Most of the problems with head assemblies have to do with installing components in the wrong order, with wrong thread combinations or because the component was installed backwards and the water flow direction is wrong. Of course there is always the chance of a defective product. If you check all of these things you can figure out most of the problems yourself pretty easily.
Filters should be checked and flushed on a regular basis. How often you should do this depends on how much debris your filter takes out of the water, in other words how dirty your water is. When your system is new, check after running it a few days to see what kind of dirt has been caught in the filter. If there is really nothing, go ahead and check again in a month or two. Just make sure to take out the screen and rinse it out under clean water when it needs it. This will keep your system running smoothly for a long time. Remember filtration is one of the most important parts of a drip system, treat it as such!
Drippers really do not need any kind of regular maintenance. There are models which come apart and can be cleaned. To do this take them apart and rinse under clean water. For stubborn dirt use an old toothbrush.
Sometimes drippers will just get clogged up with hard water deposits or dirt and it is almost always is easier to just replace them than to clean them. Most drippers will give you a few years before any kind of problems arise. For example, we have very hard water here in San Diego and in our experience we have had drippers working for 6 years or more!
Microsprinklers are like drippers as they do not require any special maintenance unless there is a problem. One of the things you will run into most often is the need to adjust the spray direction if they have moved. The other thing may be hard water deposits on the deflectors or nozzles. On some sprinklers you can clean this off and others may need to be replaced occasionally. Occasionally does not mean every year or even two, it all depends on your water quality. Just check how they work every once in awhile.
Controllers need very little beyond taking them inside during the winter and checking the condition of the batteries. We suggest replacing the batteries every year just to make sure they will always be good. It is worth the small investment!
Valves can be affected by debris in the water which could collect over time. This can be fixed by disassembling the valve and cleaning it. All the valves we sell can be taken apart and cleaned. We do suggest to use the "blow-a-part" drawing in the instruction manual or to find the information page for the valve you purchased. This will show you the way the parts go back together. BE CAREFUL!! There are some very small parts and all of them are needed to make the valve work correctly.
We will be the first to admit that we are not 100% up on all the troubleshooting techniques for the fertilizer applicators and will be working with the manufacturer to expand this listing.
Most of the information which will help you is in the instructions provided with each unit. Comparing how you have installed your unit with the instructions should be your first step in troubleshooting. Just remember the fertilizer is released very slowly.
Soaker Tape & Dripper Line
Soaker tape should not have many problems; the biggest thing is good filtration to keep the drippers from clogging. The drippers cannot be replaced and nothing can be inserted into the tape walls. The most common problem with tape is with longer single lines. Here there is a tendency for the line to "Snake". This is where the line will be laid out straight and then after a day or two the line is not straight but curvy with drippers no longer next to plants. This is caused by the expansion and contraction of heat and cold. To keep this from happening place a wooden stake about a foot past the end of the row and use twine or string to tie the end of the tape to the stake. This will hold the line in place. Be careful how tight you make this. If done when it is hot the tape will be at its longest and when it gets cold the tape will shrink. If it is tied too tight the contraction of the tape can pull the main line toward the stake. Use a happy medium and think about having the mainline staked down also.
Dripper line can have the same "Snakeing" problems which can be solved the same as the above solution for soaker tape. We would suggest that with dripper line you look into using one of the flush valves to keep fine sediment from building up in the lines.
We have not had much experience with the misting products yet so our troubleshooting tips are few at this time. We would suggest looking through the information provided on the individual product pages. This information will provide most of the information we now know. As we use our own systems and come up with any information we will add it here.
The best piece of advice we can offer is to make sure and use a 200 mesh filter for the misters. The water outlet orifices are very small and need good filtration. If you do have a problem with a mister clogging the misters can be taken apart and cleaned.