Have you ever forgotten to check the weather before you left home and now it’s raining and your sprinklers are scheduled to turn on any second? In such cases, simply having a rain sensor installed can save you. In this article, we highlight what a rain sensor is and how a rain sensor works on a sprinkler system.

How Does a Rain Sensor Work on a Sprinkler System?

What is a rain sensor?

Rain sensors can be our buddies when it comes to conserving water. A rain sensor is used to detect rain when the rainy season comes and it also generates an alarm to your sprinkler, making it easy to alert us and conserve water. When the sensor detects a level of rainfall, the alarm will be sent onto the sprinkler’s system and let the timer know that a certain cycle of the sprinkler will be skipped due to the rainfall, making it conserve water. It is a very convenient technology that is perfect for people who do not have the time to always water their lawn grasses and plants.

What does a rain sensor contain?

The rain sensor looks like a board and has nickel-coated lines. It also has its own resistance principle which plays a role whenever a rainfall happens. This sensor module also gauges moisture through analog output pins and gives a digital output to the overall sensor. It has a good quality sensor module and anti-conductivity and oxidation. Therefore, this makes rain sensors an effective technology to use.

How does a rain sensor operate in general?

Other than the principle of resistance, the rain sensor also functions based on the principle of internal reflection. The sensor’s infrared light beams are positioned at a 45-degree angle in a clear area. When it rains, the wet glass of the sprinkler system sensor causes the light to scatter. As a result, a lesser amount of light gets reflected back to the sensor. When that happens, the sensor sends a signal to the sprinkler to cut its watering cycle.

Types of Rain Sensor

Here are some of the different kinds of rain sensors. You may choose what is convenient for you according to where you live and how often it rains.

1. The Rainfall Collection Cup

This type of rain sensor usually stops the sprinkler from turning on when rainfall occurs, and it fills a certain level of the cup. However, there are risks with rainfall collection cups. These types of sensors cause a false alarm when the cup is accidentally filled with any material other than rainwater. The sensor might mistake the debris/dirt as rainfall and flag it as rainfall, causing the sprinklers to miss a cycle. To avoid this kind of situation, make sure that the collection cup is free from any sort of dirt or any possible material that the sensor might flag as rainwater.

2. Expansion Disk

Expansion disk rain sensors use a cork dish that expands when there is rainfall in order to measure the level of precipitation it has. As the cork dish expands, the pressure switch expands until it hits a specific limit. It then breaks off the electrical connection, which causes the irrigation system to turn on or off.

Benefits of having a Rain Sensor

If you have a sprinkler system in your yard, then it is good to buy a sprinkler rain sensor!

Conserve water

Imagine this, you are out of town and you forgot to turn off your sprinkler system. Then suddenly, a heavy rainfall dropped. Your sprinkler system will continue to cycle despite the downpour and will continue to waste more water. With a rain sensor, you won’t have to worry about turning the sprinkling system controller on or off.

Saves you money

If your water sprinkler is turned on even after rainfall has occurred, your water sprinkler has unnecessarily consumed water to perform its function. As a result of your water sprinkler’s unnecessary water consumption, your water bill will cost more than you think it will. Having a rain sensor will help you avoid such a situation and reduce the cost of your water consumption.

Additional Reading:

How to Update Your Sprinkler Controller System?

Conserve Water With Your Irrigation System

How Often Should I Water My Landscaping?

Pioneer Underground Lawn Sprinklers | Omaha’s Best Commercial & Residential Sprinkler Systems

Contact Pioneer Underground Lawn Sprinklers to schedule a free estimate on a system install or to find out what you can do to make your existing system more efficient. We welcome commercial and residential clients. And remember, whether you need our services now… or later in the season, Your Healthy Lawn is Our Passion and we are only a phone call away! Call 402-934-7900 to schedule your service.