New seed

Is there any update on adding daylight hours or an end time to the controller?

This is still not supported. @mckynzee This would be great to have implemented :wink:


Yeah, we know it’s not supported. It’s only been 2 years since your customers have been asking for it. God forbid you do something this simple that many are clamoring for

I just purchased and installed this product. I am very disappointed with your lack of urgency in resolving the matters in the thread. Several people on this thread of brought up valid points about adjusting their schedules and you have responded with the same “This is still not supported. This would be great to have implemented :wink:” response. UNACCEPTABLE. Why have you not made this modification to your programming? We demand answers.

Wow I wish I knew this before purchase. I may have to go back to building my own dang sprinkler controller. The custom functionality is soooo limited! Kudos to Rachio for focusing on “smart” watering, but as soon as you want to go off the path on you’re own, you’re SCREWED.

Yep, here I am keeping my seed alive with HOURLY short waterings. But I sure as heck don’t need that same amount of water at night. Can I put in a start/stop window of time? Nope! Can I set a different interval for day vs night watering? Nope! So, soooo dumb! And yet so simple to enable in the software. So what do I have to do here? Put it on standby every night, and hope to remember to resume in the morning??? LAME.

As a software and hardware developer, I can tell you this feature request is EASY. No excuse for Rachio to sit on this for 3+ years!!! No excuse also not to open this thing up for users to really get done what they want here with all sorts of custom config! Seriously, I think I’ll resume development on my controller project and just start competing here. Rachio, feel free to make your app awesome and dominate the market instead.

Maybe not intuitive, but you could set up a manual cycle and soak.

You could set up another different manual cycle and soak schedule to water at night.

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I do appreciate a good work-around. However, this is super confusing as to what it is doing, and compounded complexity with multiple zones. I shouldn’t have to bust out excel and a calculator to do this! I tried fiddling with this use of cycle/soak, and failed miserably. Likely due to a lack of understanding of what the expected behavior of the device is with regards to cycle and soak, and “hacking” the timing, etc. And it would still run for 24 hours, and watered for 100 minutes rather than 10, despite cycle and soak being set. I don’t get how you run for 10 hours as mentioned, etc. But ultimately this just isn’t intuitive and the need for real features in this area are paramount.

You just have to set the TOTAL watering time to 100 minutes, and set up a Manual Cycle and Soak to Cycle for 10 minutes, Soak for 50 minutes, as mentioned above. You still need the Total time, as that determines how many hours it runs.

yep, got it. Unfortunately, this whole approach wont work for me.

Why? Because there are more than one schedule at play in other areas, and this hangs the entire 10 hours (or 100 minutes, or whatever) until the entire schedule runs with all its cycle/soak iterations, before allowing the next schedule (which might be hourly, but sitting and waiting for this multi-cycle/soak strategy). Lame. This is what hackery gets you :slight_smile:

Also I learned I can’t have 2 zones with 2 different short schedules. I.e. “cycle” for 10 minutes in one zone every 1 hour, then do 10 minutes in other zone every 3 hours). In particular, one area of my newly seeded lawn is in shade, another in sun. They need DIFFERENT durations between watering, else one area will dry out, or be flooded, accordingly. I cannot put both of these zones in a single cycle/soak schedule because that means a single iteration time, and… I can’t run 2 of such hackery schedules simultaneously, because the first one that kicks off will tie up and dominate the system for 10 hours! Ugh!

Oh, did I mention a 3 hour iteration a bit ago? Yeah, no! I also learned I can’t even do a 3 hour interval! Nope, 1, 2, 4, 6. So lame. So, so lame! Any reason why we can’t just specify what we want, rather than bow to what these developers assumed we want? Nope. No real technical reason at all - I must be nanny’d and only be given limited options. It just so happens that with my current weather (100F, dry desert), the sun will dry out this zone in about 3 hours, not 2, not 4. So I guess I get to over water, or dry out and burn my seed. Nice.

While I’m at it, I also learned that I can’t enforce a “rest” period between zones. Why does that matter? Well, it doesn’t matter much for grass, but for SEED… think about it. Zones overlap - by design, this is a good thing. But when you have only DIRT, the potential for run-off is high. If zones 1 and 2 overlap, and I need them both to run every X hours, I don’t want them to run one right after another! I want zone 1 to soak in a bit before firing up zone 2. Is that so hard? Yes, yes it is, Rachio.

Most of this would be solvable by simply allowing both start/stop time (or a “do not run time” window) for a schedule. This way, I could actually set up different schedules for zone 1 and 2 (sun and shade, seeding scenario), and just have them run as the system fits them in, meshing together throughout the day. Done. So easy! And then we can address that “rest” feature to put icing on the cake.

Yes I played with this all day. And I kept my seed alive manually babysitting the entire thing, defeating the entire purpose of having a “smart” watering system, or any automated system at all for that matter.

How many other zones do you have?
Are they shrubs and/or trees?

11 zones. several for back yard (mature grass) 2 flower beds with sprayers, 2 drip zones for trees, shrubs. And 2 temporarily seed starting, will be mature grass eventually - and these are the ones with scheduling needs that are drastically different than mature plants.

A possible workaround until Rachio makes changes:

For your new seed, set up a fixed schedule with manual cycle and soak as per Linn above.

Then temporarily change all your other zones to water at night by changing the start time for these schedules. Night time watering may not be ideal, but it would be short term until the new seed is established.

Come on Rachio, please make your controller smarter to eliminate this clunky work around!

Although I do prefer night schedules for the other items, the thing I cannot resolve is the 2 zones for the seeds that have differing requirements. They need different cycle/soak settings, and you can only run ONE using the suggested work-around. That, and I need a rest gap of time between those 2 zones to prevent flooding in the overlap. Ugh. Such simple things.

I certainly agree that we shouldn’t have to hack it. So this is just another workaround idea so you don’t have to babysit it all day. You don’t want that seed not to prosper!

Can you set up each of the hourly waterings as fixed schedules? One problem I see here is that I don’t know what the limit for number of fixed schedules is. But at least you would be able to have the different durations, and you could arrange the order the zones water in to take care of the overlapping zones so that they didn’t water one right after the other. Your existing schedules for your flower zones could mesh in. The drip zones for the trees/shrubs might have to go at night since they are probably long running, and it’s probably not as critical for the new lawn seed to have the watering all night long.

One advantage to doing it this way is as the seed starts to come up, you could drop out some of the schedules so that it’s every two hours instead of every hour, and then a week or so later make them every 3 hours, etc.

Not pretty, but just trying to come up with a solution with the existing software. You are making me feel fortunate that when I over-seed it’s in the fall when it’s a little bit cooler, and I only have to do it 3 times a day — so I set mine up with fixed schedules.

Thanks Linn, yeah, I wish I could seed in spring or fall, but my water main broke and yard got torn up and redone, leaving me no choice on time of year. Yay! :expressionless:

I am experimenting today with pretty much what you said, 2 fixed schedules, one for 2 hour interval (sun), one for 3 hour interval (shade). I just went back in and realized its not just hour, but you can set hour+minutes for a start time. Well shoot Rachio… why did you allow that welcomed level of granularity here and not all over the place in this app??? But thank you for at least that!

So I set my sunny spot to start on the hour (9 AM), run for 10 minutes, and then my shade zone to start at 9:30, which is 20 minutes AFTER the 10 minute run of the first zone, which is my “hacked” way of forcing a rest period gap.

This only works because the scheduler happens to start these intervals on time (not offset from the finish time of the cycle), so on the hour (9am, 11am, 1pm, and so forth), AND because I am only doing a couple of zones this way. Anything more and it will get too complex, fast! And will collide the delicate timing you’re having to hack around with.

If this works, great. I want to be clear to Rachio developers though… this is not a solution :slight_smile: Open up these features, uncap the odd limitations (like preset intervals) and allow granularity like you did with start times down to the (5) minute, in practically every feature area! Of course, add these most basic, core features as mentioned by everyone in this entire thread. So many things you need to do to make this great, but so much potential. Don’t sit on this for 3 years like you’ve been doing.

Good plan!

Please let us know how it works.

I was following the directions below to set up a manual soak and cycle for a newly seeded area using two zones. I don’t understand the 'set watering duration to 1 hr and 5 min. The end result gave me two zones watering 33 minutes each. That’s too long for a newly seeded area. What I want is like 5 minutes for each zone, 10 minutes total cycle, 50 minutes soak. thoughts?

  • Go to the Irrigation tab, then you hit Schedules on the top part;
  • Then hit Create Schedule;
  • Select Fixed Schedule;
  • Select the zones you want to water, and name your schedule after that;
  • Select Daily Interval, and then Every day;
  • Select Start at a specific time and set it to 8 AM, for instance;
  • Start/End date you can set as you wish;
  • Then you hit Manual Cycle and Soak;
  • Cycle time will be 5min and Soak time 55min;
  • You hit Next until Watering duration;
  • On Watering Duration you will set it to 1hr 5min; (increase or decrease this duration by 5 minutes for each hour you’d like the schedule to run.
  • Your schedule is created.

I found it super cumbersome to do anything more than 1 zone using that cycle/sock hack method, and I abandoned it, and described my woes earlier on this thread. Sorry I can’t help more.

Using the scheduled method with different start times per zone, I am having success. BUT, only if I remember to Disable both zones at night, AND remember to re-enable both zones in the morning! I almost flooded and also almost dried out and killed my seed. So this goes back to the entire original point of this post - Rachio NEEDS to provide a start/stop time for schedules! Among many other things.

I think I figured it out. While I agree it would be great to have both start and stop times, I have this working on my small side yard with two zones. It starts at 8am and runs for 12 cycles (last cycle at 7 pm) where each zone runs for 3 minutes. That makes for 6 minutes run and 54 minutes soak. For 12 total cycles before shut off that’s a total run time of 72 minutes. This is working to give me exactly what I’m looking for.

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I think this cycle and soak method works pretty well. But ONLY if you have only 1 zone on it, AND if you can run your other zones at night.

Rachio really needs to address this issue, because it is a non-intuitive and complicated work around with limited functionality.

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