Common Hose Reel Irrigation Systems Problems and How to Fix Them

by David Wallace, CEO of FarmHQ

Keep reading to learn more about common hose reel irrigation problems and how FarmHQ can help growers avoid them.

Reel Systems use FarmHQ

Hose Reel Irrigation: A Convenient Solution with A Hidden Risk

Hose reel irrigation is a popular choice for growers of all sizes, thanks to its portability, flexibility, and affordability. However, there is one major drawback to reels: they can stop moving without warning. This causes flooding damage to value crops.

There are a number of reasons why reels can stop mid-run, including:

  • Mechanical problems: The reel may pop out of gear, the onboard computer may be accidentally programmed to stop early, or the pressure switch may cause a shutdown.
  • Hose problems: The hose may coil incorrectly and bind the reel, or the hose friction may be too high for the water turbine to drive.
  • Engine problems: reels that are driven by gasoline engines can run out of gas, have clogged fuel filters, run low on oil, or die.
Hose Reel Irrigation systems problem solved with FarmHQ

If a hose reel stops moving unexpectedly, water will continue to flow onto a small section of the crop. This can quickly flood the area. Unfortunately, this often leads to crop damage, especially if the crop is sensitive to overwatering.

According to FarmHQ data from more than 5,000 reel irrigation activities, reels stop short on approximately one out of every eight runs. This means that growers who use reels need to spend a significant amount of time and paid labor performing visual inspections.

FarmHQ tech on reel systems

FarmHQ: A Solution to The Challenges of Hose Reel Irrigation Systems

FarmHQ is a cloud-based irrigation management platform that can help growers overcome the challenges of reel irrigation. Our device provides growers with real-time visibility into their irrigation equipment, including the status of hose reels.

If a reel stops moving, FarmHQ will send an automated text message alert to the grower. This allows the grower to respond quickly. Then, they can utilize FarmHQ’s automatic pump shut down remotely. This automatically turns off the pump when the hose reel stops moving. Thankfully, this not only prevents crop damage but eliminates the need for the grower to visit the equipment in person. This can mean big savings in time and money.

Benefits of FarmHQ

There are a number of benefits that FarmHQ provides growers with reel irrigation:

  • Reduced labor costs: FarmHQ eliminates the need for in-person visual inspections of reels. 
  • Increased water efficiency: FarmHQ’s automatic pump shutdown feature can help growers use water more efficiently. The same analysis of more than 5,000 irrigation runs found that growers who enabled the automatic pump shutdown feature used 8% less water overall while covering 22% more acreage on average (per reel).
  • Reduced crop damage: FarmHQ’s real-time visibility and automated alerts can help growers prevent crop damage caused by reel stoppages.

If you are a grower who uses hose reel irrigation, read more about FarmHQ below. 

reel irrigation system with FarmHQ monitoring and control

Learn More about FarmHQ on Hose Reels

How Everyday Famers Use FarmHQ on Their Hose Reels