Rain Bird ESP-SMT Smart Controller

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by JimLewis, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. SoCalLandscapeMgmt

    SoCalLandscapeMgmt LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,829

    You can set which days are allowed to water and you can program a water window.
  2. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,720

    Both starting and ending times for the watering window?
  3. SoCalLandscapeMgmt

    SoCalLandscapeMgmt LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,829

    yep. It has two watering windows. You set the start time and the end time of the window. You also can set specifically which days of the week it is allowed to operate on. There is also a grow-in program setting for germinating new seed or establishing new sod or plant material where you can actually set up a regular user defined program until the plant material is established.

    I'm tellin ya... the really did their homework on this one. As a participant in the field testing they spent some serious time listening to what we had to say about the product and were very open to suggestions and input. We were allowed to be completely honest about the product and I really got the sense that the product manager was genuinely interested in my opinions and feedback.
  4. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    Tom is right. As much as I prefer Rainbird, they have had classic failures

    TBird rotor
    Rain sensor that was pulled shortly after coming out
    They had a remote that was apparently a POS that was pulled
    ET Manager has been a joke
    Problems with the ESP modular - the "MV Error"
    Some DV valves with the yellow o-ring on the solenoid, leak
    Older ESPs that had contact problems with the buttons
    LX Plus - wtf?
    And again, the TBird rotor :)
  5. SoCalLandscapeMgmt

    SoCalLandscapeMgmt LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,829

    But who hasn't?

    Toro had the:

    -V-1550 Rotor
    -the Green Keeper controller
    -All of their controllers actually
    -The 250 series valves with endless seat cracking and diaphragm failures
    -the piss poor ratchets on every 570 series ever made

    All of these companies have problems. I used to work at a distributor for years. We shipped back CASES of PGP's and I-40's and I-20's every quarter to Hunter. All had come in under warranty and had failed within 3 to 6 months. We were a small one shop distributor and we shipped back at least 10 to 12 cases of Hunter product per quarter. At least when Rain Bird has a problem the recall the product and make it right. And coincidentally the Rain Bird wireless rain switch and POS remote were not even engineered by Rain Bird. Some outside company designed that stuff.
  6. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,720

    I still wouldn't bet the ranch on the overall return rates of the 5004 versus the PGP. Hunter has been charging more for the PGP because they know they can.
  7. CAPT Stream Rotar

    CAPT Stream Rotar LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,911

    everything has its place..

    no 1 brand has all the best stuff.....when it comes to heads valves drip ect.
  8. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    Hunter has had it's fair share of recalls as well. Their 'ET system' unit was totally pulled for several months as well. I don't even know if it's back out now or not. But it's not like RB is the only one.

    Also, I gotta say I appreciate RB's commitment to quality. Their standard for product recalls is .25%. That is, if more than one-quarter of one percent of their products start to fail in the field, they recall it. The other manufacturers in our industry are much higher. Typical rate for most companies is around 2-5% before they begin to think about recalling something. So yah, they have more recalls. But in the long term it means a lot better quality.

    A good example is the Hunter Wireless Rain Click rain sensor. In less than 5 minutes, you can search Google and find all sorts of articles and complaints about their wireless rain sensor going bad, battery dying after just a short while, etc. But the difference is Hunter feels that is acceptable, whereas Rain Bird didn't. They pulled it and totally re-designed it. Not out yet....but we're getting close. Point is, they will eventually have a much more reliable unit and Hunter will still be pawning off their less reliable unit.
  9. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,720

    Rep :hammerhead:
  10. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    Dan was correct. You can set 2 'watering widows' per day. Which is nice. Lots of options with that. For instance, if you only want to water from 10p.m. to 6a.m. then you set one window for 10-12pm and another from 12:01-6:00 am.

    In addition, you can also turn off certain days or set it to run on odd, even , just certain days of the week, whatever. So with the combination of all of these, you can adjust it around most parameters you would come by.

    You can even program it to NOT water on certain dates. For instance, 4th of July or Memorial Day.

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