Rachio 3 and Australia - illegal!

Hi Mate.

I’ve had it up and running for 2-3 years now, works like a charm (In Adelaide). I think you’re confusing wifi with cellular frequencies. The rachio uses standard wifi 2.4ghz (or 5ghz) modes, same as any standard laptop, chromecast, etc. Otherwise the modem wouldn’t be able to connect with it.

Bigger problems Aussies have with it are the power plug, it comes in 120V wall worts, so you need to go to jarcar and buy another and swap the plugs over.

You have the older Rachio - not the new Rachio 3. The new one has the addition of 900Mhz links which operate in the vodaphone cell band and are therefore illegal in Australia. The Rachio 2 is legal as it does not have this transmitter and as you point out operates on the 2.4 wifi band.
So, under no circumstances buy the Rachio 3 for Australia until Rachio verify it works between 915 and 928 otherwise you WILL get a hefty fine.
I know the 120v is annoying but even if they put in 100-240 you would still need a plug adapter, so for me it would be better if they sold it without the transformer and I’d buy local.
Not being able to buy a Rachio 3 for Australia is annoying as it means a loss of access to new features it will support.
Shortsighted, but the US market is so big they don’t care.

@bm282 - The Rachio Gen 3 likely has a receiver in it to listen to the flow meter. The flow meter would have the transmitter. One can buy the Rachio Gen 3 without the wireless transmitter. I think that the Gen 3 will still support wired flow meters.


I wish you were correct, but unfortunately you are not. The Rachio 3 controller includes a transmitter as well as a receiver. So does the flow meter. This is how this link works. So with or without the flow meter it is illegal in Australia - unless it transmits only from 915-928 - which is unlikely and silence fromRachio on that question. Any Australian buying and using a Rachio 3 in anywhere but outback remote Australia where no cell towers exist is asking to get a hefty fine and confiscation of their Rachio. I can’t be clearer!
And given the link is a key factor in what the Rachio 3 will offer now and in the future - it would be dumb to buy it and not be able to use.
I understand their focus on the big US market, but a simple earlier decision would have at least kept the international market open for Rachio 3.

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Just a bit of an update - I asked Rachio support about the actual frequencies they are using in the 900Mz band. No answer. Prompted a second time after 20 days. No answer. That was 10 days ago.

So its poor that Rachio can’t answer a simple support question.


We are using the 902-928MHz ISM band. For this reason Australians cannot buy it and we can not sell the R3.

The Gen2 unit is still completely within Australian regulations.

Hope this helps


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Thank you - finally confirmation! I understand the Gen 2 is legal in Australia as it doesn’t transmit on this band.

Clearly though the Rachio 3 is the future for Rachio, so why would one buy what will be a superseded model - presumably dropped by Rachio in the not too distant future.

Sad that Rachio didn’t take the time to do a design that would work worldwide - it would have cost nothing extra, other than a bit of thinking.

I guess we will wait for Rachio 4 in a year’s time and see if that has a better design.

I get it that the US is big and the rest of the world is not needed - but good system designers think more broadly even if they still only focus on a specific market mostly. Ah well - there are other suppliers to go and chase.

Of course, some poor silly person in Australia will go and buy one without knowing the communications legislation and get themselves in a heap of trouble.

Rachio need to put something on their web page to warn any non-US person interested in the Rachio 3 to forget it - as it is illegal to use in their country. That would be the least Rachio should do as a good customer focussed company!

Sorry for any confusion.

We are in the process of upgrading our website to provide more information regarding R3 restrictions.


Can you provide a firmware update for Australian users to disable the 900MHz radio in the unit?

Should be simple enough to default it to off and only enable the radio when a flow meter is to be used?



Any update on option to turn off radio on software yet?

Hey @Wirepower! Unfortunately no update on this yet :frowning: The community will be the first to know when/if this happens!

Or they could, you know, realize that there is a much bigger market outside the US, and design their product accordingly.

Surely this is the easiest option - a firmware update to disable the flow meter broadcast would resolve issues for us Aussies.

I’m sure we can live without the Wireless flow meter if it means we can stay current with the controller.

A firmware update like this should be a simple thing added into the boot sequence. The device is going to know it is in Aus based on the weather data so may not even need user intervention.

Hi mate could you give me some more info on what to get from Jaycar? And the rough cost? Cheers

I think I used this one:

Then just soldered on the plug.

It was an early gen Rachio, they might have gotten their shit together and be offering international options for plugs now though. Swapping them for whatever country it’s going to. Pretty silly if they aren’t.

Let me know if you need a hand.

About to drop the money I have budgeted on a smart irrigation controller to complete my home setup when I found this thread. Rachio 3 is my first choice but I notice this discussion has been going for more than a year now so was just wondering if Rachio has done anything towards making this legal for the Australian market or if this is just a case of it not ever being available for alternate markets?

Also tweeted Rachio in the hopes of an answer: https://twitter.com/aukiman/status/1120792115976388608

Hey @aukiman!

Just wanted to share our most up-to-date post on this:

Wish I had a better update!

Thanks for the reply Laura, for the interest of the DIY’ers is anyone from the Rachio technical team able to confirm if the frequency of the comms between the flow control and the Rachio 3 device is controlled by crystal or by inbuilt processor?

As described elsewhere on the forums, just snip the connection to the transmitter on circuit board with $5 scalpel, or cover it with shield tape, both from Jaycar. Well worth the effort.

Thanks for the information.

I live in Japan and was keen to import a Rachio 3 here - given the frequencies above the closest mobile carrier is Softbank using 900MHz (not sure the exact frequency).

Would you have any specific information in regards to Japan?