OK, so I have been using the Rachio for several months. I initially set it up when we were only allowed to water twice a week back in the spring and the first watering schedule was longer than I was used to, but seemed reasonable still, so I left it alone.
I did turn on water budgeting, and my watering times have been slowly creeping up and based on the last adjustment it was up to over 6 hours duration. Well, that seemed excessive, so I figured I would move to a three times a week schedule since that is allowed during the summer months.
Well, I deleted the old schedule, made some small updates to the soil type on my zones (from loamy sand to sandy loam based on that Geo Survey website I saw in another post here) and re-created a new watering schedule.
I discovered you can’t set the watering frequency before it calculates the watering times - so it ran a schedule for the every 3 day default and gave me that whopper of an almost 12 hour watering duration!! (I can’t see any smart cycle stuff going on - its turned on, but if that is what is causing the long duration it is invisible to me on the app)
I then set the watering frequency to every 2 days and none of the durations changed? So I manually turned the seasonal adjustment to like -70% to get my watering times down to something that seemed like it wouldn’t cost me a fortune in penalties from the water company since we are in tight drought restrictions here in CA. I also turned water budgeting off so it won’t creep up again.
I guess I hope the new software is more dynamic than the old one is. I want to be able to adjust the water frequency or change stuff in my zones and get a new watering duration based on what the Rachio recommends. Or maybe the new software will handle drought restrictions better than this one, IDK.
Anyway - I guess I was just surprised at the results I was getting from the default watering times. I do live in a desert - it doesn’t rain here and it has been in the 100s for several weeks now. Maybe it just doesn’t handle that reality well. Most of my landscape is drought tolerant shrubs with no grass and a few trees and a small area of rose bushes - well suited to my climate. But it still thinks I need tons and tons of water.