How Do Sprinkler Heads Break? [The Mystery]

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  • Post last modified:December 27, 2022
  • Reading time:4 mins read

Have you ever been out mowing your lawn and noticed one of your sprinkler heads is broken? It can be quite frustrating, especially when it seems like there’s no explanation as to why.

As it turns out, there’s a lot more to this common problem than meets the eye. Let’s take a deeper look at the mysterious world of broken sprinkler heads.

What Causes Sprinkler Heads To Break?

Sprinkler heads can break from a variety of things, such as heavy mowing and weed whacking to cold winter temperatures and the age of the system itself.

A good way to prolong their life is to routinely check for signs of damage and replace them every six months or more often if need be.

When that’s not enough, other ways a sprinkler head will break include being stepped on, over-adjusting the settings, and clogged nozzles.

However, did you know just 17% of breaks have been accounted for in these ways? That means the majority of cases of broken sprinklers go unexplained!

Studies have revealed that during colder months the expanding and contracting ground around sprinklers often pushes on them too hard resulting in fractures.

Weather fluctuations can also play a part in breaking sprinkler heads due to extreme temperature changes causing corrosion or frozen pipes bursting as they thaw out again after winter.

How Can You Prevent Sprinkler Head Breakage?

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to prevent your sprinkler heads from breaking too often or at all!

One way is to make sure you keep up with regular maintenance on your irrigation system – this means checking for any signs of wear and tear every couple of months or so, as well as scheduling an annual service visit with a local professional who can do an assessment and make necessary repairs/replacements before any major problems develop.

Additionally, if you live in colder climates where frost heave may be an issue during winter months then adding insulation around exposed pipes can help protect against this type of damage. Finally, when replacing old parts always opt for high-quality ones so they last longer!


All in all, broken sprinklers aren’t something many people think about – but they should! With some preventative maintenance measures (like scheduling regular checkups), it’s possible to keep your system running smoothly for years without having to worry about costly repairs due to breakage.

So next time you’re out mowing your lawn and see a broken head – don’t panic – just remember that it could be due to one of many different causes that are easily preventable with proper care!

Hopefully, this article has given you some insight into why your precious sprinklers are breaking so often – now go enjoy those green grass days once again!