My old sprinkler controller is an "AICMobile", which is no longer made. So, I am opting to replace it. Is there an advantage to Hubitat integration of such a device and what is the best recommendation for a current sprinkler controller? I am thinking that voice control would be a desired feature too. Something along the lines of "water the front flower beds for 15 minutes". So ideally I would want to refer to a zone by a name in voice commands.
How many valves do you need to control? Also, do you really need to run watering zones on command? Most automation for irrigation involves running valves for a set period of time on a set interval, with automatic adjustments based on weather or soil conditions.
I highly recommend the Rachio 3. The offer 3 versions; an 8 zone and 16 zone on their website,
and a 12 zone that is unique to Costco
They integrate with Google and Alexa and HE. You can name your zones whatever you like and control them with voice, mobile app, HE, or the old fashion way...from the Rachio controller. I have the 12 zone model and it works great.
Yes, I need to run on command. With my current system I NEVER schedule on a set interval. The reason for that is that Houston is dry sometimes, followed by an 8 inch rain day, followed by 8 days of dryness where the ground is saturated and the rain detector on the sprinkler system is dry. However, the ground is still a mosh pit. Our soil conditions are Houston gumbo. it is either squishy wet or bone dry and the last rain does not dictate that all that well. In this climate, watering by command is the only viable use for a sprinkler system.
Excellent info. I wondered whether the Rachio was still the best. Do they run any sales?
I would think that Rachio is the best, with B-Hyve right behind it. I've got a 4-zone B-Hyve, and I've very happy with it. (Replaced the 'brains' of an existing early 2000s Rain Bird). The experience between old and new isn't even comparable! There really isn't a need to integrate it into HE, I doubt if it is possible. I would think the same with the Rachio, both are very aware of the local weather, and make on the fly adjustments as needed.
I got mine from Amazon warehouse, it was brand new, but reduced in price because it was returned. I'd check there for either system.
I also recommend the Rachio. They also can be setup for automatic watering based on your soil and water conditions; you might find it works better than you expect.
I have seen them on sale at Woot and Lowes, and occasionally on amazon.
When I bought my house it came with a Bhyve 12 zone controller that has bluetooth and wifi. It does integrate into HE just fine, although in my case I have never actually used that integration except to test it. The Bhyve app is a better experience and I've never had a reason to do anything other than make a schedule and pause the schedule automatically for rain, freeze, or high wind. All of that is handled just fine in the native app.
I created my own controller if you wanted a DIY option. I like the integration where I just control the zones on my own as switches without adding additional overhead in apps to the device.
Another option is the Rainmachine.
I use the rainmachine pro 16 and cannot be happier with it, it provides native integration with alexa and homekit, It just works, I was even able to reuse the rain sensor from my old Hunter controller. For $169 it feel it was right on the sweet spot. Ah, more importantly, doesnt have a stupid cloud dependency if you don't need one. Api is open wide and well documented and there is even a Hubitat integration, but it works so well on its own that I havent had the need to put it in H