Homedit is supported by our readers. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Water Hose Timers: How To Make Your Gardening Experience Less Stressful

A water timer is simple and ingenious. The automated device waters your lawn and garden, allowing you to focus on other things. The water hose timer is an example of how technology makes life easier.

water timer

As much as you enjoy taking care of your outdoor greenery, it’s nice to have a backup.

Automation technology is a wonderful thing and garden water hose timers are proof of this. What’s the point of spending hours watering your plants when a water timer could do it for you?  

What Are The Best Features Of A Garden Water Hose Timer?

What Are The Best Features Of A Garden Water Hose Timer

The biggest benefit of a garden water hose timer is how it saves you time by doing the work for you. However, there are other benefits that make them worth the money. 

Watering Duration

Water hose timers regulate water flow and the amount of water used for each watering period. A hose timer will also turn the water off after it’s done.

Water Hose Outlets

You can choose between water hose timers or mechanical sprinkler system timers. Some fancy models can be controlled offsite with a smartphone app. Others have schedule systems that allow you to program the timers.

Water Conservation

A garden water hose timer will help you save money. The devices conserve water which saves you money. Some hose timers have rain sensors, which prevent watering before and after it rains. 

Security Protection

Unlike other smart home devices, a water hose timer serves a function outside of its intended purpose. Believe it or not, it can keep burglars away from ransacking your home. When the water turns on, potential intruders will think someone is inside your home. 

6 Best Hose Timers For Your Garden

To make it easier, we’ve selected 6 of the best hose timers on the market today.

1. Orbit 62061Z Single-Outlet Hose Watering Timer

Orbit 62061Z Single-Outlet Hose Watering TimerView in gallery

The Orbit 62061Z water hose timer is a market leader. You can install it between your outdoor faucet and garden hose. A front dial allows you to select start times, clock set up, and adjust  watering frequency.

Pros:

  • Rain sensors.
  • Adjustable watering intervals.
  • Runtime of up to 4 hours.
  • Weatherproof construction.
  • Manual watering feature.
  • Easy to install.

Cons:

  • Short lifespan.

2. Orbit 21004 B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer with Wi-Fi Hub, Compatible with Alexa

Orbit 21004 B-hyve Smart Hose Faucet Timer with Wi-Fi Hub, Compatible with AlexaView in gallery

The Orbit 21004 allows you to control the hose timer via a smartphone app and wifi connection. You can control your garden water hose timer according to your needs. If your wireless connection is down, you can connect to it via Bluetooth.

The hose timer relies on WeatherSense Technology, so it has built-in rain sensors that prevent overwatering. It also has a flow meter that tells you how much water you’re using.  You can adjust the water for each watering session.

Pros:

  • Wireless and Bluetooth compatible.
  • Multiple system additions.
  • WeatherSense technology.
  • Works with Alexa.
  • Easy to install.

Cons:

  • Difficult to use software.

3. Instapark PWT-07 Outdoor Waterproof Digital Programmable

Instapark PWT-07 Outdoor Waterproof Digital ProgrammableView in gallery

The Instapark digital timer is yet another viable garden water tool that will come in handy because it’s easy to use and install and provides a stress-free way of watering your lawn. And it’s also weather-resistant.

It comes with a digital display that shows battery strength, hose timer status, and time. It promises to give you almost one year of power with two full aa batteries. Speaking of that, the battery compartment is detachable, so changing batteries doesn’t require removing the entire hose timer.

It works with water pressures between 14.5 and 116 psi. You can adjust the watering with 5-second increments up until a minute, and it goes all the way up to 360 minutes. 

Pros:

  • Weather-resistant.
  • Easy to read display.
  • Compatible with standard garden hoses.
  • Easy to program.
  • Easy to install.
  • Good price.

Cons:

  • Doesn’t work with high water pressure.

4. Gilmour 804014-1001 400GTD Outlet Electronic Water Timer

Gilmour 804014-1001 400GTD Outlet Electronic Water TimerView in gallery

The Gilmour garden water timer has an LCD display that gives you easy-to-read numbers to make programming a breeze. When the timer you set reaches zero, the water will turn off, saving you money and maintaining the health of your greenery.

The hose timer has two outlets that allow you to connect two hoses to a single unit. A large front dial allows you to change the settings and comes with options like time setting, watering frequency, duration, timer start, and on/off features.

Pros:

  • Dual hose connection
  • Programmable start time
  • Adjustable watering duration/frequency
  • Switch from manual to automatic watering
  • Easy to operate

Cons:

  • Does not work with low water pressure

5. Orbit 57894 4-Station Outdoor Swing Panel Sprinkler System Timer

Orbit 57894 4-Station Outdoor Swing Panel Sprinkler System TimerView in gallery

This wall mount works indoors and outdoors. It comes with weather resistant technology and other features. You can program multiple water zones for your water sprinklers, which means that if different areas of your garden have watering requirements, you can treat each area as a single unit. You have the capability adjust the water timer from one to 240 minutes per zone.

As the unit draws power, the mounting process is easy. It comes with a rain delay function, three watering programs, four start times per zone, and battery backup.

Pros:

  • Freeze/rain sensor.
  • Rain delay feature.
  • Multiple watering zones.
  • 3 watering programs.
  • 4 start times per zone.

Cons:

  • No LCD back light

6. Gilmour 820054-1001 Mechanical Water Timer

Gilmour 820054-1001 Mechanical Water TimerView in gallery

Here’s another Gilmour hose timer, but unlike the first one featured on our list, this model is a mechanical unit. The water timer has a dial that allows you to adjust it and doesn’t require AA batteries.

When the timer reaches zero, water turns off. There’s also a power switch that allows you to control manual or automatic settings. The dial can be rotated to set up the water timer for 120 minutes, enough for small to medium yards and gardens.

Pros:

  • Batteries not required
  • Easy to attach
  • Hose can easily be pulled
  • Easy to operate
  • Affordable price

Cons:

  • Questionable long-term durability

Garden Water Time Schedule

Garden Water Time Schedule

If you ever wondered when is the right time to water a garden or flowerbed? 

  • Water your garden and flowerbeds early in the morning as the sun rises. This gives water time to reach plant roots before it evaporates. It also provides the roots with water during the day so they can stay hydrated in warm temperatures.
  • If the morning doesn’t work for you, then early in the evening before the sun sets would also be a good time to water your plants.

The Importance of Watering Plants

While it may seem like all you have to do is un the water hose over your soil, there are a few rules for watering that you should follow:

  • Plants rely on moisture, but leaving their roots dry might be beneficial for their growth.
  • It is better if you water your plants less often and be more thorough when you do so. Flower beds, for instance, can get by with two watering sessions each week.
  • Wet leaves can catch diseases, so keep them dry.
  • When watering a large area, do so in parts. 
  • Water around your plants instead of a single point.
  • DIY irrigation systems can go a long way in distributing water to your plants.
  • You want to prevent overwatering because it stops plant roots from breathing and will cause them to suffocate.
  • Soil that’s rich in clay is great for planting because it traps and stores water.

Essential DIY Outdoor Watering Tools

Essential DIY Outdoor Watering Tools

Other than a garden hose and water hose timers, there are plenty of outdoor watering tools you should also be familiar with, and especially so if you have a large garden area that requires serious attention.

Soaker Hose

A soaker hose is a watering tool for flowerbeds, trees, and other outdoor greenery. If you’ve never used one, make sure you learn how or you could be hit hard with a high water bill. Soaker hoses are a great way to provide water for your flowers and backyard garden.

How Does a Soaker Hose Work?

A soaker hose provides water to the base of your plants. All you do is attach your soaker hose to a water spigot and then place it near the base of the plants that need watering. After you set the hose down, turn on the water and leave the hose alone. Basically, what a soaker hose does is it saturates the ground where your plants grow. A soaker hose does not require extra water pressure and maintains low water pressure as it releases water.

Water Hammer Arrestor

A water hammer arrestor is a water valve that is fixed to a water hose that absorbs shock when water flowing in a piping system suddenly stops due to fast closing shutoff valves. This action protects against damaging effects of water hammer.

What Is Water Hammer?

Water hammer is when pressure builds up from a water system after a tap is suddenly closed, which then stops the water moving through the pipes and sets up a shock wave through the water, causing the pipes to vibrate and ‘shudder’.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

Is A Soaker Hose Efficient?

A soaker hose is one of the most efficient water hoses on the market today. Unlike regular water hoses or water sprinklers, one of the best things about a soaker hose does not waste water. Every drop of water distributed from a soaker hose hits the areas where water is needed the most – plant roots.

What Is The Best Water Hose Timer?

It depends on what you want from a water timer. Some models have features that give you more control, like creating watering schedules for separate areas of your garden.  You can automatically shut them off when you want and create a watering schedule however you desire. Some models are connected to weather stations and have a rain delay function. 

How Do You Set Water Hose Timers?

The setup process is different for each mechanical timer and according to the brand. Today, your water source can be controlled on a smart device via voice command. Realistically speaking, it’s usually a two or three-step process before you can set up a watering schedule, but it shouldn’t take more than one minute to set. You can also attach a solar hose timer, which is simple to use and easy to find online.

Is It Better To Water A Vegetable Garden In The Morning Or Evening?

For optimum growing results, you should water your home garden between the hours of 5:00 am and 9:00 am. This specific time window frame is considered an ideal watering period for your plants and garden.  

Water Hose Timer Conclusion

Water hose timers have many benefits. The outdoor technology allows you to gain control over your water bill and adjust water usage. The technology prevents overwatering and not watering enough, and you can attach a solar hose timer if you prefer.

The purpose of a water timer is to conserve water. Thanks to advanced technology, some features allow you to control your outdoor watering system with a smart device or by voice commands. The hose timers come with child lock protection features and allow you to create a watering schedule that’s best for your plants.