How many times have you been traveling through your neighborhood and watched sprinkler systems running following a day, or week, of rain? It happens too often. Simply put, the avarage sprinkler system in the greater Kalamazoo, MI area uses between 1000 and 2000 gallons of water per day. By interrupting this following rainfall, you are saving our water resources and money that you spend to bring water to your home. Every automated sprinkler system operating today can, and should, have a Rain Shut Off (RSO) device installed. The models available today can be wired or wireless, can turn a system off after a preset amount of rainfall, or turn the system off when freezing temperatures are encountered. The model pictured happens to be a rain/ freeze sensor that is clipped to an eavetrough or attached to the soffitt. It typically takes about a half an hour to install and adjust. There are also more sophisticated units available that tie rainfall and ET (evapotranspiration) rates into the operation of the system. See this post for information on Smart Systems.
Without going into too much detail, the RSO operates by stopping the electricity that operates the zones in your sprinkler system. There are discs that expand as they get wet to make this happen. When the unit is installed, we make an adjustment that falls between 1/8″-1″ of rain. This original adjustment is based on the type of soil and the density of your lawn. The unit allows your sprinkler system to begin watering again after there is a period of heat and wind sufficient to dry the discs out. After a few rains it is common for the RSO to require a fine tuning adjustment based on your observation of the time between rainfall and when sprinkler system operation resumes. Drop us a note if you are interested in having a RSO installed or serviced at your home.