This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

July 2, 2013

Orbit watering timer failure

I had an Orbit watering timer fail again yesterday. It was a replacement for the one that failed a couple of months ago. At that time, I contacted Orbit and they assured me that it was a failure of a seal inside of it, so I returned it to Home Depot and got another one.

I had really liked the Orbit timers. They were easy to use, and had nice big lettering that I could easily see without my reading glasses. But two failures in as many months is a clear sign that I shouldn't be using them here at The Tropical Paradise. I suspect heat, which has been intense. But I have been using battery-operated timers here at The Tropical Paradise for years and it always gets hot in the summer. Besides, the last one failed before the really serious heat came on.

And it gets worse for Orbit. When the unit fails, it pours water out all over the place. I really wouldn't mind if it would fail by not working, but when it fails by releasing water at a tremendous rate (luckily it happened yesterday afternoon and I saw it right away), I have to draw the line. No more Orbit!

So I've planned a trip to Home Depot to go back to using the Toro timers, which I had been using for the last couple of decades. Sure, they're not as pretty, and the lettering is smaller, but they don't suddenly burst like these Orbits have done.

Well, I'm experimenting mostly. Consider this experiment a failure.

Update later the same day. Couldn't find the Toro timer at Home Depot. Went to Lowe's and all they had was Orbit. The manager there said that there his customer had been having problems with the Orbit timers. Apparently they have a contract, so they are stuck. Will keep looking for Toro, hopefully at an Ace Hardware, or somewhere, tomorrow. They are available on line, but I need one, like right now.

Dang, now I gotta replace all three of these before they fail. Too late for me, hopefully you will see this post before you are tempted to buy an Orbit. What a shame that they fail like that - they look great!

Update July 5. Ordered three new Toro timers online from Home Depot. They aren't as pretty, but I know that they work.
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