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Intelligent Lawn Watering – A Greener Idea!

Skydrop smart controller

I share a lot of ideas for saving time & saving money on my blog….two things I feel very strongly about! Combine those subjects with an idea for conserving our precious natural resources and you’ve definitely got my attention. That’s why my nephew Scott and his friends at Skydrop didn’t have to twist my arm when they asked me to try out their “smart sprinkler” system. The fact that it conserves water AND is a seriously simple way to keep your lawn beautiful had me clambering to get my hands on one!

Skydrop smart controller

With an estimated 100 million people in the U.S. experiencing drought conditions everyone is looking for ways to reduce their water use. If you have a lawn, chances are it’s your biggest water guzzler. Typically, at least 50% of water consumed by households is used outdoors.

Many of us have sprinkler systems that are set on timers that we HOPE are doing a good job at watering…but I was fairly shocked to learn that set watering schedules combined with improper watering techniques are responsible for up to 50% of wasted landscape water. They also add up to 30% to our water bill! Not a great set up if you ask me.

But don’t blame yourselves! It would be virtually impossible for us to adjust our watering schedules to account for all the different nuances of the ever-changing weather, not to mention all the different TYPES of landscapes we’re dealing with.

Skydrop smart controller

That’s where this nifty box comes in! The good folks at Skydrop have come up with a product that takes all the guesswork out of watering our lawns. We recently had their smart controller installed right over our existing sprinkler timer and in under an hour we were Wi-Fi connected and ready to go!

I can’t wait to see it in action (our secondary water gets turned on by the city in a few weeks.) Tests have shown that using the Skydrop smart controller results in an average reduction in water usage of 35%, earning a Water Sense Certification from the EPA. The EPA has calculated that replacing the standard timer/controller found in most yards (like ours) with one of its certified “smart” controllers can save an average home nearly 8,800 gallons of water annually!

Skydrop smart controller

How does it work??  Well, in a nutshell (from a complete novice point of view!) —- it uses a Wi-Fi connection to constantly monitor local weather conditions, and then combines that with data about your particular lawn (e.g. the slope, soil type, and vegetation) and automatically tells the sprinkler system how much to water.

It’s like your own personal weatherman and landscape specialist working together to make your landscaping amazing! :-)

I’ll be the first to admit I’m not the best person to be explaining this “smart” technology (no wise cracks!) Luckily this short video explains it a lot better than I can!

YouTube video

I just love how easy the Skydrop app is to use. I can literally monitor and control my watering from anywhere with a smartphone, tablet or computer.

But as cool and convenient as it is to use…most importantly I love how it’s conserving water and saving money. With 35% average savings…it will most likely pay for itself by the end of the year! (Plus, many communities offer rebates when you switch to a smart watering system.)

Skydrop smart controller

There’s no doubt smart irrigation systems like Skydrop are the way of the future. In fact, states such as California, Georgia, and New Jersey have already enacted ordinances requiring home owners to install weather and rain sensors on all home sprinkler systems to monitor water usage. Time to get on board and do the planet and our future generations a favor.

Skydrop smart controller

If you are interested in harnessing the power of smart watering…Skydrop is offering One Good Thing By Jillee readers a special discount. Use the coupon code JILLEE and receive $75 off your purchase!

Mine was an early Father’s Day present for my husband Dave who totally GEEKS OUT over this sorta thing! You’re welcome hon! ;-)

Skydrop smart controller

CLICK HERE to orders yours now!

Connect with Skydrop:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/skydroplife/
Twitter: @skydroplife
Instagram: skydroplife
Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/skydrop411

Compensation for this post was provided by Skydrop. Opinions expressed here are my own.

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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Homekeeping Tips

  • I like the thought of a smart irrigation system, but I definitely would be particular about how/where the system would be placed in the yard. Intriguing information, thank you for sharing!

  • I live near Palm Springs and my city is fining people if you go beyond the “tier usage” allowed. My city is participating in the rebate program, so the $700 to install the 2 monitors will be virtually free, just $12 monthly fee for the system to be eligible for upgrades. That being said, I am not totally happy with Skydrop. If your WiFi goes down so does your watering schedule. It was watering for over 30 minutes and did not shut down immediately when I used the app on my smartphone. Also, all my sprinklers are not engaged for whatever reason and I have to put out a hose & sprinkler to water a section of my yard.
    My expectation was Skydrop would “automatically” know when watering needed to be done – wrong- since I live in the desert it wanted to water every day, for a long time period. Once I received instructions on setting up a watering schedule manually, not relying on its “smart technology”, the overwatering situation ceased. I need to contact Skydrop again about the section of my yard where the sprinklers are not engaged.

  • What a timely post! I live in SoCal and have resorted to watering the little bit of grass I do want to keep in my my yard by hand. I have always thought there was a better way to utilize sprinklers. With this El Nino year, now I don’t have to worry about the rain and my sprinklers. That combined with the rebate our utility company is offering, my out of pocket is almost nothing. Thanks Jillee!

  • In the last house that we built, we had a full irrigation installed. The system came with an add-on rain sensor that was positioned at a corner eve of our house and detected when there was rain. It would automatically cancel our scheduled watering if it was set to water during these times. But, I learned very quickly that installing this irrigation system was a completed waste of money for our family. The added expense of watering the lawn, even very infrequently, made my water bill more than I wanted to pay each month. Plus, twice per year we had to pay to have the system winterized or turned back on for Spring. Both added expenses again.

    So, when we built our new home, I did not install an irrigation system. And as Barbara mentioned, I do not water our lawn anymore. Yes, the main reason is because I am cheap and I don’t want to pay a lot extra in a water bill each month for water that literally is being wasted, but it is also because at both of our properties we have had to start sod & seed from scratch since they were new homes. Doing this, we need to make sure that our roots grow strong and deep. Over time, we will have a plush nice lawn. Plus, we live in Indiana where we get quite a bit of rain during the spring and snow in the winter. Free water is good.

  • I like this idea. My parents are both from Utah and my Dad is obsessed with having the greenest lawn on the block. He gets up early and waters the grass , sometimes standing by the curb until late at night. I doubt he’d go for this idea, though.

  • My way is even easier and cheaper. I just don’t water the lawn, at all. My Mom taught me, years ago, that if you leave the grass alone, the roots will grow down deeper the grass strengthens and aerates the lawn better. I do not believe in having a picture perfect lawn anymore.

    • I’m glad to see this perspective put forth. I agree!Although I love seeing the beautiful gorgeous green lawns in August that have been tended and cared for, so it’s great to have such a product as a smart watering system.

      • A welcome water saving idea and product. From an Australian perspective, large areas of lawn surrounding our homes essentially disappeared following nation wide drought over several years from the early to late 2000’s. In their place are rain tanks and smaller areas devoted to a green expanse, replaced by larger mulched garden and vegetable beds, which act as a water sink for the whole garden, and the use of more native and drought tolerant plantings, that have the added bonus of attracting significantly more native bird life and insects, including native bees and many predators to introduced vegetable garden pests and providing heat relieving shade not only to the garden below, but the house during the hotter summer months and helping reduce energy cooling costs.

      • A picture of drenched sidewalks in an advert for a “smart” watering system? Priceless! Unless you live in an area where fines are levied against this type of water waste, and rightly so.

    • We don’t water our lawn in the summer (or anytime) as we live in Oregon, we accumulate lots of rain even in the summer. Granted our lawn turns brown by August, but I’m saving major bucks not watering……………………….

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