Boot Error - Known Hardware Failures

My Rachio 3 recently died from a boot error. My unit is 2.5 years old so support told me it is out of warranty and I must buy another one. When I researched here on the community I was shocked to find so many other occurrences of the same problem.

You can see the search results and review individual threads: Search results for 'boot error' - Rachio Community

Countless owners with the same problem and no solution but to replace it. It would seem to me at this level of failure there should be a hardware recall. The current expectation seems to be that we will just buy a new unit every couple of years, but how can I justify purchasing another unit with known hardware problems with the probability it will occur again? This really makes it so the Rachio devices cannot be trusted to last and be reliable.

I’m left with little choice but to consider my options elsewhere. Is there any other help Rachio can provide on this issue?


I’m not here to make an excuse, but to say there are countless issues might be a bit much. For the most part, people come to the community when they are having issues, so it only makes sense that when you search for something, you can find more that one instance of whatever problem you might have. Based on the number of Rachio units out in circulation, I’d bet this boot error is an issue affecting a miniscule population of owners.

That doesn’t make your issue any less annoying, and it would be interesting to know if it is a hardware issue due to power surges damaging or corrupting memory (seems many issues come after a power outage), or a software/firmware bug. Not sure if @dane or @franz can ping some of the engineers to see if they have ever replicated this issue.

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I appreciate your fair response, and can agree “countless” might be a stretch. I probably could count the instances reported on the community. One post had 67 comments, many of which were “me too.” These also don’t account for people who have had the problem and had it resolved by support in warranty and didn’t feel the need to post. I can’t quantify the total or overall percentage. While likely a small minority of units (I don’t know how many Rachio has sold), it does seem a common enough problem to me to raise the question about bad hardware failing on its own.

@rcoletti116 I’ll PM you to collect more information.


Hmm, sounds like an SD card failure although I am not sure of the Rachio internals.

Any chance you got a positive resolution out of this? My controller dropped off my wifi out of the blue, wouldn’t connect, and when I unplugged it and moved it closer to the AP to try and figure out what was wrong I ended up getting a boot error and the controller is toast. The only thing I can do now is buy another Rachio or buy a competitor’s product

I purchased a Rachio 3 Controller last month from eBay sold as Rachio 16ZULW-C Smart Sprinkler Controller. Brand New. In box and has not been opened Delivered 11 Aug 2023 I’ve tried since to connect to my WiFi and today told by Rachio it’s a boot fault and they can’t replace as it was purchased from eBay they Offered me
Email below

Hope this e-mail finds you well. In this case, the controller seems that be having an issue booting up since it is not moving forward to the second quadrant to connect to the Wi-Fi. Since the unit was purchased at eBay, the warranty would not cover it since it is not one of our authorized retailers. We can offer you a $25 discount if you decide to purchase a new one on our website.

Also, if you decide to go for this option we will need a US address where we can ship it to since we do not cover international shipping

Best regards,

Fredy A.
Rachio Support

If you have not, I would suggest contacting the seller.

Seller does not expect returns
I purchased it from the us and it cost me $36.22 postage it looks like new and the date code is Nov 2022 so not a year old yet I have contacted eBay just waiting for a reply.
But thought it was me but reading all the problems with the Rachio WiFi it looks like a faulty Controller.

Just had the same issue. Ebay seller said “perfect condition” but all I got was the 10 white blinks followed by a red. The Tech support said it was not covered since it was an ebay purchase and there was nothing I could do to make it work. The unit was manufactured in Jan 22. (They did not offer to give me any discount or coupon to buy a new one…)

Is there any FIX to this in case I attempt to buy another controller and have the unfortunate event of a power failure. Do I need a UPS on my 120V plug providing power? Seems like a design flaw that make the long term reliability very poor. For a smart controller this seems like a dumb problem that I never had with rain bird.

To set the context on this issue, for 30 years I have owned computers knowing that you have to go through the steps to power down and not just click the switch. Yet, way over a hundred times my computers have suffered an outage without damage. Yet, my rachio 3 with no way to power down died on maybe the 4th time I turned off the breaker to work on outlets. So, now I am out $500 (if you add the tempest package). Again, there is no way to safely power off unit, but that can AND DOES kill them. massive design flaw, I wont try rachio again

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Wish I knew what part on the controller had failed
Please Rachio let us try to repair the boards
Looking at purchasing another one but as I’m in the uk it’s just too expensive to purchase from the the uk .

Had the same issue a couple of months ago. The failure happened sometime in January but I didn’t try to fix it until April. Ended up with a new unit at a discount. I think I bought mine in 2019 or 2020.