Rain sensor activating

I noticed that recently my rain sensor has been “activating”. This is my first cold weather with my Rachio. Is it possible that the cold weather might be triggering it? It hasn’t gotten that cold here in Dallas yet, but maybe 30’s or low 40’s. I noticed that several times I’ve seen it activate when it wasn’t really raining.


I’ve had this same issue - I think I am closer to figuring at least mine out. Once my rain sensor activates after a rain , I get random messages that says it’s activated. Sometimes minutes apart, sometimes hours. But constantly. Once my sensor dries out and I get the “rain sensor deactivated” message, it all stops. I’m thinking that perhaps every time my network hiccups (which it seems to do a lot!!!), when the Rachio connects and the rain sensor is already activated, it kicks the message out to say what the status is.

I had had so many messages that based on some other experiences from forum members, that I even replaced the rain sensor before the last rain. But the new sensor hasn’t made any difference.

Has any one else experienced this?

@alfredoj - my guess is you have a combined temperature/rain sensor. The sensor will behave the same way (i.e. opening) based off of temperature or moisture. Do you know the actual make and model of the sensor that is installed?

Not sure the model, but I can look at it today after work. You might be right about the temp/rain combination.

What brand and model of rain sensor do you have?
I believe you have been having rain in Dallas. Some sensors like the Hunter Rain Clik are very sensitive.
You could consider trying the Sprinkl conserve, which is a virtual rain sensor and no sensor is actually installed outdoor. I think Frisco has been mentioning the sensor on their website.

If you want to determine whether your rain sensor is also a freeze sensor (and if it’s wireless), just remove it from its outside mount and put it in your freezer for a little while. If it detects the freezing temperatures, you’ll see a notification from Rachio about the rain sensor activation.

Caution: Don’t do this in the middle of the summer so you don’t shock your device by drastically changing its temperature from 90+ degrees to 5 degrees. I would also pull your sensor out of the freezer as soon as you get the Rachio notification and transition to the refrigerator for a little while so the temperature gradually climbs back up (unless it’s already freezing outside).

Hi, I’m also in the Dallas area and I’ve noticed my sensor (rain & freeze) activates somewhere around 36-37F. It is mounted up on my roof. I’ve been seeing this almost daily in the evenings. I think it is normal. I have a hunter rain clik which also includes the freeze sensor.

All freeze sensors that I know are factory set at 37 degrees. What brand and model do you have.
You can always bypass if necessary.

@alfredoj If it’s a rain/freeze sensor, it will activate on the cooler nights around 37 degrees like others have said. Since the Dallas areas have been warming and cooling a lot lately, it’s triggering the alert.

Hi, when will you add the programming to Rachio that looks at the outdoor temperature and if it is below freezing, have Rachio interpret the signal as a freeze occurence and send the correct corresponding notification? It is silly to have it saying “Rain sensor activated” for combo sensors when temp is below freezing.

@garyjnj1 The sensors on the market are basically an on/off micro-switches that disconnect the common. They send no specific signal unless they are wireless and then only send a basic signal to disconnect.

Maybe it should say, Rain/freeze sensor activated or Sensor activated.

Hi Sprinklerman, even though the sensors are on/off devices, Rachio is smarter than analog. Rachio knows both the current temperature, forecast and precipitation values. If the temp is below 32(or what you said before 37) and no precip is in the forecast, it should be able to send a message distinguishing rain vs cold triggering the sensor. The rain/freeze sensor I have never reports snow, so if the temp is below the threshold, you know it is the freeze sensor. It is just crazy to see this message when I’m traveling and I know we are experiencing winter weather. While changing it to say “rain/freeze sensor activated” is the simplest fix, it does not really do justice to the “Weather Intelligence” claim for the device. If it’s not sure about the weather station, it can even grab those temps from a linked Nest Thermostat.

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@garyjnj1 Good points. Maybe have Rachio add another drop down name from the sensor list which now allows rain and flow, and add freeze to the list. Then, you’d be able to install an independent freeze sensor that specifies it’s disconnect.

I’m not a software guy, so I don’t know how one would communicate specific data from a on/off switch that doesn’t talk, to one system that does.