Rachio 3 Custom Zone Flow Calibration


I just installed the Rachio 3 yesterday as a conversion from a different product that went EOL (the Roslen netAQUA 9D which was ahead of its time in 2013) . For sure a nearly painless conversion and everything came online as if nothing happened (7 Zones, Master Valve, and CST Flow). I think I spend more time deciding where to put the box than actually installing. Would have been great to skip the mobile device and go right to the web interface for the initial setup but everything was smooth sailing. But I digress.

Anyhow, one of my zones is actually inside and is a bunch of indoor plants in a large garden window. It’s all drip and very low flow even with everything running full blast. In fact, the normal flow is below the minimum 0.86 GPM that the CST can measure. So when I do the Flow Calibration it always fails because there isn’t a detectable flow. Nonetheless, I want to have leak detection for that zone like all the others - and especially because it’s inside.

Is there a way I can enable leak detection for that zone by specifying a manual calibration? When it fails the cal routine I am only presented with options to Cancel or Retry and cannot enable the leak detection at all in the zone settings because the cal did not successfully complete.


What kind of CST flow do you have?

One of the problems with most flow meters is that they often struggle to read at very low flow rates, which as you know are very common with drip lines. So even if you set a manual baseline and threshold, it would never be detected.

Let me spend some time with our team thinking through your problem. I would also like know about your experience calibrating the others zones.


It is the CST10-001 so your standard 1" flow meter which according to the specs measures 0.86 GPM or more if memory serves correctly.

I agree that I would not be able to detect the “normal” flow if it is below the 0.86 GPM, but it WOULD be able to detect anything above that such as a leak (the assumption is that a leak would always exceed 0.86 GPM). It wouldn’t be able to tell you if the flow was too low but I can accept that limitation. I guess the ask would be basically to add an option under the zone calibration to allow a manual cal OR a “per zone leak threshold” that would allow you to manually specify a GPM regardless of a successful cal.

To take my scenario as an example, let’s say that the actual flow is 0.6 GPM which is below the threshold of the CST. The cal routine of course fails, it then asks me to be sure that there is some flow, and I’m presented with either the option to specify 0.6 GPM manually OR it allows me to enable leak detection by manually specifying a threshold where I would then set something like 0.9 GPM or similar.

As for my experience with the other zones, it was good. No real issues or problems at all. I had elected not to run all the zones beforehand, so I discovered that I had accidentally swapped the wires for two zones and that on another zone one of my solenoids had apparently decided to quit working over the winter. As an improvement, what would be great would be to display the instantaneous GPM as it is running and for that matter, it would be nice to see that on the Home Dashboard screen and History too. Whenever I am running while looking at the console, I always tend to want to see the inrush GPM as a zone starts up, the steady state GPM, and in the history the GPM for past runs.