Lawn aeration and sprinkler system

I live in zone 7b with heavy clay soil. I have to aerate my lawn may be next year. I have sprinkler system in my yard and the builder has done an awful job. You never know where you're going to dig and find a water pipe. So I was wondering if there's a safe way to aerate my lawn without bursting any of them. I was reading old posts about core aerators and I figure it may cut through these pipes.
Is there a manual way of aerating the lawn where I can be more watchful? My lawn is not very big. About 5000 sqft or so and I'm more concerned about the front yard which is about 2000 sqft.
Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
ted wrote:

I think if the system was installed in accordance with your city/county code the pipes should be deep enough that the core aerator shouldn't bother them, just dont run over the sprinkler heads.
--
Travis in Shoreline Washington

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

OP here.. So according to typical city code, how deep should the pipes be? and how deep will the core aerator dig?
Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Most towns don't have a code that covers irrigation systems. According to Hunter the min dept for the pipe should be 5 inches. Most core aerators wont't go down more than 2-2.5 inches. Once in a while, when mine is done, the may pull out a 3 - 4 incher plug based on how moist the soil is. I know my irrigation pipes are not down that deep, especially in spots where there a significant grade change. I had my lawn areated 2 times a year, and they have yet to hit a pipe. I flag the sprinkler heads.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'm only concerned about the sprinkler system. May be I should opt for any good manual method to aerate.
does anyone have any suggestions about a good manual aeration method. I heard that the shoes are useless. Since we're talking about a small area I was wondering if there are any alternatives to core aerator machine.
Another question I have is when is it a good time to do? The lawn is 3 years old and we have clay soil (zone 7b/8a).
Thanks for suggestions.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ted,
Any manual method worth its salt is going to give you the same results as the core aerator. Aerators using the thin spindles don't do much good. Your sprinkler system pipes should be safe. As another poster said, flag the sprinkler heads and give them a wide berth when aerating.
Regards,
Joe Morris

to
done,
know
there
they
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.