This can be completely done today (flow for each and every zone) for $500 for an 8 zone controller, or $600 for a 16 zone controller. Including:
1. sending out alarms via text message or email
2. perpetual data storage in spreadsheet format so that you can historically look at anything or troubleshoot anything at any time.
3. a Web site where you can get fancy and draw a picture of your system and have real time information presented to it (this effort not required though)
4. charts to show your real time, daily, weekly, monthly, annual usage in whatever format you want.
Plus, not required is any:
1. flow sensors or installation expenses of breaking into each line to do the installations
2. field wiring needed, out to where the flow sensors might otherwise be, or anywhere else in the field (that would also serve as antennas for surges coming into your Rachio)
This works for ver 1 or 2 or ver 3 Rachio units.
You will need:
1. an Ethernet connection - it's doable with WIFi but you'll have additional expense and effort to implement a WiFi-to-Ethernet capability
2. to determine in advance the GPM flow for each zone - easy to do at the water meter using a clock.
1. Purchase 3 items from http://www.welserver.com/store.htm : WEL ($395), WEL-PWR ($11), and one or two WEL STAT-8 ($95 ea).
2. Mount WEL STAT-8 box(es) near Rachio unit.
3. Mount WEL box near an Ethernet connection.
4. Connect WEL STAT-8 box 2 to box 1 (if applicable - same wire as in next step).
5. Connect WEL STAT-8 box to WEL box using minimum 3 conductor alarm cable (lease expensive is fine; 22 AWG)
6. Connect WEL box to Ethernet - standard CAT5 cable with standard Ethernet plug on each end.
7. Plug in WEL-PWR unit. The WEL box is an Internet Appliance that produces its own web pages and it's own IP address. Verify all is in order.
8. Configure WEL unit for STAT-8 box.
8. Connect STAT-8 box to zone wires connected to Rachio - one wire connects WEL-1 to Rachio-1, etc. Plus one wire from WEL-C to Rachio-C. Verify all working fine.
9. Obtain GPM flows for each zone. Sit out by the water meter with a watch. Run each zone for 5 minutes. Note start and stop gallon numbers. Determine gallons for a five minute period from meter. Divide gallons number by 5 to obtain GPM. Calibrate WEL box with GPM numbers.
10. Set up charts.
You're done. Complete. With information to your heart's content!
The price is compelling, but, there are some footnotes:
1. This is a hobbyist level, DIY project. If this isn't you, you won't succeed. There's nothing complicated about it but an ability to pay attention to detail is fundamental.
2. This is a safe project. Nothing more than doorbell voltage.
3. There's no programming required. But, you need to be comfortable filling out screens to put in configuration data.
4. There's no networking skills required. You'll be able to view your web site information anywhere you've got access to an Internet browser (including phones and tablets).
Here's my implementation: http://www.welserver.com/WEL0343 . I put in even less time than what I outlined above. Didn't bother to get GPM flows at the meter - I'm comfortable with just the amount of time. Only implemented the capability for one zone (10) and for the Master Valve zone. I do have a couple of alarms configured that send notes to me via text and email (i.e., no watering to any zone for a 7 day period or more tells me something's wrong. Watering for more that 8 hours tells me something's stuck. Etc.)
Hope this helps.