The Best Sprinkler: How to Water your Garden Without Effort

To have a beautiful and healthy lawn, you have to distribute water over it reasonably. While manual methods are ineffective and time-consuming, the best sprinkler will help you finish the job effectively and effortlessly.

However, before you can pick the right product, learn which one is the most suitable solution for your thirsty yard, and how to know that first!

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The Best Sprinkler: Comparison Table

Editor's Check
Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler with TwinTouch Width Control & Flow Control, waters up to...*
Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler with Day & Night Detection Modes,Black*
Best Selling
Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16 Indestructible Metal Base Oscillating Sprinkler with Adjustable Spray,...*
Dimensions
6.7 x 17.3 x 3.5 inches
10 x 5 x 24.5 inches
15.9 x 5.2 x 2.4 inches
Weight
1.12 pounds
2 pounds
1.65 pounds
Coverage Area
4200 square feet
1600 square feet
3600 square feet
Price
$53.73
$69.99
$32.81
Prime
Customer's Rating
Highlight Feature
3-Way Adjustments and Infinity Drive Turbo Motor
Three Detection Modes and Humane Pest Deterrents
16 clog-resistant and adjustable nozzles
Editor's Check
Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler with TwinTouch Width Control & Flow Control, waters up to...*
Dimensions
6.7 x 17.3 x 3.5 inches
Weight
1.12 pounds
Coverage Area
4200 square feet
Price
$53.73
Prime
Customer's Rating
Highlight Feature
3-Way Adjustments and Infinity Drive Turbo Motor
Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler with Day & Night Detection Modes,Black*
Dimensions
10 x 5 x 24.5 inches
Weight
2 pounds
Coverage Area
1600 square feet
Price
$69.99
Prime
Customer's Rating
Highlight Feature
Three Detection Modes and Humane Pest Deterrents
Best Selling
Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16 Indestructible Metal Base Oscillating Sprinkler with Adjustable Spray,...*
Dimensions
15.9 x 5.2 x 2.4 inches
Weight
1.65 pounds
Coverage Area
3600 square feet
Price
$32.81
Prime
Customer's Rating
Highlight Feature
16 clog-resistant and adjustable nozzles

The Best Sprinkler For You In 2020

Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler - The Best Overall

The Melnor XT4200-IN features smooth operating tabs that allow users to control the watering length from 10 to 75 feet, which is among the widest range oscillating sprinklers can deliver at the moment.

Besides, the Melnor's exclusive one-touch adjustment technology enables the watering width to range from 10 up to 53 feet. You can also adjust the pattern to move from the left, the right, or the center.

The built-in flow control dial permits minimum customizations to fit your needs and avoid wasting water. Simultaneously, the heavy-duty tube will be full of water when in use to balance the oscillating sprinkler and offers a uniform water distribution smoothly.

Another feature that customers appreciate is the infinity turbo motor that stabilizes the sprinkler operation at both high and low water pressures. That motor combined with transmission gearing will improve not only the capacity but also the longevity of the sprinkler.

Last but not least, the Melnor company provides a limited lifetime warranty on this product, so customers can totally spend their money with peace of mind.

Pros
  • 3-way control for higher accuracy
  • Infinity drive turbo motor
  • Straightforward one-touch controls
  • Massive coverage area
  • Fine-tune to optimize watering pattern
Cons
  • Waste quite much water

Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion-Activated Sprinkler - The Best Motion-Activated Sprinkler

This is the only lawn sprinkler among the best sprinklers for gardens that can deter insects with 24-hour detection options, allowing you to have various settings for different times of the day.

The 120-degree arc motion sensor can be set to operate only at night/ only at day, or all the time. In other words, you will have control over how and when your garden is watered.

Thanks to the smart sensing technology, you will manage to save both battery and water while still keeping your flower bed fresh, healthy, and safe from unwanted pests.

With solely 4 AA batteries or more than 7.500 activation cycles, the Orbit 62100 impact sprinkler can reach as far as 35 feet with a half-hour timed watering option.

Furthermore, the heavy-duty construction with brass hose connection and metal dual step spike ensures maximum sustainability. So if you do not intend to buy new sprinklers frequently, this one is for you.

Pros
  • Can deter pests
  • Superb coverage
  • Can be connected to other impact sprinklers for massive gardens
  • There are three detection modes and both day and night settings
Cons
  • This impact sprinkler is somewhat pricey

Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16 Indestructible Metal Base Oscillating Sprinkler - The Best Oscillating Sprinkler

While it stays in a stationary position and this oscillating offers an impressive coverage range of up to 3600 square feet, which is sufficient for any average garden.

To conserve water effectively, the manufacturer Aqua Joe integrated a patented leak-resistant design that hardly any other product can feature.

What's more, all of its 16 nozzles are engineered to be clog-free. You do not need to waste time supervising the activity of the lawn sprinkler or spend time removing debris or dirt that clog up the nozzles.

When you want to change among spray patterns, these intelligent nozzles permit you to do so without effort, too.

Since the product comes with a generous 2-year warranty, you can feel secure that the brand will take the responsibility to tackle any hassles arising.

Pros
  • Come with a 2-year warranty
  • Anti-leak design
  • Sturdy construction
  • 16 clog-free nozzles
  • Adjustable water spray patterns
Cons
  • The end piece becomes loose quickly

BOBOO Garden Sprinkler 360 Degree Rotating Lawn Sprinkler - The Best For Coverage

If you have an abnormally-shaped lawn, this three-arm rotary sprinkler with a 360-degree rotation is what you need. The sprinkler will give your garden a maximum water exposure. And the BOBOO Garden Sprinkler is one of the best lawn sprinklers in this category.

It offers a groundbreaking means to modify the distance and patterns of the water. You can easily combine the connector and the rotary triple arm nozzle with the base. Just have to link faucet, turn the switch on and start watering your garden.

The sprinkler is very easy to move, and it’s made of high-quality ABS plastic, which is corrosion-resistant. One of the advantages is its water-saving system; you will get a professional sprinkler without wasting a drop.

If you are wondering if there are sprinkler modes, there are!

The angle of the watering can be set to 90 degrees for more compact or 45 degrees for larger areas. Adjust the nozzles to spray in every direction and to customize your watering.

Another great thing is that this sprinkler is very fun for the kids. They will enjoy playing and having fun in the summer months.

There are not many disadvantages, and the only one is that the sprinkler is made of plastic and can break much faster than the metal ones.

Pros
  • 360- degree rotation
  • Lightweight
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • It’s made of plastic

Raigro 360 Degree Pulsating Lawn and Garden Sprinkler - The Best Pulsating Sprinkler

The Raigro 360 Degree is built with rubber-coated metal to reinforce durability as well as stability. This perfect combination protects the lawn sprinkler from rust and other wear and tear over time.

Gardeners also benefit from the Raigro 360 Degree with its versatile water pattern options as well as the capability to cover a huge space.

Like the Gilmour 996D, this lawn sprinkler can be connected with a number of sprinklers to multiply the coverage area of 45 to 85 feet in diameter by many times.

A big plus for this is that it is compatible with all conventional garden hose threads. Also, the metal sprinkler head is rust-resistant and much more rugged than plastic models.

Using this tool might be rather tricky at first, but once you get how the mobile parts work, everything is not so complicated.

A noticeable downside that we found out at the testing session is the slow speed of the lawn sprinkler. The water comes out at the speed of a snail, so you have to give the lawn sprinkler more time to water your lawn thoroughly.

Pros
  • Flexible design
  • Fit all garden hose threads
  • Can be daisy-chained easily
  • Ultra-durable
Cons
  • A bit slow

Nelson 818653-1001 Traveling Sprinkler - The Best Traveling Sprinkler

Apart from the chip-resistant hard paint outside, Nelson 818653-1001 has cast iron wheels, frame, and traveling sprinkler head that can endure extreme use and weather.

These solid external parts are good compensation for the flimsy plastic gears inside the lawn sprinkler.

Most noteworthy, the garden sprinkler provides a significant coverage area of 13.500 square feet, which is dramatically larger than the majority of sprinklers available in the current market.

One more thing that interests us is the outstanding 200-foot travel distance and the exceptional 55-foot splash diameter. More fabulous, the lawn sprinkler provides users with different settings to adjust these specifications as well.

The traveling speed adjustment comes in handy in most cases. There are models that move too rapidly and leave many spots in your garden unwatered, but Nelson 818653-1001 traveling sprinklers eliminate this matter easily with slower speed settings.

One last thing, owing to the auto-shutdown feature, you can completely rely on the ability to work alone on the lawn sprinkler rather than having to spend time supervising it.

Pros
  • Great durability
  • Wide coverage
  • Auto-shutoff function
  • Variable traveling speed
Cons
  • The gears, sprockets, and wheel caps are flimsy.

Blisstime 237R-3011 Lawn Sprinkler​ - The Best Rotary sprinkler

Depending on the water pressure you set up, the Blisstime 237R-3011 has a spray area of between 60 and 70 square meters and watering distance ranging from 26 up to 32.8 feet.

In fact, there are two spray molds: the 90°mold keeps the lawn sprinkler rotating bit by bit with a spray diameter of between 4 and 6m; the 45°mold will make it spin much faster with a spray diameter from 8 to 10m.

As the best rotary sprinkler, it can perform a complete 360-degree rotation. Hence, it is very easy and time-saving to use.

Users can install this sprinkler system in their garden in several minutes and leave it to operate on itself. There is no need to change its positions because the spraying pattern is a full round.

We find this rotary sprinkler very ideal for watering gardens, lawns, and crops as well as offer your children a funny and cool summer.

Pros
  • Double water inlet
  • Premium ABS engineering plastic base
  • Adjustable watering patterns
  • Water-saving design
Cons
  • No warranty
  • Not durable

Dramm 15024 Metal Base - Best sprinkler for Lawns

The Dramm 15024 features a sturdy metal base, and an easy-to-use plastic turret that enables you to dial among nine different patterns:

  • Half circle
  • Small circle
  • Big circle
  • Half square
  • Square
  • Rounded square
  • Narrow rectangle
  • Rectangle
  • Outer ring

We bet that you will surely find a suitable pattern for your weird lawn!

Although the brass hose connector is quite sustainable, we found it somewhat challenging to grip and connect to a hose. Nonetheless, a huge bonus is a sieve and a washer inside this hose connector. They will protect moving parts from debris and dirt efficiently.

Selecting your desired spray pattern is simple, too. Just match the pattern you wish to apply with the arrow on top of the hose connector.

Beware that there is no on/off switch on the garden sprinkler, so users need to opt the spray pattern before they turn on the faucet to avoid getting wet.

Pros
  • 9 different watering patterns
  • The hose connector has a sieve and a washer
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Durable metal base
Cons
  • There is no on/off switch

Hunter Hunter PGP-ADJ-B 4" Pop-Up Rotor Sprinkler - The Best Water Patterns

The last product on our list is a beast on ultra-large lawns. The Hunter PGP-ADJ-B brings about a massive spraying range of as far as 20 feet at the maximum water pressure and settings.

Plus, its well-balanced system will make sure water is distributed evenly all over that huge space.

A unique feature is that the incorporated gear-drive is water-lubricated, which smoothens the lawn sprinkler operation all the time.

When it comes to using it, this garden sprinkler has an adjustment tool for gardeners to switch between orange, green, and blue nozzles to select various water patterns that suit your needs. The arc settings permit you to control the spraying angle from 40 to 360 degrees.

Nevertheless, we think that the installation process will be a bit tricky for non-technical users, and there is also no user manual included in the box.

Pros
  • Include nozzle racks and an adjustment tool
  • Even coverage
  • Water lubricated gear-drive
  • Long-lasting rubber cover
Cons
  • Difficult to use

Buyer's Guide: How to Choose A Good Sprinkler

1. Types of Sprinkler

best automatic sprinkler system

Stationary Sprinklers

As its name suggests, this type of sprinkler stays in a fixed position and sprays water over your garden depending on its capacity. If you have a smaller garden and a tight budget, it is for you.

Oscillating Sprinkler

Oscillating sprinklers rotates and sprinkles water at the same time, thus covering a wider area of from 1500 to 4000 square feet. So, if you have a medium-sized garden at this range, you should use them.

Pulsating Lawn Sprinklers (Impact Sprinklers)

These sprinklers come in two styles, namely spiked and rolling. Their sprinkling pattern is round-shaped, creating a water gush bursting all over the yard.

They are ideal for irrigating massive areas of up to 4000 - 7000 square feet.

Rotary-type Lawn Sprinklers

Rotary-type lawn sprinklers water your garden in a rotating manner. Nonetheless, they manage to water not only flat gardens but also curved yards efficiently.

If you require high pressure to satisfy your enormous lawn that is around 5k to 7k square feet, you should buy this type.

Traveling Lawn Sprinklers

A traveling sprinkler will travel around vast yards and distribute water uniformly on its path. Hence, they are often used in ultra-wide golf courses or parks.

Yet, if your garden is larger than 5000 square feet, you can invest in them.


2. Settings

Best lawn sprinklers feature various settings for spraying patterns, water pressure, timing, and so on. Depending on your needs, select products that have corresponding settings.

For instance, purchase sprinklers that have night settings if you want to water your garden at night. Or if you are living in an area that has water restrictions, opt for something that can save your water, such as a garden sprinkler with an automatic shut-off feature.


3. Range

Each lawn sprinkler for gardening comes with different water pressure and range. Therefore, you should measure your lawn's dimensions and check the capacity of the garden sprinkler to make sure its range and water pressure is neither excessive or insufficient.

Otherwise, you can go for smart sprinklers with adjustable capacity.


4. Hose End Coupling

best sprinkler amazon

Ensure the connector between your hose and your sprinkler can fit tight. A bigger coupling with a slip-resistant surface or knobs is more straightforward to use.

Besides, there ought to be a washer, a strainer or sieve inside the connector to prevent debris from clogging up the nozzles.

Although plastic couplings are prevalent, you should invest in metal ones because their threads are more durable, and thus, leaks are less prone to happen.

And search for a connector that swivels when connected; this will help the sprinkler be flat without fighting with the hose.

To keep your lawn sprinkler lay flat without hassle, seek connectors that swivel when connected to your hose.


5. Materials

Personally, we recommend a sprinkler with all parts from the nozzles, hose, to connection points and moving parts made from metal.

Although it is heavier a bit, it will not require you too much effort to move or adjust while it is much more durable in comparison with plastic models.

FAQs About Sprinkler

1. What is Good Sprinkler?

If you want to have a general criterion to assess whether a sprinkler system is good enough or not, here it is:

  • Materials: It is best to be made of 100% rust-resistant metal or at least high-quality plastics.
  • Capacity: A good lawn sprinkler should have a decent range and water pressure.
  • Hose Compatibility: Make sure that it is not too picky to fit standard hoses 
  • Features: Although a sprinkler can be considered to be good without extra features, we recommend ones with adjustable spraying patterns/water pressure/range, or on/off timer, etc.
  • Warranty: Of course, a fine product should come with a minimum warranty of one year or longer.

2. What Sprinkler Covers the Most Area?

As we explained about traveling sprinklers in the "Types of Sprinkler" section above, a traveling sprinkler has the widest coverage areas. It can travel anywhere your hose system is installed.

Therefore, theoretically, a traveling sprinkler has no restricted coverage area.


3. What is the Best Oscillating Sprinkler?

Coverage Area

As we mentioned above, oscillating sprinklers are intended for medium-sized yards, and the largest coverage area you can achieve is 4000 square feet.

best sprinkler controller

Number of Holes

Try to buy an oscillating sprinkler that has the most holes if you need to water a massive area. If you have a little garden and want to save a lot of water, go for one with fewer holes. In general, the standard number of holes should be 18.

Durability

It is a good idea to invest in an oscillating sprinkler that is made out of metal such as cast iron or aluminum instead of plastic. These materials make up the best garden sprinklers that have the capability to stand up against the wear and tear of external impacts.

Ease of Use

The most easy-to-use oscillating sprinklers only require you to connect the hose to, reposition and switch on.

Besides, a timer that automatically turns on/off the garden sprinkler will also ease your burden.

Warranty

It goes without saying that the best sprinklers for lawn must come with an excellent warranty. You should purchase an oscillating sprinkler with 2-3 years of warranty.


4. How Long Should You Water Your Lawn With an Oscillating Sprinkler?

best sprinklers for lawn

The majority of grasses require around 2 inches of water weekly. Nonetheless, you had better supply this amount of water at once to facilitate their roots to develop more deeply.

So, we have a simple formula as follows:

If your watering tool sprays 2 inches of water hourly, you should water your lawn for a consecutive hour once per week.

If its capacity is one inch or three inches or so on, you can multiply or divide the watering duration as long as the sprinkler system can provide enough water to moisturize the first two inches under the ground.

You can inspect whether the water has seeped into the underground as deep as 2 inches or not by using a soil sampling probe or tube.

You can start with an hour of watering per week for two to three weeks. If your lawn is green and fresh, the current watering schedule works perfectly for you.

Depending on the weather, you can tweak the operation duration of the sprinkler. For example, if it is hot, give your grass more water. Vice versa, if it is often rainy, you can reduce the amount of time the sprinkler runs.

Conclusion 

Among so many excellent products, we choose the Melnor XT4200-IN to be the best garden sprinkler. It is very accurate, easy to use, durable, offers wide coverage, and can be fine-tuned with multiple configurations.

The only disadvantage is that it wastes a bit of water, but overall its quality is still incomparable.

Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler with TwinTouch Width Control & Flow Control, waters up to...*
  • Large volume tube, Maximum pressure (PSI):100
  • 18 Precision rubber nozzles with clog resistant design even at high pressures
  • Clog resistant desgin and built-in flow control
  • Turbo-drive motor for extra long life
  • Patented one-touch width adjustable

If you have an unusual-shaped garden or your lawn requires specific features, you can still buy another sprinkler that you find the most suitable. It will be the best sprinkler in your own case.

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