Upgrade your irrigation system to be ‘smart’
To make your existing irrigation system ‘smart’, the first step is to determine what type of irrigation system you currently have.
Generally there are two types:
Standard (central automated) irrigation controllers
These timers are mains powered and can operate multiple irrigation lines. In most instances, mains powered standard irrigation controllers can be simply swapped over to a smart irrigation controller.
Programmable tap timers
These tap timers are battery powered and generally only operate one irrigation line.
If you have a programmable tap timer and want to upgrade your irrigation system to a smart irrigation controller you are likely to need extra work done by an irrigation specialist. This may include:
- Installing an isolation valve: these isolate the irrigation system from the main water supply when closed. When this valve is open, water from the main supply line enters the irrigation system. At a residential home, the isolation valve is usually located underground near the meter whilst at a large commercial property there may be a number of isolation valves throughout the irrigation system. An isolation valve enables you to turn of the supply of water from the mains to the reticulation in order to find leaks, make repairs and so on.
- Installing a back flow prevention device: backflow is the unwanted flow of water from an in-line irrigation system to Power and Water’s potable water supply system. It has the potential contaminate the drinking water supply. A prevention device is an important piece of infrastructure to keep you and your family safe.
- Installing solenoid valves for each watering station: solenoid valves connect and help control the water flow to the sprinkler heads in each individual watering zone. They enable you to manage your irrigation system better.
You will also need to ensure there is a strong consistent Wi-Fi signal at the location where you intend to install your smart irrigation controller and have access to an external power point.