As the temperatures creep up during the long days of summer, lawns grow thirsty. Even though you might have the best intentions to keep your lawn properly watered and looking lush and green, busy work schedules and family activities can derail you from those plans. The solution is installing one of these 4 best smart irrigation controllers.
These devices are designed to replace conventional irrigation controllers, which can be notoriously hard to program. Once in place, they will help keep your lawn at the optimum moisture level and ensure you never again forget to water that expensive sod or yard you’ve worked so long and hard to cultivate. Furthermore, smart controllers can help ensure your garden or landscape bed is kept perfectly watered to grow lush, beautiful plants.
These smart controllers are also well-suited for use by homeowners in municipalities where watering is restricted to specific days or times, by delivering easy-to-set systems that put your mind at ease and help avoid potential penalties. Some cities may also offer rebates on smart irrigation controllers, so it pays to check with your local utility.
Rachio 3 Smart Irrigation Controller
Rachio offers a complete solution for those wanting smart watering systems for their lawns. Their system for in-ground irrigation setups includes a set of products and an app that works with any smartphone. So, you could purchase a Rachio smart sprinkler controller matched to your size of yard, install an optional wireless flow meter, and then download the Rachio app to run it all. Well connected, Rachio works with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, plus Apple HomeKit and the Home app.
The cost of the system varies, depending upon how many zones you need to control. Add-ons include things such as weatherproof outdoor enclosures, flow meters, valve monitors, and more.
Rachio Smart Hose Timer
For hose-end watering, the Rachio Smart Hose Timer is a appealing option. It works inside the same Rachio app as its big-brother irrigation system controllers. It can be used with any type of hose-attached sprinkler device, and can also be connected to drip irrigation systems.
An included Rachio Wi-Fi bridge is required for the system.
Orbit B-Hyve XR 8-Zone Smart Sprinkler Controller
Orbit offers several smart timers that you can put your in-ground irrigation system on. Their Orbit B-hyve XR sprinkler controller, for example, helps you make decisions based on the needs of the groundcover you chose for your yard. It comes with the ability to control eight zones and control them from your smartphone. You can schedule your watering, but you can also hit a button that reads “rain delay” if you have an unexpected downpour.
Blossom 7-Zone Sprinkler Controller
Blossom’s smart sprinkling controller for in-ground systems allows you to program a watering schedule for your lawn and prevent overwatering—the Blossom system starts at $149. Blossom can analyze weather reports via a cloud-based algorithm and give you an optimized watering schedule based on your specific location.
As with other systems, you can add various accessories onto the base model at additional costs. Still, the cost of the base system itself is reasonable for the peace of mind you get, and that includes compatibility with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
About In-Ground Irrigation System Zones
For in-ground systems, do keep in mind that watering zones are typically defined by the number of underground sprinkler valves built into your system, not by the smart irrigation controller. So, if you have a conventional non-smart irrigation controller with 8 zones, replacing it with a smart controller will only give you 8 zones.
Make Your Lawn Happy While Conserving Water
Smart irrigation controllers are excellent tools to keep your lawn happy and save you work and worry, while also conserving water and saving money on your water bill. No longer will you have to recall if you remembered to turn on the sprinkler system or turn it back off. In fact, if you forget, you can open an app on your smartphone and see what your smart system has scheduled.
Smart irrigation is clearly the wave of the future, and your lawn will thank you for investing in one of these systems now.