Cycle/soak runoff


Continuing the discussion from Simpler Scheduling for Spring:

A 30 minute delay should be enough, and your runtimes definitely look perfect for the conditions (~10 minutes of watering, 5 cycles). The only other option I can think of is if you create different schedules that stagger the zones even more, but this would have you running for quite some time.

If you use a fixed schedule with more than 3 zones you will be guaranteed to have enough zones running (flex may not run all zones on a given day) to get a longer soak time. Our new scheduling coming out in our 2.5 release will allow you to use flex concepts with a fixed schedule that will run all your zones on the same day.

For next year I want to make the soak time adjustable.

Hope this helps.



I think that allowing different soak times would help. Our soil is the worst soil I’ve ever encountered. HEAVY clay. Sticky clay. Clay that holds water like a starving dog holds onto a bone. Would a soil analysis add any information to the discussion?

In any case, I just discovered the obvious - the raindrop in the flex schedule that lets you increase or decrease the amount of water. For the area with the worst runoff, I’ve decreased the amount of water. We’ll see if that helps.

I’m reminded of the punchline to an old joke, “It’s supposed to be automatic, but actually you have to push this button.”

Thanks again!


Ok great, the new water as needed schedules coming out in 2.5 will allow you to set exact minutes which will make things a bit simpler.



If you have one, it could…


I think lowering the water will work. I have had. To do that for a few zones and it works well. I too live in a place where the clay will not come off the shovel unless you smack it on the wheelbarrow.


@mavery76266, it would be interesting to see what properties your soil has; i.e. available water, infiltration rate, etc – assuming the soil analysis provides this level of detail to you.

Another idea is to put some Revive on your lawn if your local lawn & garden store carries it :wink:


Just trying to understand the discussion. Are we saying with flex schedule the soak time is not guaranteed? If only one zone needs watering. Does it wait 30 minutes between the cycles? If not why not and why not set it that way or at least give the option to define it that way for the users?

I do have a soil report for Denton County in Texas, but it is a 6M PDF file which I am not able to upload here. Below is a screenshot of the summary


The soak times for flex and fixed schedules will always be the same, 30 minutes.

Now if you only have one zone in the schedule it will wait 30 minutes for each cycle.

If you have multiple zones their cumulative runtimes will determine how long the soak time is, but it will always be at least 30 minutes from when a certain zone starts to when it runs again.



Cycle/Soak is available on Fixed and Flex schedules as Smart Cycle. If you haven’t yet, I’d recommend giving this support article a quick glance.

Yes. 30 minutes is a fixed default duration that we use.

Hope this helps.


Thanks Emil and Franz. When I was reading that thread I got the misunderstanding that the 30 minutes might not be guaranteed. Happy you both confirmed it is.


Judging by the runoff, it would be good if the soak time could be based on soil type or the crazy owner’s preferences.


Ya, I definitely want to make this configurable :wink:



A followup, in which I hang my head in shame.

One of our front yard sprinklers had it’s head cut off by an inattentive lawn guy. Major geyser.

When we had the sprinkler repair company come out, they found two breaks in the underground pipes and fixed both.

It’s an old computer nerd mantra, “whoever touched it last broke it”, but that’s not always true.

It will be interesting to see what happens the next time the Rachio decides to water.