Best Sprinkler Controllers In 2020: Reviews & Buying Guide

1. Rachio2. Orbit 579503. Rachio 3
Rachio Smart Sprinkler ControllerOrbit 57950 B-hyve Smart Indoor OutdoorRachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller
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When you have a garden to take care of, there are many things you need to keep an eye on. So, if you can use technology to save some of these tasks, it is going to be in your benefit. Watering your plants is one of the essential aspects, and sprinkler controllers can help you a lot.

To enjoy the benefits of a sprinkler, you need to find the best sprinkler controller in the market for gardening tools. And this guide will help you do just that. So, keep reading to find only the product that you need!

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Why Would You Need A Sprinkler Controller?

A sprinkler controller can ease your job a lot when it comes to watering your garden. First of all, a sprinkler controller will save you a lot of water that you would waste otherwise. You have many features that you can use with such a device. You can set it to water your garden at certain times and even according to certain weather conditions.

You can control your sprinkle from inside the house or from your work as some of them come with a mobile app that you can use. This will save you time as well, and you can change the water settings by using your controller.

Who Should Buy The Best Sprinkler Controller?

Sprinklers are essential in helping us water our lawn or garden automatically without waking up at dawn to do it. By setting up a timer, a sprinkler controller will automate your watering schedule. What is needed of you is to occasionally check on it to ensure everything is going as you’ve planned.

Anyone who wishes to save water can use the best sprinkler controller. Sprinkler controllers are perfect water savers. Most modern models have advanced sensors that are designed to detect how to water your lawn or garden requires. It also identifies the time that the garden or lawn needs to be watered.

Anyone who wants any convenient tool to water the garden and lawn should consider buying the perfect sprinkler controller. The finest sprinkler controller is ultra-convenient as you can automatically water your yard or garden wherever you are. You don’t need to worry about getting home late and begin watering the lawn or garden.

If you want your garden, yard, or lawn to look healthier, the most excellent sprinkler controller is all that you need. With a sprinkler controller, your garden or yard will never miss watering throughout the whole seasons. The following are some of the people who should buy the best sprinkler controller:

1. Gardeners

If at all you have a big enough garden that requires frequent watering, then you need a modern sprinkler controller. They will sense the requirements of your garden and water it appropriately. Sprinkler controllers will also save your time and energy on bigger gardens. They are also effective compared to other methods.

2. Homeowners

If you own a home and want to have evergreen and attractive yard, then the most excellent sprinkler controller is essential for you. It will simplify your work and give you better results.

3. Farmers

Farmers and especially small-scale owners can benefit from a sprinkler controller. This is because it will meet your modest needs as you can automate your watering schedules. Your land will be well watered to meet your business needs.

4. Landscapers

A landscaper is another benefit of the best sprinkler controller. As a landscaper, you can benefit both ways, in your yard, as well as for your clients.

Types Of Sprinkler Controllers

There are different types of sprinkler devices, and each depends on the size and scope of the area to be watered. Throughout the years, sprinkler controllers have evolved from old to modern models.

Older models are a bit heavy, while modern ones feature Wi-Fi so that you can take charge of everything from the app via your phone. Below are different types of sprinkler devices:

1. Standard Controllers

This standard sprinkler controller type mainly features the control area. It is almost like a breaker in appearance and is on the top list of the best sprinkler controller types. It features an LCD with several buttons and switches, as well. This standard sprinkler controller operates based on zones.

In this case, if you have a very big yard, you will need two or more depending on the size of the yard. When using older models, you will require selecting the area to be watered manually. Choose the weekdays and when to start and end the watering plan.

Sprinklers that are incorporated with sensors operate according to weather changes. This, in turn, helps you save water, energy, and time. They also help avoid overwatering.

2. Smart Controllers

Smart controllers are the latest versions that have advanced features. Intelligent controllers have Wi-Fi to make every task more accessible than before. With an internet connection, intelligent controllers allow you to control the timers as well as schedules using a Smartphone.

You can also use any other smart device for the set up with a lot of convenience. Besides, intelligent controllers are designed to be weather-based. They monitor weather patterns and twist the watering plan automatically. This is because they have sensors that read the soil in the yard, type of plants, and much more.

They do this so that they can water your garden, lawn, trees, and any other plant appropriately. If you are looking for the best sprinkler controller type, a smart controller is advisable.

3. Hose Timer

A hose timer is easy to install and use . It is affordable and is usually attached to the spigot, which is then screwed to the garden horse and later onto the timer. One of the benefits of using hose timers is that they are powered by the battery.

In case there is a power outage, you don’t need to meditate upon losing your scheduled programs. When using such controllers, always monitor the nature of the batteries.

If at all you are a standard as well as a hose unit owner, it is recommended to frequently watch the weather pattern. In case rain or wind is coming, you will have to put off the programming to avoid overwatering. A smart sprinkler controller with a Wi-Fi feature is the perfect sprinkler timer.

This is because it is flexible to control through several devices like Smartphones or other smart devices. You can as well control it through Alexa or Google Home. These are voice-activated command control centers, and such devices are a bit expensive.

To save you time researching for sprinkler controllers, we put together the best that you can find in the market. The following products are of impeccable quality. They also have impressive features that you can count on.

Top 14 Best Sprinkler Controllers In 2020

1. Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controller

Rachio Best Sprinkler Controller

This Rachio product can easily be the best sprinkler controller to invest in. This is a wifi sprinkler controller that you can use as you need to get your plants watered. You can download the app that comes with this product so that you can use it as you please.

This gives you the possibility to control it anytime you want by only using your phone or computer.

You can manually set this controller or put in data such as weather and plant types to fix it automatically. There is a wifi flow meter that allows you to find any leaks as soon as they happen.

You will not waste water or time with this product. This device will adapt to weather conditions, so it will not water your plants when it is raining.

Your water bill will be reduced by 50% as you use this sprinkler controller. It is certified with EPA WaterSense, and you can easily install it as you need. You will not regret investing in this sprinkler controller. It is one of the best that you can find in the market.

Pros

  • Wifi sprinkler controller
  • Adjust to weather conditions
  • Can be set automatically
  • EPA WaterSense certification
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • It doesn’t work offline
  • Might be difficult to reach customer service
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2. Orbit 57950 B-hyve Smart Indoor/Outdoor

Orbit 57950 B-hyve Smart Indoor Outdoor

Orbit offers another sprinkler controller that you can invest in with no regrets. Once you start using this product, you will get rid of many of your concerns regarding your garden or lawn. This is also a wifi controller.

You can download the app that comes with it and use it with most operating systems. You can set up the schedule yourself or use the weather sensor. If you choose to set this automatically, it will adjust according to the weather conditions.

It has a WaterSense feature that allows you to use just enough water. It takes into account the type of soil, the variety of plants, weather conditions, and many other aspects.

So, you will not waste any water at all, and your plants will get precisely what they need. You shouldn’t have any problems installing this product either.

It comes with all the instructions you need to set it up and running in no time. This sprinkler controller is the best option to save water consumption as well as money.

You can install your timer inside or outside so you don’t have to worry about weather conditions. You can choose to voice control this device, which makes it even more useful.

Pros

  • Wifi sprinkler controller
  • Works inside and outside
  • WaterSense feature to adjust automatically
  • Comes with an app to control it
  • It is easy to install

Cons

  • The water might shut off unexpectedly
  • It might deliver too much water at times
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3. Rachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller

Rachio 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller

Another Rachio sprinkler controller that will not disappoint you is this product. It is not one of the cheapest controllers in the market, but it is the best sprinkler controller to invest in.

The fantastic features of this product will make you fall in love with it as soon as you start using it. This product will reduce the water bill every month with up to 50%, which is very important.

You will need to download the mobile app to start using this wifi product. The app is compatible with most operating systems, and it is very easy to use.

You can control your sprinkles when you are on the go by only using your Smartphone. You can also check the water usage anytime you want and adjust it accordingly.

This sprinkler controller will adjust your water consumption according to the weather conditions. If it rains, it will skip the same for wind or snow. This is a WaterSense product and will estimate just how much water your plants need.

You can use it easily and install it by yourself with no hassle. It is one of the most efficient controllers you can find in the market, and it has a very modern design.

Pros

  • It can be used through all Smartphone operating systems, also from your computer and tablet
  • Easy to set up
  • Easy to install
  • WaterSense features
  • Reduces water bill

Cons

  • Not a budget-friendly product
  • Hard to reach customer support in case of problems
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4. Orbit 57896 6-Station Outdoor

Orbit 57896 6-Station Outdoor

This Orbit sprinkler controller is one of the best that you can invest in, thanks to its increased efficiency. This 6-station panel can be installed inside or outside according to your needs and preferences. It is one of the most affordable products in the market, and you can use it for a long time.

You will find it very easy to program this controller. Even more than that, it can be set for six different areas in your yard according to the plants you have.

This is a handy feature, and it allows you to control your entire garden. You can choose between three different programs to set up, so you don’t have to worry about one set in stone schedule.

And you will love the full LCD screen that allows you to control this device easily. Overall, this can be the best sprinkler controller if you are on a budget, and you need to ease your work in the garden.

You will not regret investing in it, and you will be able to rely on it entirely as soon as you install it.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Wide LCD screen
  • Can control six different areas
  • Three programs to choose from
  • Works indoors and outdoors

Cons

  • Not weather sensitive
  • Might not be compatible with all timers
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5. Rain Bird SST900IN Simple-To-Set

Rain Bird SST900IN Simple-to-Set

Rain Bird sprinkler controller will become your best friend when you need to take care of your plants. This product also comes at a budget-friendly price, so you will not have to spend a fortune on it.

You should be able to program this timer just the way you need to. It comes with all the instructions, but chances are you will not need to use them much.

You can set up a different schedule for specific areas of your yard. You can also install this controller anywhere where there is no risk for water. The best place to put it would be indoors as it is not waterproof.

This controller will reduce and increase water consumption according to the weather conditions. If you set it automatically, you will not have to worry about these functions.

This product should last for a long time as it is made of durable materials. It has a sealed case, so you don’t have to worry about insects or moisture damaging it. This is the best sprinkler controller for beginners and people who need to water different zones. You will love relying on it daily, and your plants will grow healthy!

Pros

  • Adjustable for different areas
  • Easy to program
  • Durable design
  • Compact case
  • Budget-friendly price

Cons

  • Not waterproof
  • Water might not run evenly
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6. Rain Bird SST900I Simple

Rain Bird SST900I Simple

As you probably noticed, Rain Bird is one of the best brands when it comes to sprinkler controllers. And this product is one of the best in their vast selection. It also comes at an affordable price and impeccable quality. Its features make it the best sprinkler controller to purchase for your lawn and garden.

You can set this controller for nine different areas of your yard, which makes it very efficient and functional. This comes in handy for people who have different plants with different needs.

You can set each area differently, which is very useful for your plants and comfort. The surge protection makes this system very resistant. You can use it for a long time as long as you use it properly.

You don’t need a battery backup either, and it is very easy to install and set up. The settings can be stored in the memory that this controller comes with, which makes it very functional.

It is one of the most appreciated products in this range, and you will make the most out of it. You can also choose to invest in a pack of 1, 2, or 3, and even four controllers according to the needs of your garden.

Pros

  • Easy to set up
  • Covers 9 different areas
  • Wide LCD screen
  • Resistant
  • Budget-friendly price

Cons

  • It might leak at times
  • The internal memory might be too small
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7. Rain Bird SST400I Simple

Rain Bird SST400I Simple

If you are looking for the best sprinkler controller at a low price, this will not disappoint you. It has an automatic timer to use just the way you need so your garden is well taken care of.

You can schedule the watering time just the way your plants need it and according to your preferences as well. This device will not allow water to be wasted at all during this process.

It has a very modern and discreet design that will blend in perfectly with your background. You can install this anywhere indoors, where it is not at risk for severe weather conditions. It can cover up to four different zones in your garden. So, if you have diverse plants to water, this controller allows you to do that with no hassle.

If you want, you can set it up to adjust to weather conditions, as well. It will not water your plants on rainy weather, so no water is wasted. Also, it will water them as they need dry weather. All you have to do is set this product right, and it will take care of all your needs.

Pros

  • Reduced water consumption
  • Easy to set up
  • Easy to install
  • Covers 4 areas
  • Adjust to weather conditions

Cons

  • The settings might not remain consistent
  • You might have leaking issues after using this for several months
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8. Rain Bird 1ZEHTMR Professional

Rain Bird 1ZEHTMR Professional

This controller is perfect for people who never invested in such a product, but they want to try it out. You can use it to update your gardening style, and it is a great starting point for this. It is also the best sprinkler controller that is very affordably priced, and it is easy to install.

Plus, Rain Bird is one of the brands that you can rely on. Clients highly appreciate their products from all over the world. You can use this time for both your sprinklers and hose, which makes it even more functional.

It is a seven day, so you don’t have to worry about scheduling it according to your needs. This controller covers one area, which makes it perfect for small gardens with plants from the same category. The LCD screen is full enough so you can check it out comfortably.

You can set it up to work six hours a day with two starting times. To use this product, you will need to purchase batteries as they are not coming in the package. It is so easy and convenient to use that you will feel confident to upgrade for complex products after using it.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Set for seven days
  • Runs for six hours a day
  • Wide LCD screen
  • Budget-friendly price

Cons

  • Batteries not included
  • Covers only one area
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9. Netro Smart Sprinkler Controller

Netro Smart Sprinkler Controller

This Netro sprinkler controller is a middle-range product that you will fall in love with as soon as you start using it. It covers up to six different areas. So, you can water different plants in different ways according to their needs.

This makes it an excellent option for the best sprinkler controller at this price range. You can choose the same product for 12 zones if you have a more extensive garden, so keep that in mind.

This product is an EPA WaterSense product, which makes it even more efficient. You can set it according to the type of plants as well as the type of lawn you have in your yard.

Since it is a wifi product, you can use it to control your garden from anywhere. It comes with an app that you can download for your phone, and you can even use voice control devices.

With this product, you reduce your water bill upto 50%, which makes it a very eco-friendly product. It should take up to 15minutes to install this product, and it comes with all the instructions you need. However, it might be slightly more challenging to set up compared to other products.

Pros

  • Wifi controller
  • Eco-friendly
  • Reduces the water bill with 50%
  • Controls up to 6 areas
  • Compact design

Cons

  • Not a budget-friendly product
  • Might be more difficult to install
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10. Orbit B-hyve 57915 Smart

Orbit B-hyve 57915 Smart

Another budget-friendly product that you will love to use for your harden is this Orbit sprinkler controller. You can use it by downloading the additional app. The app works with all operating systems, so you don’t have to worry about that.

It will water your plants according to the weather conditions. This means that you will not waste water at all. So, you will reduce your monthly water bill and save money. No wonder this is the best sprinkler controller to invest in.

You can use up to four different schedules, each one starting at the time you wish. This gives you plenty of flexibility when it comes to watering your garden. There is also an option to start or stop the controller manually if, for any reason, your app is not working correctly.

This product is compatible with 110V, but you can use it with other systems if you get different versions. It has all you need to save time that you would spend watering your plants, and this is a great advantage for busy people. You can rely on this product to water your plants just as you would need it to.

Pros

  • Can run on four programs
  • Adjust according to the weather
  • Easy to install
  • Reduces water consumption
  • Helps you save money and time

Cons

  • Only works with 110 V
  • It might need adjustments often
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11. Hunter Sprinkler XC600i X-Core

Hunter Sprinkler XC600i X-Core

If you are looking for a timer for six different areas, this is the best sprinkler controller to consider. It has excellent features, and it comes with an impressive quality so you can rely on it in the long run.

The price is also in the budget-friendly range, which makes it even more convenient. And you will love the modern and compact design of this product. It blends in nicely with any background so you can install it where you want.

You can successfully use this product along with the Hunter’s ROAM Remote Control. Each one of the six areas covered has three programs to choose from. They also come with four different starting time options. This is one of the easiest to adjust controllers in the market.

You don’t have to worry about safety aspects either. This product has a short circuit controller as well, so you can relax and not worry as you are using it. There is also an internal memory, so you don’t have to set up your watering times every time. It is an investment worth making for your garden and your time!

Pros

  • Easy to set up
  • Compact design
  • Covers six areas
  • Safety protection
  • -Budget-friendly cost

Cons

  • It might overheat easy
  • Leaking issues might appear after prolonged usage
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12. Blossom 7 Smart Watering Controller

Blossom 7 Smart Watering Controller

Blossom offers you a very sleep sprinkler controller that will not just be efficient but also compatible with your space. The compact design and the affordable price it comes to making it the best sprinkler controller on a budget.

You can rely on it for controlling up to seven areas in your yard. This is an impressive feature considering the price that it comes at. It is also wifi, and you can use it with voice control devices such as Alexa.

This controller will use just as much water as your plants need. It will not overwater them, and you can rely on it as soon as you set it up. You can control it from your phone, tablet, or computer regardless of where you are. Installing it is also easy, even if it might take up to 15 minutes to set it all up.

You will love how neat this product looks inside your house or your garage. It is perfect for beginners thanks to the clear instructions but also very efficient for more extensive gardens.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Compact design
  • Easy to control
  • Covers seven areas
  • Reduces water consumption

Cons

  • Might be harder to install
  • It might develop leaking issues after several months
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13. Hunter Sprinkler XC600 X-Core

Hunter Sprinkler XC600 X-Core

This is another Hunter product that will be an excellent addition for you. By using this product, you don’t have to worry about watering your plants. All you have to do is set it up so it will water them just the way you need.

This is also a product that will work great with the Hunter’s ROAM Remote Control. It has advantageous features and can easily be the best sprinkler controller in the market for your needs.

With this product, you can control six different areas in your yard. Each region comes with three programs and four different starting times. You will have no problem setting this up , as it is very self-explanatory. The short circuit protection makes sure that you are safe at all times. Also, the screen is straightforward to check out, and the design is compact.

You can use this product for several years and not worry about maintenance. And the internal memory will come in handy, so you don’t have to start setting it up all over again every time.

Pros

  • Covers six areas
  • Short circuit protection
  • Budget-friendly price
  • Easy to install
  • Compact design

Cons

  • Might not deliver enough water at times
  • You might need to adjust the settings more often
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14. Hunter Sprinkler XC800i X-Core

Hunter Sprinkler XC800i X-Core

The last but not the least product that could be the best sprinkler controller is this one from Hunter as well. Just like the rest of the products from Hunter, this one will also work great with the Hunter’s ROAM Remote Control.

A great feature of this item is that it can control even eight areas at once. You can set it up to deliver the amount of water your plants need when they need it. And you will not have to get frustrated as this controller does everything for you.

Over time this will help you save money by reducing water consumption. You will also have healthy and growing plants. Each area has three different programs to use and up to four starting times. With such flexibility, there is no wonder that this is the perfect sprinkler timer in the market.

It also has short circuit protection, so you will be safe at all times when you use this product. This is a feature that you will not find at many sprinkler controllers, but for the Hunter, one is a norm. So, you will not regret investing in this product, and you will love how flexible and efficient it can be.

Pros

  • Short circuit protection
  • Covers 8 areas
  • Easy to set up
  • Easy to use
  • Precise timer

Cons

  • Not a budget-friendly product
  • Some programs might not work properly
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What You Should Know About Smart Sprinkler Controllers

Using a smart sprinkler controller benefits the user in very many situations. You can water small yards and even larger farms. If you get the right intelligent sprinkler controller, you will get a full year service without any worry.

Smart sprinklers are designed to automatically open and close each valve to allow the flow of water. They work almost the same as both old electronic and manual sprinkler controller models.

They don’t control how water flows. They are, therefore, the way to go for the future. Installing any smart sprinkler controller will help you save money, water and conserve the environment effectively.

What makes them different from old models is that they can connect to the internet and monitor weather patterns. They also notify you appropriately concerning weather changes.

It is important to note that intelligent sprinkler controllers don’t work well with hose timers or those powered by batteries.

They only work correctly with wired sprinkler controllers. Also note that to achieve better results, install it close to the covered outlet and near the Wi-Fi network. Mounting it slightly above the ground is the best idea to protect from being spoilt.

When setting up the unit, always remember to include the home addresses. This is because most of them are designed to determine the forecast so that it doesn’t need to water unnecessarily. Some of the sprinkler controllers will demand you put your home address. It is also essential to check on the watering pattern of the sprinkler controller.

Some might be faulty in forecasting the weather and fail to water your lawn or garden. In such situations, you need to use the manual scheduling function to avoid loses. It is, therefore, the best sprinkler controller device.

It is important to note that installing a smart sprinkler controller is very easy. You don’t need to worry about looking for a costly specialist to fix it for you. The process is straightforward that any homeowner can interpret.

Smart sprinkler controllers are also affordable, with the cheapest going for around $100. You can get amazing features from any most competitive model, as well. They are also designed to last for more extended periods when installed.

Features Of The Best Sprinkler Controller

It is important to note that there are features the best sprinkler controllers must-have. There are other extra features that are not a must for a sprinkler controller . The following are the features the best sprinkler controller should have:

1. Wi-fi Connection

One of the main features the best sprinkler controllers should have is the ability to connect to Wi-Fi. The Smartphone, in this case, becomes your remote control. With an app on your Smartphone, you can monitor all the watering and come up with software to aid the watering process.

2. Weather-Controlled

A weather-controlled sprinkler controller system consists of a sensor. The sensor primarily detects and notifies you if there is a possibility of rain. This is a factor that helps you save water in case there is rain and also prevents overwatering your lawn or garden.

3. Compatible With Smart Home

The best sprinkler controller should be intelligent home compatibility. It essentially means that you can command it ‘water’ through your voice. You can alternatively use Google Home or Alexa devices to control it.

4. Several Programs

Sometimes your garden or yard might have distinct requirements. Having a system with multiple applications is essential in such situations. Intelligent and typical sprinkler controllers can be programmed to specific tasks. This is a factor that can’t be ignored.

5. Great Memory

The best controller is that which is capable of storing permanent memory in case there is a power outage. It should recall all the programs when the electricity is back so that you don’t keep on programming the system.

6. Powered By Battery

Battery-powered sprinkler systems are useful, especially when there are power outages. They are simple to use and readily affordable but require replacement of used-up batteries with new ones.

Things To Consider When Buying The Best Sprinkler Controllers

The most important thing to consider is whether you want a controller system controlled remotely using a Smartphone or manually operated. The following are essential things when considering buying the best sprinkler controller:

1. Indoor vs. Outdoor

An indoor and an outdoor smart sprinkler controller differ, and you can choose according to your needs or preferences. Indoor for instance will demand an outlet power and usually aren’t resistant to weather. An outdoor on the other hand is weather-resistant and requires an outlet power of 110 V.

2. Zones

This factor is essential because most houses have more than two zones. Before buying a smart sprinkler, know the number of zones your home has so that it accommodates all of them.

3. Range Of Communication

The paramount smart sprinkler controller is one which is capable of maintaining the required field of communication with your smart device. You can as well decide to go for that which connects via Wi-Fi or INSTEON. It allows you to operate it at any convenient place.

Best Sprinkler Controller – Your Pick?

Finding the best sprinkler timer can be a challenge if you have never invested in such a product. However, this guide will help you choose just the one you need.

All the products on this list are of excellent quality. They are easy to use and install, so you don’t struggle at all. Make sure to know the needs of your plants so you can make the most out of a sprinkler controller!