Archive for the ‘Gardening & Backyard’ Category.

Orbit Water Sprinkler Timer Systems

There is an extensive range of water sprinkler timers available from Orbit Irrigation Products. This is a company that specializes in irrigation products and the control of when the sprinklers are operated can be controlled either by simple or quite complex means. The Orbit products cover all watering requirements and cater to the backyard watering system as well as the far more extensive systems that might be used on large estates.

The simplest of the Orbit products is the Orbit 1 Dial Hose Faucet Timer. It is a very simple piece of equipment that fits directly onto the faucet and features a dial that explains each function in clear terms. Setting the timer is a simple process of setting the watering time, how often you need it to operate and for how long and you are done. It also comes with a manual button that will allow the system to be overridden without affecting the automatic settings. For less than $35, it’s very good value for money.

A little more advanced is the Orbit 2-Dial Digital Timer. The first dial is a Start Interval Dial that allows you to set up to ten interval options that will control when the watering is performed over the period of a week. The Duration Dial can then be used to set how long each of those watering periods will last. This is a very good set-and-forget system that can be operated directly at the faucet. It can be bought for less than $30.

Moving the settings to a central location is a simple matter with the range of Orbit Outdoor Swing Panel Timers. They are available in a range of multiple station versions including 4-station, 6-station, 9-station or 12-station Timers. These outdoor units come in weatherproof containers and are easy to install in either an indoor or outdoor setting. If you are after a unit that can control multiple parts of the yard with watering options over a number of days the Orbit systems keep coming up as particularly reliable units that are very easy to use. The smaller 4-Station Timer System is less than $50 while the larger 12-Station System can be bought for around $80.

A couple of things that stands out whenever reading any of the customer reviews for the Orbit Water Timers listed above as well as others in the extensive range is firstly the ease with which they can be installed and, secondly, their reliability. The Orbit Water Timers definitely look as though they provide an outstanding option for setting up a home watering system that can be relied upon.

Use of the Sprinkler Timer Saves Valuable Time

Featured on this page are 3 low-cost water sprinkler timers for sale with details of each that makes it possible to compare the units against each other.

Three Top Rated Low-Priced Sprinkler Timers

If you are going to buy a new water sprinkler timer you’re going to want to buy the best quality timer that provides you with the features that you require at a price that suits your budget. It can be a difficult choice to have to make so we have investigated the various options available and have come up with three of the most popular sprinkler timers available at reasonable prices.

The sprinkler timers listed below follow the adage that simplest is best with straight forward dial or button settings. A couple of these sprinkler timers also feature easy to read digital readouts to immediately see how much time is left for the sprinkler to operate.

As well as providing a comparison between the three featured timer sprinklers and details about each, we have also provided links to Amazon where there is the opportunity to buy each of them as well as read the customer reviews that have been offered by those who have used them.

Orbit 91213 One-Dial Garden Hose Digital Water Timer

When you buy a water sprinkler timer you just want an easy to set up and use timer that doesn’t require hours of programming. That is what you get with this timer from Orbit. The single dial is easy to use and just as easy to read with a simple turn to the setting you require all that is needed.

One of the big advantages with this particular timer is that it is very easy to simply turn it off if it has been raining. A single press of the + button will shut the timer off for a day to help conserve water.

The automatic settings are easy to set up and, if the conditions require that setting to be overruled the manual button can be used without changing the automatic settings.

For ease of use this particular sprinkler timer is very hard to beat and there is little wonder that almost 100 Amazon customers have given it the maximum 5 star rating.

Timer Features
• Single dial control
• Manual button to allow program interruption
• Oversized features for ease of use
• Rain delay for water conservation
• Heavy Duty weatherproof construction
• Requires two AA alkaline batteries

This timer is available for sale from Amazon at a very reasonable price - click for details

Gardena 1169 Mechanical Water Timer With Flow Control

This is another very simple to install water timer that simply attaches to the water supply and is ready to operate. Unlike the Orbit, this timer is a fully manual timer which means when you need to water the garden you must go out to the garden faucet and turn the dial.

The Gardena water timer does have a feature that is not available in the other timers and that is the water flow control. This means you can adjust the timer to suit the plants or part of the garden that is being watered.

For those who are sick of having to replace batteries in their sprinkler timers, the Gardena will also come as a relief because it is fully mechanical and doesn’t rely at all on batteries. It is a durable device that will give you years of service. However, some people have reported that it doesn’t like to be left out in adverse weather conditions and its life-span can be extended by remembering to store it indoors when it is not in use.

Timer Features
• Watering time can be set between 5 - 120 minutes.
• Water flow can also be set.
• Garden quick connect fitting
• Water timer, switches off automatically.

Check the price of the Gardena Water Timer and read the customer reviews


Gilmour Single Outlet Electronic Water Timer 9500

The Gilmour water timer looks a little more high-tech than the other two timers that have been examined above but this is only due to the keypad at the front. Like the Orbit it can be set to operate at a predetermined time (or times) during the day. It also has a manual setting that will allow for watering outside of the pre-determined times.

The emphasis with these sprinkler timers has been on their ease of use and while the Gilmour timer is not overly complicated, it will require some work to get it initially set. The owners’ manual is definitely going to be required for this process.

To protect the electronics of the keypad, as well as to keep it from being stolen, it is possible to remove the electronic portion of the timer while leaving the rest in place.

For the price this is another timer that offers a lot of strong features making it good value for money.

Timer Features
• Daily clock option of 12 or 24 hours
• Skip cycles for 2nd or 3rd days
• Manual or timed on-off settings
• Angled display for easier reading
• Battery voltage meter monitors available power
• Time countdown on screen during watering
• Backlight in screen for better visibility
• One on-off watering cycle
• Two minute minimum watering time
• Requires 4AA batteries (not included)

This Gilmour Water Timer is available at a low price - look at the customer reviews

Select Your Preferred Water Timer

Your needs are going to dictate exactly what type of water timer to use in your garden. Among even the cheapest of timers, such as these that are discussed above there are a number of different options available. They will all help to regularly keep the garden watered and this will ensure it will have a far greater chance of flourishing and looking healthy.

The sprinkler timer has revolutionized the way that people tend their lawns and gardens. No more do gardening enthusiasts or home owners who are trying to keep their lawn in optimum condition need to remember to turn the sprinkler on and off or move it so that it reaches different parts of the lawn and garden. Now the user can set the timer for sprinkler system and leave it to operate by itself for months at a time.  It is important to keep an eye on it, however, and to make sure that you adjust it as the seasons change or turn it off when the winter rains start.

You are able to specify which days water sprinkler timers run as well. Thus if you only want the sprinkler to water the lawn every second day, you can set it to do so. Sprinkler timers also have options so that you can manually over-ride the programs that are set so that they do not run. For example, if you suddenly had a summer rainstorm you could select the manual override and choose for the program not to run that particular day.

When you first get your timer you will need to do the initial set up. This is fairly easy to program, you simply select the programmable mode and then set up the programs one after the other. You will first of all need to set the time to the current time, specifying whether it is morning or afternoon, and then select the current day of the week. Once you have this initial set up done you can begin programming it. Lawn sprinkler timers allow for programs to run at different times and from different valves thus it is possible to water one part of the garden in the morning, the lawn during the afternoon and another section of your garden during the early evening.

Why You Should Install A Solar Security Light

If you want some added security around your home then a solar security light can be of benefit to you. The extra light that these kinds of lights provide can deter intruders from coming onto your property. By choosing solar lights you have additional benefits over those using electric ones. With a little advanced planning you can ensure your home is safe and save money at the same time.

Burglars intent on breaking into homes are less likely to enter a property if there is a chance they will be seen. By installing a solar security light at the entrance to your home you can deter these intruders. A light with a motion sensor attached will light up when someone walks past, which can give the impression that there is someone inside the house and most likely scare off an intruder. This is a great way to protect and monitor the front of your home, particularly if you are entertaining out the back.

Solar lights have many benefits over regular electric lights. They absorb energy from the sun during the day and use this energy to power the light at night. This makes them very affordable because solar energy is completely free so you have no ongoing power costs. They are simple to install as they do not need to be connected to electricity, so you can do it yourself rather than getting an electrician in. There is very little maintenance involved once the lights are setup. Maybe a little cleaning and a bulb change is all you will need to do.

If you plan ahead of time you can make sure all of your needs are met with minimum effort required. You can ensure all of the darker areas of your property are well covered with the type of solar lights you choose. As well as the security lights, you can get solar garden lights to light up your paths and walkways which will make them safer, and spot lights or flood lights are great for larger areas.

You can enjoy a safe and secure home and save money at the same time by using solar lights.

Go Green and use Solar Patio Lights

When you are deciding how to light up your patio for the summer season take a few minutes to look at the benefits of solar patio lights.  They have many advantages over traditional electrical powered light sets.  You might be surprised at how east they are to use and install.

The technology for solar lights has improved significantly over the last several years.  The lights are brighter and retain power longer than they used to.  You can also get a solar panel that gathers the energy and then powers a string of lights.  Designs have improved a lot as well.  There are so many different styles available now to meet consumer demand.  There is sure to be something to meet most needs.

Thinking specifically about the patio area there are several choices.  You can go with individual tall torch like lights that are located around the perimeter of the patio.  They provide a lot of light and last about 6 hours when fully charged by the sun.  There is no wiring involved.  Just secure them to the deck and off you go. They are also easy to reposition and to store during the winter season.

You could choose a string of camp style lights and string them around a banister or overhead along a cabana or roof top.  These lights are wired together.  The require a solar gathering panel that then stores and transfers energy to the lights via the wiring.  They require more thought, time and effort to install.  In return they offer softer light and can positioned more strategically than tall torch lights.  You can add more brightness to the area by combing solar lamps around on tables.

There are many other options out there as well.  All options are money savers in the end.  If you do a lot of outdoor living or entertaining the electricity bill can go up in a hurry.  Solar power saves the light bill and improves your homes green factor.  People love being green so this could also increase desirability if you decided to sale.  Either way you will enjoy the results. So stop, think and go green with patio lighting.

Market Leading Manufacturers of Solar Lighting

The most recent batch of solar garden lights are far more powerful than the previous generations of solar lighting.  A couple of well placed lights can illuminate your entire patio, garden, or yard.  The brightness has improved, as has the tinting of the globes, which produces a more appealing color of light.  Basically, you are now looking at lights which perfectly substitute for traditional outdoor lighting, except that they don’t cost a cent to power.

This is one of many great benefits which solar garden lighting offers the savvy homeowner today.  They store sunlight which has been converted into electricity until dusk, and then automatically power up to illuminate the desired space.  Basically you not only save money, but time, as they turn themselves on and off (when the battery dies), and reduce both maintenance and upkeep as the LED globes last a long time.

It is wise to consider shopping at an established lighting or hardware store, at least for your initial purchase, as you will want to test the lights, and discuss it further with a person somewhat knowledgeable about the subject.

For some products, you can get away with substandard finish quality, and it doesn’t affect you, but for solar garden lights, unfortunately, you can’t.  There are 3 reasons why this is the case.  Cheap LED globes don’t light spaces well, the batteries and globes don’t last very long, and for them to last in a harsh environment, the lights need to remain waterproof for a long time.

The two market leading manufacturers of this type of lighting are Hampton Bay and Executive Lighting.  Both produce lights which are of an extremely high quality.  Hampton Bay is renowned for their variety of solar lighting, whereas Executive focuses on the upper end of the market with a number of luxury, high end outdoor solar light fittings.

Either way, the saving you get from the power easily justify making a higher end purchase.

Garden Lighting Offers Creativity To Your Back Yard

The moment the weather changes and the ground begins defrosting, your green thumb also begins itching to get your garden in top shape. Working tirelessly every moment you get and all throughout the day so that your garden looks exactly the way you want it is very time consuming. When you have completed the task perhaps you would like to enjoy the garden during the evening hours as well. Now that there are so many different types, styles and colors of garden lights available, you can have the lighting you need to enjoy your garden area at night. Lighting can create a welcoming atmosphere for your guests, or it can create a safer playing area for your children during the evening, or the lighting can simply show off the amazing garden you have created.

Although garden lighting may seem complicated at first, the installation is really not difficult at all. There are many different types of garden lighting that requires different means when it comes to the installation of the lights. Many home owners use a special type of lighting called up lighting or garden spot lights that are meant to shine up the height of your tall trees, statues, large plants. This type of lighting creates a full large and artistic feel to the area. To create a completely opposite affect, you will want to use shadow and silhouette lighting. Shadow lighting occurs when you place lights at a specific angle directly in front of a plant or shrub so that it will reflect another surface. Silhouette lighting is where you place lights behind the plant or shrub so that the item is silhouetted as you look directly at it. The most practical style of lighting is illuminating lighting which provides lighting along the pathway or steps so that people are able to see where they are walking.

No matter what style of lighting you choose, garden lighting can provide your yard with exactly the right amount of light you desire and the look you are trying to achieve. Pick up a set and give garden lighting a try today and see what a different a little light can make.

The Different Types of Gardening Lights Available

When buyers are out shopping for lights to use outdoors they will find many different styles of garden light types. These lights will be powered with many different sources that provide energy. The most common source that powers garden lighting is by electricity. this type of lighting is set up by an electrician. The lights go on and off based on whether they are on an automated time or controlled by a switch.

One type of garden light are solar powered lights. Solar powered lights are very popular with consumers as they are energy efficient and while they used to be the more expensive option the prices on solar lights are now very affordable. Solar powered lights operate by storing the light they absorb from the sun during the daytime. They then concert that energy into light in the evening. One of the drawbacks with solar lighting is that they lack brightness. Some of the cheaper models barely produce enough light to them in the nighttime.

One popular option when it comes to lighting one's garden is the use of lights that are battery powered and rechargeable. This option is not as energy efficient as solar lights but they do produce brighter light. One great feature of this type of light is that as they not hardwired into the home they can be easily moved around to create different looks.

The last type of lighting is a type of low voltage garden lights that runs on electricity. This type of lighting will be hardwired to the home but it will not use as much electricity as the other type of lighting that is hardwired to the customers house. These lights still emit a decent amount of light but the higher voltage lights are still the preferred option as they are more durable.

Pool Safety Barrier Laws are Forged in California

Several states, mostly in the South and West, have passed laws pertaining specifically to pool safety barriers. California is one of several states that have enacted legislation that enforced pool safety fences. The law passed three years ago states that any new or remodeled pool or spa, done on or after January 1, 2007, is required to have at least one of seven required safety features. The most adapted option for homeowners is to install a fence, wall, or removable mesh fencing around the pool or spa. The fence must also include a gate that is self-closing, self-latching and able to be locked. The law currently only applies to privately owned, single-family residences.

When a homeowner chooses to install a wall or permanent fence, the law sets specific requirements regarding the height, gap between fencing, and distance from the ground, of the fence. The fence must be at least 60 inches tall. The spaces between the slats in the fence must be less than 4 inches and the space between the bottom of the fence and the ground is limited to 2 inches. Lastly, there cannot be any objects or protrusions near the fence that provide a way for a child under the age of 5 to climb over it.

If installing the mesh pool fence, it must meet the specifications of the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). Mesh fencing is easy to remove and reinstall each time the pool is used. The fencing must again reach a height of 60 inches to meet the California state law requirements. The fence inserts into sleeves, which are drilled into the concrete or surface surrounding the pool.

While the law is readily enforced, it does not force homeowners to install a pool safety fence if they do not want to. The Swimming Pool Safety Act allows for other forms of drowning prevention safety features to be used instead of a fence or wall. There are options for pool safety covers, alarming of doors with direct access to the pool area, and the use of self-closing and self-latching equipment on doors with pool access. With a number of options to choose from, pool owners are not coerced into one specific action. This allowance has lead to a favorable reception of the law and will likely be implemented in more states to come.

3 Steps to Getting the Best out of Outdoor Solar Lights

To get the best out of any type of solar lighting and outdoor solar lights in particular, you need to first understand that solar lighting systems have taken some huge steps forward in recent years. As the systems have improved, so the applications that this type of technology is suitable for have increased. There is now a solar light fixing to replace virtually any type of light that is powered by a conventional electricity supply.

1. Decide what type of system you want to install.

Do you want to install a complete solar power system for your home that will provide almost all the electricity for your home (some homes can be totally self sufficient), or do you just want to replace individual lights and power them with solar energy. If you are only interested in replacing some of your lighting, probably the easiest place to start is with outdoor lighting, as this is cheaper to install and the units have built in solar cells which make them fully self contained units. Fixings such as the solar driveway lighting is ideal if you are considering this.

2. Set the budget you want to spend and stick to it!

If you fix a budget before you start your scheme, you are much more likely to avoid a large overspend. The amount you decide to fix for your budget depends very much on how far you decide to go, but as a ball park figure you could be spending as little as a few hundred dollars to fully light the outside of your home, or as much as $10,000 net for a full home installation. If you decide to opt for a full install, don't forget to investigate any state or federal grants that might be available. In some states you can receive up to $10,000 in rebates for installing a solar energy system.

3. Get at least 3 quotes.

Before you commission any work, you should seek advice from at least 3 different solar energy contractors. I have seen some wild fluctuations in contractor's quotes, so this is an extremely important step. In my opinion you should never accept the cheapest quote and always ask for references or better still, ask to see examples of the best solar solar lighting systems they have previous installed.

Why Should I Choose LED Grow Lights?

When choosing grow lights for your indoor garden be sure to consider LED grow lights as an option. What most people do not realize is that LED technology has come very far in the past few years resulting in LEDs being some of the best grow lights around. The NASA space program has even been testing them up on their missions to space. Even though there is a lot of evidence to support that LED plant lights are superior to other types of grow lights they are still not as widely accepted in the grow light community as they should be. If you are thinking about purchasing some grow lights for your indoor garden make sure to read this article before purchasing any other type of grow light on the market.

By far the number one reason that people should choose LED plant lights over the rest is the fact that they save you tons of money compared to other grow lights. The top LED grow lights on the market claim to save you up to eighty percent of the energy that other conventional grow lights would otherwise use. There are a couple of different ways that these lights save you money. The first way that these grow lights save you money is by not having to buy and power cooling fans, ballasts and reflectors along with your grow lights. LEDs do not emit a lot of heat or need to be boosted by ballasts to produce a large amount of light. Another reason that LED lights save you valuable money is that they only produce the kind of light that the plants use for photosynthesis while the others produce large amounts of light that cannot be soaked up by the plant. it is said that some of the top LED grow lights on the market can even be set up to either make your plants grow strong roots and then changed over for flower production when it is time.

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