Does this topic seem like the most basic of ideas? Obviously you should just turn on your sprinkler and let it rip right? WRONG!
During the dog days of summer (90+ degree days) you need to water slowly and steadily to avoid water run off. How do you do this? Find a shot glass and a sprinkler. Set the sprinkler on low and run it until the shot glass fills up. Time it while you do this. That’s an old trick estate management professionals use to set their timed sprinklers for years. One inch of water during normal conditions and 2 inches of water during drought periods is what’s in the lawn bible. That’s how golf courses are keeping lush while homeowners suffer. Once you find out the time and rate for your lawn, you can use an automatic hose timer available for $35 or less.
Always water your lawn while it’s in the shade, your lawn will drink at a better rate if you do it while it’s in the shade. Consider a walking sprinkler. A solid cast iron train model shown as this article’s main photo is between $50 and $100 depending on brand and quality. I’ve had my Nelson cast iron walking train for 10 years now, money well spent!
Lucky enough to have a sprinkler? Are you using it most efficiently? Consider adding an outdoor rain sensor which will automatically trigger your sprinklers and keep the lawn at the right mist level.