Moen and Rachio introduce new smart water tools to your garden

There are many smart gadgets for the home that can be displayed in CESTo be honest, I’m excited about the prospect of independent lawn maintenance this year. Moen and Rachio released new smart irrigation tools that can remotely control watering times and locations in your yard. This will allow you to keep your plants healthy and help reduce water waste. Only one of these tools requires an expensive irrigation system.

First, Moen is expanding its Smart Water Grid—a system of products designed to control and monitor water use—with a new smart sprinkler controller and smart wireless soil sensors. Moen claims that the Smart Sprinkler Controller is easy to install on existing irrigation systems. Moen confirmed that this system is not compatible. The edgeIt can be integrated with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

Moen’s Smart sprinkler controller (center photo) and Wireless Soil Sensors, (right), allow precise irrigation by monitoring soil moisture and tracking local weather conditions.
Photo by Moen

You can track water usage and save water, set up custom watering times and enable seasonal features like weather skip. This uses local weather data and disables sprinklers when it is raining. It’s worth noting that most irrigation systems offer similar features these days, but the Moen Smart Sprinkler Controller can be monitored and operated via a smartphone app rather than on the unit itself—similar to devices already offered by Orbit and Rachio.

It is available in 8- and 16-zone versions that allow you to manage different sections of your garden depending on your watering system. This is useful for plants with variable watering needs. Smart Sprinkler Controller starts at $179.99.

A phone showing Moen's water smartphone app showing a top-down view of a beautiful garden.

Multiple watering zones can be set up in your yard. This allows you to create customized watering schedules using the Moen Smart Sprinkler Control and App for each lawn, flowerbed, or vegetable patch, based on their specific needs.
Photo by Moen

I hate being a green-toed goddess. However, I do not enjoy keeping plants healthy and alive. I tend to be very inept about watering my plants and can’t tell how much. So I focused my attention on the Moen Smart Wireless Soil Sensors. They can detect soil moisture and temperature between one and five inches deep and transmit that information to the Moen Smart sprinkler Controller to adjust watering schedules in areas that need more or less moisture. This reduces water waste and preserves plants. Your in perfect health.

Moen's Smart Wireless Soil Sensors are placed in a hole on the lawn.

Moen’s Smart Wireless Soil sensors are cordless and can easily be placed on the ground. This is great for people like me, who might get run over by a mower.
Photo by Moen

Moen’s Smart Wireless Soil sensors are wireless so there’s no need to dig trenches in the garden to run them. They should also be level with ground when they’re inserted (to avoid mishaps with gardening tools). Moen did not say if the lithium battery is replaceable, but each sensor comes with a six-year-old battery. Moen Smart Wireless Soil Sensors are sold separately from the Moen Smart Sprinkler Control at $70.

Rachio already sells smart irrigation controllers. However, their latest gadget is designed for those who still rely upon a hose to do the watering. Rachio’s Smart Hose Timer, which was unveiled at CES this week, is available for those who don’t have expensive irrigation systems. The Smart Hose Timer costs only $99 and can be connected to any outdoor faucet, drip system, or hose. The free Rachio app allows you to control the Smart Hose Timer and create customized watering schedules for each day. Local weather data can instruct the meter not to water based on the entire day’s rain data. This ensures that other sessions aren’t skipped. The Rachio Smart Hose Timer includes a valve, Wi-Fi hub, and will be available in March 2023.

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