Terminology

General Irrigation Terms #

Timer

Refers to the ‘hose-end’ models of controllers. These units will attach to a standard hose faucet and either has a valve built-in or use specialized valves.

Hose-end 

This term refers to the threads of a standard outdoor faucet, which is a ¾ inch male hose thread. All ‘timers’ are designed to attach to the standard faucet, hence the term hose-end timer. This can also refer to Hose-end accessories like above-ground sprinklers, handheld spray nozzles, misting systems, etc.

Controller

Refers to units that connect to a valve manifold system. These systems can be either AC or DC and it is important to match valves and controllers to the same current.

AC

aka ‘Alternating Current’. Alternating current describes the flow of charge that changes direction periodically. As a result, the voltage level also reverses along with the current. AC is used to deliver power to houses, office buildings, etc.

DC

aka ‘Direct Current’. Direct current is a bit easier to understand than alternating current. Rather than oscillating back and forth, DC provides a constant voltage or current.

Wi-Fi

This feature allows you to connect to your controller from anywhere via the internet.

Bluetooth

This feature allows you to connect to your timer/controller via your smartphone or tablet but usually only within about a 30-100 foot range from the device.

Start times per day 

This is the number of times per day you will be able to water.

Zones or Stations

This represents the number of independent watering zones you have. Each valve is a station that provides water to an irrigation zone.

PSI

aka Pounds per Square Inch – PSI is what we use when referring to water pressure. You will see PSI mentioned in just about every application of an irrigation system.

Controller and Timer Specific Terms #

START TIME

The time the program begins watering the first programmed station.

VALVE

Supplies water to a specific station or area. The opening and closing of the valve are accomplished through the electrical current supplied by the sprinkler controller.

MASTER VALVE

Typically located at the main water source. Turns on and off water for the entire irrigation system when not in use.

MULTIPLE START TIMES

A controller feature that allows a program to be operated multiple times on the same watering day.

OVERLAPPING PROGRAMS

When a “Start Time” is set for a program before the previous program has been completed.

PROGRAM (A, B, C, OR D)

Individual programs as set by the user. Each program operates independently. If one program overlaps the other the programs will be “stacked.” After the first program finishes the next program will begin.

RAIN DELAY

A feature that postpones the running of a scheduled watering program for a specific duration.

SOLENOID

The electrical part on an irrigation valve that opens and closes the valve.

WATERING BUDGETING

aka Seasonal Adjustments – Adjusts your overall watering program as a percentage of total watering duration.

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