Use adjustments on the impulse sprinkler to control water coverage.

How to Adjust the Spray Coverage of an Impulse Lawn Sprinkler

by Keith Dooley

When the weather turns warm and days grow longer, an impulse sprinkler provides an instant water park for the kids. From a long stream to a wide spray, the water coverage is adjustable for a range of fun to keep your little ones entertained and out from under foot for long periods of time. Plus, on the off chance you ever wrangle the sprinkler away from the kids, the adjustable feature tends to help water the lawn from time to time.

Connect the female fitting on the end of a garden hose to an outdoor water faucet. Turn the fitting clockwise to thread it onto the faucet. Connect the male fitting on the opposite end of the garden hose to an impulse sprinkler. Position the impulse sprinkler in an area of the yard or landscape that needs to receive water. If the sprinkler is attached to a base, simply place the unit on top of the ground. If it has a spike, push the unit firmly into the ground so it is vertically straight.

Locate the two arc adjustment rings on the base of the impulse sprinkler used to limit the side-to-side movement of the impulse sprinkler head. Turn the impulse head by hand to get a rough idea of how far left and right you want the water to travel. Pinch the tabs together on one of the rings and move it to the left to set the left travel distance. Repeat the process for the other ring to set the right travel distance.

Turn the faucet on. Observe the water pattern on the lawn in regards to the side to side (arc) travel as well as the distance it travels and how it is dispersed. Turn the water off.

Adjust the arc, if necessary, by pinching the adjustment rings and moving left or right. Locate the diffuser adjustment knob on the top of the impulse sprinkler. Turn the knob clockwise to move the diffuse flap down, decreasing the water distance and diffusing the water. Turn the knob counterclockwise to increase the water distance and concentrate the water stream.

Turn the water back on. Observe the water as it travels from the impulse sprinkler. Turn the water off again, if necessary, and continue to adjust the arc rings and diffuser to fine tune the water dispersion over the lawn or landscape.

Items you will need

  • Garden hose
  • Outdoor water faucet


  • Some impulse sprinklers may feature a diffuser flap in addition to a distance flap. In this case, simply use the adjustment knobs on both flaps to fine tune the distance and pattern water is dispersed from the impulse sprinkler.
  • Flip the wire trip lever on the base of the sprinkler up to allow for full 360-degree coverage.

About the Author

Keith Dooley has done work in the field of landscaping and design for more than 10 years. He has implemented his own designs, as well as pulled from techniques learned through studies, creating many landscapes for others to enjoy.He has also maintained lawns, athletic fields, town parks, large gardens and game fields.

Photo Credits

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