I poked around the forum looking for a thread discussing this and was surprised I couldn’t find one. I currently have a Skydrop controller and have become fed up with it and looking for a replacement. Over on the SmartThings forum I asked for input and several people directed me to Rachio, and after doing some reading up on it, I think it sounds like a good fit for me. I especially like that there is an active forum that includes input from both users and staff. . . .that’s a really good sign in my book.
In any case I think I am choosing between the Gen 2 from Costco and the Gen 3. Since the Gen 2 from Costco has Weather Intelligence Plus, the main differences seem to be these I list below. Anyone have guidance or can point me to an existing thread discussing this?
Dual Band Support: Gen 2 is 2.4 only and Gen 3 is dual band. From reading the forums it seems some people have trouble getting Gen 2 connected to dual band routers. I have a dual band router with distinct network names which seems to make it unlikely to have a problem. That being said I will probably in the next year get suckered into getting a mesh system, likely Google Wifi, which use unified naming. Do people think that is enough of an issue to steer me away from Gen 2?
On Unit Controls: The only time the unit gets run locally is when there is an irrigation person working on the system. I can’t quite tell, does the Gen 2 have on board controls, but maybe they are just more rudimentary? Can Gen 2 both start and stop a zone? In terms of remote access, is there a safe way to give someone access to control it without having them have to access the wifi network? Not necessarily keen on opening up my wifi network to random people working on the system. If you can give them remote access, can it be only temporary?
Wireless flow meter: I don’t see my self being brave enough to install my self nor being willing to pay a plumber to install, so don’t think I would miss it.
50 bucks: 50 bucks is 50 bucks, if I don’t need the stuff that comes with the newer device, no real reason to pay the extra. That being said, hopefully this is a longer term device so spending to get the newest generation might just be worth it for longevity. I had hoped to get more than 2 years out of my Skydrop, but its just not cutting it even after a good bit of tinkering (and painful interaction with support) and costing me a lot of money from extra watering as water is very expensive where I am.
One last question, for those who have had to get support, has it been a good experience?