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  • wary smart sprinkler system
  • June 23, 2016
  • Recommended Product

While I've only had the RainMachine installed for 5 days, I did check to see if it actually varied the watering times based on it's daily calculated watering percentage ( you set the watering time for each zone at what would you like to be on a typical summer day and the controller varies it down based on the forecasted hi & low temps from NOAA as well as projected rain. It will also increase watering if the forecasted temps are significantly higher than the average summer temps for your location ). It does vary the watering times based on the daily weather forecast exactly as advertised. The Android apps run a little slow and could use some tweaking & upgrading but do allow you to fully program the controller as well as activate manual watering if you need to test the zone. The controller has a built in browser & can be accessed from either Safari or Google Chrome browsers from any computer on the same network. It's wifi enabled and the wifi is actually a thumb sized USB wifi unit that plugs into an external USB port on the top. A second USB port on the top is probably for future expansion. The whole front of the unit is a capacitive color touch screen display which not only displays the 5 day weather forecast and what percentage of the watering time you have set it will water that day ( if it's a day you have scheduled ) but also either the last 30 days or last years savings. You can also fully program the unit from the touch screen. The firmware is also remotely upgradable for future enhancements or improvements.

Pros Easy to Install, Functionality, Great Quality, Good Shape, Sharp, Stylish, Vibrant Color

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frljo1

Minneapolis, MN
35 to 44, Male
15 out of 15 people found this helpful
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By: frljo1
  • good machin
  • March 22, 2017
  • Recommended Product

Unlike 12 zone this sprinkler system does not have display monitor to display all information about whether in your area and about the watering intervals, much simpler and you must have smart device to set it up and control it, the only thing you can do it is to manually start it up or run the cycle. Specifically I like about this device that is not dependent on any third party services or cloud servers. It works as you set it up with weather data automatically downloaded from NOAA whether station through your Wi-Fi, free for any taxpayer. It works with or without help from the manufacturer. They do provide a cloud service for your convenience, but you can completely run the device without it. Even if something happens to the company, you sprinkler controller would still perform as it should. I did not find that flexibility in any other controller. All others are depending on their own cloud system so they might be prone to fail. Fair warning for all of the users this device is not weatherproof and it may fail on extreme low temperature (-4F or lower) if installed outside, if you do have to install outside rainmachine recommend to install it in orbit weatherproof box. Installation is a breeze I took a picture of the old wires so that I know what zone it is. Settings are super flexible; I set up different programs for lawn (sprinklers) flowers and shrubs (drip lines) also it does ask you what type of soil you do have it does need that info for more efficient watering. Use the phone or tablet to connect and make changes. Best of all if you have service guy coming out to winterize your system he can start it up from control panel without you being there.

Pros Easy to Clean, Easy to Install, Functionality, Good Shape, Great Quality, Multi Use, Sharp, Stylish

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frljo1

Minneapolis, MN
35 to 44, Male
10 out of 10 people found this helpful
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By: frljo1
  • Smart sprinkler controller that doesn't waste water when it is raining
  • June 18, 2016
  • Recommended Product

There are a lot of things to like about this device. First the installation is easy. I mounted it next to my old controller and just moved each of the zone's wires one at a time so the zones would remain the same. And I did the same with the C wire (the common) and it started right up. There is a set-up wizard that comes up and you can use the touch screen to enter the data. First you need to define your Wi-Fi network at your house and then enter your street address so it knows with NOAA weather location to use in order to get your local forecast. It also does a firmware update which takes a few minutes but ensures you are running their latest software. Then using the touch screen you define the zones and watering times. It took a couple of minutes to get the local forecast from NOAA and then it displays its forecast plan based on the weather. This is really cool and smart. There are 2 USB ports on the device and the device comes with a USB Wi-Fi adapter (by TP-Link) so make sure that is plugged in all the way so it can connect to your network. I really like this design approach instead of having the Wi-Fi circuit built into the unit because if it were ever to break you can just replace the USB adapter. A free app is available for your smart phone or web browser on your PC that lets you see the forecast and settings and also allows you to program the run times as well as do manual watering. The manual watering feature for me is great. I can use my phone to turn a zone on and then make sure all of the sprinklers are coming up and watering correctly. I did find a couple of sprinkler heads that I needed to replace as well as trimming some grass that was preventing them from coming up. This device makes maintaining your sprinkler heads very easy and that is important to do. The touch screen and display are very nice but the main benefit is the water saved by the unit having the forecast available and the device being smart enough to adjust the run time. Why buy the water when it is falling from the sky for free!

Pros Easy to Install, Functionality, Great Quality, Multi Use
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Oceanside

Oceanside, CA, USA
55 to 64, Male
7 out of 7 people found this helpful
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By: Oceanside
  • Stop looking and get this one. This is the only Smart Sprinkler Controller I could find that is...
  • April 28, 2017
  • Recommended Product

Stop looking and get this one. This is the only Smart Sprinkler Controller I could find that is cloud independent--no fees, and will still work without an internet connection. It is not reliant on Rainmachine's cloud service. Hookup is very simple for up to 12 stations. Use either or both common wire connection points. Works with existing rain delay. TFT touch screen is all you need to get going and program. Use a smartphone or any internet connected device to dive deeper into the settings for better water control. Access, adjust, and change water setting from anywhere. Uses NOAA, or choices of other weather stations to automatically adjust watering. Total time for install and programming is about 15 minutes. Internet connectivity is very automated and has very strong signal even for a large home. PROS 1) Not cloud-based. No subscription charges. Will work as a standalone. 2) Super easy installation and setup. Integrates with any sprinkler system. 3) Access and adjust programming from your laptop, tablet, or anywhere. Lot's of adjustability. 4) Intuitive instructions. Easy to use large TFT (touch screen). CONS 1) You pay for what you get, and this system is a bit more than others. 2) So simple to set up, smart guys will overthink it a bit and wonder what steps they missed. You didn't miss any, it's just that simple. 3) This is nitpicking: You can't set the "soak" feature independently for each station--it's either all or none. Since Rainmaker updates their firmware from time to time, they may change the soak feature to be accessed independently for each station.

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TheAdmiral

6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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By: TheAdmiral
  • Smart Watering
  • June 17, 2016
  • Recommended Product

Water rates are starting to go up everywhere and it's really beginning to have a noticeable effect on the pocketbook. Just like smart thermostats took their market by storm a few years back, smart irrigation controllers are poised to do the same for their market now. These things are fantastic! They can use data from the internet to know if they SHOULD be watering or not, or how much they should be watering. What's nice about this unit is that it carries the EPA certification for being a resource conserving unit, but it's not actually hooked to any big brother clouds where you lose control of the amount of regulation in place. The app is really friendly too. The whole unit only took minutes to install. VERY simple!

Pros Easy to Install, Functionality

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Greg

Texas, USA
35 to 44, Male
5 out of 5 people found this helpful
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By: Greg
  • Touch-Screen Irrigation Controller
  • July 12, 2016
  • Recommended Product

The Rainmachine irrigation controller is a WaterSense-certified system that can adjust your irrigation system watering daily as the weather changes. The Rainmachine is easy to install and has an Easy Installation Guide. This unit is designed for indoor installation only. If you have an outdoor controller, the web site offers a solution by purchasing a third-party weatherproof case and installing the controller into the case. I do not recommend this solution as it is clunky and awkward. Programming is done by using the Touch-Screen interface on the controller. In order to setup this controller, you have to program Start times, Run Days, Run Times, and other details. Essentially you are using this just like any regular controller, so you have to know your yard and plants and know what their water needs are. You generally will program it for the average hottest day of the year. There is a feature that is turned off by default: Settings>Weather>Hi/Lo Temps>Extra Watering For Hot Days. I recommend you turn this on. It should be on by default, in my opinion. This will add water on those occasional heat waves. Of course, you can control this unit from your phone and from any computer using an internet browser. Be sure your Wi-Fi signal is really strong wherever you place the controller. Daily, the controller will gather weather data for your area, and adjust watering times for the type of weather. It will even turn off the controller if there is rain in your area. Keep in mind, it is only as good as the closest weather station. Check to see what your closest station is. You cannot add an outdoor sensor to this model so you are reliant on the local weather station to shut off your controller automatically if rain is forecasted. Basically, this controller is really just a water budget manager. You have to tell it what the proper Run Times are for each zone in your system; all it does is adjust that number from 100%, down as needed to reduce water usage during cooler days. I have had several errors with the controller at startup and during run. I believe the system is based on open-source Linux, which makes it adaptable and connects to IFTTT systems (Smart House and Life Management Systems). Tech support has been good and responsive, but have not solved my errors yet. Fortunately, I just remove power for one minute and the controller runs fine again for a week or so. So far, the errors have not stopped my controller from actually watering and doing its job. Overall, this is the latest in a new generation of Internet-Enabled home management systems and Wi-Fi Irrigation Controllers. If you are looking for a Touch-Screen controller with all the latest bleeding-edge technology, integrating with IFTTT systems and features at a premium price, this is for you.

Pros Easy to Install, Functionality, touch-screen, ifttt enabled, water-sense, weather-based Cons software needs updating

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JohnS

California, USA
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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By: JohnS
  • Works Great
  • June 22, 2016
  • Recommended Product

Replace my Hunter Pro C with a 16 zone Rain machine, the unit works great saved over 50% of the water usage so far this summer, i have called tech support and they gave me a work around to connect my rain sensor and it works, i have tried to run it during a rain event but the system stayed off.

Pros Durable, Easy to Clean, Easy to Install, Functionality, Great Quality, Multi Use, Good Shape

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ronmax11

Clarksburg, MD
45 to 54, Male
4 out of 4 people found this helpful
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By: ronmax11
  • Works great
  • August 09, 2016
  • Verified Purchase & Recommended Product

Only problem is it relies solely on forecasts, which won't work in Florida in the summer. Hoping they get the algorithm to take into account actual rain fall. The unit itself works great. The browser interface is excellent.

Gilles

Florida
3 out of 3 people found this helpful
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By: Gilles
  • Really like it
  • May 19, 2016
  • Recommended Product

This machine was super easy to install and works like a charm. I will be advising my friends and neighbors to check it out. also touch screen is a great feature, makes thing really easy for my gardener! Native English speaking support, easy to use, nice design.

Pros Easy to Install, Functionality, Great Quality, Stylish Cons not waterproof

Steve

Texas
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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By: Steve
  • Watering your lawn made easier
  • April 08, 2017
  • Recommended Product

To start this is a very compact and minimalist unit. It was extremely easy to install, it had good instructions on how to wire it and I like that instead of having to screw wires in all you had to do was strip the ends of them and the push down a small spring loaded button and then simply insert the bare section of wire and release the button. Then when it comes to programing it you download the app to your phone where you can program it or you can use your computer and go online to program it. There are a lot of options and it may seem a little intimidating at first but once you start to use the program you realize how easy it is to use making it very easy to, program, adjust and operate things. The app works excellent and so does the online site you can use on your computer to program it. I started with the same base times I have always run my sprinkler zones on and I have already noticed it working according to the weather where it has canceled watering on days where it has rained a lot. I also like that your not tethered to a third party cloud service so there is never a fee to pay and your not dependent on single system. The WiFi on it works excellent and it is cool that you can access it thru an app on your phone or online on a computer anywhere or anytime. I have already got it programmed very easily and seems to be working very well and I will be interested to how well it works over the summer and I will update my review after I have used it a couple of months. As for now I have rated it 5 stars because it was super easy to wire and install, programming it thru your phone using the app or using the website on you computer is very straight forward and easy, and your not tied to a 3rd party cloud based service that you have to pay for.

Pros Durable, Easy to Clean, Easy to Install, Good Shape, Great Quality, Multi Use, Sharp, Stylish, easy to wire, easy to program

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Chevy513

Utah
25 to 34, Male
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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By: Chevy513