If you tend to forget to water your lawn from time to time, then you could use the automatic irrigation controller. These units automate lawn watering process so you never miss watering your yard no matter what.

The best part is that they use real-time weather data to cut water supply when your lawn doesn’t need it so you can save time, water, and above all money. These irrigation controllers are built to work with apps for remote control convenience.

Thus, you can monitor and control your sprinklers from just about anywhere in the world. Plus, they are easy to install, requiring no special skills or tools. Without further ado, below are some products to look out for in the top 10 best automatic irrigation controllers in 2020 reviews

List The Best Automatic Irrigation Controllers in 2020

01. Orbit B-hyve 12-Zone Smart Indoor/Outdoor Sprinkler Controller

Housed in a water-resistant case, the Orbit B-hyve 12-Zone Smart Indoor/Outdoor Sprinkler Controller is weatherproof and durable. As such, you can choose to mount it indoors or outdoors without any risk of weather damage. This smart sprinkler controller is equipped with a locking cabinet that keeps it safe from further damage or harm. It is built to work with Amazon Alexa to ensure you can control your watering with just a simple phrase.

This sprinkler controller boasts weather sense technology that waters depending on the site conditions like soil type, slope, sun, live weather feeds, as well as historical ET. This technology adjusts the controller automatically to deliver the right amount of water each time. What’s more, the controller works with an app that is fully functional for iOS, Android, and web devices. Thus, it allows you to take control of your watering from anywhere in the world.

Key Features

  • EPA WaterSense approved and certified
  • Smart watering with weather sense technology
  • Amazon Alexa compatible with voice control
  • Pump and sensor compatible

Pros

  • Easy to install and to operate
  • Well-made and secure to use outdoors
  • Saves up to 50% more water
  • Available in 6 and 12 station capacities

02. Rachio 8ZULWC-L R3e Generation 8 Zone Sprinkler Controller

See savings in your monthly watering bill by introducing the Rachio 8ZULWC-L R3e Generation 8 Zone Sprinkler Controller. It is engineered to help you cut back on unnecessary watering without putting your lawn’s health on the line. This irrigation controller installs easily and quickly in 30 minutes or less so you can get watering in no time. It uses weather intelligence to automatically skip unnecessary watering with features like rain skip, wind skip, and more.

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Built to work with Rachio’s free easy-to-use app, this irrigation controller allows you to control your sprinkler from wherever you are. All you have to do is install the app in your smartphone, connect to Wi-Fi, and create the recommended watering schedules that work with your lawn. And through the app, you can pause, run, and stop your sprinklers directly from your mobile device.

Key Features

  • Alexa compatible design
  • Premium weather intelligence
  • Upgraded weather forecasting
  • Handy mounting template and hardware

Pros

  • Available in three different zones
  • Creates smart schedules based on your lawn
  • The setup is simple with no extra tools needed
  • This unit is highly stable and easy to use

03. Rachio 3 8 Zone Smart Sprinkler Controller

Deliver all the water your plants need with no more or less water using the Rachio 3 8 Zone Smart Sprinkler Controller. It tailors smart schedules for the specific needs of your lawn based on the soil type, sun exposure, plant type, and more. This automatic irrigation controller is accompanied by an easy-to-use app to enable you to control your sprinklers from anywhere. The app allows you to run sprinklers, observe your estimated outdoor water usage, and view upcoming schedules.

With the in-app installation tutorial, this sprinkler controller lets you experience the fast and simple DIY installation. It is equipped with exclusive weather intelligence and automatic skips. As a result, it will skip unnecessary watering with functions like freeze skip, wind skip, and rain skip. It is for this reason that this unit will help you save up to 30-50% on monthly water bills.

Key Features

  • Apple Homekit and Alexa compatibility
  • Smart schedules based on specific needs
  • Weather intelligence with automatic skips
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi and expressive light bar

Pros

  • Ensures a beautiful yard with less water
  • Easy to install and to use
  • Available in two styles to select from
  • The in-app installation tutorial is a great addition

04. Rain Bird 12-Zone Irrigation Controller, SST1200OUT

Weather-resistant cabinet and sealed case protect the Rain Bird Irrigation Controller from insects, grime, and moisture. It has a built-in transformer and removable power cord to allow for direct wiring. This irrigation controller has the superior build quality and built-in surge protection to see it last several years of use. It is a new and improved model, meaning it has all the latest features and functions that set it apart from the rest in the industry.

Engineered for simple zone settings, this irrigation controller allows for personalized watering schedules for each part of your yard. And being a 12-zone model means that it offers a wide range of schedules for utmost flexibility. This irrigation controller has a rain delay function to suspend watering for up to 72 hours. When the delay ends, the programming automatically resumes, ensuring just the right amount of watering with no water wastage.

Key Features

  • Built-in surge protection
  • Weather-resistant construction
  • Zone-by-zone settings
  • Built-in transformer and removable power cord

Pros

  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor setup
  • Easy to install and to use
  • LED screen allows for easy reading
  • Available in 5 styles for you to choose from

05. Rain Bird ST8I-2.0 Smart Irrigation System Controller

Have the control of your sprinkler system in the palm of your hands with the Rain Bird ST8I-2.0 Smart Irrigation System Controller. It comes with a free easy-to-use app to enable you to personalize your watering. All you have to do is upload the pictures and name each zone in the app to manage your watering wisely. This app lets you enable notifications so you can keep in touch with your landscape no matter where you are.

Being EPA WaterSense certified, this automatic irrigation controller guarantees up to 20% water savings over non-certified models. It has an intuitive interface that makes it easy for you to view and make changes for your watering needs. This unit boasts a weather intelligence technology that continually checks for rain, humidity, and temperature changes to provide the right amount of water. Moreover, it has a water delay feature to enable you to suspend watering from 1 to 15 days.

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Key Features

  • Compatible with Android, iOS, and Amazon Alexa
  • Automatic daily watering schedules
  • EPA certified for water saving
  • Custom manual watering options

Pros

  • Simple to set up and to use
  • Offers the convenient watering option
  • The app gives you easy controls from anywhere
  • This unit has numerous upgrades from the previous model

06. Netro Smart 6 Zone Sprinkler Controller

Fully automatic, the Netro Smart 6 Zone Sprinkler Controller creates and adjusts watering schedules dynamically optimized for your lawns. It is easy to install in about 15 minutes with basic tools, requiring no professionals. This automatic irrigation controller is equipped with advanced water saving technologies with historical statistics and weather forecasting. Hence, it will see you save up a greater percentage of your outdoor water.

Fully compatible with Google Home Voice Assistant, this irrigation controller enables you to control everything by the word of mouth. It boasts a clean, simple, and modern design that makes a great addition to any home. This model comes with Netro App that you can install to control your watering system remotely through your mobile devices. Better yet, it has a strong Wi-Fi reception to connect stably to your home Wi-Fi network.

Key Features

  • State-of-the-art software and hardware
  • Strong Wi-Fi reception
  • Pre-programmed watering recommendations
  • Eco-friendly and EPA WaterSense certified

Pros

  • Complies to the water rules in your area
  • Offers convenient remote controls
  • Easy to install with no special skills required
  • Helps to save water and money

07. Hunter Sprinkler XC600 X-Core 6-Station Irrigation Controller

Control up to 6 zones with 3 programs and 4 start times when you have the Hunter Sprinkler XC600 X-Core 6-Station Irrigation Controller. It is easy to install, use, and maintain while providing optimal efficiency and reliability. This irrigation controller features easy dial-based control that ensures access to the programs, intervals, runtime, and day of the week. Thus, you can set no water days, intervals, and rain delays to keep your landscape healthy without wasting water.

Using advanced water conservation technology, this irrigation controller lets you save more water compared to manual controllers. It is, therefore, a perfect choice for residential and light commercial applications. This model works based on onsite weather conditions to automatically regulate irrigation runtimes. What’s more, it is engineered with automatic short circuit protection for safe and reliable performance.

Key Features

  • Easy retrieve memory
  • Automatic short circuit protection
  • Easy dial-based control
  • Advanced water conservation technology

Pros

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Well-made to sustain the tough outdoors
  • Compatible with ROAM remote control
  • Offers seamless irrigation management over longer distances

08. Irritrol 6 Station Irrigation Controller, RD600-EXT-R

Featuring a 6-station capacity, the Irritrol 6 Station Irrigation Controller is a versatile unit to control your sprinklers. It has 3 independent programs to meet the needs of a wide variety of plants on the landscape site. This irrigation controller is designed with a rain sensor bypass switch to help you save water when it’s raining.

With the water well recovery technique, this irrigation controller allows for the delay between stations. It is compatible with contractor residential remote series to allow for easy controls. This unit is well-built to ensure it holds up well outdoors. As if that’s not enough, it has a nice feature that allows you to program it offline using power from the 9v backup battery.

Key Features

  • Remote control ready
  • Three independent programs
  • Rain sensor bypass switch
  • Terminal for sensor hookup

Pros

  • Easy to install and to use
  • Offers convenient controls for 6 zones
  • Enables you to save water while keeping your lawn healthy
  • The delay between stations is handy
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09. Sprinkl Control 16 Zone Smart Irrigation Controller

The Sprinkl Control 16 Zone Smart Irrigation Controller takes about 30 minutes to replace just about any irrigation controller. It will disable the irrigation system depending on forecast, current and past rainfall. This unit uses up to 7 days of historic accumulation to ensure you save money and water while keeping your lawn watered and healthy. It has freeze alert options that you can use to turn off the system with the temperature drops.

Equipped a built-in 16 zone controller, this model gives you total control over your sprinkler system. It works with Android and Apple smartphones to enable you to have everything control from the palm of your hands. When connected to moisture sensor this controller eliminates the need scheduling all together. This is because it uses moisture sensors in each zone to determine if watering is required based on real-life conditions.

Key Features

  • Built-in fault detection
  • Wireless moisture sensors
  • Alexa and other smart home hubs compatible
  • Weather intelligence function

Pros

  • Saves money and water
  • Uses local weather conditions
  • Easy to install in less than 20 minutes
  • Mobile notifications let you know the yard is watering or restricted

10. RainMachine Touch HD-16 Smart Wi-Fi Irrigation Controller

Control your sprinklers from wherever you are with the help of the RainMachine Touch HD-16 Smart Wi-Fi Irrigation Controller. It works with the free RainMachine App compatible with Android and Apple devices for remote controls. This unit boasts a unique touch interface to provide ultimate control experience. It is easy to install with the simple step-by-step instructions included so you won’t need expensive contractors to do the job.

This device is designed to update weather data several times a day just to calculate the right amount of water for your yard. And depending on your climate, it records whether savings of up to 80%. This irrigation controller is an updated model with improved Wi-Fi to give you unrivaled performance. Further, it works with Alexa to give you convenient voice controls.

Key Features

  • Smart schedule with free weather data
  • Real-time weather adjustments
  • EPA Water Sense certified
  • LED illuminated touch keys

Pros

  • Easy to connect and to control
  • Helps to save water and money
  • Protects your plants and landscape
  • Adjusts the right amount of water automatically

Buyer’s Guide for the Best Automatic Irrigation Controller

Here are things to consider when looking for the best automatic irrigation controller

Smart Home Compatibility

With almost everyone using some kind of smart home device, it is necessary to bring in an automatic irrigation controller that is compatible with your smart home unit. Luckily, most of the devices included here are either compatible with Amazon Alexa or other smart home devices. So check to take home only compatible ones.

Installation

Whether you are buying for the first time or looking to replace your old unit, ensure you choose an irrigation controller that is easy to install. Look out for all hardware and necessary tools included for easy installation. Plus, there should be instructions; either in a document or in-app for added convenience.

Programs

For ease of use and peace of mind, consider an automatic irrigation controller that has multiple programs. Your garden and yard have different needs that to fulfill, you need a versatile controller with several programs. In this case, consider a machine that has a larger zone/ station capacity.

Conclusion

Even if you are home all day, you cannot beat the efficiency and reliability of the best automatic irrigation controller. This is because you may not be there for your lawn 24/7 but an automatic controller can. And the best part is the ability to control everything remotely from anywhere in the world. So if you want to save money, water, and time, then you must go through the above reviews to find an ideal controller for your irrigation system.