Winterization - Blowing Multiple Zones At Once


#1

I had my system winterized earlier today; the gentleman who took care of it commented that he typically blows 2 zones at once when winterizing.

He said it was the result of his compressor being larger and putting 185 cfm into the system

Would it be possible to enhance Iro to support this?

Thanks!


#2

@jsurpless, thanks for reaching out. Unfortunately, this is not a feature we can support at this time. This is a cloud<>device limitation.

This is usually a trick done in blowouts to speed up the time required to perform the service. All things equal, if you can double up zones, then you can complete twice as many blowouts in one day :wink:


#3

Maybe in time

Yup, added benefit no doubt


#4

That’s just him trying to get done quicker. :grinning:

Tell him to “Suck it up, Cupcake!” :smiling_imp:


#5

I would be just as easy to open multiple valves manually to blow out the system.


#6

@Munch, agreed. Usually running a drip zone while cycling through a few turf zones at the same time is a great time saver :wink:

Don’t forget, a user has created a handy website that lets you turn on/off zones from one screen. Check it out @ http://winterizinator.com/


#7

I realize this thread is a year old, but this thread seemed the most pertinent to add what I have to say… I live on the East Coast, and I just had my system winterized today (system blow out). The company I use just started charging and extra $30 to blow out systems that have smart/Internet controllers! The reason is that it takes longer for them to blow out. With a typical controller (e.g., Hunter Pro-C), they can blow out multiple (3x) zones at once. They can only blow out one zone at a time with a smart controller. I’d like to not have to pay an extra fee just because I’m using a “smarter” controller. Once again, being punished for being an early adopter! #firstworldproblems


#8

This, so much this. I just came to mention exactly this.
I just had my system winterized today. When they use the “normal” controllers (Pro-C is my old controller), they can blow-out 2 or 3 zones at the same time, since they have enough air pressure and with the simple pins they can easily activate multiple zones at the same time. Since with the rachio I couldn’t do this, a process that normally would take 15 or 20 minutes took almost 45 minutes.
They even implied that it might make the cost be higher, since it’s limiting the number of houses they can hit in a day.

It would be ideal if there was a way to do a similar thing in the app.
Maybe a special blow-out/winterization cycle that would allow me to pick multiple zones to turn on at the same time?


#9

The person blowing out the sprinkler can manually open all the valves and blow them out from the valve box…If they can’t figure out how to do this and need to charge $30 extra then maybe its time to find someone else to service your system.


#10

I’m a complete newbie to sprinkler systems, so this may be really dumb: could you attach a small, cheap air compressor to the system permanently such that the Rachio could turn it on and off? It could blow out one zone at a time, taking as long as necessary for each (due to being “small, cheap”). The controller could even watch the weather station forecast and do it automatically when a hard freeze is expected.

I found this Instructables article, but note that he gets a certain amount of push-back in the comments.


#11

It’s all about time and effort from their perspective though…
Opening the Pro-C and jumping 3 zones at a time -> fast and easy
Having to find each valve box, opening and blowing -> slow and messy (remember by now all the small covers have been covered by grown grass, so it’s not just popping open a box and jumping a wire, and many systems (mine included) opted to not have one big main valve box but small individual boxes closer to the actual break from the main)

It seems that it should be simple enough for the app to send the “open” command to multiple zones instead of just to one (ideally letting the user pick which zones, so that you can hit different sections off the main to make the process faster and more efficient)


#12

Still no news regarding this functionality? It’s blow-out season one whole year later…

I still can’t see how it could be that hard to send the “open” command to multiple zones at the same time… There should/could really be a separate blowout functionality built into the app…


#13

How many zones are you trying to activate at once @jrapoport?

One issue is actually a hardware limitation- your controller can only power 3 valves at once.


#14

Honestly, anything that’s more than 1 is an improvement over the current limitation.
I think 2 or 3 zones at the same time is realistic with the type of compressors the sprinkler company brings.


#15

Thanks for the extra info @jrapoport!