Inspect your system for clogged, broken or missing sprinkler heads.
Connect. Examine points where the sprinkler heads connect to pipes or hoses. If water pools in your yard or you have large wet areas, you could have a leak in your system.
Direct sprinklers away from your driveway, house, or sidewalk in order to apply water only to your landscape.
Select a seasonally appropriate watering schedule that meets your landscape's minimum needs.
You should change the programming on your irrigation timer at least seasonally and check the back-up battery.
Spring: As the weather warms up and the soil starts to dry out, turn your irrigation timer back on but only water as much as needed for your landscape and the current weather conditions. Check your irrigation system and fix broken sprinkler heads or other problems.
Summer: Once it starts getting really warm outside, you can turn up your watering a bit. Remember to turn off the sprinklers for 30 minutes halfway through your complete watering time to allow the soil to absorb the water and prevent water run-off.
Fall: As the weather cools down, adjust your timer to water less.
Winter: When the weather cools and it begins to rain, turn your timer off.
Weather-Based Irrigation Controllers (WBICs) automatically update your irrigation system based upon local weather and landscape conditions. Look for the WaterSense label on controllers for those certified through the USA EPA WaterSense Program. In order to earn the WaterSense label, irrigation controllers must be able to adequately meet the watering needs of a landscape without overwatering. View the WaterSense Labeled Irrigation Controllers Fact Sheet.
Soil moisture-based irrigation controllers are another water efficient controller option. Soil moisture-based controllers use a probe buried in the soil at the root zone and are programmed to shut off an irrigation system when the ground is already wet, preventing overwatering.
Rain sensors are switching devices activated by rainfall. Most rain sensors use an absorbent disk that swells when wet and turns off the irrigation system during a rainfall event. Once the disk dries out, the rain sensor turns the system turns back on. Learn more about Rain Sensors.
Following the irrigation tips above and adjusting the programing on your irrigation controller will help with efficient lawn watering. Two online irrigation calculators that can help in determining lawn watering needs are: