Three Features You Need in a Sprinkler System Controller

It’s easier than ever to keep your lawn watered and green with just a simple control and a smartphone app.

Woman controls sprinkler system on phone
Setting, monitoring, and changing your sprinkler settings is simple and intuitive thanks to smartphone apps.Rachio

There was a time when your “automatic” lawn watering plan called for hollering at the kids to move the sprinkler. Who could imagine asking Alexa to water the petunias? Or who the heck is Alexa anyways? Today most controlled sprinkling systems are so sophisticated you can monitor and make changes remotely, and some you can even create a schedule based on weather forecasting satellite feeds. While it may sound horribly complicated, most of these systems are relatively easy to install and set up. If you can operate a smartphone, you can customize a lawn and garden watering system to fit your needs. Here are three things to consider.

Multiple Control Options

Rachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller, Works with Alexa, 8 Zone
This sprinkler controller is compatible with Apple and Android smartphones, as well as virtual assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant.Rachio

The current generation of sprinkler system controllers offer systems options including WiFi, voice control and remote control via your smartphone and virtual assistants. Be sure everything is compatible as you choose the right system for your needs.

Zone-Specific Programming

Orbit 57946 B-hyve Smart Indoor/Outdoor 6-Station WiFi Sprinkler System Controller
This controller comes with an option for programming 6 or 12 watering zones (stations).Orbit

Zone-specific programming divides your yard into specific areas based upon watering needs. Controllers equipped with zone options enable you to schedule the timing and length of watering for maximum effect, reflecting sun or shade cover, soil type, etc.

Weather Sensitivity and Adaptability

Rain Bird Simple-to-Set Indoor Sprinkler/Irrigation System Timer/Controller
This product features a manual “rain delay” that suspends the regular watering schedule for up to 72 hours.Rain Bird

Today’s state-of-the-art controllers come equipped with weather sensing capabilities that enable you to create an automatic program to water your landscape based on weather. Some integrate with a weather forecast, and others are based on actual conditions (such as stopping the watering if it is raining).