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Saturday, June 11th 2011, 8:46pm

Rain Bird ESP-6TM Counting Down but no water Flow

My Rain Bird ESP-6TM with 6 zones has been working fine for the last 5 years. However, last weekend, despite the controller counting down....water isn't flowing. Here are the events...

Short (but heavy) storm about 8 days ago

Went to turn on system but had NO DISPLAY.

Opened controller and trouble shot...two things found.

1. Battery was not enabled (tab preventing connection still installed since house was built)

2. Fuse was blown. Changed fuze. System reset like normal.

Went to start system. System appears to be starting (Zone 1 counting down) but no water flowing.

Manually advance through other zones...all the same...appear to be counting down but no water flowing.

Trouble shooting 1: Checked voltage through COM & Zones...voltage is sitting around 25 on all

Trouble shooting 2: Checked the relays to see if there is water. When I turn the solenoids of the relays...water flows.

So looking for help. Any ideas wold be appreicated. I'd be especially interested in how I would disconned the rain sensor or test if that is keeping the water from flowing. But that seems strange given that voltage is flowing when a zone is one. Beyond the controller...where are the common points of failure that would cause all zones to fail?

Thanks for any help!



Supreme Member

Posts: 493

Location: Seattle


Sunday, June 12th 2011, 1:21am

Could be a number of things

Do you have a bypass switch for your rain sensor. Is it hardwired or wireless?
It's possible it's still active, or got damaged during the storm..
The sensor is connected the the common wire ( which connects to all valves) so if the sensor is bad then the whole system is. Take out the wires on the rain sensor and connect the common wire directly into the common port. I don't think you have sensor ports but if you do , jumper the 2 ports together after you take out the wire

If the fuse blew from the storm than it's possible it fried the solenoids too.


Sunday, June 12th 2011, 8:14am

No bypass switch on the controller. It is hard wired in. I disconnected the sensor and connected the common wire into the common luck. Still counting down by zone on the controller with no water action.

Unless there are any other suggestions, my next effort will be to purchase 1 new solenoid...hook it up straight to the controller and see if it works.

Thanks for your help.



Supreme Member

Posts: 493

Location: Seattle


Sunday, June 12th 2011, 2:13pm

Yeah.. Bust out your multimeter again

First ohm out your valves and see what you get by touching the common wire and then 1 by 1 the valves and let us know your readings.

Then do the same at the valves.
If you don't have any ohms at the controller but are getting ohms at the valves( average ohm reading is 20-60)

This indicates your common wire / and or entire multistrand wire is severed / bad wire connection.
I would recommend to check the wiring as it enters the ground from where the controller is. Dig it up, typically there is a splice connection there.

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