HOW TO CONDUCT AN ORBIT TIMER TUNE-UP
Sprinkler timers are the brains of an automated sprinkler system. Getting it in top shape doesn’t have to be hard. Here are a few tips to get customers started;
First, get the timer up and running
Most of the time that won’t take much more than turning it on. Orbit’s timers, even if turned to OFF during the winter, will still save customers on programming. It is important to ensure that the customers run through all the zones as a test, to begin with, making sure they’re turning on and off correctly. Any problems may indicate an issue with the timer, but more likely it’s a problem with the wiring.
To perform a manual check in order to see if all the stations are working correctly, these steps must be followed;
- Turn the dial to the “Auto” position
- Push the “manual” button once
- Push the “enter” button once. The first station will now open.
- To move to the next station, push the “? / next” button. The controller will now close the first station and open the second station. Repeat this step to ensure that all the stations are opening.
- To stop the check at any time, turn the dial to the “off” position.
Check irrigation zones
This is also a good time to observe each zone’s sprinklers, looking for broken heads and leaks that need repair and that the timer is clean. Small critters, such as spiders and bugs, sometimes make their home inside a timer, so check for these and clean those out as this will cause the controller to malfunction over time.
Check run times for the correct season
Once sure the timer is running correctly, next is to check the run time per station. As the seasons' changes, the schedules will need to change with it. For example, you may not require that much watering, so a typical check will be to ensure that the schedule isn’t still set for hot months. In the winter months, most plants go into a type of hibernation, therefore they need considerably less water than in the summer months, so irrigating with the same amount through the year will waste up to 75% of the water as plants absorb a lot less than in summer. On many timers, it may be as simple as adjusting the BUDGET feature to something like 25% of normal.
Adjust for changes made
Have any changes been made to the landscape since last the controller was used? This might also be cause to reevaluate what is watering and for how long. Something to keep in consideration is the amount of water that a certain type of plants requires. For example a cactus will need less water than tropical plants or a grass lawn. Overwatering could possibly damage your plants due to waterlogging.
Know the water restrictions in your area
Also, check to see if your municipality has implemented any new watering restrictions, such as days or certain times you’re not allowed to water, and make those adjustments to your timer. This will prevent any expensive fines.
When is the ideal time to irrigate?
It is important to note that plants do not absorb water at night, therefore irrigating very late in the afternoon or early evening is a waste of water because by the next morning when the plants need the water, the water could already have infiltrated the soil past the effective root depth of the plant. The ideal time to start irrigating would be just before sunrise, this minimizes evaporation, prevents frost in winter months and when the plant is ready to start absorbing water, the water is available around the roots of the plant.
Upgrade to B-hyve for an easier experience
If much of this seems like a bit of hassle, consider upgrading the customer to a B-hyve smart timer, which takes the guesswork out of it. The B-hyve connects to real-time weather feeds for their location and constantly updates the watering schedule to make sure their landscapes are getting the right amount of water but avoiding water waste.
It will turn itself off is rain is coming, make adjustments for heat or cool, and stop watering altogether when it’s not needed. Any watering restrictions and restrictions about each zone in your garden can be programmed, to get the perfect watering experience. To read more about the B-hyve click HERE.
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Samrand: T: 012 657 2222, E: email@example.com
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