Low Flow notifications and watering times

When the Rachio 3 with the Everydrop flowmeter senses low flow, does it increase the watering time to provide the same amount of water that would have been used if there wasn’t a low flow? In other words, if the calibration is 10 gpm for 40 minutes but only 9 gpm is actually delivered, does the watering time increase for that run?

Yes… as long as the 9 GPM is not at or below the “low flow” calibration threshold, which when Flow Monitoring and Auto Shut Off are enable for the zone, will produce a notification or shut off. Within the “Flow Trigger” ranges for each zone, 9 GPM is just “normal”, though slightly variable (10%) if you’re calibrated to 10 GPM. Your calibration of baseline flow (what Rachio uses when it doesn’t have anything better), should coax you to at least review those Low and High triggers.

I’ve mentioned on this forum that my EveryDrop sees significant flow variations in my neighborhood as the result of pressure instabilities (down as much as 50% low flow and up as much as 120% high flow) from water service at the curb. If Rachio’s default determination of the trigger values seems too narrow with a working calibrated flow meter, change them so you aren’t driven crazy. Before I had a flow meter (ie: no flow data was available to Rachio), I had to do manual flow calibrations by zone (with the source water meter), then live with the result by calculating Nozzle Inches Per Hour (Advanced Zone setting) for those zones.

I just checked and the app disables zones only if high flow is detected. I have a large 60 mesh filter on the water line prior to the flowmeter. I had the low flow set to 90% trying to catch when the filter starts clogging. Water is reclaimed from holding ponds and can contain algae, sediment and other contaminants. That filter has to occasionally be manually cleaned.

I don’t mind the notifications but need to make sure the yard is watered correctly. I just changed the low setting on all zones to 85% so that 9 is not at or below the threshold. Hopefully, the times will increase for that particular run – or will it change times for the next run? And any future runs? What happens when I clean the filter and the gpm goes back to the originally calibrated setting? Does the watering time then go back to the original scheduled run time?

Obviously, do any calibration when the screen is clean. Each time, gradually adjust the Low Flow limit until it triggers when the screen requires maintenance. Don’t recalibrate and Rachio should run a bit longer as it gets clogged as you’ve surmised. If you think you need to recalibrate after cleaning the screen, be sure to do all the zones.

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