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The last 10 posts

Saturday, September 3rd 2016, 9:12am

by Wet_Boots

Try the 9-volt NiCD (nickel-cadmium) battery - we are not hearing about controller failures with people reloading the controller with a modern-day NiCD replacement

Friday, September 2nd 2016, 7:09pm

by controlledwetness

Rain Bird rechargeable 9v back-up battery

I replaced the 9v battery in my rain bird controller with a regular coppertop 9v battery in October 2012. I didn't have my glasses handy when I installed the battery so I wasn't up on having to replace it with a super special rain bird replacement. It has worked up until now when, possibly due to a power interruption the clock got all wonky. I just read an old thread regarding the nonsensical 9v micro warning label placed over the battery and how people had had a problem finding the right voltage battery. My solution is to replace the current coppertop battery with another one. If this finally fries the controller, I'll trash it and replace it with an Orbit that is much easier to program and has a more sensible easy to find replacement backup battery. Basically Rain Bird sucks because they're overpriced hard to use and set. I would never buy one, but this one came with the house. When it goes it will go in the trash.

Tuesday, June 14th 2011, 2:26pm

by Wet_Boots

Well, stuff happens

Tuesday, June 14th 2011, 1:05pm

by pillboy

My house burned down.

Tuesday, June 14th 2011, 12:44am

by Mitchgo


oh well

like I said it's not a big deal.

Monday, June 13th 2011, 7:48pm

by pillboy

My "9 volt" Energizer rechargeable NiMH came in the mail today.

In teeny, tiny little print (had to put on my reading glasses) on the back label of the battery itself..."8.4 volt".


Friday, June 10th 2011, 12:42pm

by pillboy

Thanks Mitchgo. I searched this web site, Rain Bird, and eBay. I figured if it existed, eBay would have it.

Makes me want to take my VOM to these batteries and see what exactly they put out for volts. :D

Thanks to both you and Wet Boots for hanging out on this site and conversing with us homeowners.

Friday, June 10th 2011, 8:10am

by Wet_Boots

Since the charging voltage isn't likely to destroy the controller, it's hard to see what damage will result from putting an uncharged 8.4-volt battery in the controller


Maybe there were manufacturing limitations that had only six-cell forms of nicad and nimh being available

Thursday, June 9th 2011, 11:07pm

by Mitchgo

my google search came up with this in 30 seconds.. They're out there.

In any case it doesn't matter too much.. All it does is remember programming date/time if the controller is unplugged.

You can even put a regular 9v battery in there.. It will last for about 2 years.

Thursday, June 9th 2011, 10:06pm

by pillboy

The parts and accessories section of Rain Bird's online store does not list a back-up battery. I tried calling the store, but apparently they don't have much for staff as the call eventually routed to voice mail with the only option to leave a message and they would call me back. I would be extremely happy to buy OEM...IF I COULD FIND ONE!

I hate to disagree with the professionals, but I am virtually certain that a rechargeable NiMH battery does not exist (like I was told at the battery store). Think about it, every NiCad or NiMH battery is a multiple of 1.2 volts. These batteries are made up of multiple cells and each cell is 1.2 volts, hence cordless power tools are 12v, 14.4v, 15.6v, 18v, 19.2v. I believe the chemistry of the rechargeable cell is what determines (or limits) its voltage.

The battery I took out of the controller is a Varta brand (from Germany) and is labeled "AccuPlus Ultra", 7.2 volts. I don't ever remember replacing this battery in the past, so I am 99% sure it is what came with the controller from Rain Bird. The controller by the way is an ESP-12LX+ (the manual is copyrighted 2001 and I think the irrigation system was installed in 2005).

Since the manual plainly states, and I quote, "The replacement battery must be a 9-volt rechargeable NiMH battery.", I am gonna go with the 8.4 volt I found at the battery store. Think about it, 8.4 is LESS than 9.0 volts, so it shouldn't fry the circuitry, and it is at least 7.2 volts which is what was being utilized in the past. Makes perfect sense to me.

And when you winterize systems, you should leave the controller plugged in (but turned "off") to keep the back-up battery charged. Repeatedly running the battery completely flat will kill them much sooner.

Thanks again for your thoughts on this.