Manually Run from Panel is Only 3 Minutes?

I’m looking into buying a Rachio and I’m trying to figure out what limitations it has. It looks like if you want to manually run a zone from the buttons on the panel, it’s limited to 3 minutes per zone. Is this correct?

I have someone come out to blow out the sprinkler lines for Winter, and he’s not the type of guy who has a smartphone (land line only). So I can’t give him access to the system via an app. I’m not usually home when we comes by (he has a list of people who he does, and just gets to them as needed), so I can’t manually run the system for him either.

Is there any other option that I haven’t thought of? This might be a deal breaker for me. I did a search in the community and I’ve found several other posts going back a a few years ago about this problem, but it doesn’t look like it was ever addressed.

We don’t do that here in SC, but when my irrigation maintenance guy needs to operate/test a zone, he simply manually actuates the value directly in the valve box.

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Now I’m feeling a bit stupid, I always assumed he needed to use the controller to open the valves. I’ll ask him how he does it.

Thanks for the quick response!

Check out Youtube. There are a number of videos, depending on the manufacturer. For most, you simply turn the solenoid CCW to turn on, the CW to turn off. As long as you have access to your valves, it’s a much quicker way.

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