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New Member


Tuesday, August 2nd 2011, 11:01am

Toro El-12 not turning off

I just purchased a home which has a 10 station system. It has an older Toro EL-12 that seemed easy enough to program, but now, the stations just keep cycling through and do not turn off. Manual mode works fine, but the timing mode seems to be malfunctioning. Do I need to replace the controller, and if I do, will any controller work as far as brand goes? Thanks.


Advanced Member


Tuesday, August 2nd 2011, 3:49pm

If you need to get a new controller,I would go with a HUNTER PRO C, they are very easy to use,they are the most common clock,therefore we all know everything there is about it,and you can buy a $60 remote to wire in,and turn the system on from anywhere on your property. I know thats not what your question was lol. To answer your question. Any 10 zone capable controller will work. With hunter you will need the clock,plus a few modules. Pretty much any clock will do the job,but not all clocks are equal. Any mainstream clock nowadays is fairly decent,toro,kwikdial,rainbird,k-rain,weathermatic. Or you could just buy used on ebay. Making sure whichever you choose is capable of 10+ zones,you never know when you might want to add that zone of drip for new beds or gardens,or sprays or anything really.
But,90% of problems are programming could possibly have multiple run times programed in. or consecutive run times on different programs. If it is not shutting off at all, ever.Its not likely that its a programming error. I had a guy the other day that thought the start times were the zones,so he had all kinds of start times and they were comming on during the day. You could buy a $10 or maybe even a $5 tester to see if the terminals are getting voltage, when they should NOT be. If your on this site though,which obviousely you are lol. This means you are a do-it-yourselfer. And I would highly recommend an autoranging multimeter,as opposed to a $5 tester. I can hardly think of any situation,where that is not the first tool I grab. $50 for a nice one. maybe $25 on sale. Then when you come on this site with a problem,you say i have a MULTIMETER, and i know how to use it lol. And we give you specific info and you figure out your problem quickly.
Just today we were at a $2million dollar house,trying to run night lighting wires into the house from like 150' away,there was this sleeve with all kinds of wires in it,they couldnt get through it,to get into the house. So they were not sure if it was the same sleeve even. I pulled out the tester,put a jumper between grounds outside,touch grounds inside using continuity tester, BEEEPP BEEEEPPP. That was obviousely the same sleeve,so we grabbed 1'' poly instead of the snake, because we now know were not going to jam 1'' pipe into the heated driveway connections or anything lol. We got right through it and they were amazed, multimeters are friggen great tools.

Maybe try re-setting the clock too. Then program carfully, double checking start times,if this does not stop the problem. BUY A MULTIMETER, it will pay for itself with the first issue you encounter. Plus do-it-yourselfers love that feeling when you save yourself hundreds. I know I do. Ive saved by last estimate $25k doing EVERYTHING myself, remodeling my house,chainlink fence,Irrigation wells,carpeting,auto repairs,granite tiling,lights/wiring/fixtures/switches,building tables and kitchen cabinets,patios,all kinds of other stuff. And im 23. And I was able to do alot of it because of the internet. If you look hard enough,there is info on how to do any job the right way,on the internet. So anytime I can help somone I do.I could be helping somone that helped me remodel the living room lol. Thats why I love sites like this. I think everybody who does things for themselves,should invest in a decent AUTORANGING MULTIMETER. I paid like $70 for mine and its awsome. Check those things out and then check back if that doesnt work.



Posts: 2,311

Location: USA


Tuesday, August 2nd 2011, 7:56pm

You only need ONE start time then the valves will run in sequence.


New Member


Wednesday, August 3rd 2011, 12:48pm

You only need ONE start time then the valves will run in sequence.
I have it set for 1 start time. They are the push pin type on the programmer. I have checked, and double checked this thing. It seems vary basic compared to ones I have used in the past. I am pretty sure it is just in need of replacement because it actually worked yesterday properly, but this morning, it kept running through the stations at least 3 times until I turned it off. Thanks for the help guys.


Supreme Member

Posts: 5,288

Location: Metro NYC


Wednesday, August 3rd 2011, 2:26pm

Operator Error - is why controllers cycle over and over. Try a complete power-down reboot, to return to factory default programming. Then, only change the program A start time. DO NOT enter any additional start times.

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