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How Motion Activated Sprinklers Work

Updated on February 15, 2014

Garden Pests

Motion activated sprinklers, or scarecrow sprinklers, are a nice addition to your home flower or vegetable garden. Gardening for many homeowners can be quite a hassle, especially for those living in rural areas where wildlife can easily take over and ruin the hard work and effort put into any type of garden.

Domestic and wild animals can play havoc on gardening spaces that are left unprotected. Many will simply give up on having a garden due to the annoyances caused by animals such as: dogs, rabbits, cats, doves, crows, raccoons, gophers, groundhogs, and deer. Many will give up for lack of finding a humane solution for these annoying pests.

Motion detector sprinkler systems are safe, effective, and eco-friendly. Most motion detectors sprinklers run for extended periods of time on alkaline or lithium batteries. Most systems blast a stream of water for approximately three seconds, using about 2-3 cups of water per blast. 

Quick Facts

  • Economical
  • Simple installation.
  • No harm to animals.
  • Detects wildlife day and night.
  • Runs for months on one battery. 
  • Adjustable detection and spray ranges.

Sprinklers in Action

The videos that you will find in this hub down the right hand side of the page, while the article will continue on the left. These videos are pretty good at showing how well a motion activated sprinkler works on a variety of different animals and wildlife. Enjoy!

Good Coverage

When you spend your time creating a beautiful flower garden, or a vegetable garden to enjoy fresh vegetables, you don't want it eaten or dug up by the local wildlife. The quick blasts of water can typically shoot for a distance of up to 1000 square feet to cover a large area. Most systems require a lithium, alkaline, or 9-volt battery which can usually last for up to six months of use.

Designed for efficiency and ease of use, these systems are the perfect solution for keeping the neighbor's dog from fertilizing your yard. Simply attach your garden hose into the adapter of the sprinkler, and drive the 12-17 inch typical spike on many versions of motion detection sprinkler systems.

How They Work

Sudden noise, unexpected movement, and a shot of water, isn't something a cat, dog, squirrel, deer, birds, or any other trespasser who may be digging up your flowers and eating your carrots, will not forget very easily. Most consumers who review these products state that most intruders get the message the first time, yet many have to test it out more than once before giving up and going elsewhere.

Adjustments can be made on height, distance, and arc of water, making a motion detection sprinkler great for different sizes of animals. Not only do these systems work on gardens, they work well for keeping pests out of other areas as well. Some of these could include keeping birds away from swimming pools, ponds, and outdoor water gardens.


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