Flaw in scheduling or working as expected?


#1

To set the scene here I have a flex daily schedule that waters all of my grass and I presently have a fixed daily watering sod that I’ve installed which waters every morning. The sod zones are not part of the flex daily yet.

I noticed that my flex daily schedule was constantly updating to run the following day but never actually running and the rest of the lawn was starting to suffer. looking into it because the fixed daily overlapped somewhat with the start time of flex daily it was causing the flex daily to just reschedule itself to run the next day rather than just starting the watering cycle once the fixed daily finished.

Is this actually the expected/intended behavior? I assumed that the schedule would just start once the other schedule had finished, is there some maximum amount of time that a schedule will delay for? I believe there was a 30 minute overlap in the two schedules.


#2

It should run the schedule later, I have a few that start 1 minute later than its predecessor, can you post a screenshot of your moisture graph for the skipped zone?


#3

Here’s are moisture graphs for one of the zones in the time period that it was continually rescheduled.

And here’s are the messages for when the flex daily should have been running

Jul 18 at 3:17 AM
Grass watering with zones Zone 5, Zone 2, Zone 7, Zone 1, Zone 6, Zone 4 scheduled to run at 04:40 AM

Jul 19 at 3:17 AM
Grass watering with zones Zone 5, Zone 2, Zone 7, Zone 1, Zone 6, Zone 4 scheduled to run at 04:40 AM

on the afternoon of the 19th we received .23" of rain and then on the 20th we received .24" of rain so it did not update to run on the 20th.

Jul 21 at 3:17 AM
Grass watering with zones Zone 5, Zone 2, Zone 7, Zone 1, Zone 6, Zone 4 scheduled to run at 04:40 AM

At this point I was tired of seeing it rescheduled daily and watching the grass dry out so I pushed the start time back to 5:40 so that it would actually run and stop rescheduling.

Jul 22 at 4:21 AM
Grass watering with zones Zone 5, Zone 2, Zone 7, Zone 1, Zone 6, Zone 4 scheduled to run at 05:40 AM

The watering cycle actually ran on Friday the 22nd.


#4

Can you repost your graphs with the details? Without the details it’s just about impossible to figure things out.

From the graph, we can see that it’s not watering because it hasn’t reached your MAD level, but can’t tell why. It would also help o determine what’s going on if you could post one of your zone settings.


#5


#6

So the fixed daily is not involved here. It’s working as you’ve set it up – so sharing your zone setup may help to get it dialed in correctly.

Each day your beginning moisture balance for the day plus the precipitation minus the Crop Evapotranspiration doesn’t get down to 0.00 (0%) (your MAD). As long as it stays above that zero point, it won’t water. On July 15 and July 21, you probably had rain forecasted for the day (determined an hour or so before your watering schedule time), and that rain didn’t materialize (or missed your area).


#7

I’d have to disagree with that since it popped up with a notification on my phone and on the web app saying it had every intention of watering on all of those days yet didn’t run. There were never any notifications that the scheduled watering would be skipped due to some reason which I’ve received multiple other times at which point the watering is rescheduled for a later date.

Here’s a perfect example of the notification I would have gotten.

Jul 15 at 3:17 AM
Flex schedule Grass watering processing skipped due to rain delay

Being relatively new to this whole thing I don’t quite know how to read these charts I can only assume the rain that we received on July 15th is actually shown as the +.36in on July 16th. Knowing that it hasn’t rained at all today and seeing that .10in has been added to the 27th and yet it did rain lightly last night.

I can certainly agree that the moisture balance had not reached 0 on those days but I’d be willing to say that had I not made the modification on the 21st; even though the moisture balance reached 0 on the 22nd the system wouldn’t have run. Will it really only water when the moisture balance reaches 0 though? I assume that’s one of the possible settings within my zone.


#8

Ok, let me give this a try and see if I can help it make sense.

I’ll start with the morning of July 15. When the system checked things at 3:17am, your moisture balance was low (.09in) but the weather forecast was for enough rain that day to cover the Crop Evapotranspiration that day, so it sent you a notification that it was not going to water. But that rain never showed up at your weather station (KNAK) on July 15, and so 0 precipitation was recorded.

The rain instead showed up after midnite on July 16, and KNAK got .36 inches of rain. This occurred before 3:17am, so now you had more than enough water for the day, and it did not water.

OK – now to July 26 and July 27.

Jul 26 was recorded from midnite last night. As of that time, your weather station, KNAK, had gotten 0 precipitation.It rained lightly at your house last night, but it did not rain at your weather station.

Jul 27 is a forecast. As of your posting, the forecast is for .10 in of rain today.

Here’s the math to read the chart from day to day:

PMB = Previous Moisture Balance
Irr = Irrigation (Adding water)
Precip = Precipation (adding water, will be what happened if the weather station shows, or it is an estimate of what you are going to get if is says Forecasted)
ET = Crop Evapotranspiration (what water your plants are going to use today and is going to disappear from your soil)

PMB + Irr + Precip - ET = Current Moisture Balance

For a day in the past, the Current Moisture Balance is what really happened

When the system checks things (in your case now at 4:21am), if the Current Moisture Balance is greater than 0, the system will not water. If the Current Moisture Balance is negative, the system will water.

Rachio has recently changed the Crop Coefficient for Cool Season Grass to 0.8 - depending on when you set your flex schedule up, you may be able to just change it on each zone to 0.8. If you can’t change it, you’ll need to create a new flex schedule and delete your old one so that you have the ability to adjust crop coefficient. Changing to .8 will better reflect how much water your grass is using and will cause it to water a little more often.

Is the KNAK weather station close to you? If not, you might want to look at using a PWS that might better reflect the precipitation you are getting at your house.

Now as for those texts you got on July 17 and Jul 18 saying that is was going to water, I’m totally puzzled!!! I can understand why it DIDN’T water, but I don’t get why it told you it was going to. Maybe someone smarter than me can figure that one out!


#9

@JasonM - I think I have a simpler answer for you here, from recent personal experience running both Fixed & Flex Daily schedules, albeit in different zones.

In general, I’m seeing a lot of skips going on for your Sod Watering schedules (the Fixed Daily ones), which are very close to your Flex start-times & checks.

Example from the 18th:

Your Flex schedule ran it’s calculation and expected to water. However, the Climate Skip feature (enabled on your Fixed, “Sod watering”) likely still had your controller in Rain Delay mode when Flex was set to run.

My advice, put simply, is to turn off Climate Skip for your Sod Watering schedules.

I assume you’ll still want to keep Rain Skip enabled, to take advantage of free water from mother nature, but … you may also consider turning off all Weather Intelligence features for those Fixed, to ensure there’s no overlap of the Rain Delay mode. (assuming the Sod is a short-term thing, requiring heavy watering anyway)

Hope that helps! ~Lucas


#10

@Linn thanks for the explanation of the chart and its data. @Lucas I’ve disabled the climate skip for the schedules so we’ll see what that does for me.


#11

Whow, climate skip puts the whole controller in rain delay?