2nd season w/Rachio. Feel like it's watering way too much


#1

Hello all, first post so hopefully I provide enough info.

I moved into my first house in early 2015, and was shocked how high my water bills were after a full season of watering my landscape. I needed to do something to both save water and cut my bills.

I bought the Rachio (v1) early in 2016 and easily saved on water bills last summer what the unit cost. Setup was a breeze, the remote control via the app is incredibly convenient, and I appear to be saving a lot of water. All good stuff!!

However, I don’t feel like I set the schedule up for optimum performance. I have water restrictions so can only water on even days. Late last summer, my entire lawn was very brown since it hadn’t rained much here, and the unit didn’t appear to water the lawn enough. It never watered for more than 30 mins per zone.

I need some help to configure this unit better. Maybe it’s just my perception, but a zone I have configured and setup with shrubs is getting more water than my grass. My landscaper says the shrubs and trees are very resilient and need little water, but the grass needs the most attention.

Is there any good resource I can read to get me started again the right way? I’ve read many of the posts here, and really just feel most of what’s posted is above my head. I mean, I can do accurate measurements of my property and the zones, but I don’t know what kind of soil I have.

Thanks for reading, and for any help!


#2

What type of schedule are you using? Flexible Daily with watering restrictions? That’ll turn on most of the advanced features by default.

This talks about why shrubs are watered longer. In terms of soil type, this was deeply helpful to me to see what I had. The type of soil will impact how often and how long Rachio waters. If the soil holds more water, water less often but deeper, etc.

Also as I found out recently, make sure your selected weather station is reporting your precipitation correctly. Rain is free and my Rachio wasn’t counting it until I changed weather station to one actually reporting precip.


#3

Thank you so much for the help. I read the document about flexible daily scheduling and decided to try setting a few zones with those options to see how it works for me. I’m going to set the back yard lawn with the new settings, and leave the front lawn on the traditional settings. If both yards appear as green as each other, I guess I’ll apply the new settings to both.

Thanks again!