#2) When I ordered this unit I was told by the sales person that I could use HomeKit to integrate with my existing Home Automation. Clearly as you can see above that this version is not HomeKit Compatible. Is there a firmware update I can install to enable this?
Here’s the wiring to show how I connected the Rain Sensor. Maybe I did something incorrect?
@ryanbuckner - I believe that Rain Bird sensor sends serial data (e.g. temperature and rain) down the two wires in a proprietary format for Rain Bird’s controller to use. Rachio can’t use that data or sensor.
I would agree with @DLane. I took a fairly quick scan through the manual, man_ESPSMT_en.pdf (rainbird.com), and it does seem to provide more than a simple rain sensor. I see (both are part of the sensor mounted outside:
All irrigation will be suspended to prevent potential freeze damage to the irrigation components if the measured temperature is below a user set level.
The rain gauge not only acts as a rain shut-off device, it also provides rainfall intensity and accumulation information to the controller in order to prevent overirrigation by accounting for “effective” rainfall.
I use a Tempest weather station which beautifully integrates with my Rachio 2nd Generation.
Plus the weather station is really nice to have for all the other uses I have for it.
You could extend the existing mount for your Rain Bird and install it there and it is solar powered and totally wireless to the base station, which you can tuck away anywhere you can plug it in and it connects to your wifi.
To be fair, some people have no issues at all with HomeKit. It has something to do with everyone’s individual network and a few other things it seems.
Update to the latest firmware and see if you can get it working.
As for the sensor, for short term turn on the weather intelligence and choose the closest working weather station to grab info from. I say closest working because some don’t actually collect rain data which I found out when my sprinklers went on after a heavy rain. Changed to another and all has been good.
Thanks for the reply. My firmware is iro3-firmware-hk-5-640 which appears to be the latest. Anything else I can do to troubleshoot the network or my setup?
I have chosen the closest working weather station to the house and this appear to be working properly to plan for forecasted rain. What is cannot do (and I’ve seen this issue with other posts here) is determine when it’s actually raining. I haven’t had these issues but others have, and I want to avoid:
On days that rain is forecasted but it never rains, the Rachio skips cycles incorrectly. for others
On days that rain is not forecasted but it rains, the Rachio waters incorrectly. Again, for others. I haven’t had this problem yet since rain has been forecasted in Northern VA since I installed over a week ago
I may consider purchasing a rain sensor that is compatible. I don’t expect the weather forecasts to be accurate enough, since others have pointed this out.
When do you have your system watering during the day? I believe it pulls everything at the end of each day so if you water early in the morning it’s got a better chance to be more accurate than at the end of the day…
Also it never actually skips a cycle. It simply waits longer to run it, so in theory if it gets new data the next night that it didn’t actually rain that day it should then run the following day since it now knows it wasn’t actually watered and it’s moisture level was not filled …. So watch for that and see how it does with that.
Of course I’m assuming you have days between watering zones and that your system doesn’t water daily…
I’m using a Flex Daily schedule set to complete before sunrise. Today was the first day in 10 days forecasted without rain. It didn’t run. Yesterday was forecasted for rain but it didn’t rain. No run. Rachio hasn’t run in 10 days.