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farna

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Tuesday, June 21st 2022, 8:14pm

Sprinkler zone turns pump on/off repeatedly

I'm sort of familiar with sprinklers, but this one (my house!) has me stumped!
My setup:

Rainbird SST-600i controller.

Weathermatic NITRO 1" valves
Pump that pulls out of lake (pump works fine on all but one zone...)
The controller is six zone capable, I only use four. Zone 1 is just to prime the pump and system, no valves open, runs 1 minute every day starting at 5 AM. Zone 2 is the back yard and is set to run 5 minutes every other day. Zone 3 is front yard, set same as Zone 2. Zone 4 is flower beds and is set to run twice daily for 4 minutes.

Zone 2 is the problem. When on the pump itself is turning on and off. It runs maybe 30 seconds, turns off of 15-20 seconds, then turns back on for 30 seconds or so, repeatedly. Controller issue, right? Reset controller... no change. Move Zone 2 wire to the unused Zone 5 on controller... same issue, so I moved it back. If I turn the Zone 2 valve on manually and leave the controller on Zone 2 it does the same thing! But if I turn the controller to any other Zone and push the "water one zone only" button the sprinklers on Zone 2 run fine. I don't understand why it cycles the pump when the valve is manually turned on and controller is on Zone 2. Could a shorted solenoid cause this issue?

I can't get a new solenoid locally. A replacement solenoid and diaphragm costs a bit more than a new valve. Just in case I have a cracked valve body I just ordered a new valve.

Has anyone else had a similar issue? I guess it wouldn't be an issue without a pump (if on city water). My only guess is that a shorted solenoid is feeding back in the system and causing the pump cycling issue.

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