While You're At It (Merging Flex and Fixed Schedules)


Yes, we only have 8 zones, so the time won’t really be an issue (I hope, I haven’t received the controller yet, so I don’t know what it’s going to recommend for times especially during the hot months). What I’m hoping for is that the system will still be smart enough to take the available time slots & required duration into consideration along with the “best” times to water (to prevent mildew/fungus/disease).


To add, our watering days are the same odd/even all summer with the exception of no watering on July 31 nor on Aug 31.

One scenario we have been dealing with here in central TX is some areas being on 1-day per week restrictions.

Mid-summer time requirements for a rotor zone (0.4in/hr) for St. Augustine grass when the ETo is 1.7in for the week, comes out to 2hrs. If you have more than 5 rotor zones, you are SOL on getting everything in from midnight until 10am. Have more than 7 and your SOL getting it all in with both morning and evening windows.

I’d love to see an advanced feature that provides a priority value for each zone. High priority gets first shot at full time, low priority zones get the remaining time divided up evenly.

@docBliny, the controller currently does not account for time of day (hourly) restrictions, but this is in our backlog. Further, accounting for the “best” times to water is also in our backlog. At the moment, we’re working on combining our Fixed and Flex schedules. For more information, please see this community post. The new schedules will be able to forecast your schedule for the entire year, so you’ll be able to see what the watering durations and intervals will be by month.

@JeremyInMT, is this restriction only effective in the months of July & August? If I’m understanding correctly, you’ll need to enter restricted days by actual date?

@SmartWaterTX, valid concerns. Our scheduling algorithm factors your crop (turf) coefficient and microclimate to calculate the landscape coefficient, which when applied to ETo (Reference ET) provides your Landscape ET – which is used to calculate the inches of water to apply to the lawn.

Love this idea and it’s currently in our backlog. Like a DVR priority for which TV shows to record if they all air at the same time :wink: Much easier said than done, but a great way to handle schedules with restriction constraints.

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@emil Yes, because of where we live, watering on May 31 isn’t an issue and October 31 is nuts! :slight_smile: I would suggest something like being able to right-click on a date in the calendar and choose “Do no water on this day” or something of that ilk. As for the phone interface, I’m not really sure. This is throughout our whole state though, so it’s not just me. Thanks for taking the time to communicate about it, emil!

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@JeremyInMT, that would be pretty slick for irregular no watering days

Restrictions create quite the list of edge cases to develop scheduling rules for. Maybe someday restrictions can go away and everyone just uses a Rachio :wink:

I think the opposite is going to occur because water problems are increasingly rising to the top few priorities of many multi-state, state and metroplex areas.

And if I was an investor of Rachio, or part of the executive team running Rachio, I’d be worried that some other competing product will come along, understand how critical water is becoming, and undersand that irrigation controller programming has to be done in reverse of the classic controller. Now what’s needed is sophisticated programming for when not to water - by zone, by grass type, by drip technology, etc.

Best regards,


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@emil Yeah, I’m sure the options get pretty complicated when lumped together. Maybe it could be thought of as a “standby” day or something. You guys just keep up the good work. I’ll throw things against the wall and see if they stick, lol!


Amen. I would be using less water if I could let the Iro do its thing without restrictions. Interesting when regulations cause the opposite of their intent!


They so often do! The law of unintended consequences. :cry:


Yea Steve levit and Steve dubner covered this very well in freakonomics

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Any word on this? I’d love to be able do eliminate the need of remembering to do a rain delay the day before this happens. Seems like if you could just intersect restriction days with the watering schedule so it wouldn’t run, at least on a fixed schedule which is what mine is.

have you investigated an ifttt recipe that monitors a google calendar? was curious if that did not provide enough flexibility for you

I haven’t investigated IFTTT much after its lousy, albeit unrelated, geofencing capabilities. This just seems like something that should be part of the software and not require a second app that requires access to a calendar. This feature should be really easy to implement against a fixed schedule. With the water as needed stuff I have no idea though. Restriction days are such a big thing that I’m surprised this wasn’t a first-release feature really. Thanks for the idea though and if Rachio can’t add it I may have to resort to this method. :cry:

well, i think the idea is when enough ppl have your need/problem, it will be exposed via the app. not saying you are a statistical anomaly but for the moment, you are not the majority.

for now, rachio at least provides an avenue via ifttt. and its not too bad, if you sync the calendar to your phone, but yes, you do miss that feel good rachio feedback loop that the rocket has been fueled and the boosters have been ignited.

I’m the person that started this discussion, requesting consideration for implementing of a ‘pause’ period of time capability.

I.e., specify watering start at 1 AM, and be able to specify a ‘pause’ period as 10 AM - 6 PM.

On a hot day with a large property, watering starts at 1 AM, continues up to 10 AM, ‘pauses’ until 6 PM, resumes at 6 PM, and finishes before midnight.

This would be maximum simplicity. No IRRT or anything else - just the Iro.

If a ‘pause’ capability isn’t cost effectively implementable, then the customer simply has to do the math long hand. Figure out how which zones can be watered between 1 and 10 AM during the hottest day of the year. That’s one schedule. Then do the remaining zones after 6 PM.

Best regards,


I can’t believe this has not already been implemented. I know Rain Bird and Irritrol (Toro) both already support this. RainMachine can do it. I’m sure there are others as well. This is not that odd of a feature. Rachio seems to be way behind in this. I just got my Rachio and it is essentially useless because of this lack of feature. In my municipality we cannot water between 6am and 6pm. Another option that would help with this situation would be the ability to run a drip station while other stations run/cycle, but that is just a Band-Aid not a solution.

I see the last post was April 2016, is there any idea of when this will be implemented? If there is no forecast for this I will probably return my rachio.

@nvanlaar - Rachio has made comments that they’re re-writing the calendar/scheduling for V3 of the software in order to handle all the different watering restrictions that are in place around the country. So far there has been no announcement on the release of this software and I don’t expect to see any official comments from Rachio staff on features or availability until it is actually released.

Welcome to the community.

Thanks! I was/am trying to transition from a Rain Bird ESP-LXM with the etManager module (the receiver keeps burning out). I use to do commercial Landscape design and am familiar with smart (et) controllers so I was initially excited, but now a little bummed because I now perceive that the rachio is feature poor comparatively speaking. The Rain Bird allowed for very granular control of all aspects, but could also be setup to be completely automatic. The good news is that rachio can be updated.

All that said, I don’t expect an exact date, but would like to see some goal or tentative idea for the update to be completed by (insert date).

but flex makes up for 15 other features.

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