What is the recommended way to protect against stuck valves?
(1) Does the software support grouping the valves physically, then assigning one of them (the one that controls the source water flow to the rest) to be turned on first, and left on, until the last valve in that physical group has completed watering time?
I’ve seeing valves stay on with OpenSprinkler Pi (for days) that have never gotten stuck on before. So now there is a need to protect against those times that OpenSprinkler turns off a valve, but doesn’t notice it has stayed on.
(2) Can OpenSprinkler e-mail me each time it runs a program (describing how long it will run the entire batch — because of flexible scheduling, this changes dynamically, such as “148% of normal”)? And e-mail again when the program completes?
That will not solve the problem, but will give a heads-up to check that the valves are not still open.
(1) The firmware limits the turn on time to maximum of 16 hours. So if you observe a valve is stuck for more than that, then it’s not a software problem — it’s likely due to hardware or mechanical problem. For example, if you power OSPi using a DC power supply (instead of 24VAC), that will result in valves open but then cannot close properly. It could also be due to some sort of mechanical problem of the valve that kept it in.
(2) for notifications you can make use of the IFTTT notification feature that’s available in the latest firmware (2.1.7).