I set up my OpenSprinkler last night. It was a pretty painless endeavor. I’ll walk through it in this post so I can explain what I did.
There are a few different models and options to choose from on RaysHobby.net. Time seems to be my greatest commodity at this stage in life so I opted to get the fully assembled model for $149.99. It seemed a bit expensive. I paid the same price for a 12 station remote control system at my old home a few years ago. But that system, while very nice, didn’t allow me the customization I knew I would get with this system. Also, I didn’t have to worry about my kids walking off with the remote. I could just use my phone or computer.
Once the system arrived, I realized I didn’t have everything I needed to set up the sprinkler. Specifically, I needed a power source and something to get the internet to this thing.
The instructions said I needed a 24VAC transformer. Honestly I had no idea what this was. I did a little research and ended up buying this one on Amazon for $14.96. It has a plug for Rain Bird devices at the end of it. I just cut it off and trimmed the wires to attach to my power terminal block on the OpenSprinkler. I learned that each of this blocks pull out with makes it easy to attach wires.
In hindsight, I didn’t really need to purchase this. When I took down my cheap sprinkler controller that the landscapers set up I noticed it uses a 24VAC transformer and I just had to loosen some screws to detach it and it would have been easier to use — no trimming of wires required.
Unfortunately there is no wireless adapter built into this thing so I had to find a wireless bridge. I found this one on Amazon which I purchased for $25.99.
It was a pretty simple setup to get it configured:
- Plug in it.
- Connect to it as if it were your wireless rounder.
- Go to http://192.168.10.253 in your browser to access to admin config.
- Put it in repeater mode, connecting to you main wireless router.
That’s basically it. Then I just ran a Cat5 cable (which came included in the package) to the OpenSprinkler.
Managing Open Sprinkler
Once it connects to your home network, if you push the top button on the right side of the device it will display it’s IP address. In my case it was 10.0.1.30. I then went to this IP in my browser (http://10.0.1.30) and was propted to log in. The default password is printed on the OpenSprinkler instructions. From here you can change settings, set up stations and watering times etc.
Wiring up the sprinkler wires was also simple. I just moved the wires from my old system to the new OpenSprinkler. There wasn’t much to it.
I downloaded the Sprinklers App on my iPhone. Because my iPhone was connected to my home network as well it was able to easily detect my OpenSpinkler automatically.
I installed the app on my wife’s phone so now she doesn’t have to ask me to turn on sprinklers on random occasions.
All in all this project cost me around $190 and about 2 hours of time. You could save some money if you went with a DIY kit and didn’t need to buy the 24VAC transformer or wireless bridge. But I am sure going to love the ability to manage my sprinklers on a web page rather than a tiny black & white display. Also I have the ability to control my sprinkler from anywhere. (I could put it on a public IP but I haven’t done this yet since I work from home and don’t really see the need to control my sprinklers from out of town. But who knows, that could change.)