I live in Denver and installed my Rachio in November. I am just now starting up the system and implementing the automatic watering schedule. A couple of questions, the watering does not seem to take into account colder days vs warmer days. I can set the seasonal adjustment, but I would think Rachio would scale back watering on a folder day, vs a warmer day. One problem I had was that last Wednesday when it snowed by Rachio went forward with the full schedule (as if it were 80 degrees outside). Does Rachio look at the snow forecast? Lastly, is it possible to show more detail around the forecast that my Rachio sees? It is supposed to rain and snow tomorrow, but I don’t have enough confidence in my system yet not to turn on tomorrow. I end up utilizing the rain delay, but would prefer to have this done automatically. The system starts at 5am, so if the system does not interpret the weather correctly, by the time I wake up and see snow on the ground, I also see the sprinklers had already finished. Thanks!!!
Thanks for reaching out. This Denver weather is throwing me off this week thats for sure! Currently we are utilizing seasonal adjustments on a weekly basis, but with the new version of our app, 2.0, we are going to moving to a daily adjustment. So this will become more real time.
We are reviewing the forecast 15 minutes prior to your watering time starting, that way we are gathering the most accurate precipitation data before the watering time begins. Would you mind providing your username, or the email associated with your account? I can review everything and provide insight into what occurred.
A fellow Coloradan, greetings. Our offices are right near Coor’s field
I’ll try to answer all of your questions on how the system currently/future works.
- Currently we don’t scale back on a day-by-day basis. Water budgeting looks back two weeks, forward two weeks and takes the percent change of evapotranspiration (how quickly water evaporates from the yard) to calculate if we adjust incrementally up or down on a weekly basis.
- Rain delay (weather intelligence) will skip if there is a precipitation threshold met (configurable) or below freezing at the time schedule is supposed to run. The temperature threshold will eventually be configurable in a future release.
- Our 2.0 release (May) is going to go even further in regards to water efficiency and scheduling. We will be releasing flex schedules which will treat each zone like a checkbook with credits (rain, irrigation) and debits (evapotranspiration). Each day we will determine if a particular zone needs to be watered. So, this will closer to your question regarding cool/hot days. In weeks that are cooler you will water less frequently, and weeks that are hotter you will water more frequently. Studies have been performed that estimate this technique alone can save an incredible amount of water by irrigating much more infrequently and only watering when a zone is depleted of moisture. This slideshow goes into depth on this technique.
Let us know if you have any more questions or feedback. Thanks!
Thanks Franz. Next time I am at a Rockies game I will swing by and say hello.
Last question, based on the intelligence built into the system, is there any reason for me to manually set the seasonal adjustment, or will the system do this automatically. i.e. on a day with a forecast of 45 will the system adjust to 50%, and in the same week when the temperature is 85, will the system increase the watering time?
I still think it would be nice to see the rain forecast that the Rachio is seeing. I can see the rain icon, and the temperature, but I want to know if the Rachio is forecasting (a few days in a advance) enough rain to bypass watering on that day.
@gregorydmelton The system will adjust automatically but you can also manually adjust if you feel the yard needs it. We don’t do daily adjustments since there would be too much fluctuation, but do weekly adjustments based on a rolling percent change of evapotranspiration over periods of time.
Couple changes coming with 2.0 of the app.
- Flex schedules will have a constant water time which will not fluctuate by season. It will water the same amount but either more frequently or less (days) based on the time of year. It is based on an industry accepted practice called management allowed depletion. The calendar view will show the days we predict the flex schedule will run on based on forecasted data.
- Rain delay will get triggered much earlier for a schedule (12 hours) so you can see if we are going to skip or not based on forecasted data. These events will allow you to easily skip/not skip if you want to override. Currently it is processed 15 minutes before the scheduled run which is not enough time for you to take action.
Let us know if you have any other questions or feedback. Thanks!
Do we think the Rachio will skip watering tomorrow based on the snow forecast for Denver?
@gregorydmelton Hard to say. Depends on what you have your weather intelligence threshold set at, what the forecast predicts, and if the temperatures go below freezing. This is a hit/miss time of year since it was 80 a couple days ago and supposed to snow tomorrow. I’d set a rain delay for a couple days since the weather is so unpredictable right now.
Personally, I don’t think watering is necessary right now. I’m usually starting beginning of May.If April is unseasonably warm I might start earlier. I remember last year we got so much rain it wasn’t necessary until like Mother’s Day
I set the watering time to 7am, so I’ll be awake. I’ll let you know if it goes or not.
I agree with you on watering this time of year, but we have a new lawn so we have to water. Pain in the neck.
Thanks for all of the help today. Great product, even better people.
I live in the Denver area as well and am dealing with these same issues right now. It’s been snowing the last two days and my system tried running this morning. I had checked the schedule yesterday and there was nothing scheduled for today, yet at some point, that changed. Would a rain sensor help with detecting snow? How do I configure the precipitation threshold? Will the system ever recognize snow? I know it’s not a normal weather situation for most, but it’s how it is here.
We are from Denver as well, loving this late May snow
Have you checked your weather station and what it is reporting? If you would like to post the link to the station data I can check it out. I think that snow is hard to record, however it should’ve at least captured some moisture this weekend.
I hadn’t checked the weather station. I guess I just assumed it was showing snow. The station is KBJC. Would it help me to get a rain sensor? The station is less than a mile from my house. Would the sensor override what the station is reporting?
Looking at the data from KBJC, I see no precip data. This may be why you are running into issues! Have you checked out the PWS’s in your area? They may report data more accurately…
I’ve switched to a pws that is within a mile. Let’s see how this fairs. It’s raining right now, so hopefully soon it will show some precipitation.
@Jefflite If you would like to post the link for the station in this thread I can take a look at it as well… let me know!
Yeah, it’s PWS_KCOWESTGC. Thanks!