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Dripit good
02-07-2009, 11:14 AM
Anybody else do this? Am I nuts to keep the systems "on" if you will.

Is it better to have everything sit completely dormant for 6 months, or exercise the solenoids and allow the controller to run? Keep the electrical juices flowing if you will.

Also is it taxing the spicing or helping it?

Wet_Boots
02-07-2009, 11:30 AM
Taxing the spicing? What kind of beatnik lingo are you young'uns slinging around?

Dripit good
02-07-2009, 11:35 AM
You know, wear it out faster......make it go bad earlier.

bobw
02-07-2009, 11:42 AM
I've heard the theory that keeping the clock plugged in will generate a little warmth and keep an outdoor clock a little warmer...but we mount clocks inside around here, so no definitive answer.

I will say that I have seen a loose correlation between people that leave their clocks running all winter (and cycling runs) and solenoids needing replacement in the spring.

I'd say, turn the clock off and let winter have its way.

Wet_Boots
02-07-2009, 11:51 AM
Electromechanical clocks are supposed to last longer if the motors keep running on their regular schedule. Of course, the always-on timekeeping motor will be the first one to wear out.

Without A Drought
02-07-2009, 11:57 AM
we leave everything in plugged in, but in the off/rain position.

Dripit good
02-07-2009, 11:58 AM
I guess I can't say that.

Haven't seen more problems doing this, I thought it might be less.

I think the warmth part also applies to the solenoids.

I guess I'm asking does the dormancy affect a weak/borderline spice (just before it goes bad) or help it.

Without A Drought
02-07-2009, 12:07 PM
I know if I let my oregano sit by the radiator a couple of hours a day, my sauce tasted better.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 03:02 AM
I really don't see how it would make any difference at all. Cold doesn't kill electronics, heat does.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 03:08 AM
dup (damn reboot)

mitchgo
02-08-2009, 04:07 AM
That's just over kill. And yes, although it probably wouldn't be noticeable it will wear out the solenoids quicker. It would take years to tell the difference. The only way would be to see the difference of Ohms of a solenoid that you do run through out the winter and a solenoid that you do not run in the winter. But like I said it would take years to actually see a big difference.

It's like a light bulb, if you leave it on 24/7 it will run out much quicker then having it on only when you need it.

Anything electrical that you have on has it's own lifespan. And the moment power is sent to it it's depleting it's lifespan


I really don't see how it would make any difference at all. Cold doesn't kill electronics, heat does.

That is not true at all.
Cold has as much if not more damage to electronics just as heat. It's just on the opposite side of the spectrum with different kind of damages.

Dripit good
02-08-2009, 06:34 AM
I know, crazy questions. Thanks for the input.

Every other minutia has been discussed before, just wanted other peoples take on this. I suppose I could go either way on keeping the system "active" over the winter. I actually though it was helping the electrical components. :dizzy:

DanaMac
02-08-2009, 08:36 AM
That is not true at all.
Cold has as much if not more damage to electronics just as heat. It's just on the opposite side of the spectrum with different kind of damages.

Uh oh... you've questioned one of Kiril's responses without backing data. Prepare for a war. :)

FIMCO-MEISTER
02-08-2009, 08:51 AM
I hope I'm understanding this correct but having the system run with no water in the pipes or solenoid? The theory being that keeping things working is better than having them sit idle for several months then start up again? Solenoids need water flowing through them to cool them down so I definitely believe firing up solenoids with no water in the pipes will shorten their life. Diaphragms I believe are different. A diaphragm that sits with no movement for a length of time will, especially one that gets dried out, fail sooner. True for popups and rotors as well. Timers, unless they are electro mechanical, it makes no difference. Just my belief, theory, and experience. No science here. May explain why Dana feels valves fail at a high rate but I find them very reliable. While I'm at it I also think valves last longer in 6" boxes than 10" or manifold jumbos because there is less temp change.:)

AI Inc
02-08-2009, 09:04 AM
[QUOTE=FIMCO-MEISTER;2754160]I hope I'm understanding this correct but having the system run with no water in the pipes or solenoid? The theory being that keeping things working is better than having them sit idle for several months then start up again? Solenoids need water flowing through them to cool them down so I definitely believe firing up solenoids with no water in the pipes will shorten their life. QUOTE]

I read that in an article last week and then as now I have to disagree. All a solonoid is , is an electro magnetic switch. Just like a pump start relay, or the solonoid that engages your truck starter of makes a snowplow angle.
There is no water cooling a pump start relay.

EagleLandscape
02-08-2009, 09:30 AM
while the shoots maybe dormant. the roots are still alive. dont starve them of water.

Tony Clifton
02-08-2009, 09:49 AM
Since you are in Michigan, I am assuming the water is off and you are basically running the system dry,
I really do not have an educated answer on the solenoids, but as everyone else said, I really don't think it would make a difference.
However, you should keep your clock plugged in. The tiny little bit of heat that is generated from the electricity in the clock will evaporate any moisture that will begin to collect inside the clock and keep the circuit boards dry.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 09:58 AM
That is not true at all.
Cold has as much if not more damage to electronics just as heat. It's just on the opposite side of the spectrum with different kind of damages.

Tell that to the makers of vapor compression cycle cooling systems. :)

AI Inc
02-08-2009, 10:01 AM
Well they do say not to stack electronics ( stereo , video) as it will harm them , correct?

Kiril
02-08-2009, 10:12 AM
Uh oh... you've questioned one of Kiril's responses without backing data. Prepare for a war. :)

:laugh: No .. I'm sure there can be problems with low temps and electronics, but they are nothing compared to the damage high temps will do ... at least that is what my computer tells me when I overclock it without sufficient cooling. People will spend some serious money to cool their processors to well below 0C, the lowest I have seen is near absolute zero with liquid nitrogen + liquid helium at 6.5 GHz.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wB0JodKgZ0A

FIMCO-MEISTER
02-08-2009, 10:28 AM
[QUOTE=FIMCO-MEISTER;2754160]I hope I'm understanding this correct but having the system run with no water in the pipes or solenoid? The theory being that keeping things working is better than having them sit idle for several months then start up again? Solenoids need water flowing through them to cool them down so I definitely believe firing up solenoids with no water in the pipes will shorten their life. QUOTE]

I read that in an article last week and then as now I have to disagree. All a solonoid is , is an electro magnetic switch. Just like a pump start relay, or the solonoid that engages your truck starter of makes a snowplow angle.
There is no water cooling a pump start relay.

Why don't you try this and see what happens. hook up a solenoid to a 24 volt adapter and just leave it on. Early in my career I took off a solenoid and left it activated while I serviced a valve. When I reached for the solenoid to screw it back on it was warped and hot.

hoskm01
02-08-2009, 10:31 AM
:laugh: No .. I'm sure there can be problems with low temps and electronics, but they are nothing compared to the damage high temps will do ... at least that is what my computer tells me when I overclock it without sufficient cooling. People will spend some serious money to cool their processors to well below 0C, the lowest I have seen is near absolute zero with liquid nitrogen + liquid helium at 6.5 GHz.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wB0JodKgZ0A
Conversely, and this has nothing yet to do with irrigation, but some Lithium Ion batteries actually have small heating coils in them to bring and keep the core at proper temperature. Electric and Hybrid vehicles, for example.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 10:45 AM
Conversely, and this has nothing yet to do with irrigation, but some Lithium Ion batteries actually have small heating coils in them to bring and keep the core at proper temperature. Electric and Hybrid vehicles, for example.

That would be due to the restrictions of the electrolyte.

http://www.covalentassociates.com/Li-ion%20Battery%20Electrolytes%20Designed%20For%20a%20Wide%20Temperature%20Range.pdf

DanaMac
02-08-2009, 10:49 AM
May explain why Dana feels valves fail at a high rate

I agree. I think we have more overall valve and diaphragm failures due to them sitting around all winter not being used. The rubber dries out and changes due to the freeze thaw cycles, in my opinion. I believe the same can be said for all plastics, including poly, PVC, fittings, bonnets and poppets, and valve bodies. PVC sitting in the frost line in Michigan is probably going to have problems sooner than PVC used year round in Texas.

bicmudpuppy
02-08-2009, 11:08 AM
My opinion is from undocumented observation, but also from observations with years of service. Peter is correct about solenoids, and the system does NOT have to winterized or blown out. If a solenoid valve continues to cycle with the water off, the cooling that comes from the water not being in the solenoid will cause failure. Anyone who has worked both north and south climates will know that the conversation between Dana and Peter is also correct. You can find diaphragm valves that have never been dry that are 30+years old and still working. A diaphragm valve in a northern climate that has set dry and cold for 3-4 months out of the year will fail at 5-10 years. A 10 year old valve that has been winterized every season is a very old valve. In contrast, a valve in Dallas (Peter and John's neck of the woods) can be a brass antique and never have been serviced. Weather Tragic had a bad batch of diaphragms about 14-15 years ago. The northern guys didn't notice it near as much as the southern guys did. The rubber in those deteriorated from water chemistry and went bad in 4 or 5 years. I replaced a bunch of the when I was in Dallas. I moved north to Lawrence, KS and there were still a bunch of them around, but when I asked about the bad rubber and if WM was still offering replacements, you would have thought I had grown a second head. The KC market never identified the problem, and WM didn't volunteer except when someone screamed loud enough.

DanaMac
02-08-2009, 11:12 AM
As for the title of the thread winter run times, mine tend to be slower as I put on more weight in the winter. :)

hoskm01
02-08-2009, 11:15 AM
As for the title of the thread winter run times, mine tend to be slower as I put on more weight in the winter. :)
HAHA. Good one, did not specify.

I hate running.

DanaMac
02-08-2009, 11:58 AM
I hate running.

I don't do in anymore unless someone is chasing me. I've been trying to use the elliptical machine at the house lately.

Wet_Boots
02-08-2009, 12:04 PM
Controllers should always be left on, in the Rain/Off position in the winter, if only to protect the programming of the older ones, that need a backup battery to preserve the information.

Mike Leary
02-08-2009, 12:55 PM
Controllers should always be left on, in the Rain/Off position in the winter, if only to protect the programming of the older ones, that need a backup battery to preserve the information.

I've always left them in the Rain/Off position to provide a little heat to keep the moisture down.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 02:03 PM
I've always left them in the Rain/Off position to provide a little heat to keep the moisture down.

Explain that reasoning to me please, but before you do you might want to take a look at the following.

http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/docs/documents/281/volume-air-moisture-holding-capacity-imperial.png

Wet_Boots
02-08-2009, 02:09 PM
Uhhh, I believe that water vapor, if it's going to actually condense, will do it in a cooler area first, so the controller heat serves a purpose. For controllers powered by a wallwart, they probably never get very warm when not running a zone.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 02:15 PM
Uhhh, I believe that water vapor, if it's going to actually condense, will do it in a cooler area first, so the controller heat serves a purpose. For controllers powered by a wallwart, they probably never get very warm when not running a zone.

Yes, but we are not talking about condensing surfaces are we ... or are we? Furthermore, for your theory to work, you have to assume the entire circuit board is at a temperature that is consistently >= than the surrounding air. Will this be the case ... I think not.

Would it not make more sense to eliminate the condensing surface altogether by keeping the circuit board at the same temperature as the surrounding air if moisture is a concern?

FIMCO-MEISTER
02-08-2009, 02:15 PM
Condensation versus vapor. I'd rather as boots says have the moisture as part of vapor and not condensing on the controller parts. Having said that With a digital timer I don't think it makes any difference if unplugged all winter or not. Mechanical definitely want running all winter on off.

Kiril
02-08-2009, 02:19 PM
Don't know about you guys, but I have seen moisture condensed on a "live" controller circuit board.

Wet_Boots
02-08-2009, 02:24 PM
Moisture still condenses on colder surfaces first, which is why your freezer needs defrosting.

Sprinkus
02-08-2009, 02:45 PM
What's "Winter"? :confused:

Waterit
02-08-2009, 02:55 PM
We don't winterize like y'all do. We strongly recommend to our pump-and-well customers to run the system a couple of times a week to keep the pump motor from locking up. Salt air + disuse = $600 pump replacements come spring.

TRILAWNCARE
02-08-2009, 03:11 PM
You can still have 100% relative humidity at lower temperatures. This is what is referred to as the dew point.

The amount of water in the air will be less at lower temperatures.. When you reach the dew point is when you will develop frost or condensation.

Here are some formulas for you Waterit.

Did you know you can calculate the distance clouds are above the ground from the air temp and the dew point.

Temp - dew point divided by 4.5 X 1000 + your altitude above sea level.


So if the outside air temp is 80 and the dew point is 75 and you were at 1500 ft. The cloud base would be at 2611 ft above sea level or 1111 AGL (above ground level). Not very good flying weather......

Wet_Boots
02-08-2009, 03:31 PM
This discussion is rapidly approaching the Dewar's Point

http://tbn0.google.com/images?q=tbn:EAJs8OhIBDaRjM:http://gigamarket.1001tours.org/images/syrups/Dewars_White_Label_B.jpg

Mike Leary
02-08-2009, 03:34 PM
I'd agree.

Wet_Boots
02-08-2009, 03:46 PM
We don't winterize like y'all do. We strongly recommend to our pump-and-well customers to run the system a couple of times a week to keep the pump motor from locking up. Salt air + disuse = $600 pump replacements come spring.I don't have much salt air worries, but the idle time can become an issue, and I'll have to work a motor shaft free, before a pump is good to go for a season. I prefer pumps with the older-style round-flange motors, since you can easily get a wrench onto the motor shaft.

Waterit
02-09-2009, 09:58 AM
I don't have much salt air worries, but the idle time can become an issue, and I'll have to work a motor shaft free, before a pump is good to go for a season. I prefer pumps with the older-style round-flange motors, since you can easily get a wrench onto the motor shaft.

Working the motor shaft free is one of those tricks-of-the-trade that I reserve for good customers - everyone else gets a new pump.payup

Wet_Boots
02-09-2009, 10:21 AM
As long as I'm getting my time, I don't mind using it for my customer's benefit. Especially if I installed the pump myself. I'll probably never install a pump with a square-flange motor.

FIMCO-MEISTER
02-09-2009, 10:43 AM
You can still have 100% relative humidity at lower temperatures. This is what is referred to as the dew point.

The amount of water in the air will be less at lower temperatures.. When you reach the dew point is when you will develop frost or condensation.

Here are some formulas for you Waterit.

Did you know you can calculate the distance clouds are above the ground from the air temp and the dew point.

Temp - dew point divided by 4.5 X 1000 + your altitude above sea level.


So if the outside air temp is 80 and the dew point is 75 and you were at 1500 ft. The cloud base would be at 2611 ft above sea level or 1111 AGL (above ground level). Not very good flying weather......

Learn something new every day.