I've sent several emails and also chatted on the phone and still not satisfied with any of the answers. I've also spent some time in the forum and I can see that many have similar issues to me. I don't think the Rachio team is effectively considering a basic customer use case.
I'd say everyone with an irrigation system and particularly those who invest in a "smart" controller want the same thing - green landscaping with the least amount of water used. Its a basic tenet. The Rachio has all the capability but its simply not using it.
I have twice a week water restrictions. I'm allowed to water morning and evening but not in the heat of the day. This equates to 30 hours per week of possible water time. The controller knows the weather, ET rate and all my zone parameters. Why can't it just water each zone when needed within my restriction time windows? If it waters every hour it can on the watering days but the ET data shows it's still not enough water, then it could simply send a message to me indicating there is an issue.
I understand I can waste hours of time tweaking many detailed settings on the flex schedule. As an engineer I find that interesting but unnecessary. I want the controller to water what it thinks is the correct amount based on its inputs and then I can adjust up or down as I see fit. I don't care about crop coefficient, available water, etc.
The whole point of a smart controller is to be smart. What I have been told is that since I have 2 day water restrictions, then I need to used fixed schedules which is exactly what my 1980 technology Hunter controller can do. I had the Hunter solar sync also so it already did seasonal adjust. The whole point of the smart controller is to eliminate dumb fixed schedules and to use the data to determine the watering schedule.
I think 2 types of schedules are needed - that is it. Fixed and Smart. Fixed is tied to the calendar and smart uses data to determine when to water. The most elegant solutions are the most simple.
Does Rachio plan to make the controller smart and handle the common water restriction use case?