An oscillating sprinkler is a versatile gardening tool for homeowners who love maintaining a lush lawn with little time and energy. Since picking up an oscillating sprinkler might be confusing for new farmers, this in-depth review of the best oscillating sprinkler items will cover the highlighted features, along with their pros and cons.
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Top 7 Best Oscillating Sprinkler on the Market 2022
|Product Image||Product Name||Features||Price|
|Melnor XT4200M XT||Best Adjustable Oscillating Sprinkler||See latest Price|
|Brizer Oscillating Lawn Sprinkler||Best For The Money||See latest Price|
|Melnor 65078-AMZ XT Turbo||Best Oscillating Sprinkler With Timer||See latest Price|
|Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16||Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Low Water Pressure||See latest Price|
|Eden 94115 Metal 2-Way||Best Metal Oscillating Sprinkler||See latest Price|
|Orbit 56761||Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Medium-sized Gardens||See latest Price|
|GARDENA ZoomMaxx||Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Small Lawn||See latest Price|
In-depth 7 Top Rated Oscillating Sprinkler Reviews
1. Melnor XT4200M – Best Adjustable Oscillating Sprinkler
Melnor XT4200M is the first and also the best adjustable oscillating sprinkler that you should look for when building a watering system for your flowerbed or yard.
This sprinkler can cover an area of up to 4,200 square feet with 20 rubber nozzles. With Twin touch and the Zoom controls, you can adjust the coverage of the sprinkler to water the newly seeded lawn or the whole flowerbed. Therefore, you can save a huge amount of water and time in the long run.
If you don’t have much time to take care of your green corner, or you are often far away from home, you can purchase the 2-Way version with Timer. The timer will automatically work at a certain time of the day.
A small pitfall of products from the Melnor sprinkler line is that its base might be made of plastic. This plastic base cannot withstand harsh weather conditions compared to platinum or metal. In this case, pick up this Melnor XT4200 metal 3-way is a wise way to lengthen its lifespan.
2. Brizer Oscillating Lawn Sprinkler – Best For The Money
Since dedicated plants need a more complicated watering system to keep them thrive all year long, the Brizer sprinkler is a handy gardening tool for first-time homeowners who only need to water small plants in the front or back yard.
Compared to the above powerful models, this sprinkler offers a gentle, soft flow, which is sufficient for small plants and flowers like roses in an area up to 3,000 feet.
You can adjust the spray in 4 options – left, right, narrow width, or full width. Along with 15 nozzles, this package also includes a cleaning tool to help you maintain an even water flow.
With a weight of only 1.05 pounds, this Brizer sprinkler is super lightweight and can easily be mounted or unmounted anywhere you like. I think this oscillating sprinkler is good enough for your basic needs with an affordable price tag.
3. Melnor 65078-AMZ XT Turbo – Best Oscillating Sprinkler With Timer
Melnor 65078 provides more options to maintain good moisture for your yard. You can choose the oscillating sprinkler only, or the sprinkler with accessories.
This Melnor XT Tubor oscillating sprinkler can spread water up to 4,500 square feet. Notably, it can fulfill the watering demand of odd-shaped spaces. This is a strong plus for professional farmers.
You can unleash your creativity in re-landscaping with your outdoor space with little worry of maintaining. If you don’t want to wake up early in the morning to water your plants, the timer will do it for you.
This functional timer is easy to set cycles, watering time, how long, how often for each program. What is better is its “rain delay program”, ensuring no unnecessary water is used. Without a doubt, this item is considered the best oscillating sprinkler with timer on this list.
4. Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16 – Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Low Water Pressure
While almost all sprinklers work best only in high-pressure water, Aqua Joe SJI-OMS16 is born as the best oscillating sprinkler for low water pressure. In other words, The Aqua Joe is suitable for those who don’t need a complicated adjusting system.
This sprinkler features a steel base, with the same durability as some high-end models. It can cover an area of 3,600 square feet, which is sufficient for medium-sized lawns.
While this sprinkler does not offer advanced functions like expensive items, it is still equipped with two-side controls that allow you to change the range adjustments.
Besides, the turbo drive motor along with a leak-resistant connection ensures a powerful, smooth, and even water flow goes to the sprinkler.
5. Eden 94115 Metal 2-Way – Best Metal Oscillating Sprinkler
The 20-nozzle version of Eden 94115 offers you superior durability and performance.
First, this version is made of 100% heavy-duty metal with a strong metal sled, which can maintain a great appearance against harsh weather conditions compared to plastic ones. That’s why it is listed as the best metal oscillating sprinkler.
Second, this oscillating sprinkler allows you full water flow control. At 40 P.S.I (Dynamic) in a wind-free environment, the rectangle-shaped spray pattern can reach maximum coverage of 4,300 square feet. What’s more, you can also regulate the water pressure easily with the flow control knob.
6. Orbit 56761 – Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Medium-sized Gardens
Not too little, not too much, Orbit 56761 sprinkler is ideal for small and medium-sized lawns with a maximum area of 3,600 square feet. That means you can cover a partial or a full range without watering for other’s property.
Its 17 metal nozzles ensure an even water distribution in all corners of your flowerbed or garden.
Moreover, the wide, innovative base allows you to reposition the sprinkler to any area while reducing tipping. Additionally, the motor is proven as quiet and smooth. Thus, you can let the machine run at any time of the day without disturbing your neighbors.
7. GARDENA ZoomMaxx – Best Oscillating Sprinkler for Small Lawn
GARDENA ZoomMaxx is the best oscillating sprinkler for small lawn. Indeed, this sprinkler can serve from the smallest area of 76 square feet and up to 2,300 square feet, even in irregular-shaped areas.
This GARDENA oscillating sprinkler offers you a fully adjustable power like no others on the market. Equipped with 16 rubber nozzles, it provides you flexibility and ensures a solid water flow. The big sled base keeps the sprinkler stay firmly on the ground, even in high water pressure.
Besides, this sprinkler is small and lightweight (only 2.71 pounds). Thus, you will waste no time for re-assembly or disassembly when you need to re-landscaping your garden or move to a new house.
It is also quiet so you can operate it late nights or early mornings without waking up your neighbors.
How to Choose the Best Oscillating Sprinkler?
Lawn Size & Sprinkler Coverage
Without a doubt, the size of your lawn is the most important thing that you have to take into consideration when you buy a new sprinkler.
When you know the exact size of the place, you’ll know the amount of coverage that your new sprinkler would need to have. It will limit the number of times that you have to shift the sprinkler around in order to cover the whole yard.
Measuring lawn size is quite simple. The first step is to measure the length and width of the yard. Then, multiply the two numbers together. So, let’s say your yard is a perfectly square parcel that’s 50 feet long and 50 feet wide. You would need a sprinkler that can cover 2,500 square feet at a minimum.
You may have to buy several sprinklers to cover a large lawn.
A square or rectangular yard is the best case scenario here as oscillating sprinklers have a square-shaped coverage area. If your yard doesn’t have a symmetric rectangular shape, it’s possible that you would have to buy multiple sprinklers to reach every corner.
Last but not least, keep in mind that a sprinkler’s total coverage will depend on the water pressure. If pressure is too low, it won’t reach the maximum coverage area written on the box. Usually, if your home’s water system has a pressure below 30 PSI, consider getting a water pump. 30 PSI is lower than most sprinklers’ pressure requirements.
Material & Durability
Oscillating sprinklers can either be made from plastic or from metal, each material has its special strengths and weaknesses.
All metal oscillating sprinklers are known for their high durability. They can withstand strong impacts like from a soccer ball or a baseball without breaking. Some are strong enough to not be damaged after being bumped by a riding lawn-mower. In return, metal sprinklers are expensive and are susceptible to corrosion and rust.
Plastic wrinklers are cheaper, but they aren’t as durable as their metallic counterparts.
Aside from the material, the design of the sprinkler also decides its overall durability. Oscillating sprinklers have a mechanism to move the spraying head back and forth. In high-end models, this mechanism is hidden inside of an enclosure to protect it from damage. Such models can last a lot longer than ones with the mechanism exposed.
Sprinklers with open drives are more vulnerable to clogging and jamming due to debris and dirt. When that happens, the sprinkler will stop oscillating until you fix it up. Therefore, during bouts of bad weather, you should pack up the open drive sprinklers and stow them away. That will extend their longevity.
Hard water can negatively affect the durability of your sprinkler, too. After some time running on hard water, mineral deposits can form inside the sprinkler and clog it up. You must unclog the sprinkler by cleaning off these deposits with special cleaners for it to work again.
If you want to prevent this from happening again, we recommend investing in a water softener. A softener can remove the minerals inside of the water, eliminating the risk of mineral scale build-ups.
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Most oscillating sprinklers on the market will be able to provide their maximum coverage when water pressure is at 30 PSI. This fits the water pressure envelope in most big cities, which often goes between 30 and 50 PSI.
If the water pressure in your home’s pipes isn’t high enough, the sprinkler’s coverage won’t be high. As a matter of fact, if it is too low, the oscillating mechanism wouldn’t even work at all and the sprinkler won’t turn.
In this scenario, you have two options. You can either pick oscillating sprinklers that are specifically designed to work at low pressure. Alternatively, you can install a water pump to boost the water pressure in your home.
However, don’t go overboard. Too high water pressure is also bad for your sprinkler. When water pressure is too high, the water will mist as it leaves the spraying nozzle. To combat this problem, some models come with pressure regulators that can reduce water pressure down to more ideal levels.
Water Spray (Number of Jets)
By design, an oscillating sprinkler will have a series of water jets arranged along an oscillating bar. These jets shoot water into the air and irrigate your lawn.
Most oscillating sprinklers on the market will have between 16 to 20 jets, with the latter providing the most coverage. The jets are set at different angles to provide more even coverage to the lawn. They also oscillate back and forth to deliver water to the whole area.
Certain models have spray adjusters that you can use to control the oscillation angle of each sprinkler. Premium sprinklers even have adjusters that you can use to change the width and size of the coverage area.
No matter what model you choose, it’s undeniable that sprinklers use a lot of water. An average model can consume up to 17 gallons of water a minute. As a result, picking something that’s water-efficient can save you a lot of money and reduce water usage.
Oscillating sprinklers are often highly precise. They can be positioned and adjusted to target only a very specific area. For example, you only want your lawn to be watered, not the driveway.
By positioning the sprinkler so that it avoids the driveway and only focuses on the lawn, you can prevent wastage.
Many models on the market come with a built-in timer that automatically shuts down the sprinkler at a predetermined time. If you don’t have a full-fledged sprinkler control system, these timers can help you schedule watering sessions and reduce water consumption.
Extra Features (Convenience)
Manufacturers have loaded sprinklers with extra features to help them stand out on the market. For example, they can give you adapters that can be attached to the hose end, allowing you to attach and detach the sprinkler more quickly. When you have to store the sprinkler, these adapters also eliminate the need to fiddle with the connector.
To prevent debris and dirt from falling into the sprinkler’s nozzles and clogging them up, there are usually strainers integrated into the system.
Premium oscillating sprinklers can have a flow control system that you can use to precisely control the amount of water that the sprinkler uses.
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FAQs about Oscillating Sprinkler
1. How long should you run an oscillating sprinkler?
Most grass will need about 1 to 2 inches of water every week. With the normal capacity of an oscillating sprinkler, that takes roughly an hour.
If you are unsure about the capacity of your sprinkler, I have one tip for you to figure out yourself. Place a shallow can under the coverage of your sprinkler, then turn it on for 15 minutes. Check back on it and measure the water in the can.
It also depends on the climate of where you live. If you live in a wet climate, you may not have to water as much. At a drier place where your soil can dry up quickly, you may need to leave the oscillating sprinkler on for another hour. This will give more time for the water to penetrate into the soil.
2. How do oscillating sprinklers work?
The oscillating sprinkler has an aluminum bar with many holes on it. The water going through the tube to the bar, under high pressure will be pushed through the holes. This creates small powerful sprays of water that can travel in distance.
The water force can also help the tube rotate from left to right, making up the sprinkler’s ability to cover such a large area.
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3. How to set/adjust oscillating sprinkler?
There are 4 spray patterns on an oscillating sprinkler. You can switch the pattern simply by turning the dial left, right, at the center, or full. There are usually symbols on top of the dial to indicate which pattern is on.
On the “Right” pattern, your sprinkler will only water from where it is placed vertically to its right side on your lawn. Imagine a fan that only waves 90 degrees to its right. Exactly the same but in the opposite direction on the “Left” pattern.
At the “Center” option, the sprinkler doesn’t wave completely to the right nor left. Instead, it stays in the middle and only moves within a few feet to both sides.
Lastly, the “Full” pattern allows you to have maximum coverage of both sides from where the sprinkler is placed.
You can also adjust the travel distance of the water by changing the flow of the source water.
4. How to clean oscillating sprinklers?
After a while of using, an oscillating sprinkler can accumulate dirt and grime. Therefore, regular cleaning is necessary to keep the sprinkler function effectively.
The inlet filter can be rinsed through. For the nozzles, there is a small Cleaning pin tool attached to the end of the sprinkler. You can unscrew it, then poke into the blocked nozzles. After that, rinse through the bar before putting the pin back.
You should drain the sprinkler each time you use it and don’t let the water freeze inside during the cold season.
5. How many sprinkler heads can you put on one line?
A single oscillating line can hold around 16 to 20 sprinkler heads. The more heads there are, the wider the coverage area of the sprinkler would be.
6. How deep should sprinkler pipes be buried?
In most places, burying the sprinkler pipes around 8 to 12 inches into the ground will suffice. Do note that these figures are measured from the top of the pipes to the surface. So, when you dig the trenches to fill in the pipes, take into account the diameter of the water pipes, too. You’ll have to dig slightly deeper.
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My top pick
Melnor XT4200M is the best oscillating sprinkler in all cases if you are asking me which item worth your investment on this top-rated list.
If you need an oscillating sprinkler for a specific purpose (like big trees, small areas, with low prices, etc.), please refer to the remaining ones to pick up the most appropriate item for you. Happy gardening!