Let’s assume there are garden taps in both gardens or if only at the back there is a possibility to pull forward an inch plastic pipe nearly invisible (even if it’s zigzag) to take water to the front garden and the pipe can be taken further to all beds without crossing drive- or pathway on the surface.

Same laying down would be great in the back garden as well, for example hiding the pipe in bottom of the fence by mulch or leave it hardly noticeable in bottom of the walls.

It’s hard to say how many and what kind of sprinklers can be used to cover the lawn due to its shape and size but in our example four water-saving pop-ups are calculated what are enough for 50-60 sqm-s. They will be operated on two zones from main water if the water yield of the tap exceeds 30 l/min. (Measurement: hold a bucket under the open tap. If it fills up 3 buckets in a minute there is the right amount of water for operating this kind of sprinkler zone.)

Two small sprinklers can cover 20-30 sqms

Now two sprinkler and two bed zones are given. In the beds 3 m dripline can be calculated per each sqm so we can say 200m drip pipe covers these beds. If the plants are established the micro irrigation is much recommended because less damage will be caused during the installation process, and it’s price is nearly the same like the drip irrigation.

Micro jet in work

Four solenoids, lateral pipes to carry the water to the beds and sprinklers, standard tap connection, manifolds and other fittings, valve box(es) mean the remaining costs.



  • Indoor controller 4 zones 140£
  • 3/4″ tap connection by British Standard 50£
  • Signal wiring 10£
  • Standard valve box 30£
  • 4 solenoids 100£
  • Manifolds and fittings 100£
  • Lateral pipes 100m 30£
  • 200m dripline or micro emitters for 70m2 350£
  • 4 water-saving pop-up sprinklers 120£
  • Working hours 500£

All together: 1420£

This is the cost of our example basic irrigation system with 4 zones.

Of course the irrigation systems can be equipped by lots of comfort and even more useful functions.

Firstly begin with the rain sensor which blocks the system starting during and right after the rain. Even the simplest ones can be adjusted depending on the amount of rain when they will be operating.

Rain sensor against water waste

In some cases there is no possibility to mount indoor controller but an outdoor one in a waterproof box still can be mounted. Battery operated controller can be used in lack of power socket.

Controller locked in waterproof cabinet

But as much as we are, we can choose as almost as many controllers from the basic one via wifi controllers to consider the actual and forecasted weather to the most advanced ones to integrate with home managing systems like Alexa or Nest and what can even be an ornament of our flat.

Smart looking Skydrop indoor controller

The systems can be equipped with other sensors as well and it worths to highlight the water flow meter from them due to its usefulness but the soil moisture sensor can be mentioned too. This latter works on the same principle like rain sensor but the valuable information are originated from the root zone directly.

Water emitters can also be sophisticated based on your demands.

Most often demand of irrigating of hanging baskets and planters comes up. They take place on a separate zone to sort out their frequent watering with less water amount. Water gets to the planters via thin spaghetti pipes which can be hidden easily with adjustable emitters on their end so both leanders and rhododendrons are watered from the same zone.

Pot emitter

Other often demand is the irrigation of veggie plots. It should also work from a separate zone because water demands of these plants are significantly differ from shrubs. In this case the different plots or even rows can be isolated one by one to avoid the water loss on unused parts.

Easy to isolate a plot

Bed plants with more water demand can be equipped by dedicated emitters from an existing zone or the emitters can be varied within one zone depending on the water pressure.

There is also a possibility to avoid the winding pipes on the surface of beds because the bed irrigation can be sorted from pop-ups as well but obviously not from the same zone like lawn sprinklers. These high risers can be recommended among tall perennials where the appropriate humidity might be important but the short micros cannot provide that with high efficiency.

Part of gardens naturally cannot be pulled in to this category due to their size or because one or more circumstances are not available mentioned at the beginning of this article or there are further extra demands for example rainwater harvesting.

In these cases installation of pump based systems are necessary but about this and its costs we come back later.

If you are interested in having an irrigation system don’t hesitate to book a free consultation online. Click here!