How to Repair the Heads on a Toro Lawn Sprinkler

Darin McGilvra

Toro lawn sprinklers are commonly used in residential lawns in automatic watering systems. These save the home owner time and aggravation from trying to water by hand and they save on water as well.

When the sprinkler begins to leak or is damaged by a lawn mower, this usually means that part or all of the sprinkler head needs to be replaced. If the nozzle is the only part damaged, then you can just replace the nozzle. Otherwise, you will need to replace the entire sprinkler head.

Cap Replacement

  1. Pry up the nozzle with the screwdriver and pull up the pop-up head with your fingers.

  2. Hold on to the pop-up head with one hand and unscrew the nozzle with the other. Don't let go of the pop-up head, because it may be difficult to pull it up again without a nozzle.

  3. Remove the old plastic screen and replace it with a new one. The screen keeps dirt from entering your sprinkler system. The nozzle holds it in place, so it should just lift out with the nozzle removed.

  4. Screw on the new nozzle, but don't let go of the pop-up head.

  5. Adjust the spray pattern of the nozzle to fit your needs. This is done various ways depending on the type of nozzle. The new nozzle will come with instructions on how to adjust it.

  6. Turn on the sprinklers to test the repaired sprinkler.

  7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 until the sprinkler is adjusted and working correctly.

Head Replacement

  1. Start digging by cutting straight into the turf with the shovel several inches from the sprinkler head. Make a complete circle around the head if a sidewalk or driveway is not in the way. Pull out the sod and set it off to the side. Try to keep it in just one or two pieces.

  2. Continue digging the hole. Dig deep enough to expose at least 1 inch of the pipe the head is connected to. The trowel may be easier to use to dig with because of the tight confines of the hole.

  3. Unscrew the head from the pipe.

  4. Turn on the water for several seconds to flush out the pipe.

  5. Screw the new head onto the pipe.

  6. Turn on the water to test the sprinkler. Watch for any major leaks.

  7. Make sure the sprinkler is straight by using the level in two perpendicular directions.

  8. Fill in the dirt and periodically check that the sprinkler remains level. Use your foot to tamp the dirt down before replacing the sod.

  9. Adjust the nozzle on the sprinkler (See steps 5 through 7 in Nozzle Replacement).


Use the same model of sprinkler for replacement or at least make sure they are the same height, otherwise the new sprinkler won't lie flush with the ground.


Don't dig too aggressively around the sprinkler, especially as you get to the bottom. The sprinkler usually is connected to an elbow joint, so the horizontally running PVC water pipe is not very deep. A shovel can dig into it and cause more repair headaches.