DIY Troubleshooting

For over 10 years we’ve been helping people solve their sprinkler timer issues.   

Scroll down to see the many DIY troubleshooting topics below

  1. Go through DIY list below.
  2. Contact us about repair/replacement options or
  3. Post questions if you have them. You’ll get a response within a day or two at the most.

This do-it-yourself page will help you troubleshoot and diagnose problems with the Irritrol Rain Dial RD-600 and other irrigation systems.  We don’t want you to send in a sprinkler timer in for repair if it doesn’t need it. Click the links below to navigate the troubleshooting sections.  If you’re asking “How do I …”, keep reading.

Manuals and User Guides for RainDial RD-600, 900, 1200 PROGRAMMING HELP and manuals, click here

Use the following topics to solve your Rain Dial RD600 series problems

  • Get smart – learn the terminology
  • Get user manuals
  • Choose the best problem description
    • Timer Behavior problems
    • Display error messages
  • See the “How Do I” … and troubleshooting topics

Get smart – learn the terminology and concepts from the “What is a” topics: Irritrol Rain Dial Timers

  1. Learn the terminology – what is the back terminal board, timer, transformer 
  2. What are valve boxes, valves, and solenoids?
  3. How is a Typical Sprinkler System Wired?  See this Valve Wiring Diagram?

Official Manuals, User manuals, programming information etc :

  1. Programming guide and template worksheets: click here
  2. Manuals and user guides: click here

Behavior Problems: RD-600/900/1200 :

  1. Rain Dial Sprinkler/irrigation valves chatter or buzz or water pressure seems low.
  2. Valves do not come on when they’re supposed to (a good page to start with)
  3. Valves stuck onwon’t turn off or more than one is on.
  4. Time is frozen or cannot change the time
  5. The case door won’t open or you lost your key 
  6. The case door breaks off or comes apart
  7. One station does not shut off before the next station starts
  8. Voltage measurements don’t make sense

Display Error Messages for the Irritrol RD600, RD900, RD1200 Irrigation Timers:

  1. Display shows OFF or blinks when turning on a valve manually
  2. Display is Blank.
  3. Display says FUS or FU5 and a number
  4. Display shows 5En or SEn
  5. Display shows OF1 or OF… some number
  6. Display shows P:On or P:Off
  7. Display is blinking – see the earlier topic
  8. Display shows “—-“ for days of the week – refer to skip days

Programming Information for Irritrol RD600, RD900, RD1200 Irrigation Timers:

  1. Programming tutorial for RD-600/900/1200
  2. Programming worksheet for RD600/900/1200
  3. Understanding the Skip Days Feature

How do I …” sprinkler timer-related topics

    1. How do I turn on a valve using the manual button?
    2. How do I program the timer to irrigate a newly seeded or overseeded lawn?
    3. How to reset the RainDial controller and set it to factory defaults
    4. How do I water while my timer is being repaired (Manually watering without using a timer)
    5. How to check the fuse (also see FUS topic above)?
    6. How to test the transformer to know if the transformer is bad?
    7. How to test if the valves or solenoids are bad?
    8. Rain Sensor information for Irritrol RD600 and other timers.
    9. How do I replace the dial?
    10. How do I replace the Solenoid?
    11. How do I replace the valve guts for a leaky or stuck valve?

RainDial Plus Model (Different than the regular RainDial timers)

Video of common symptoms that indicate the Rain Dial Controller needs repairing.

If this information wasn’t enough to resolve the issue, we can help:
Send Rain Dial Timers in for repair?

RD600 Repair

Irritrol Rain Dial RD600 repair services

For other issues, or ones that are in progress and do not have a link yet, just contact us, or see details here: How do I send it in for repair?


421 thoughts on “DIY Troubleshooting

  1. how do I check how much time a station is already scheduled to run for? My drip system has been running just fine for a year, and suddenly stopped. I went to check the programming, and it doesn’t seem to have any start time programmed, so i’m not sure how to figure out if it is configured properly. it just say “on” or “off” for certain days.

    • Hi,

      Make sure you have the bottom switch set on ‘set programs’ to see the programming.
      There’s a good description on how the programming works, along with a video on the same page that’s done well too. Take a look under DIY Troubleshooting and Programming information. It’ll have everything to get you going. If not, let me know; if so, please leave us a donation.

    • Hi Gerry,

      I’d try a reset, if no luck, send it in for repair and we’ll take a look. I’d definitely try the repair first, as the newer models are not as reliable as the older ones.


      • Thanks, reset didn’t work. Tried both procedures your site outlines. Procedure B reset it, but + and – buttons still don’t work. I’ll look at the instructions on your site for sending for repair. Thanks for your time

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