We've been having great results with our drip system since installing a Rachio controller late last year. The only significant problem we've encountered has been with plastic parts of the drip system that have been breaking. While not a Rachio issue per se, I know there's a lot of experience represented here, so hoped I could describe the problem in case anyone has suggestions.
Our system is built around taking water from 1/2" risers from a previously installed sprinkler system, and distributing it via 1/4" microtubes to drip emitters. The big problem is with the adapter connecting the 1/4" tubes to the 1/2" risers. We've been using four-outlet manifolds from the local hardware store that screw onto the risers:
We've tried a couple of different brands of these manifolds, all of which are plastic and seem to break easily. In the picture above, for example, you can see that two of the outlets have broken off.
I noticed that Orbit has a manifold that appears to be somewhat better built:
However, it's still plastic, and there are more outlets than we need. In addition, we'd prefer to use a manifold or connector that can be buried, and the Orbit one didn't look like it was designed for that.
As a work-around, I could see connecting the 1/2" riser to a larger drip distribution hose:
then punching holes to attach 1/4" tubes to the sides of that hose. Kind of more hardware than we wanted to use, though.
Is there anything else out there that would provide a more durable way of attaching clusters of three or four 1/4" tubes to a 1/2" riser? Thanks in advance.