Automated Watering V1

Automated Watering V1
This has just beed added as a historic look at a previous project I implemented a while back. This projected is a basis to the ground work of what will soon be V2.
Running the dripper through the garden. This got later changed to some black irigation pipe and sprinklers.

So a couple of weekends ago I decided that I would redo the front garden and plant some new plants and just generally jaz the garden up a bit.

I know - "where's the smart home part your probably thinking". Well someone has to water the garden right?  

By the time I get home in the afternoon, usually fairly late I either dont have the time to do it, or its too cold to water. So today all of 10 minutes I rigged up my home assistant automated watering system - "Water-matic"?

Using one of the Arlec Grid Connect smart plugs, a 24VAC power adapter and a Pope Solinoid Value and some spare cable I had in the shed I have been able to put this together.

A bit bulky but does the job.

Looking at some of the garden automations setups, they cost a hell of a lot for what they are. Even the Gardenia stuff, what are they thinking with that stuff! What I was after still does not exist. I want it to be able to go into my Home Assistant and to automate the hell out of it with the sensors I have around the house.

To put this together I am currently all in at $70 and I can do the things I want with it. Yeah its ugly.

Unfortunatley this version leaves me with quite a large amount of over hang from the power-point. But with v2 I will see how I can achieve this setup in a more all in one setup. With automations I have been able to do a couple of fancy things as well!

  • The garden bed now gets watered twice a day for 15 minutes, once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Its more water efficient as well using a soaker hose instead of a normal hose and watering nozel.
  • It will not turn on if there is more than 5mm of rainfall in a 6 hour period from each of its two trigger times per day. This data is thanks to my weather station.
  • It will adjust its "on" and "off" times based on the season.
  • There is a temperature threshold value used that works out what time of the day is best to trigger watering. Data from the previous day is used to calculate this. All I care about is for a trigger in the morning and another in the afternoon.
  • If you still want to just turn it on manually you can do that as well. Just press the inbuilt button or the Home Assistant button.
  • As well as the many advantages with automations this runs whether I am at home or even on holidays (not that I will be doing that any time soon) without needing to manually trigger a timer or turn a tap on.
As with all my automations I also have to think about what happens if something fails. What happens if I am not at home to fix it etc.
The button in Home Assistant - Testing and designing

With all my water connections where possible I have used threaded adapters. Dont rely on your standard push on connectors. I am kind of lucky with having a tank as well as having a pump where it will shut off if its unable to push the water through or if the tank runs out of water it shuts off.

The pump with the Flow Controller.

Having those fail safe built in is definatly handy. Electrical has been run in conduit and the end has been siliconed up. It is technically low voltage, however electricity is electricity.

The final product:

The final product