Ask your questions here – (They will appear shortly)

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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.

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

  1. My Irritrol TC 15 EX B will not allow me to enter a specific number of minutes that I want a ‘manually’ set station to run when I push the On button. When I select the Off button, it defaults to 10 hours and I have to hold the Off button down until it reduces the time to the number of minutes I want for that specific station.
    Why won’t my On button work?

    • Hi Steve,

      I don’t do as much with the Total Control timers as I do with the Irritrol RD600 series, but it’s possible that the button has simply failed. Also make sure the slide switch and dial are in the correct position (in case they’re a little off).

      I replace buttons periodically and can help if you’d like. You’d just mail it in using the basic steps shown on the ‘how to get it repaired’ page.

      Let me know if you’d like to send it in for repair,
      Brian – aka the RainDialDoctor for RD600 series timers.

  2. I have an RD600-EXT-R that runs my A and B programs fine, automatically. However, I can only get one station to run manually. It’s on my B program. The other 5 stations are on the A program, if it matters.

    • Hi Marty,

      A couple questions first:
      1) When you try to run the station manually, what happens? Does it blink and say off?
      2) Does it happen only with one valve, or does it happen with multiple valves.


  3. Hello Brian,
    I have Hardie Rain Dial product #HHA 11272 (cannot see model number on unit). None of my sprinkler zones will turn on when using the manual feature, even though they worked fine after recharging the system two weeks ago. I have run through your troubleshooting guide for the obvious issues and the controller seems to be working fine. I can turn on the valves manually. I bypassed the controller to try turning on a zone using your described DIY troubleshooting method (Testing valves/solenoids (and transformer/power)) and this still did not work. My unit does not have a fuse and I assume the transformer is working as the unit display works fine as expected (no flickering and displays the zone as on when activated). I am stumped at this point – it seems perhaps an electrical issue or the controller, but I don’t know what my next steps are. Can you help?

    • Hi John,

      Just to confirm? Does the timer lcd still work without a battery? If so, the transformer is good. If not, we should do some more checking to make sure it’s good. e.g., you could try connecting the the valve wire (like you did before) AND the common wire to the other 24VAC terminal. If the transformer is good, this should turn on the valve. If this does turn on the valve, I’d suggest sending in the timer and the back terminal board. If it does not turn on, check your wiring carefully at the timer and the valve box.

      You’ve done a good job troubleshooting so far, we’ll get it figured out.
      Brian – the Irritrol RD600 rainDial Doctor

      • Yes, the lcd works without the battery, so I guess this confirms the transformer is good? Just to eliminate it as a potential problem, I also replaced the 9V battery yesterday. I checked the wiring at the timer and valve boxes, and it all looks good.

    • Hi Benita,

      You would set “two” start times (start time 1 and start time 2). See the programming tutorial and video on my site for more information.

      Brian – aka the RD600 rain dial “doctor”

  4. My RD600-EXT (date stamp 051705) and will not stay on. The watering for valve 1 starts and shuts off after 3-4 seconds. I can hear hear a continued clicking sound for about 5 minutes after. Same for valve 2 which is set to start about 5 minutes after valve 1 is finished. Batteries have been changed, wiring checked. The installer thinks the heat from sun is making the batteries go bad and suggested moving the controller location to a shady spot. Any suggestions?

    • Hi Susan,
      The chattering or clicking valves is a very common problem that we fix. The information in this link has detailed instructions about the repair process. The sun is unfortunately not the cause of your problem, it is a failing part inside the controller.

      The RainDial Doctor

  5. my display panel on my Rain Dial Hardie 1200 (grey) is blank. The power source to it is active. I can’t find a “fuse” so I suspect it doesn’t have one. Also don’t see a “reset” button. I wonder if an electrical storm might have fried it?

    • Hi Bob,

      Look in the diy section for information on how to test the transformer. If you determine the transformer is good, then just mail both the timer and back terminal board in for repair and we’ll get it going for you, or look at other options.

      Brian – aka the sprinkler timer RD600 series repair guy

  6. I have an Irritrol Rain Dial -R 1200. The controller says the time of day at the top. That alternates with “OF 1” . They flash between one and the other in the display. What does this indicate and how to I get rid of this?

    • Hi Judy,
      That means you’ve got the rain delay feature enabled for one day. You can read more about that on my DIY page at this link.

      Brian a.k.a. the RainDial RD600 Series Doctor

    • Hi Judy,

      I f I didn’t replay already, you can find the answer on my website DIY page – look for the item that say something like ‘what if my timer displays of1 or ofn.


  7. I have a Irritrol rain dial 6 station. It was working fine until I turned it off as we were having a lot of rain – it was off for about 3 weeks until the sky finely cleared up. Once I turned back on it is now in a recycle mode. I’m using program A and have 3 valves. Each stations valve is set for 5 min’s and each start time is set for 6:00 AM. Once the first cycle is finished it recycles 2 more times. It now has watered my lawn a total of 45 min’s. I didn’t change any set up from what I originally had. What ever happen is it possible to fix this problem on my own ? Thanks MS

    • Hi Mike,

      You shouldn’t have the start times the same. They should be spaced apart by more than the total time it takes for all the valves in that schedule to run. Try setting the other start times to OFF. Take a look at my programming tips page for more information.

      Brian – aka the RD-600 irritrol raindial doctor

  8. Hi. I have a refurbished RD-600, which I got 2-3 years ago (not from you). It has worked fine until today. About a month ago, I switched the system to off as we were getting lots of rain. Today I realized I forgot to turn it back on and so I did. But I noticed two problems. First, I wanted to test a valve. I was able to successfully do this a month ago, but today when I pressed the manual start button, nothing happened – the 1 minute stayed on display. It’s like the manual start button just doesn’t work. It doesn’t do the weird thing shown in your video – it just acts as if I haven’t pushed the manual start button at all. Then I had to adjust my programming time, and I noted that my plus/minus buttons no longer speed forward or back – they only advance 1 minute per press. No matter how long I press, they only advance one. Which is very tedious when adjusting the time! Tonight is a programmed watering cycle and I wanted to see if the program worked and the timer works fine. Everything seems to work except the manual start button and the plus/minus buttons. So it makes me think of a TV remote where a few of the buttons are worn out, while the rest still work. So my questions are these: 1) do I need to replace the control box; and (2) if so, do you recommend upgrading to the RD-600 R? Is this something you have heard of before? Thanks for your advice.

    • Hi James,

      I sounds like your RD600 may have gotten a little moisture in around the buttons, or something similar has cause them to start failing. I replace buttons frequently. My recommendation would be to send it in for repair and let me take a look. If it seems like it isn’t a good candidate for repair then I have replacements and upgrades to -R models that we can consider then.

      I usually turn them around the next day. If you have any other questions, just let me know.
      Brian – aka the Irritrol RD600 rainDialDoctor

  9. I went to start up my RD 600 timer and my display would not show anything. I replaced the 9 volt battery thinking that would be all that was needed, but still no display. The transformer seems to be providing electricity okay. I checked the connection on the ribbon strip and wires and they all look okay. There is no fuse as shown in the diagrams and I could not find how to reset the unit. Any suggestions? I don’t know how old the unit is, but it shows Hardie as the company who made it.

    • Hi Richard,

      It sounds like you’ve done a good job troubleshooting it already.
      If the 9V battery doesn’t get it to show a display, I’d send it in for repair. If I can’t repair it or it doesn’t seem like a good candidate for repair then I have other options we can look into when the time comes. Some of the Hardie models are ‘better’ than others so I’ll know more when I see it.

      See the Removal instructions for the RD600 on my website. The ‘how to get it repaired’ page gives you all the other details. if you have any other questions, just let me know.

      Thanks for posting,
      Brian – aka the RainDial RD600 series Irritrol timer doctor

        • I usually get them repaired and in the mail the next day. I ship them two day priority mail which I pay for. Bottom line, it’s a pretty quick turn around.

          You can always water manually by turning on the valves at the valve box if you need to, even without a timer at all.

    • Hi Bill,

      Skip days is often misunderstood and difficult to understand, so thanks for the question. I like to think of the skip days feature like a counter that starts at 1 and goes to the number you specify and then repeats. E.g., for a skip days setting of 3, it goes like this: 1,2,3,1,2,3,1,2,3. When the counter matches the number, the water comes on. Instead of ‘skip days’, think of it as ‘water every # days.
      So if it’s 2, it waters every 2 days, which is every other day: 1,2,1,2. If you set it to ‘1’, it waters every 1 day, which is ‘every day.’

      Let me know if that helps?
      Brian – aka the RD600 Rain Dial Doctor for Irritrol timers

    • Hi Jan,

      It’s possible, and it’s not too difficult, but it’s not real easy either. I’ve done it once by hammering/tapping out the hinge pin. If it’s attached to the house, it must be well attached, otherwise you end up tapping the whole case loose from the wall 🙂
      I don’t have any extra doors/hinges for sale right now.

      Does that help?

  10. My controller has one of your typical problems you mentioned in one of your you-tube videos. I set the minutes push the manual start, the numbers on the display start to flash then it goes to off. I’m glad you can fix it quickly according to your website but I don’t see anything for the cost to repair. Can you please give me an estimate for this typical problem.


    • Hi Kody, Sure. It’s usually 40-45 for a rd600 and I pay the return shipping.

      I warranty it for a year (officially) but if u have any trouble after that just let me know. I’ve been doing this for almost 8 yrs and the repair is very reliable, I’d expect you to get 10yrs plus

  11. The semi-automatic feature works for only 2 of my 3 zones. The zone it doesn’t work on is does work when it’s running on the scheduled times. What would cause this/how can I fix this?

    • I suspect that it is a programming issue. Or it could be that the abc switch is not in the position you think it is. Semi auto runs the selected schedule only. Consider doing a factory reset too(see my DIY page).

      Let me know if that helps, if not I’ll add more


  12. Hi Brian. The LCD screen on my RD-600 occasionally goes blank, then is non-functioning for days or weeks at a time. It had been out for several weeks, and suddenly yesterday it was on, so I tested the various cycles and it seemed to be working, then it suddenly went off again while I was testing. What do you think?

    • Hi Joan,
      That’s a pretty common indication of a timer that just needs to be repaired. I would send both pieces, the timer, and the back connector board. There’s two short videos on my website that show you how to remove them. It’s fairly straightforward.
      I’m turning them around fast these days and will probably send it back the day after I get it. If you have any questions just let me know. Most of the information you need is on my website.
      Let me know what you plan to do.

      • I will go figure out how to take out the pieces and get it in the mail today! Its been driving me crazy : )
        Thank you so much!


        • Brian, when I went to remove the pieces, I noticed some spider web gunk (technical term) on the battery terminals… Thinking this could interfere with the connection, I cleaned it up and put in a new battery just to see if it helps at all… Maybe? I’ll let you know in a few days…

          • Brian, the LCD screen stayed on for about a week, but then it just wasn’t going on when it should. I tried one manual test and thought it was OK, and re-checked my timer settings but its still not working. And today the LCD screen was off again, so I give up! I am sending it in to you today : )


            • OK, I’ll keep an eye out for it. That’s common for the RD600’s, I’ll have it repaired and back to you in ‘short order’.


  13. All of a sudden my rd 600 controller drains the back up 9 volt battery and the display starts to blink. I thought the battery was a back up only when the power goes out. I put a new battery in the unit about every ten days and then the unit is ok for awhile. Thanks

    • Hi Louis, thats the classic symptom of a controller that needs repair. As it starts degrading, the battery is making up the difference; eventually he battery wont be able to compensate enough and even a fresh battery wont help.
      He good news is that i repair rhem all the time. Just send it in; o turn them around rhe next day. Thanks for posting.
      Brian aka the rd600 series raindial doctor

  14. I have an RD900 controller with 8 operational zones. Zone #6 will run when running each zone. When those zones shut down zone 6 will shut down. I disconnected the zone 6 from the controller and when I operate any zone, #6 will still turn on. I have cleaned out the valve body, replaced the diaphragm and solenoid. The Valve is a old Toro Flo Pro Jar Top. Could the problem be with the controller?

    • Thanks for the questions. Here are some things to try. Disconnect the wires to the valve at the valve. That will eliminate any wording issue and tell us if it’s an electrical problem or mechanical valve problem. Then retest. If it still comes on, it’s the valve reacting to pressure changes and may need to be serviced.

      If it doesn’t misbehave, it’s likely a miswiring problem. Could be a wire is shorted to another wire, but often there is a “common” wire problem. Try disconnecting all wires at the timer and connect that valve first, then add one at a time to try and see when things stop working correctly. This will help you narrow it down.

      Let me know what you find to be the problem.

      Brian, the rd600 series raindial doctor

      • Hi Brian, when I disconnected the wires to the valve at the valve, nothing comes on. I reconnected the wires and continued testing. I disconnected each zone at the controller and attempted to run that zone, that specific zone did not come on but zone 6 would continue to come on when testing each zone. I then disconnected the MV, nothing happened. I then reconnected the MV and disconnect the Com, nothing happened. When I reconnected the Com with everything but the MV and Com disconnected, the zone 6 would still run. I disconnected all the wires except the MV and Com. the zone 6 still came on. I then disconnected all the wiring except the MV and Com and them added each zone starting with zone 6 and the zone still reacted in the same way. Let me know what you think.
        Thanks, Donald

        • Hmmm… If I followed all that correctly, it sounds like whenever you have MV and VCom connected, zone 6 comes on. Please let me know if this matches what you found. If that is true, then it appears that MV may be shorted to zone 6 somewhere. MV comes on with any zone (it’s intended to drive the booster pump or well pump whenever anything is turned on). You can check for shorts with an ohm meter.

          Check to see that the ribbon cable looks like it’s in good condition and the check for broken wire insulation on multiple wires where they leave the timer enclosure. Consider places where cables could have been dug up recently (even by pets…)

          Question: Do you have more than one VC wire? (e.g., one wire for valves in the front yard, and another for one in the back yard, and another for the pump)?

          Please let me know what you find out, I’m very interested to hear the results.

          • Hello Brian, I checked the ribbon cable, it’s in good condition, flexible not cracked or broken. All the wiring is also in good shape and there has been no digging. I care for my own lawn so I would have noticed any digging like pets or any animals.
            I only have one VC wire for each zone. I have city water supply, so I don’t think I have a pump.

  15. My Raindial 600 ext r has a blank lcd sceen with no numbers visible, and it does not operate the sprinklers at all. I’m getting 26.8 volts from the transformer test. I don’t see this problem listed In the troubleshooting. Any idea what the issue is and whether it can be fixed.

    • Hi Mike,

      It sounds like you’ve done a good job troubleshooting. If you’re still getting a blank screen, and you’ve tried resetting the unit, AND you see good voltage (which you do) then it’s time to send it in for repair, there isn’t much more you can do on your end.


  16. Hi Brain, I have notice the SEn is flashing but there is no rain in sight, we live in Sun City ,AZ and the system did not come on as set. What should I do to fix it?
    Thank you for your help.

    • Hi Julie,
      It’s a problem I repair often and I’m happy to help. You can give me a call at 623-252-2949 and I’ll give you more details on how to get it repaired

  17. My Irritrol 15 station model TC 15EXB, number 114232
    Suddenly will not start and flashes an “ERROR” message
    each time I try to run it. What is causes Error Message?
    It ran a few days ago.

    Charles – Denver

  18. Question:
    15 station Irritrol TC 15 EX B # 114232
    gives error message, “SHORT”

    What is wrong and how do I fix

    • Hi Charles,

      ‘short’ usually indicates a shorted solenoid. try removing all the wires to your solenoids and try it. Then add them back one at a time until you see the error re-occur. That should help identify which one is shorted. Some models will show you on the display which one it is.

      If you google for the manual, it should also provide more info. I don’t work on the total control modules very often or I’d be able to help more.

  19. RD-900 Irritrol will not display information when the direct sun shines on the box. When shade is covering the box the controller functions. Is this a repair or replace problem? thank you

    • Hi Paul,
      Thanks for posting about your RainDial. It’s definitely a repairable item, I perform them often and you can expect a long long operational life afterwards. I’ll followup with a separate email to you and include more details.
      thanks for posting,

  20. RD 600 not coming on after setting up. Tried to operate manually by setting to manual and input time but not coming on. Set run times for stations manually and still nothing. Screen at top shows OF4.

    • Hi Don, the DIY troubleshooting section has some info for you. Look for the one that says why does my timer say OFn…
      Brian – aka the rainDial RD600 doctor

  21. My Irritrol RD1200 Plus has a button named “next” where the Manual button normally sits. Does it have the same function but different name?

    • Hi Barry,
      It’s a little different. You can read about it in the manual – here’s a link to the manual’s page.

      Happy New Year,

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