Rain sensor verbage

I got a ping on my phone saying “Rain sensor deactivated”. I thought to myself, what happened? It didn’t like my new rain sensor? Why did it get deactivated? No, it means that the rain sensor was dry.

Could you consider changing the wording from “Rain sensor activated” and “Rain sensor deactivated” to something a little more human-friendly? Like “Rain sensor detected rain” or “Rain sensor is wet” and “Rain sensor is now dry” or something. :slight_smile:

[Thanks to Lucas for suggesting that I post this on the community board.]



I was thinking about installing a rain sensor, but Rachio is so accurate I am not sure I need one.

It depends on how severe your micro climate is.

I am in Oklahoma. Not sure if that qualifies as severe. I will wait and see how things go.

What I mean is that I will get .25 of rain and the weather station 1 mile from here gets nothing at all. This has happened often for me. Sooner or later I’m going to buy a netamo

We have so many weather stations I don’t think this is a problem here. Last year we had 52 inches of rain.

Right there with ya… just don’t know where to put it. Back of the house is a different climate than the front…!

It’s not a function of how many are are you but how close and reliable. You are probably ok where you are at, moisture has to travel a distance to get to you. I get all the spittle from the gulf.

Although I agree that I probably don’t even need a rain gauge, we’re getting off-topic. :smirk:

For those who do have a rain gauge, the words they use are difficult to understand. I am a professional software developer, and I would never use the phrases “rain sensor deactivated” and “rain sensor activated”. For something to be activated makes me think of “enabling” it. Likewise, something deactivated would be “disabling” it.

My 2c… I never interpreted the wording any other way that how it was intended. Time for a focus group :slight_smile:


English is a terrible language. :wink:

The first time I got a push notification to my iPhone saying “Rain sensor deactivated”, I wondered why the Rachio would want to ignore the input from my rain sensor. Seriously, I thought something was wrong, and almost contacted support.

I think the best way of looking at this is to look up the word “deactivated” in a thesaurus.


All those words imply that things are being shut down or being made inactive.

The root word, “active”, has very different connotations.


Things like “operating”, “functioning”, etc.

My suggestion was to talk about the function the rain sensor is doing. “Rain sensor is wet” and “Rain sensor is dry” are my best suggestions, though I’m open for other suggestions.

(On a semi-related note, I got dinged at a software development meeting for naming a SQL table column “deprecated” instead of “inactive”, even though deprecated was technically more accurate.)

Hey everyone, thanks very much for the suggestions. We’re definitely going to take a look at this. :slight_smile:

Go back to the old verbiage. “It’s raining” ,“it stopped raining”.
Getting a text at 2am that says RAIN SENSOR ACTIVATED is not user friendly.
Especially trying to interpret it at 2am


I agree. The current verbiage is confusing and not logical from the user perspective.

What Rachio says: "Rain sensor is activated"
What the user thinks is happening: “Ok so my rain sensor is connected and now works. Was it not working?”

What Rachio says: "Rain sensor is deactivated"
What the user thinks is happening: “Why is my rain sensor not working/deactivated? I think it’s connected right.”

This is just not logical for the way the user thinks about the product and how it works.

How about “Rain sensor - Watering delay ON” and “Rain sensor - Watering delay OFF”

Here’s another real world example, Intermittent Windshield Wipers (formerly Windshield Wiper Delay). To select the wiper speed, cars typically have a visual indicator which looks like progressively taller/longer bars. However on some cars the longer bar means a greater delay while on most cars it means that the blades will move faster. To the user the later is the more logical approach. The user does not think about delaying the wiper blades, the user thinks about the speed of the wiper blades. Therefore the longer bar would indicate a greater speed and is the logical way to represent the information.

If you look hard enough the inverse of your argument can be found which prompted the verbiage change to its current state.

I’m surprised that so many ppl are conflating enabled and activated.

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This discussion has been going on for almost 3 years, and I think we’ve made at least 3 revisions, clearly we need to hire a word smith to finalize this debate.


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it should say
"good evening david, we have noticed that enough moisture has precipitated in precipitation monolith and would like to inform you that we will no longer be executed your requested schedules as a result"

then it could say
"good morning david, we have detected drought like conditions in your precipitation monolith and have decided to resume your normally schedule water broadcast"

im not trying to be mean, just felt like dragging in 2001 space odyssey. because i would really like that verbiage. i would love to have a hal 9000 in pocket’s reach.

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I have been following this and feel the programmers have better things to work on than what it says when the rain sensor is on or off.It doesn’t matter what it says as long as you know what it means. It’s more like “BS is on” or “BS is off”.

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How is the Netamo? Thought about getting one. Didn’t think it monitored precipitation though. As a new Rachio user, was my understanding the controller doesn’t actually utilize personal weather station data when calculating its Flex schedule. Is that true?

I have heard of Netamo. Right now I am totally satisfied with the NOAA station that I use. It us only 2.23 miles from my home. Rachio has really simplified things for me.

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