Rain8 Timer Issue


Active Member
I'm having an issue with my Rain8 Wifi and I'm hoping someone can help clear it up.

I've got the Rain8 module set for a 30 minute shutoff. However, when I turn it on via CQC each zone only runs for 10 minutes before turning off. I'm not sending any off commands and it's 10 minutes, on the dot.

I've also confirmed that it's set for 30 minutes by downloading the settings from the Rain8 and reloaded the 30 minute marker just to be sure. But, just as before, after 10 minutes whatever zone is on, turns itself off.

Anybody run into this issue before?
Sounds like that modification of the default shutoff didn't take, and it's sticking with the 10minute auto-shutoff thing.

I'm not sure how often jart of WGL checks this forum, but you should PM him to this thread and see if he can confirm that you can actually modify that setting. I'd test it for you myself but i'm not going to be back home for nearly a week.
I don't know about the wifi, but the older units had an option to "poll" the device via WGL's software. This way you could "confirm" that the settings took.
The wifi version still allows you to do as you suggest BSR. Hitting the "Download from Module" button in the Rain8 config program updates the software with the current settings the Rain8 has and it's reporting 30 minutes for each valve.

What's weird is that I just tried setting it for 10 minutes and it ran for 10 minutes. I then set it for 1 minute and it ran for one minute. I then put it back to 30 minutes and, again, it only ran for 10 minutes.
Sounds like they need to mod the firmware to accept times greater than ten minutes! I'm sure WGL will take care of that. :rolleyes:
Hopefully that's all it is. I'm having other issues with commuincation that I'm going to have to figure out so if it turns out to be nothing more than a firmware update to fix the 10min limit that will make me very happy.
There's something nefarious going on. I tried turning on one of the valves with the Rain8 programmed for 30 minutes and then unplugged the wifi adapter. Bingo, sprinklers run for more the full 30 minutes.

This may be related to another issue I'm experiencing that I thought was CQC related but looks like it's probably a network issue.

The wifi adapter responds to pings. When I try to ping it the first packet always gets lost but the last three usually come back in a reasonable time. The problem is that CQC can turn the sprinklers on one time but after that looses access to the comm port. I can still ping the adapter but it looks like, for some reason, the Comtrol software doesn't give up the port unless I reboot the computer. The Rain8 config program also responds with a "Unit not found" (or something along those lines) and won't talk unless the computer is rebooted.

I'm going to have to track down what's causing the 10 minute kill time. It looks like the next step will be to leave the adapter plugged in but turn the computer controlling it off and see if it still turns off after 10 minutes.
When controlled via mcsSprinklers the connection is directly to the IP port of the WiFi. If you are using a COM port redirector then the redirector software is handling the keepalive TCP timing and may be setup for a generic 10 minutes to handle the mainstream IT devices. This, however does not explain why an OFF command is being seen by the Rain8 when the TCP connection is lost. It may be setup this was. I just dont know.
I'm working on this again today and I'm making some good headway now. I think I may be on to something in regard to the 10 minute shutoff. Just a little background in regard to my thinking, I purchased the Rain8 weatherproof enclosure. However, this particular enclosure is not designed for the wifi version of the Rain8. I ended up cramming everything into the box, bundled wires up, etc. but there really isn't enough room for everything to be laid out well without cutting and shortening wires.

This morning I took the wifi adapter out of the box and have it sitting on a chair outside the enclosure but still hooked-up to the Rain8. I can now leave the wifi adapter powered on and the Rain8 runs for the full 30 minutes. I don't know if there was interfearance that was causing a false shutoff command after 10 minutes, the wifi adapter was overheating (it does get warm to the touch) or what the deal was.

However, I have another thread going on CQC's board in regard to another problem I was having that I thought was unrelated, but may be another symptom of the same problem. I was getting time out errors when trying to access the virtual comm port created by Comtrol's software. (That thread is here)

There's a page in the Comtrol Driver that shows me a bunch of information including packets that need to be retransmitted. I found that around 25% of the packets needed to be retransmitted. The Help file indicates that it could be a problem with the network, which wouldn't surprise me because of where the adapter is located and the possibility of a weak signal.

However, there are some adjustments you can make in the driver including a "Scan Rate" timer. The Help file says that this can be adjusted for latency problems. I've upped it from 10 ms to 25 ms and I'm not getting nearly the same amount of retransmitted packets. There's also a "Keep Alive Timeout" timer that, "...allows you to set the amount of time in seconds that this device waits until it closed this connection and frees all the ports associated with it." (From the Help File) It's possible there is an issue with this Timer taking over the Comm Port while things are going on which keeps out the programs I'm trying to use the trigger the sprinkler zones.
I'm bumping this very old topic with an update.

Just to quickly catch-up to where we're at now, I moved my sprinkler wiring from the side of the detached garage and to the side of the house. Instead of using the wifi adapter I went ahead and drilled a hole through the wall and have the Rain8 wired directly to a computers com port.

With this setup, I could not get the Rain8 to work reliably. Zones would fail to come on, turn off before they were set to, I'd lose communication periodically, all kinds of fun stuff.

I e-mailed tech support for the Rain8 with a big "Whaaaa?" and they had my disable the built-in shutoff and try it again. Lo and behold, every zone fired off just like it was supposed to and no communication drops reported by CQC.

I'll update again when I hear back from the Rain8 people whether there is something I can do to use the automatic shut-off or not. Hopefully they'll have something I can do.