URGENT: Need fix to multiple Rachio units so they work as one system


#101

I am a residential user (27 zones) who is currently on a discontinued Hunter ICC controller. It has four 8-zone expansion modules (32 zones) and a total expansion capacity of 48 zones. Assuming it hasn’t already, possibly the Rachio Team should take a look at the expansion module concept that the ICC uses, from a design standpoint. Offering a system that comes with one 8-zone module included, but the capacity to add three or more additional modules ($), might make sense. Having everything inside of one, albeit larger, control box would also be cleaner than daisy-chaining multiple controllers; in my opinion.

Please add me to the list of residential users who pledge to purchase a Rachio when it expands to a seamless solution for systems with an above-average number of zones.


#102

FYI, Hunter reintroduced the ICC controller this past year. I advocate the module idea, too. Hunter WIFI controller comes with a 12 station base. One can buy modules in 12 station increments bringing capacity up to 36 zones. But…their controller does not have all the excellent features of Rachio programming. If Rachio could have modules this would be excellent. The reality is that most irrigation systems for single family homes are less than 16 zones. Rachio has really kicked the irrigation industry into the 21st century.


#103

If Hunter’s WIFI controller (the HC) actually allowed 12-startion modules, and not a daisy-chaining of 3 separate full-bodied units, I’d consider it. The other main plus of the ICC is that it is housed in a top-notch weatherproof enclosure. To connect three HC units AND enclose them from the weather would be challenging if aesthetics are a concern. I would buy the PRO-HC today if it was not limited to 24 zones.


#104

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.hunterindustries.com/irrigation-product/controllers/pro-hc&ved=0ahUKEwjJsfqS5srVAhVIl1QKHcVBD8MQFggmMAA&usg=AFQjCNFuI2liEvQ6t6B4p8ddBc-pgJjJZg


#105

I must be missing something. Are you implying the Pro-HC expands beyond 24 zones?


#106

Hunter ProHC is not modular as far as I know. Fixed station count models with 6, 12 or 24 stations in one cabinet. Their HC is where you have 2 extra expansion models but it acts like a controller with 24 or 36 stations. But I don’t like their product. You can only select one airport weather station for free, or you pay a subscription for their “enthusiast” plan. Not too smart. Hunter gave up trying to come out with their own product. They gave up and purchased an Australian company called Hydrawise.


#107

I was told last Summer that this merge feature was coming. I’m checking in to see if there was any progress. I own one 16-valve Rachio Controller and two 8-zone Rachio controllers and have 30 zones. I don’t understand why this wouldn’t be a programatic fix. Select the three controllers on my iPhone and then click “merge”. Isn’t the goal to simply consider the three as one for the purposes of programatic scheduling and display? In my case, I want to ensure I’m only running one zone at a time and currently I need to manage this via the three controllers in the app - frustrating - especially when you live in the desert and are xeriscaping as I’m needing to consult a spreadsheet each month in order to avoid zones overlapping.

Please advise status of this one.


#108

Hey @DesertDweller-

Unfortunately, I cannot give any dates on this feature. It is absolutely on our roadmap, and something our team is working to improve. I’m sorry I cannot give any more detail!

McKynzee :rachio:


#109

Thank you for the reply @mckynzee. In scanning through this thread, it looks as though a few of us were promised this feature. Please advise a date when you have one. Your communication here is wonderful.

I will be moving to another brand if this and one other feature I have separately posted about are not added soon. It has now been a year. It is frustrating to have a “smart” device that goes dumb when you (ironically) buy more.


#110

Welcome to the club. I have been waiting for so many years.


#111

I think it’s coming, along with MV delay capability. These are two of the more frequently asked for enhancements, and, can be done in s/w without requiring a h/w change (Rachio says it’s a s/w company).

I think 16 to 32 zone is hard. I think its order of complexity is similar to moving from a 32 to a 64 bit OS. Version 3 has to keep track of a whole bunch of details, optimize them, and then schedule them.

I think Rachio is late on putting forth an update. I think it’s an intentional decision. I think it’s a gamble of ‘we won’t lose market share, even with such incredible delay, because what’s coming is incredible enhancement.’

I also think there’s no way anyone ‘in the know’ is permitted to comment here. I think at this point it’s ‘no comment’ (mckynzee uses many more words to say as such, above).

All IMO. We’re all just going to have to wait. My bet is that you’ll be better off waiting than moving on. (But, I too am about to become a victim in the contest.)


#112

I’m researching my first upcoming job and I’ll also have two controllers located which are located at the North and South sides of the house. I’d like to see these operate as one system to the home owner. I agree that this should have been addressed long ago, hopefully you make some progress soon.


#113

FWIW, I installed (6) 16-zone Rachio v2 controllers on our property. It seems to me that if all Rachio controllers in use can have shared “Community” attributes (such as how many gallons the community used), and all of my Rachio controllers can have shared “Rachio Account” attributes, then why can’t the 6 Rachio controllers on my property have shared “Location” attributes? That’s all I need. In this fashion I wouldn’t have to log into all 6 controllers to change, say, a weather station, or a smart climate or rain threshold. It’s a real pain.

I wouldn’t purchase a >16 zone controller if it was available. More but smaller controllers mean shorter wire runs, easier swap-outs in event of a controller failure, the ability to run multiple valves at the same time, and the like.

I don’t need ethernet - simply install a long-range WiFi access point. It’s more secure that way, and you don’t have to run outdoor waterproof ethernet cable to your controllers (the cable plus installation would cost more than your AP.)

What I also need is native support for Weather Underground. I had to shut off the “smart climate” features and bump up the rain thresholds until I can kludge together a bridge to my own PWS. Don’t understand Rachio’s reticence around doing this.

Definitely need better fault reporting. For instance, this morning one of my Rachios got hung up at zone 5, keeping a valve powered on for 7 hours (was supposed to shut off after 6 minutes) and dumped about 7 thousand gallons of water on the zone. Kudos to customer support for swapping me out with a new unit; however something should alert me if the run time did not complete and ideally should shut off a master valve if installed.

Rachio reports on current overload. That’s good. It needs to also report on undercurrents - for instance, from open wires to a problem with the valve solenoid. Otherwise it will report that zones were watered when they weren’t.

I like the Rachio, especially the small footprint for outside, and the UI, once one figures it out. If you could add the above features you could make a nice dent in the commercial market.


#114

I think the above is well written. Puts forth good points on a model of multiple Iro units distributed out around a large property that thus is irrigation system installation cost saving, Emphasizes need for Iro units to be able to communicate to Internet and/or each other wirelessly. Also puts forth good emphasis and need for real time monitoring and fault detection capabilities.

Best regards,

Bill


#115

@chrisgayler - @Gene has created WUFYI to bridge data from Weather Underground to PWSWeather where Aeris can pick it up and serve it to Rachio. Here is the link to one of the posts about it -> Using WUnderground.com to integrate Personal Weather Stations


#116

Hey, it works! Elegant. Thanks, to you and Gene !!


#117

The commercial market already has this solution: 2-wire systems.

I do see what you are trying to accomplish. It makes perfect sense provided you already have the infrastructure in place to support it. However, it’s not typical to have power and a charged water main throughout a residential property. It’s also not typical to have a water supply that can run more than a zone of two concurrently in a residential setting.


#118

Count me in as one of those requesting the ability for multiple controllers to be combined into a single larger “virtual controller”.

I have a Rachio installed at one of our vacation homes that we’re perfectly happy with. But a single controller won’t cut it for our primary residence, and I’m left to manually determine the schedules on each to avoid running multiple zones at the same time. As long as I have to do that, I’ll might as well stay with my Rainbird controllers and just add a LNK WiFi module to each one. I’d replace them in a heartbeat with Rachios if I could program them as though they were a single controller.


#119

Hi Franz,
Disappointed but, I understand where Rachio is coming from. For the record, I’m another customer that would benefit from that. I currently have at my primary residence gen 2 - 16 zone and a 8 zone dumb controller (Just died). My 16 zone gen 3 is on the way. I’ll replace my gen 2 with the gen 3 and replace the dumb controller with my old gen 2. Schedule the gen 2 to run at an odd time like early morning. My one question, when the gen 2 is running, will the water usage for that report into the gen 3 from the wireless flow controller? Or will it just ignore that data since its no gen 3 zone is active??

Thanks in advance,
Loren Okuly


#120

It will not. The flow meter is built for one controller.

Hope you enjoy the new controller. Please let us know if you have additional questions.

Have a great week.

:cheers: