The Monterey Peninsula Unified School District (MPUSD), located in coastal central California, includes 26 schools with acres of irrigated turf and various other plant life. The area does not typically receive a large amount of rainfall and the drought restrictions have been increasing, especially as of late. With more than 70% of the district’s water going towards irrigation, and the local price of water increasing 29% over the past several years, the need for water conservation became crucial.
After analyzing their water bills and energy consumption reports, David Chandler, the Energy Specialist for the district, spearheaded the implementation of smart irrigation controllers. Utilizing grant money from the district and extensive rebates available from local water agencies, they installed 25 WeatherTRAK smart irrigation controllers on 14 sites. “The partnership with HydroPoint has been instrumental in the implementation of these controllers,” Chandler proclaims. “With the level of training and support provided, HydroPoint is working smarter and harder for our sites.”
With only a single irrigation technician to service the entire district, installing WeatherTRAK controllers was like hiring a team of technicians to help. He is now able to remotely access the irrigation controllers, address alerts, and make changes as needed, all without physically visiting every site. “Using the web-based platform is easy,” Chandler states. It only takes one minute to make a programming change to all
controllers, whereas it used to take all day to complete those site visits just to make a tiny change to the irrigation controllers.
In addition, the WeatherTRAK controllers enable flow visibility and monitoring on all sites equipped with flow sensors and master valves. A broken sprinkler head can leak anywhere from 81-126 gallons per minute. Without flow monitoring on sites, a basic break like this could result in losing significant amounts of water, and could take weeks to be made aware of the problem. Adding flow monitoring to sites with WeatherTRAK immediately sends alerts of leaks or breaks, which can then either automatically be turned off, or addressed to avoid catastrophic water loss. This real-time visibility and remote access has been so beneficial to the district, that WeatherTRAK controllers, flow sensors, and master valves have now become mandatory for all new construction projects.
With the help of WeatherTRAK’s smart water management, the district has been able to reduce their water consumption by 48%, saving significant water during one of the worst drought seasons.