DIY Network

How To Wire the Electric Controller for a Sprinkler System

The electronic controller is the brain behind the irrigation system. Learn how to wire it to a sprinkler system.

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electronic controller wired to sprinkler system
  • Time

    30 Minutes

  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty

    Easy to Moderate


Step 1: Get a Fuse Box

Before beginning the installation, hire a licensed electrician to install a separate fuse box on the exterior of the home. This box will be used exclusively for the controller.

Step 2: Strip the Wires

The control wire that was pulled underground from our master control valve is threaded through the conduit attached to the house. Start by stripping each wire's insulation to reveal the colored wires again. Mount the control box to the side of the house. Before wiring the control box, make sure all power is turned off.

strip each wire insulation

Step 3: Complete the Wiring

Start by stripping each wire's insulation about 1/2 inch from each end. Then, loosen the contact screw labeled "common" and attach the common wire (white) to the contact (Image 1). Next, take the brown wire (Zone 1) and screw it onto the contact labeled Zone 1. Do the same thing for the remaining 3 zones (Image 2). To test the system, manually turn on each zone to check that there is sufficient water pressure and that there are no leaks and that each sprinkler head is working.



  • Sprinkler heads and components from Rain Bird Sprinkler Mfg. Corp.