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Thread: Proline Controller

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Default Pro-line Controller

    I have an old Pro-line Hydro-Saver Automatic Irrigation Controller. Recently while running it switches to a "System Trouble" indication on the panel and beeps until I press any button on the panel to clear it. The controller is at least 13yrs old. I would like to know what my options are for a replacement.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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    Last edited by jerome8283; 07-11-2010 at 06:16 AM.

  2. #2
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    After thirteen years, you have gotten your money's worth out of that one.

    I don't really understand 'options'. Replacement is replacement. If you are looking for what to replace it with, I like the Nelson/Signature controllers. They are AFAIC the easiest and simpelest controller for the consumer to operate.

    How many zones do you have? Is your conroller indoor or outdoor mounted? You have two schedules, Nelson/Signature have two for the indoor 4 & 6 zone controllers, and three schedules (a,b, & c) for the indoor/outdoor controller

    http://www.sprinklerwarehouse.com/Si...mers-s/100.htm

    Are you knowlegeable/skillfull enough to install and program the new controller yourself?

    Mick

  3. #3
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fireguy97 View Post
    After thirteen years, you have gotten your money's worth out of that one.

    I don't really understand 'options'. Replacement is replacement. If you are looking for what to replace it with, I like the Nelson/Signature controllers. They are AFAIC the easiest and simpelest controller for the consumer to operate.

    How many zones do you have? Is your conroller indoor or outdoor mounted? You have two schedules, Nelson/Signature have two for the indoor 4 & 6 zone controllers, and three schedules (a,b, & c) for the indoor/outdoor controller

    http://www.sprinklerwarehouse.com/Si...mers-s/100.htm

    Are you knowlegeable/skillfull enough to install and program the new controller yourself?

    Mick
    Zones = 5
    Indoor controller - garage
    I never installed one but as long as the instructions are clear I see no problem doing it myself. Do I need to simply replace the controller only? I see everything is wired directly to it.
    Last edited by jerome8283; 07-11-2010 at 06:53 PM.

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    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Mick - I took a look at the URL you posted. The Nelson/Signature controllers sound like they will do the job. They have nice features, some I have now, some I don't. Based on what I have now it appears the 8306C - Signature EZ Pro Jr. Series 6 station Controller would make a good replacement since I have 5 zones and external power. Currently I have a hardwired transfer connected for power but I guess I could use the power cord that comes with the 8306C.

  5. #5
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    If you're the least bit handy (and comfortable) with tools, you should be ok with this job.

    It's fairly easy. Instructions do come with them. Keep track of what wire (color(s)) go to what zone before you start taking anything abart. Make note of your common wire. Normally it's white, but I've seen people use all colors for common.

    Do you have a rain sensor? A booster pump? Master Valve? Those take a little more work, but easy to get around.

    Mick

  6. #6
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerome8283 View Post
    Mick - I took a look at the URL you posted. The Nelson/Signature controllers sound like they will do the job. They have nice features, some I have now, some I don't. Based on what I have now it appears the 8306C - Signature EZ Pro Jr. Series 6 station Controller would make a good replacement since I have 5 zones and external power. Currently I have a hardwired transfer connected for power but I guess I could use the power cord that comes with the 8306C.
    I like these clocks because thay are the easiest and quickest for my clients to learn to use. They also have great features.

    The 8306 has a built in transformer. You only have to hang the clock in the right place in the garage, wire the power cord to the transformer, wire the six irrigation wires, plug it in and program it.

    Don't forget to pull the plastic tab before you start wiring the irrigation wires in. Pulling that tab will allow the rehargable lithium battery to touch the contacts and charge up. When you open it up, you'll see it.

    I can't remember how long the power cord is. It's either 6 or 8' If you need something longer, I normally purchase a three wire extension cord and cut off the female end, to wire into the transformer.

    Mick

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    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fireguy97 View Post
    I like these clocks because thay are the easiest and quickest for my clients to learn to use. They also have great features.

    The 8306 has a built in transformer. You only have to hang the clock in the right place in the garage, wire the power cord to the transformer, wire the six irrigation wires, plug it in and program it.

    Don't forget to pull the plastic tab before you start wiring the irrigation wires in. Pulling that tab will allow the rehargable lithium battery to touch the contacts and charge up. When you open it up, you'll see it.

    I can't remember how long the power cord is. It's either 6 or 8' If you need something longer, I normally purchase a three wire extension cord and cut off the female end, to wire into the transformer.

    Mick
    Thanks Mick. I'm reading this right after installing a new Orbit Controller. I went with the Orbit because I could get it immediately at the big box store and take it back without problems if it did not work.

    It was very easy as you said. I labeled the wires as I took them off the old controller. After connecting everything I tested and noticed station 2 of 5 was not working. This was probably the issue all along. Since my watering schedule starts at 5:30am, I did not notice station two not working.

    I'm guessing the problem could be the solenoid?

    Please let me know what you think. Thanks again
    Last edited by jerome8283; 07-13-2010 at 10:35 AM.

  8. #8
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    Does zone 2 turn on manually from the valve box? If it doesn't, then you either have a leak or a plugged pipe. Can you hear water when you manually turn the valve on?

    How are the wire connections protected? Years ago, a lot of installers used regular wire nuts or marettes to join the solinoid wire to the irrigation wire. Some have used a dab of silicone in the wire nut to try to keep the connection dry, or just used electrical tape. These don't work. Irrigation valve boxes are very moist and corrosive locations that will destroy an electrical connection not done correctly. Pull apart the connection and see if the wire has corroded. I've seen corrosion go the length of the valve wire right to the solinoid. The best wire nut is a King DryConn Irrigation connector. They're not cheap, but you have to use a grease filled, protected wire connector, not a silicone connector. Silicone will fail, let moisture in and corode the wire.

    http://www.kinginnovation.com/produc...rs-irrigation/

    You will need the black/white ones. The website will show you where you can purchase them.



    Is the valve for zone 2 in the same valve box as any other valves? Check the wiring. Pay attention to the common wire. If there is another valve in the box, try swapping the wires. If the wire from the other valve works, then it's not the solinoid. If the wire from zone 2 doesn't work on the other zone, then it's your common, or a bad wire.

    After you swap, If the wire from the other valve doesn't work on zone 2 then it's your solinoid.

    If your old controller picked up the problem with a "System Error" then it propably is your solinoid. What kind of valves do you have? It will probably be less expensive to purchase a new valve (if the same make and model are still available) than the solinoid by itself.

    Before starting this take apart the new valve (slowly) and take notice on exactly how it's put together. Springs and diaphrams need to go together properly and in some cases the screw holes have to be a certain way on the diaphram for everything to work.

    Remove the wire connections from the old valve and take the top off. Take the guts out of the old valve along with the diaphram. Do the same with the new valve. Replace the guts, diaphram, top, and solinoid from the new valve into the old bottom of the old valve.

    If your valve is no longer on the market, you might have a harder time. You might have to replace the entire valve.

    Mick
    Last edited by Fireguy97; 07-13-2010 at 09:56 PM. Reason: more detail

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Does zone 2 turn on manually from the valve box? -- How do I do this?

    How are the wire connections protected? -- regular wire nuts are used. I will pull them apart to see if the wire has corroded

    Is the valve for zone 2 in the same valve box as any other valves? -- yes

    If your old controller picked up the problem with a "System Error" then it propably is your solinoid -- the old system did show system error. The new controller showed fault error or something like that.

    This system is very old. Wouldn't it be best to try to replace the solenoid? If so, how do I remove it, turn off the water supply and twist is off counter-clockwise?

  10. #10
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    You should be able to turn a zone on maually from the valve box by keeping the water supply on and turning either the bleed screw or the solinoid. You should be able to turn it and hear the water go through the pipe.

    It could also be the wire going to zone two. That's why I suggested the wire swap to see if it's the wire or the solinoid. You know that the other wire(s) and solinoid(s) work.

    To replace the solinoid shut off the water supply, remove the wire nuts, remove the connecting wires and twist off.

    Mick

  11. #11
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    I'm back at this after finally getting rid of a yellow jack nest right by the valve box

    I found that the wire to the valve box is unprotected and there is damage. I'm pretty sure this is the problem.

    I'm going to replace the wire. Also, I'm moving the new controller outdoors, closer to the valve box.

    Question: The valve box is not located next to a power source, it's about 30 to 50 feet away. Should the controller box be installed closer to the power source or valve box? Either way I need to route wire but which is the best approach? I plan to route the wire to the valve box through PVC tubing to protect it. How long can I extent the power cord? What do you suggest?
    Last edited by jerome8283; 08-22-2010 at 09:33 AM.

  12. #12
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    I would place the clock closer to the electrical outlet and run proper (direct burial) irrigation multi-strand wire, without PVC. If you believe that the irrigation wire could be accidentally damaged in the future, or that you might not be able to bury it at least 10"-12", then PVC wouldn't hurt. Take pictures of everything, including the trenching and permanent landmarks for your records. This way you won't have to fix the wire again at a later date when someone accidentally cuts through the wires.

    If you want to run a power cord 30'-50', then get a good quality outdoor (3 wire) extension cord. Cut off the female end at the correct length and wire that into the clock. Support the electrical cord properly and you're done. Outdoor extension cords are not rated for direct burial. If you want to go that way, then you will have to get a direct burial wire for the power.

    Mick

  13. #13
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fireguy97 View Post
    I would place the clock closer to the electrical outlet and run proper (direct burial) irrigation multi-strand wire, without PVC. If you believe that the irrigation wire could be accidentally damaged in the future, or that you might not be able to bury it at least 10"-12", then PVC wouldn't hurt. Take pictures of everything, including the trenching and permanent landmarks for your records. This way you won't have to fix the wire again at a later date when someone accidentally cuts through the wires.

    If you want to run a power cord 30'-50', then get a good quality outdoor (3 wire) extension cord. Cut off the female end at the correct length and wire that into the clock. Support the electrical cord properly and you're done. Outdoor extension cords are not rated for direct burial. If you want to go that way, then you will have to get a direct burial wire for the power.

    Mick
    Thanks Mick. I appreciated your help.

  14. #14
    DIY Senior Member jerome8283's Avatar
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    Mick I moved the unit outdoors closer to the valve box and all is well now. There was definately a break in the wire.

    Now that you've instilled some convidence in me I will attempt to blow out my system at the end of the season myself. This of course after I obtain tips on how o do this. I already own an air compressor. Can you or someone offer some guidance here? Thanks in advance!

  15. #15
    Irrigation Contractor Fireguy97's Avatar
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    I'm glad that everything worked out Jerome, congratulations!

    How big is your compressor? You only want to run at 45-55 PSI max, but you really should have a large volume of air to purge most of the water from the lines, and push the water column out in one shot. When you don't have enough air volume, you end up removing only a part of the water volume. Then when your compressor is re-pressurizing, the water in the line settles. This creates a partial air escape on top of the water in the pipe.

    Make sure that the line is shut off in the home so that you don't get any air going into the water lines to your home.

    The compressor that I use for blowouts is an 85 CFM model.

    Mick

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