Smart Sprinkler Controllers
Posted by Norman Fong
Our water bill has been steadily climbing to new record levels. Water rates seem to just keep going up as a new increase was just announced in our area. It was time to look for ways to save water and money. Spring and fall are good times to look into this. There will still be rainy days ahead where we would not want to waste water.
EPA’s WaterSense web site has indicated that as much as 70% of a home’s total water use during the dry season may go towards landscape irrigation. 50% of that water may be wasted due to evaporation. EPA WaterSense Draft specifications for weather- or sensor-based irrigation control technologies are currently under development.
Drip irrigation is more efficient than spray irrigation. Little water drippers connected to a flexible tubing system can direct water to where it is needed. Utilize drip irrigation, flag drippers, spot watering, and micro spray watering heads for particular areas to maximize water savings.
Hand watering is also very efficient but painful.
Some water districts like the San Francisco Bay Area’s East Bay MUD even have rebates for using Self-Adjusting Irrigation Controllers.
Amazon has the Weathermatic line that has won awards from Consumers Digest. They have models that use on site weather stations to taylor irrigation to your microclimante.
Some controllers require a subscription to get weather information. We would recommend avoiding these models.
Rain shutoff devices are also available. These connect to your your ignition system to automatically stop watering if it is raining.
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