Advanced notice for cycle skips?


#1

My new unit is doing a pretty good job skipping schedules based on weather. Still, I know it isn’t an exact science, and weather , temps and soil all play a role in whether a schedule is skipped or not.

My unit watered a few days after a rain, but it could have skipped the water, given the cooler weather and soil still damp. I didn’t think the unit would water, but it chose to. Totally understandable given there’s lots of factors at play. But what if there was an indicator that had told me how likely the unit will run/skip the next cycle? It might be a visible percentage or bar that changes as the unit is computing data and getting closer to your watering time, and the end user has the option to check the indicator and make an educated decision if they want to turn off the upcoming cycle or not. For example, the night before a watering, if the unit indicates it’s likely to water but I know my soils are damp, I can do a one time turn off for that cycle. As it is now, my unit waters at 5am, and I’m only alerted about an hour before (4am) that the unit will cancel a cycle. And I’m not really awake to override that decision. Yes, I could just cancel the cycle the night before if the soils appear wet, but getting keyed in to what the unit is thinking earlier would reduce the question in my head “is the unit going to water in the morning or not”.

Just an idea!


#2

Hey @motifone!
If you want more info on how all of those settings play into how Rachio waters, I could absolutely dig into it for you. Do you currently have “Climate Skip” enabled on your schedule? If so, it probably should have skipped that day…
Either way, we have received requests on a “before bed” notification about if your system is going to water or not, and it’s something we have talked about! When you get this notification, would you just like to know the percentage possibility, or would you like the decision if the system will water or not to be made at that time? The only issue with that is if it decides then, and it unexpectedly rains that night, you would water after that rain. Don’t know how often that would realistically happen though, especially with your Rachio accounting for the forecast as well as past weather.
McKynzee :rachio:


#3

Hi McKynzee,

I do have Climate Skip currently turned on. I’ve only had the unit a couple weeks, and it had done well skipping a cycle prior to a rain and skipping a cycle for a few days afterward. It was only recently, after having a wet weekend, that the unit didn’t skip on Wednesday. Not the end of the world, given there’s variables at play.

Yes, the “before bed” notification is essentially what we are talking about. When I first got the unit, I was thinking of waking up early to see if the unit would skip or not – so if there is a way of knowing what the machine “is thinking” (either percentage or decision) before bedtime, the user could make an educated decision to cancel the cycle (like if your yard is still wet).

Also, in your example with the unexpected rainfall at night, maybe the bedtime notification isn’t so much telling you what the machine will do in the morning no matter what, but rather the notification is a snapshot of what the unit is currently planning for the morning as of bedtime. But if it rains that night, the unit could still decide to kill the cycle (if the software allows). The bedtime notification simply gives the user an opportunity to cancel the cycle if he/she choses. If the user doesn’t cancel the cycle, the unit could still change its mind in the middle of the night if there’s a rain… because currently, it seems the unit is committing to a final decision as to water or not about an hour out from watering time? I think the only “bad” scenario would be the unit telling you at bedtime it won’t water in the morning, but then it does – but I can’t see what factors in the middle of the night would cause that to happen.

Example scenarios: my yard is damp from rain few days ago and a cycle is scheduled for 5am:

  1. Unit: BEDTIME NOTIFICATION “Unit planning on watering at 5am” Me: I cancel the cycle before bed.

  2. Unit: BEDTIME NOTIFICATION “Unit planning on watering at 5am” Me: I do nothing. But it rains at 3am. Unit could still shut off 5am cycle.

  3. Unit: BEDTIME NOTIFICATION “Unit planning on watering at 5am” Me: I do nothing. No rain that night. The cycle runs.

  4. Unit: BEDTIME NOTIFICATION “Unit will not water at 5am” Me: I do nothing. The cycle does not run at 5am.