What’s the difference between an RD-600 and RD600-R

Difference between the -R and regular series connectors.

  1. The RD600-R and other -R models have additional wiring to support a rain sensor.  However, it is still possible to use a rain sensor on the older model.  Enter rain sensor in the search box for more info on that.
  2. The biggest difference between the -R models and the standard model is that the -R model has a different size connector (20 pins instead of 16).  There are adapters that allow you to convert between the two sizes.  You can also do some jury-rigging to make them work, but it’s not a “clean” solution.   Alternatively, you can replace the controller and the back-connector board at the same time, which avoids the connector mismatch.
  3. My favorite new feature of the -R series is the rain delay.  If it rains today, you can go out and tell the timer to stop watering for 3 days, or however many you want to delay.
  4. One other key difference is that the RD600-R series saves the programming in non-volatile memory so even if the battery dies, the programming will be saved.  The RD-600 will lose it’s programming if power is removed and the 9V battery is dead or missing.

Should I upgrade to the RD600-R series?

There’s no serious reason to upgrade to the newer series of controllers.  The new features are nice, but not really necessary.  The repair we do is solid and it will last a long time.  Unless the controller is in bad physical shape due to extreme exposure to the elements, it’s usually better to fix it instead of upgrade.
Contact us or enter a question/comment on the Q&A page if you have more questions.

8 thoughts on “What’s the difference between an RD-600 and RD600-R

    • Hi Al,

      I don’t have those, but I sometimes repair them. What seems to be the problem with it?


  1. My RD-600 quickly uses the 9-volt battery within a few days. What should I do to remedy the problem or is it time to upgrade to a newer model?

    • Hi Donald,

      These older models are work horses, I would get it repaired instead of getting a newer one. I have more trouble with the newer ones and the repaired ones seem to last for years. Just follow the instructions on the ‘ how to get it repaired’ tab at the top of the page.

      Thanks for posting

  2. I have a RD600-R. It shows 12 stations that wires can be hooked up to but only 6 stations on the dial. Is there a way to access stations 7-12?

    • Hi Tony,
      Great question. The hookups for wires that you described is the back wiring board, which is made to be universal to the 600,900, and 1200; but the amount of those stations you can access is limited by the circuitry on the inside of the timer that connects into the backboard. In your case, you are unable to do stations 7-12 without adding components to the board inside your timer. Irritrol likely did this to cut costs, as most people only need 6 or fewer stations.
      I do sell refurbished 900’s and 1200’s sometimes, if you’re interested in that or talking about this more you can send me an email at raindialdoctor@gmail.com !

      Hope this helps,

  3. My RD.600.R is simply dead. No indication it is even receiving electricity although I know the outlet is good. Should I send it in for repair? How long does it take? My yard is dying now.

    • Hi Nancy,

      Yes, definitely send the sprinkler timer in; I usually repair it and have it back in the mail the next day. I’ll follow up with a separate email including details.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *