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Irrigation Product Listings & Reviews
Toro Stream Rotor Pop-Ups
The stream rotors, sometimes called "multi-stream sprinklers", are beyond a doubt the most beautiful sprinklers to watch operate. They feature rotating fingers of water which circle one after the other, always in the same direction. If you want a quiet, graceful, sprinkler, this is it. If you want a low maintenance, trouble-free sprinkler, keep looking. If you have clean, sand-free water, and you don't mind replacing the nozzle and arc plates every few years the stream rotors are fine. Stream rotors are available in both retail models and commercial models. Commercial models are generally only available through specialty irrigation supply stores.
- 300-00 series, 2 3/4" pop-up (commercial model)
- 300-10 series, shrub style (commercial model)
- 300-12 series, 11 3/4" high pop-up (commercial model)
- 340-00 series, 3 3/4" pop-up (commercial model)
- 340-10 series, shrub style (commercial model)
- 340-12 series, 11 3/4" pop-up (commercial model)
- 53757 model, 3 3/4" pop-up (retail package, same as 340-00)
- 53758 model, shrub style (retail package, same as 340-10)
- 53759 model, 11 3/4" pop-up (retail package, same as 340-12)
- 53278 model, discontinued
- 53279 model, discontinued
One of the big advantages of all stream rotors is that they have the best matched precipitation rates of any sprinkler due to the way they work. This means there is no need to use different nozzles when changing arcs. The pop-up models have a strong retraction spring and a good-quality wiper seal on the riser piston. An optional check valve can be installed to prevent low head drainage (the check valve is standard on the 340-00 model). A purple cap ring is available for use with recycled water (the purple color is the universal warning for water that is not safe for human contact.) All of the stream rotors have 3/4 inch female thread inlets. The 11 3/4" pop-up models have a side inlet for use with shallow pipe (warning- using the side inlet makes the sprinkler very hard to remove if you ever need to replacement it, and with a stream rotor you will need to replace it someday!) An internal screen provides some protection against contaminants. However I recommend that you do not rely on this internal screen, if there is dirt in your water you should install a good quality filter on the irrigation water supply.
The arc for all of the Toro stream rotors is determined by an arc-plate, which you install under the nozzle. 9 to 11 plates come with each sprinkler. That's it, you can't set the sprinkler for any other arc. The retail and 340 series come with 9 arc plates: 90°, 112.5°, 135°, 157.5°, 180°, 225°, 270°, and 360° (full circle).
The 53757, 53758 and 53759 retail models only come with the adjustable radius Omni™ nozzle. The radius for the Omni™ nozzle is adjustable from 15 feet up to 28 feet. These retail models are otherwise the same as the 340 series. Both the retail and 340 series have plastic arc-plates.
The 300 and XP-300 series models feature a metal arc-plate, which holds up better (but the nozzle is still plastic, so wear is still an issue.) The 300 series and 340 series can use the optional Omni™ adjustable-radius nozzles. There are also non-adjustable radius nozzles for all the stream rotors, for these you must select a different nozzle for each radius. The radius for the 300 and 340 series runs from 15 feet to 28 feet. For the XP-300 the radius ranges between 28 feet and 37 feet. It all gets rather confusing.
The stream rotors are almost hypnotic to watch when operating, and I do use them for special projects where they will be seen operating. If they are going to only run at night, there are better choices, take a look at the Toro Super 700 rotor. Think of stream rotors as decorative fountains that also water your lawn. If that fits your need, then these are the prettiest sprinklers around! For a homeowner I would recommend that if you want to use the stream rotors, that you use the retail version with the adjustable radius nozzle. It's less confusing and the plastic arc plates are not that much less durable than the metal ones. With either retail or commercial models you should be prepared to replace the sprinklers every 5 years or so, less if you have fine grit in the water. I suggest you do not space the retail stream rotors more than 28 feet apart. I would avoid the XP-300 series as the larger radius will be very susceptible to coverage problems due to wind drift.
Important Design Considerations:
Do not use stream rotors if you have any fine grit in your water supply. The stream rotor has a arc plate that the nozzle turns on, fine grit will act like an abrasive between this plate and the nozzle and will quickly destroy both of them. I strongly recommend you install a filter having a mesh size of 100 or higher on the water supply if you use stream rotors.
DO NOT OVER-SPACE STREAM ROTORS! Keep them at head-to-head, put them even closer together if you have ANY wind at all. Head-to-head means that one sprinkler must spray water all the way to the next sprinkler. They are very unforgiving of poor design practices.
Toro has some really minimal performance data at their website online, at the time I wrote this it could be found here. If you are using the retail versions (models 53757, 53758, 53759), the performance for them is the same as for the 340 series. For performance data on the 300 and XP-300 series see your local Toro Irrigation dealer or call Toro to request a data package: 1-800-367-8676. Keep in mind that Toro Irrigation is a different division of the company than the lawn care products like mowers. Look for a irrigation specialty store that stocks Toro products, they will have a catalog.
For an in-depth description of features found on this and other rotors (like check valves), see the faq on "How to Select the Best Rotor-Type Sprinkler".
Text and Images by Jess Stryker unless noted. Copyright © Jess Stryker, 1997-2011. All rights reserved.