Fun in the Sun: DIY Sprinklers for Kids Made from PVC Pipe

Construction & Contractors Articles

There is something about running wild through spraying water that delights children. While nearly any sprinkler will do, you can create your own sprinkler system to keep your little ones occupied and give them a way to cool off in the summer sun. These easy DIY sprinklers for children are made from PVC pipe found in the plumbing supply aisle at any hardware or home improvement store and are sure to encourage active play in the summer sun.

Square Sprinkler—Great for Toddlers

Don't let the simple design of this sprinkler fool you.  Although it is quick and easy to assemble, it will provide hours of fun for little ones.

You will need four 5-foot sections of ½ PVC pipe, four elbows, one T-joint and one hose connector. You will also need a drill, a PVC cutter, PVC glue and a tape measure.

  1. Cut one of the 5-foot sections in half and insert the T joint and hose connector. Glue these in place and set it aside to dry.
  2. Drill holes along the length of the PVC pipe spaced 3 to 5 inches apart. For best results, angle the holes in different directions, but place all holes along the same side of the pipe. The angle of the hole determines the direction the water will spray when the hose is turned on.
  3. Connect the four sections of PVC pipe with the elbows, using care to position the hose connector so that it is pointing outwards and the drilled holes are directed inward.
  4. Allow the glue to dry thoroughly.
  5. Place the sprinkler system in the desired location for water play. A grassy area works best, as it avoids muddy water and dirty feet.
  6. Attach your garden hose to the hose connector and turn the water on.

Encourage toddlers and young children to run through the water spray, or better yet, set a good example and don your bathing suit and join in on the fun. You can also use sprinkler games to teach little ones how to follow directions and encourage social interaction with their playmates while cooling off in the summer sun.

Mister Jets with Standing Sprinkler—Great for Older Kids

Older children will enjoy a sprinkler with a little more oomph, and that's exactly what this freestanding sprinkler with mister jets provides. You will need two 5-foot sections of ½ inch PVC, one 4-foot section, and four 18-inch sections of PVC, two elbow joints, two T-joints, one hose connector and three end caps. You will also need mister jets and a drill with a bit to match the size for the mister jets.

  1. Draw a line down the center of your PVC pipe to mark the area for the mister jets.
  2. Mark the position for mister jets evenly spacing them along the line you drew on the PVC pipe.
  3. Drill the holes for the mister jets and screw them into the PVC pipe.
  4. Assemble the two 5-foot sections and the 4-foot section to form a U, connecting them with the elbows. Keep the mister jets facing toward the center of the U.
  5. Attach the T joints to the bottom of the sides and add the 18-inch sections for the base of the sprinkler. Position them so that they are perpendicular to the top of the sprinkler.
  6. Cap the ends of these sections, leaving one end open.
  7. Attach the hose connector to the open end of the sprinkler system.
  8. Place the sprinkler in the desired play area and attach the garden hose.
  9. Turn on the water and watch as it creates a magical mist of spraying water sure to please the little ones in your family.

This misting sprinkler is tall enough for older children to enjoy and will even accommodate kids riding bikes. Let little ones use the mister to entertain themselves on hot summer days, or invite the neighborhood kids and make it a play date in the sun.

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