Introducing the new NxEco Autonomous Smart Irrigation Controller
Gerald Star, President
Special to the Village News
Just about every day I hear about some new smart device, and if you search smart for irrigation controllers on the Web, be prepared to be bombarded by seemingly hundreds of smart controllers. I’ve installed smart irrigation systems for decades and now there is a new controller that may change smart irrigation forever.
Smart irrigation is a very deep and varied subject and controllers in recent years have gotten smaller, cheaper, and easier to use, but still have many variations and complexities – too much to be covered here.
It’s the sensors that primarily make smart controllers smart – tensiometers, wire loop moisture sensors, anemometers, rain catchment sensors, wafer sensors, weather stations, and so many more sensors are used in conjunction with today’s smart controllers. Some are very expensive, and with others the installation is prohibitive.
With that said, let me introduce you to the NxEco Smart Controller, a simple, inexpensive, and powerful smart irrigation controller.
The NxEco smart irrigation controller is a robust and reliable 12 station, fully functional irrigation controller with the customary screen, dial, and buttons that operates like any other ordinary controller. Once connected to the Internet, via Wi-Fi or Ethernet through your existing router, it becomes a very smart weather-based irrigation controller. A reliable, optional $50 cellular hot spot is available that can control up to eight NxEco controllers in one remote location using cellular to Wi-Fi technology. It’s available from Best Buy, but see us first and we may be able to reduce your monthly service fee to as low as $10 a month.
NxEco also includes a powerful, fully-functional remote control unit – your smart phone. Running the NxEco free mobile app it is the simplest way to program your controller, name your zones, manage smart watering, and actively run zones on the fly. It’s never been easier or more reliable to control your irrigation system. Even high-end, $500 add-on remote control units can’t do what NxEco does for remote control.
NxEco actually receives confirmations back from the controller for every command you send so your phone remotely lets you monitor every aspect of what your irrigation controller is doing. Range? NxEco phone remotely works anywhere cellular service is found.
For all its power, the NxEco controller is the simplest controller to operate. We typically find homeowners using their new controller within minutes of downloading their NxEco Android or iPhone mobile app.
NxEco is also packed with features – too many to list here – but registered owners can authorize a landscaper, or any others, to operate their controllers with just an email address. All the landscaper needs is the NxEco app on their phone and to set up a NxEco account. At any point, the homeowner can cancel access. So, assuming your irrigation controller is in your garage, you will no longer need to be home providing access to your garage – or to your prized Ferrari.
Some other quick features are noteworthy. You can set watering delays for up to 72 hours and you can set, save, and use manual watering presets as you wish and are not tied to any existing scheduling.
For Home Owners Associations or large industrial centers, multiple NxEco irrigation controllers, on multiple properties, anywhere in the world, can all be managed from one NxEco account. In fact, the Web app was built to handle 10,000 controllers in a single account. Also, NxEco users can easily manage up to 20 or more controllers from their smartphone.
Installation is simple. There is no need to install expensive sensors, wires, or add-ons with this controller as it uses your local, certified government NOAA weather station as your sensors – all the hourly ET DATA is free. Additionally, NxEco seasonally adjusts your watering schedule so you don’t have to, making your irrigation system autonomous. However, those regular site inspections and watering schedules should be closely monitored as usual, but from what I’ve seen, NxEco’s ET and seasonal adjustments are amazingly accurate.
During the last five months, the NxEco controller has consistently delivered water savings to my properties. I also noticed it protects your plants through an unanticipated hot dry spell by adding some run time as required by the ET smart watering. You can easily view the current NxEco smart watering status from your phone, the Web, or at the controller and make additional adjustments instantly. As part of the autonomous nature of the NxEco Smart Controller, every adjustment you make personally to smart watering, NxEco is learning and fine-tuning your smart watering needs.
NxECO is on the EPA’s WaterSense list of approved smart controllers, and the available rebates usually can more than cover your cost of purchase and installation.
To see what’s waiting for you, go to www.SoCalWaterSmart.com. NxEco is available for $269 on Amazon.com and other distributors. However, additional discounts are available at Fallbrook Irrigation, 115 Laurine Lane, Fallbrook. Call (760) 723-9001 for more information or visit us in person for a free demonstration.