Ask your questions here – (They will appear shortly)

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To add a question, go to the bottom of the page, fill in the comment and click Post Comment.  

Please look at the DIY Troubleshooting section before posting, answers to most questions can be found there. 

You can also reply to other people’s questions if you like. (Thanks for helping)

Please try to include the following with your question, list:
1) the date code (located under the battery),
2) the model number shown on the face of the controller (usually below and to the left of the dial, e.g., RD-600 or RD-600-R).
3) Color (mostly Gray or Blue) based on the example rainDials shown at the top of the page.

824 thoughts on “Ask your questions here – (They will appear shortly)

  1. We have an old RD-600 with wiring for 12 valve positions, but only 6 positions show on the dial. How do we access positions 7-12 for programming the times?

    • Hi Chris,
      The backboard wiring you mention is standard, but the number of stations useable is determined by the timer, since it drives the whole system. RD 600 units can do 6, 900 can do 9, and 1200 can do 12- If you have a 600, sadly it is only capable of programming 6 stations.
      So, to answer your question directly- you can’t.
      If you would like to use more than 6 stations, you need to upgrade to either a 900, 1200, or some other companies sprinkler timer.
      If you’re interested in purchasing a 9 or 12 station timer, let me know! I have some in stock.

      Thanks,
      Ben

  2. I followed your troubleshooting directions and eventually fixed my 99-R system. Saved me at least $100, so I sent you $20.
    Thanks,
    Chad

  3. We have a DR 900 R at our bowling club.The timer initially stopped working so I opened it up & I repaired a corroded track on the timer just below the failed internal battery & replaced the battery.
    The timer then seemed to work fine on battery until I reconnected it to the system.
    I have used your diagnostic guidelines. I have tested solenoids ,all pass resistance tests & by-pass tests. The outputs on the board all switch on and off continuously including the pump output. I think the timer is faulty. It is 10 years old.

    • Hi Shad,
      Sounds like a common problem that we deal with! I sent you an email to verify, and I look forward to getting an email back and getting you sorted out.
      Thanks,
      Ben

    • Hi John,
      The solenoid unscrews from the valve if you rotate it counter clockwise.

      Thanks,
      Ben

  4. I just left a question about the unit pulsates when timer is off and keeps having water go thru the line and soak the yard. Rain dial RD 600 R date 11/19/2013. Is their a transformer that can be replaced?

    • Comment Referenced:”I have a RD600 and it pulsates when timer is off and water continues to flow thru the lines and over water each time it pulsates”
      Hi Butch,
      This is definitely an unusual problem- Brian is out for the week on a well deserved vacation, but let’s see if I can help.
      There is a transformer that can be replaced, and I have a page about testing it: Transformer Testing
      If you think that the transformer is your problem, please try that link to test your transformer.
      It sounds to me like you have a problem with your valves- I think that this page will be more helpful to you: Valve stuck on
      Please let me know how it goes, and if I can be of more help.
      Thanks,
      Ben (Brian’s son)

  5. Just bought a house in a town with low water pressure, my dial “zones” has up to three zones spraying at once, how do I program it to spray one zone at a time. For instance, if it’s on zone 3, it is spraying 3,4,and 5. How do I minimize it to one zone at a time

    • Hi Nancy,
      Please check out the page I have on this issue under Troubleshooting!

      Thanks,
      Brian

  6. when the timer dial is on “current time” so I can change the time, neither + nor – button will not change the time. If I keep wiggling the time will only go down, not up, for a few numbers but stops again. Is there way to maybe open the box it self where the back of the button is making the connection?

    • Hi Yoko,
      We use a flat head screwdriver and slot it into the slots on the side of the timer- it can be hard to do so without breaking the tabs, so be careful!

      Thanks,
      Brian

  7. We recently replaced our RD-6- Mod-R a few months ago and right now the morning run is working fine, but the night run won’t come on (only one valve, drip only). We live in Phx and the daytime highs are above 110 degrees. I have tried to manually start the runs at night and they won’t come on – I can manually start the runs in the morning just fine. I just replaced the solenoid with no change. Any ideas what might be causing this? I have double checked all settings and they appear to be fine (1 run in the morning and one at night for ten minutes each).

    • Hi Harold,
      This heat definitely has been rough in Phoenix- this sounds like a problem I can fix for you, I’ll be sending you an email soon with some details.

      Thanks,
      Brian

  8. I just had a new Irritrol RD900-INT-R (Blue color) installed last Saturday (8/8). I programmed “Skip Days” to begin the next day (Sunday) and it appears to be working properly. However, yesterday (8/11) I turned it on with Manual button for Valve 2 to test some newly installed lines and it came on ok but after I stopped it to repair a line, it now will not work again in the Manual setting nor the Semi-Auto setting. The next “Skip Days” is scheduled for tomorrow so do not yet know if that still works. Any ideas?

    • Hi Ed,
      It sounds like an issue with the new line you installed, not with the timer.
      Does the timer indicate that it thinks the valve is activated? The top row of the display should show the number of the valve if the timer is actually trying to turn it on.

      Thanks,
      Brian

  9. Hi,
    Nice site you have here…
    I am helping my elderly uncle, whose sprinkler system has obviously seen much better days. Lots of troubleshooting to do – everywhere it seems. I am close to being a newbie at irrigation systems, but I’m fairly handy and I’m learning.
    I’m starting my troubleshooting quest with the timer.

    Here’s the info on the timer:
    – Rain-Dial (Hardie Irrigation)
    – 9-station
    – mounted on outside wall (with cover).
    – gray face
    – no model number on face
    – date stamp is 041593

    Here are the symptoms that I see:

    A) Buttons are failing (“Manual” & “Minus”)
    B) When I first opened the cover I saw a flashing LCD. So I moved the function switch back and forth between the positions Off/Set/Run, and it was still flashing. Then I replaced the battery, and the flashing stopped. I reprogrammed 3 stations and the settings stored successfully.
    Then the next day, I opened the cover again, and to my surprise, the flashing had returned. I took out the battery and it tested “like new”. I decided to try a Semi-Auto check anyway. So I reset the time on stations 1, 2, and 3 down to 1 minute, and the settings were stored. I then noticed that the flashing had stopped. But then later it came back again. I had been playing with it and I don’t understand the cause or what it could be telling me.

    Here are my questions:

    Q1) Is the LCD flashing behavior that I described normal? What is it even telling me?
    Q2) I assume that if I brought it in to you, that the problems I described above would be simple fixes for you. But I’m wondering if it’s worth doing. Of course I’d want some reassurance that all the other components would have some life left in them. I see in another post that you typically scan/test other parts and replace the typical troublemakers. I assume that it kinda validates the overall state of health. That is awesome. I’m trying to weigh if it’s worth fixing, or if a newer model wouldn’t be more advisable. About how much would this cost me?

    Here’s a question about the timer’s features, that will help me decide whether to fix… My uncle’s system features a manual anti-siphion valve (Orbit 51022) that leaks profusely. I assume that there weren’t any solenoid-operated SVs back in the day. So while dealing with its leak problem, I thought I might just upgrade his SV to a modern automatic one. I’m assuming that an auto siphon valve is preferable, and that it would be activated everytime that any station gets activated.
    Q4) Does his vintage timer even support a solenoid equipped SV?
    Q5) If not, is there some kind of a wiring hack to get that to happen, or again, would I need to invest in a more modern model?

    • Hi Dayold,

      Sorry about the delay in response – we have gotten a little behind with comments. I updated this link with details about the flashing problem. I hope your repaired timer is working well now.

      Brian

  10. I had a power outage and my rain dial kept the time and settings during the outage. I am new to the system details since I only bought the house 2 years ago. Anyway , when I realized it has a 9v battery back up I went to change the battery and one was not installed. So my question is, how could the system have kept the time and setting set during a 2 hour power outage without a 9 v battery installed??

    • Hi Mike,

      Some of the newer models can keep the programming even without a battery plugged in. The 9 volt will help keep the time correct in case of a power outage.

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