Bert De Winkle: Irrigation Equipment Improvements

Melba, Idaho, dairyman Bert De Winkle had problems getting enough water to his crops. His pumps were running at normal levels, but he was unable to get enough pressure in his linear move irrigation system (Linear). With help from an Idaho Power Agriculture Representative and the Irrigation Efficiency Rewards program, De Winkle successfully retrofitted his equipment and now achieves results he never thought possible.

Existing System

  • 350 acres of irrigated crops
  • 325 horsepower (hp) deep-well and booster pumps, pressurizing the system at 75 pounds of pressure per square inch (psi)
  • Linear operating 440 outlets

What Changes Were Made?

De Winkle and an Idaho Power agriculture representative worked together to determine that he could irrigate successfully and uniformly with an upgraded sprinkler package on the Linear. This energy efficient upgrade qualified as a menu incentive on new nozzles, rotating-type sprinkler heads, and low-pressure regulators under the Irrigation Efficiency Rewards Program. De Winkle’s energy-efficient equipment upgrades included:

  • 15 psi low-pressure regulators
  • Low-pressure spinner/rotator
  • Sprinkler heads
  • New low-flow sprinkler nozzles

What Were the Results?

  • De Winkle will accrue an estimated 44,000 kilowatt-hours per year in energy savings
  • An Idaho Power incentive that paid for nearly 49 percent of the total cost to make the upgrades
  • De Winkle will gain an estimated $2,200 in energy savings per year compared to his old irrigation system
  • An increase in irrigation uniformity, resulting in higher yield