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How to clean out drip irrigation hoses?

Posted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 5:57 pm
by TheWaterbug
I have several hundred feet of drip irrigation tubing, mostly from RainDrip, but also a few from other companies. It's a mix of 1/2" and 1/4" sizes and a mix of "drip-a-long" hoses and discrete emitters. I try to use and re-use it for as many seasons as possible, but some of it is getting old and clogged.

Is there a good, inexpensive way to clean out the mineral deposits and other junk? I have hard water in my area, and I suspect that a lot of my clogging is due to that.

Would soaking the tubing and emitters in a trash can with a vinegar solution work? Or is there another chemical that would work? Preferably something not too toxic.

How about some sort of pump so that I can circulate the vinegar solution repeatedly through the system?

In addition to saving money, I'm also trying to prevent putting a ton of plastic into the waste stream.

Thanks!

Re: How to clean out drip irrigation hoses?

Posted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 2:32 am
by imafan26
I end my hoses with a hose end cap so I can flush them. Vinegar should work, but my system would be hard to put back, so I just check the emitters once a year and either I clear the clogged ones with a wire or I replace them. The microemitters are hard to unclog.