Keeping the lawn in good condition can be a lot of work. The grass is quite sensitive when it comes to high heat and lack of water. Most people have irrigation systems that help at least with keeping the lawn in a good condition.
With the introduction of sprinkler timers or controllers, things got a lot simpler. We all know that it is quite common to forget the sprinklers on for far too long. It can be a waste of water that will cost money in the end. Sprinkler timers can be integrated into most irrigation systems quite easily.
Known also as lawn irrigation controllers, sprinkler timers can be considered the brain of an irrigation system. They can be set to start at a particular hour and run for a determined number of minutes. Some of them are so advanced that they can be controlled remotely using things such as smartphone apps. With these things in mind, we managed to assemble the 10 most popular and reliable sprinkler times. Here is our list.
Best Sprinkler Timers in 2018
Table of Contents
- 10. Instapark PWT-07 Outdoor Waterproof Digital Programmable Single Hose Timer
- 9. Orbit 57894 4-Station Outdoor Swing Panel Sprinkler System Timer
- 8. Orbit Dual Valve Digital Watering Hose Timer
- 7. Melnor 53100 2-Outlet Digital Water Timer
- 6. Orbit 62056 One Outlet Single-Dial Hose Faucet Timer
- 5. Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler with TwinTouch Width Control and Watering Timer
- 4. Orbit 57946 B-hyve Smart Indoor/Outdoor 6-Station WiFi Sprinkler System Controller
- 3. Orbit 62034 Mechanical Watering Timer
- 2. Melnor Two Zone Electronic Water Timer
- 1. Orbit Single Outlet Programmable Hose Faucet Timer
- Things to keep in mind when looking for sprinkler timers
10. Instapark PWT-07 Outdoor Waterproof Digital Programmable Single Hose Timer
The Instapark PWT-07 outdoor digital sprinkler timer is a simple device that can be installed directly onto the hose that supplies the sprinklers with water. It is a single station that can be used with a single sprinkler or water hose.
Installation is quite simple. The only thing that needs to be taken into consideration is the device runs on batteries. It needs runs on 2 AA batteries that are not included in the kit. Replacing the batteries is simple as the battery compartment is removable.
The device itself comes with a large screen and a few control buttons. It allows the timer to be set. The sprinklers can have a delayed start of up to 72 hours. The runtime of the sprinklers can also be set in just a few seconds.
- Simple installation, battery powered
- Allows for the delayed start of up to 72 hours
- Water-resistant construction
- Quite easy to use and straight forward
9. Orbit 57894 4-Station Outdoor Swing Panel Sprinkler System Timer
Orbit 57894 outdoor sprinkler system timer is a great option for the ones that need a single control unit for multiple sprinklers. It makes it very easy to set timers for each individual sprinkler.
The system comes in a metal enclosure that keeps it safe even in poor weather conditions. Each sprinkler can be programmed to start individually while the LCD screen will show all the relevant information.
Setting the unit up is fairly simple and straight forward. It will need to be connected to electric sprinkler valves in order for it to work. The unit will open and close the valves based on how they are programmed.
- Can control up to 4 individual sprinklers
- Has a large LCD screen and dial
- Can be mounted indoors and outdoors
- Easy to setup and use
8. Orbit Dual Valve Digital Watering Hose Timer
Orbit dual valve digital sprinkler timer is a great solution for the ones that need something simple, easy to setup and not too expensive. It is basically a timer with two outputs for sprinkler hoses.
The sprinkler timer is quite straight forward. It needs to be installed on the water supply house. It has 2 outputs for 2 individual sprinklers. They can be set to start individually for an amount of time set by the user.
To power the unit, 2 AA batteries will be required. A fresh set of batteries should be good to last for approximately 4000 cycles. Delayed start can be set for 24, 48 or 72 hours. The device comes with a 6-year warranty and can be found in a single valve setup.
- 2 valve setup for 2 individual sprinklers
- Runs on 2 AA batteries (up to 4000 cycles)
- Can have a delayed start of 24, 48 or 72 hours
- Waterproof construction for outdoor installation
7. Melnor 53100 2-Outlet Digital Water Timer
Melnor 53100 digital water timer is a great pick for the ones that need a more efficient way of managing their sprinkler system. It is a single programable unit that can set timers for two independent valves.
The model comes with a small LCD screen and simple controls that allow each valve timer to be set individually. To power the unit, 2 AA batteries will be required and are not included in the kit. A fresh set of batteries should last for about 6 months.
In terms of functionality, the timer can be set to start with a delay and can be scheduled to start routinely. It makes it possible to set up water for up to 7 days in advance. Setting it up is very simple and only takes a few seconds.
- Can control up to 2 sprinkles at once
- Delayed start for up to 7 days
- Runs on 2 AA batteries that can last up to 6 months
- Comes with a limited 7-year warranty
6. Orbit 62056 One Outlet Single-Dial Hose Faucet Timer
Orbit 62056 hose faucet timer can be considered more of a universal device. It can be used on any hose regardless of what it is used for. It works great for a single sprinkler and installation is quite straight forward.
Like most sprinkler timers, the unit has a small LCD screen and several buttons to adjust its settings. It allows the user to set a delayed start of up to 72 hours. It also can have the timer set for how long the sprinkler should run.
To power the unit, 2 AA batteries will be required. A new set of batteries will last for several months since it is an energy efficient unit. A useful feature is the fact that the user can set programs for multiple days if needed.
- Allows for delayed starts of up to 72 hours
- Can have programs set for up to 7 days
- Batteries can last for up to 6 months
- Very compact and easy to install
5. Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler with TwinTouch Width Control and Watering Timer
Melnor XT Turbo is a very basic device. It is basically a sprinkler with a timer built-in. It is basically an all-in-one solution for the ones that do not want to install a sprinkler in a fixed position. It can be attached to any hose and can be moved around where it is needed.
The sprinkler has 20 precision rubber nozzles that provide excellent coverage. At the end of the nozzles, a small dial has been placed that can be used to set for how long the sprinkler will run. It also allows the user to set a delayed start of up to 2 hours.
Unlike other timers, the Melnor XT is completely mechanical. This means it does not need any batteries. It does lack some features such a long delayed start but overall, it is a great little sprinkler and timer.
- Sprinkler and timer
- Allows for delayed start up to 2 hours
- Mechanical, no batteries needed
- Allows for greater mobility, can be moved around
4. Orbit 57946 B-hyve Smart Indoor/Outdoor 6-Station WiFi Sprinkler System Controller
Orbit 57946 is one of the more advanced sprinkler timers that comes with some interesting features. The unit was designed to control multiple sprinklers at the same time and it allows for wireless control using a mobile app if the unit is connected to a Wi-Fi network.
Installing the device is quite simple and can be indoors and outdoors. The model has a large LCD screen and a swivel door that allows for easy access to the wiring inside. It also has smart watering. The device can detect site conditions and automatically adjust the sprinkler timers.
The mobile app developed for the unit makes it very easy to control every single aspect of the system without being near it. It allows for delayed starts, can set timers for up to 6 sprinklers and even works with voice commands.
- Dedicated mobile app for remote setup
- Allows for delayed start and timers for up to 6 sprinklers
- Voice control works with Amazon Alexa
- Durable, suitable for both indoors and outdoors installation
3. Orbit 62034 Mechanical Watering Timer
Orbit 62034 mechanical watering timer eliminates the problem that most other sprinkler timers have and that is changing batteries. Being a mechanical model means it can be installed anywhere and it does not need a power source. It does lack some features but for the price, it is difficult to beat.
The sprinkler timer can be setup to have timed watering for up to 120 minutes. All it takes is to turn the top mounted dial. It does not have a delayed start option. When it needs to be used, someone will have to set it manually to start and set the duration.
Because it is so inexpensive, the Orbit might prove to be an ideal option for the ones that have just one or two sprinklers. Not needing batteries is a great plus.
- Mechanical sprinkler timer, no batteries needed
- Can be set for timed watering for up to 120 minutes
- Durable high impact construction
- Easy to install
2. Melnor Two Zone Electronic Water Timer
Melnor two zones electric water timer is a good option for a small or medium size lawn. It is a simple timer that can control 2 sprinklers at the same time. The same timer model is also available in a 4 zone setup, working with 4 sprinklers at the same time.
The timer features a large display that shows the status of each sprinkler. The control buttons are as simple as possible. Each sprinkler can be set to run up to 6 times per day and can have a delayed start if needed.
To power the unit, 2 AA batteries will be required and are not included in the kit. Batteries should last at least 6 months. The timer is well built and feels durable. It has been rated as suitable for outdoor installation.
- Can control 2 sprinklers individually
- Allows for up to 6 watering times per day
- Batteries last at least 6 months
- Reliable and durable
1. Orbit Single Outlet Programmable Hose Faucet Timer
Orbit single outlet programable sprinkler timer is a great pick for the ones that are looking for an advanced but affordable solution. It is a single sprinkler timer that manages to be both compact and easy to use.
The timer allows for run times ranging from 1 minute up to 240 minutes. It also allows the user to set watering intervals for up to 7 days. Programming the unit is quite simple and the large LCD display makes everything easy to understand and set up.
To power the sprinkler, 2 AA batteries will be needed which should last for at least 6 months. The unit has been made in 2 other variants with 2 or 3 outputs for sprinklers.
- Delayed start and watering times from 1 minute to 240 minutes
- Allows for programming of watering intervals for up to 7 days
- Heavy duty construction
- Inexpensive and easy to setup
Things to keep in mind when looking for sprinkler timers
Sprinkler timers are not very complicated devices. The issue with them is how they are used as they might not be as durable as some would like. As they usually contain electronics inside, being installed outdoors and being close to water all the time may cause them to fail prematurely.
A good sprinkler timer needs to be well made, durable and easy to use but that is not enough. There are several other things that matter a lot when picking a sprinkler timer.
- Mechanical or electronic? There are mechanical sprinkler timers and for the most ,part they are better at least in terms of durability. They do however lack some features such as a delayed start, they can only work with one sprinkler and so on. On the upside, they are cheaper.
- How many sprinklers should the timer handle? The vast majority of timers have one input for the water hose and one output for the sprinkler. There are some units that may support 2, 3 or even 6 sprinklers.
- Advanced features: Models from the upper pricing bracket do come with some interesting features. The most useful one is wireless support. Some timers can be controlled using a smartphone. The user does not even have to be close to the unit to set it up.
Sprinkler timers can save money and water. If used correctly, sprinklers can work unattended and make things a whole lot easier. There are hundreds of models to choose from and for the most part, they are quite inexpensive.
As technology improved, sprinkler timers got a few extra features that might prove to be useful for some users. Wireless control is one such example. Some even support voice commands. When picking a sprinkler timer it is important to look at all the features and decide if it is worth spending the extra money or not.