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    Best irrigation controller?

    Hi -

    I’m looking at replacing our ancient Rainbird controller with either a Racchio or a RainMachine... and obviously I’d LOVE to Integrate with HomeSeer. seeking thoughts and Insights from the HomeSeer Community!

    looking forward to your Feedback!

    Ed

    #2
    I use OpenSprinkler. There is a plug-ins for it. Frankly, I don't use the plug-ins as I just program the sprinkler and let it do what it is supposed to do. It takes rain into account but not heat. I hope they will add that.

    Comment


      #3
      I use a Hydrawise controller by Hunter.
      Very happy with it as it can change watering based on outside weather: rain, heat etc.
      Also there is integration for HomeSeer.

      Comment


        #4
        We have a Rachio. It's pretty easy to set up. We replaced an old Rain8 controller. And there is a Rachio plugin for HS.

        BUT.........as with all 'cloud connected' devices you are dependent on an internet connection and a working cloud service. Recently Rachio had issues with weather forecasts for non-US customers (NB Rachio is officially only supported in the US and Canada). So we lost a lot of the functionality until the issues was fxied.

        As a general piece of advice......the less stuff you have that needs cloud based services the better. Over the many years of playing with home automation I am more and more convinced that local control is better where possible. I'm sure you will find many forum discussions on this.

        In summary Rachio is good and easy but is cloud based.

        M
        iCore5 Win 10 Pro x64 SSD

        HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435 Windows

        BLOccupied:,Device History:,Yamaha:,UltraMon3:,mcsXap:,Restart:,UltraNetatmo3:, UltraM1G3:,Ultra1Wire3:,BLBackup:,Harmony Hub:,DoorBird:,UltraECM3:,Nanoleaf 3P:,UltraRachio3:,Z-Wave:,SDJ-Health:,BLGarbage:,Blue-Iris:,Chromecast:,Pushover 3P:,EasyTrigger:

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          #5
          Regarding the Rachio (I own one) even though the advanced features require Internet access, one can control it if your Internet is down.

          https://support.rachio.com/hc/en-us/...onal-Partners-

          https://support.rachio.com/hc/en-us/articles/115010378927-What-if-my-controller-goes-offline-

          Comment


            #6
            Rainmachine has a open API. It is not hard to integrate to as their "token" doesn't regenerate for something like 10 years. If you're not familiar, the token is the authentication token which appears to not change often. So, it is easy to go through the process to get a token, and then reuse it when calling the API. Rainmachine can also be standalone without Internet requirement.

            I returned my Rachiao because they didn't support third party integration, and because it was cloud based.
            HomeSeer 2, HomeSeer 3, Allonis myServer, Amazon Alexa Dots, ELK M1G, ISY 994i, HomeKit, BlueIris, and 6 "4k" Cameras using NVR, and integration between all of these systems. Home Automation since 1980.

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              #7
              russr999 So Hydrawise is adjusting watering levels based on temperature? If so I might actually switch to Hydrawise. I guess there will be another plugin to buy, though I didn't really use my OpenSprinkler plugin so maybe I won't need a Hydrawise plugin, either.

              Comment


                #8
                Hi mulu ,

                From the Hydrawise website:
                Hydrawise automatically adjusts watering based on highly accurate, internet-sourced local weather data. The system looks at the forecast and past history to ensure that just the right amount of irrigation is applied. This is accomplished via advanced Predictive Watering, which fine-tunes watering based on the weather data. This leads to significant water savings from your sprinkler system, saving you both time and money.

                I haven't turned on the predicative watering on my controller - I use the good old fashioned run length duration 😀

                The hydrawise plugin (rnbHydra) brings the same functionality to HomeSeer that's in the Hydrawise app but you can always use a "set and forget" approach to the irrigation once you configure the controller (through Hydrawise app). Having said this, I do have it linked through HomeSeer to my house alarm. When the alarm gets triggered, it turns on the irrigation zone closest to the the alarm trigger point (hopefully soak the person who triggered the alarm) 😂

                Hydrawise is a cloud controller but once you apply the settings, they are stored on the controller locally so if you controller loses internet it will continue to operate on the same schedule.
                I've been very happy with my hydrawise controller since I got it installed. I used to use opensprinkler but after it failed and I replaced twice, I decided to move to Hydrawise.

                https://www.hydrawise.com/content/hy...ement-software

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by TC1 View Post
                  Regarding the Rachio (I own one) even though the advanced features require Internet access, one can control it if your Internet is down.
                  Hmmmm....kind of true. Direct access is not intended for home users (from the link posted):

                  Direct Access is a feature designed for Rachio professional partners. This feature should only be activated if you are an irrigation or building professional trying to connect or configure a new controller without Wi-Fi.
                  This also only works for Rachio3 and still requires a cellular connection.

                  If your internet is down you can't access or change anything as an end user. Rachio will just run schedules...for a short period, without any weather interlegence (frost, wind etc). In other words Homeseer won't be able to see or control anything. After all, we are talking about HS controlling an irrigation system.

                  I'm not saying Rachio is not good. And to be honest we have had just few minor issues with our Rachio2 and HS control of it. Just be aware that proper functionality is dependent on an inetrnet connection. And being dependent on the internet is a weakness for many home automation subsystems (e.g. Google Home, IFTT, Netatmo etc.) Hardwired local control tends to be the most reliable.
                  iCore5 Win 10 Pro x64 SSD

                  HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435 Windows

                  BLOccupied:,Device History:,Yamaha:,UltraMon3:,mcsXap:,Restart:,UltraNetatmo3:, UltraM1G3:,Ultra1Wire3:,BLBackup:,Harmony Hub:,DoorBird:,UltraECM3:,Nanoleaf 3P:,UltraRachio3:,Z-Wave:,SDJ-Health:,BLGarbage:,Blue-Iris:,Chromecast:,Pushover 3P:,EasyTrigger:

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by mminehan View Post

                    Hmmmm....kind of true. Direct access is not intended for home users (from the link posted):



                    This also only works for Rachio3 and still requires a cellular connection.
                    Untrue, where did you see it requires a cellular connection? And anyone can follow the procedure they list for direct access, there is nothing restricting the owner from doing so. They say for "pros" because it means having to set the schedule yourself and not rely on their algorithm automation.

                    And in terms of HS integration.... I don't get the fascination with this. My watering schedules are setup for overnight before dawn (as they should be to prevent wasting water due to evaporation and allow the water time to seep in). It's already automated, what does HS bring to the table? It's not like one is going to have a garden party at 5am and you need sensors/events to prevent guests from getting sprinkled on, lol.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by TC1 View Post
                      Untrue, where did you see it requires a cellular connection?
                      Fourth paragraph titled "Attention!" in big red writing on the link you provided.

                      Attention!

                      Direct Access requires a cellular data connection, so be sure to enable it before starting.
                      We have a touchscreen LCD running HSMetro in our kitchen to interact with HS, including an irrigation page (last run time, duration, next run time, pause and resume, trigger a manual run etc).​​​ We don't have a lot of 5am garden parties though so as you mention it is mostly all automated. But it is nice to be able to see what is happening with the irrgation, much like you would using the Rachio app.

                      But my point is all this only works provided you have an internet connection and the Rachio service is running correctly. Rachio's selling point is 'smart' irrigation with weather prediction (e.g. no need to irrigate if it is going to rain soon). Without a network connection it's just like any other schedule/timer based irrigation system, which it defaults to if it looses connection as per the second article you linked to:

                      If for some reason the Rachio doesn't reconnect to the Wi-Fi, the controller will continue to run the last schedule it saved until it can reconnect. The controller utilizes EEPROM (persistent memory), so the last saved schedule(s) are stored on the controller itself.
                      Case in point, Rachio recently had problems with connection to weather forecasts for non-US users. It took several weeks for this to be fixed during which time there were issues with scheduled watering. See https://community.rachio.com/t/web-a...-wheel/27796/8
                      ​​​​
                      Just an example of how cloud based systems have their issues.
                      iCore5 Win 10 Pro x64 SSD

                      HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435 Windows

                      BLOccupied:,Device History:,Yamaha:,UltraMon3:,mcsXap:,Restart:,UltraNetatmo3:, UltraM1G3:,Ultra1Wire3:,BLBackup:,Harmony Hub:,DoorBird:,UltraECM3:,Nanoleaf 3P:,UltraRachio3:,Z-Wave:,SDJ-Health:,BLGarbage:,Blue-Iris:,Chromecast:,Pushover 3P:,EasyTrigger:

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