General FAQs

In by Dan Wilson

General FAQs

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Below, you can find frequently asked questions about the skydrop smarter watering sprinkler controller and it’s associated functionality.

How many zones can the Skydrop Controller manage?
The standard Skydrop Controller is able to manage up to 8-zones. With Skydrop Expansion an additional 8-zones can be managed, for a total of 16-zones. Skydrop Expansion also allows for rain sensor or flow meter integration.

Where does the Skydrop Controller get its weather data?
Skydrop utilizes your Wifi connection to the Skydrop cloud and our network of weather stations. The Skydrop cloud service constantly monitors real-time weather in your specific location and determines the optimal watering schedule based on what the weather conditions.

What are the hardware specifications for the Skydrop Controller?
Detailed specifications are posted on our Tech Specs page on our website.

How is the Skydrop Controller installed?
Skydrop is very simple to install. It replaces your existing sprinkler timer, and the existing valve wires will plug directly into your new Skydrop Controller. Once you power up the controller for the first time, it will guide you through a WiFi connection setup process. Once connected to WiFi, it will gather weather data from the cloud, and also allows you to manage your system from a smartphone or computer.

View the Quick Start Guide for details or view the Installation Video.

Can I manage settings differently for each zone?
Yes, each controller valve wire corresponds to a different zone.  When you first setup your zones, Skydrop will ask questions regarding that particular condition or each zone. These conditions consist of soil, sprinkler, plant type, slope, shade, etc.

Which mobile devices are currently compatible with Skydrop?
Any Apple device running iOS 7.0 or newer & Android device running 4.1.x (Jelly Bean) or newer.

How can I download or update my Skydrop App?
The app can be downloaded through links on our website. It is also available from the Apple App Store or Google Play store, by searching “Skydrop Mobile”. The app will prompt for regular updates as with any 3rd party app on your smartphone or tablet.

Do I need a mobile device, smartphone or browser to use Skydrop?
No. Skydrop can be controlled using the jog-dial & LCD screen on the device itself. Control can be accessed additionally from a computer, smartphone or tablet.
*Some advanced settings are available only via a browser or the app.

Are there any additional fees or costs associated with the Skydrop Controller?
No. There are no additional fees or costs associated with the purchase or use of the controller. The manufacturer suggested retail price of the controller is $299.00 + tax.

Am I able to integrate my own personal weather station into the Skydrop Controller?
The controller cannot integrate with personal weather stations directly. Skydrop pulls hyper-local weather data for your controller from our vast network or weather stations near you. However, the ability to connect to a personal weather station linked to the Weather Underground PWS Network is in development and should be available in the second quarter of 2015.

See the “How does my controller get weather data?” article for additional details.

How do I set up my Skydrop Controller account?
You can create a new account or login to an existing Skydrop account by going to my.skydrop.com or accessing the Skydrop Mobile app. Creating & accessing a personal Skydrop account will give you the ability to manage your sprinkler system remotely.

What type of power supply does Skydrop use?
The controller uses a 24V AC power supply.  It is a small module which plugs directly into an AC socket, commonly known as a “wall wart.”

Does the controller add to my existing system or does it replace what I have?
The Skydrop controller will replace your existing sprinkler control system, but not existing valves or wires.

What browsers does the Skydrop web interface (my.skydrop.com) support?
Chrome, Safari & Firefox (IE9 or newer)

Can the Skydrop Controller be installed outside?
The device is built for indoor installation, but can be installed outdoors with use of an outdoor housing. The Skydrop Enclosure provides an ideal solution to installing in a location that requires a weather resistant housing.

Does the Skydrop Controller have lightning strike and EMI protection?
Yes.  The Skydrop Controller is resistant to interference and meets all FCC standards for unintentional EMI radiation. Skydrop has built-in circuitry to protect against lightning strikes.

Is the Controller heat & cold resistant?
The Skydrop Controller is designed for indoor use (including the garage). Temperature resistance is a maximum 85C and minimum of -20C.

Can I set specific watering instructions on my Controller?
Yes. Skydrop’s smart watering system allows you to set specific schedules based on day, time, duration or local watering restrictions.

See the article “How Do I Create Custom Schedules” for additional details to create a customized watering plan.

How do I report a problem?
You can reach us by any of the following Support methods:
email – support@skydrop.com
chat – http://www.skydrop.com/
call – 1-844-SKYDROP (844-759-3767)

How does Skydrop make water conservation better than other “smart” controllers?
The Skydrop controller will anticipate watering needs based on future weather predictions. These weather updates are analyzed several times per day to ensure the greatest accuracy for your lawns watering needs. In addition, after the initial setup, the Skydrop controller enters a learning period where it will send notifications requesting feedback. With this information, Skydrop fine tunes the schedule and maximizes efficiency. See the article “How skydrop smart watering works” for additional details on our smart watering methodology.

Does Skydrop help conserve water?
The EPA estimates that about 30% of a household’s water is used for irrigation.  Over 50% of that irrigation water is wasted through overwatering and evaporation. With Skydrop, those inefficiencies will be reduced by up to 50% by watering only based on need, rather than watering by a set weekly schedule.

Why is water conservation so important?
With water use in the United States increasing every year, many regions are starting to feel the pressure. In the last five years, nearly every region of the country has experienced a water shortage. At least 36 states are anticipating local, regional, or statewide water shortages by 2013, even under non-drought conditions. Most of these municipalities are placing restrictions on watering to combat drought conditions.

What happens if Skydrop loses its Internet connection?
If you have been connected to the Skydrop cloud service at any time, the controller will use a backup watering schedule based on the device’s history. This schedule lacks the day-to-day smart watering intelligence, but will still operate using seasonal adjustments provided by historical data. If Skydrop does not have an active Internet connection, you will not be able to access your controller using a mobile device or web browser.

Can I use Skydrop outside the United States?
The Skydrop controller is currently only officially supported in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. However, we have many happy customers throughout the world. We cannot ship outside USA and Canada, but the device will work anywhere with a WiFi Internet connection, proper power conversion and a local weather station. Before purchase, please ensure a weather station is within reasonable distance by searching Weather Underground.

Does Skydrop support languages other than English?
English is currently the only supported language on both the controller as well as Skydrop Mobile App and Skydrop Web App. We are working on internationalization and will soon support many other languages.

Does Skydrop support Metric units?
Skydrop Mobile 2.1.0 now includes metric support, however, Skydrop Web and the controller interface still do not support it.