Contech Electronics scarecrow motion-activated sprinkler for humane animal deterrence
Scarecrow detects and sprays animals in a 1000-square-foot area day and night
Lightweight plastic shaft; metal sprinkler head
Includes sprinkler mount and motion detector; 9-volt battery not included
2-year limited warranty; measures 17-inch
Average Customer Rating:
based on 2110 reviews
Average Customer Review:
( 2110 customer reviews )
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
982 of 995 found the following review helpful:
Annoy your neighbors dogs and cats.Aug 13, 2010
By Honest Reviewer Watch Video Here: http://www.amazon.com/review/R3KNN2M4523G4N My stupid neighbors dont obey the leash laws, and let their pets roam free. I was constantly having to clean cat and dog mess from my yard. It was so bad that when I would mow my lawn the tires of the lawnmower would be totally covered in brown matter, if you know what I mean. So I figured I would give the scarecrow a try. Works great, I have on video two dogs going into my yard to do their business, then the scarecrow blasts them point blank in the face with water. It was Hilarious, one of the dogs took off, but the other one panicked and ran around the circles not knowing how to get out of my yard through the fence, even though my gate was wide open. The dogs haven't been in my yard since. I seen cats get blasted with water too. My neighbors are mad though, because their dogs are now messing in their own yard, and everytime they walk in their yard they step in it, very funny. One thing that needs to be improved though is battery life, 9 volt batteries have very little capacity and go dead in less than a month if the unit goes off alot. It would be great if the unit could run on 4 D cells, then the scarecrow could run more than a year on one set of batteries. I bought lithium rechargeables in order to save money, plus they last longer than alkaline 9 volt batteries. Overall great product and alot of fun to watch it work.
561 of 574 found the following review helpful:
A good, if expensive solutionJun 07, 2006
By Coronet Blue Before I bought my house I thought cats went in a litterbox. Well some do, but my yard is apparently more appealing to Leo, my neighbor's cat, who is old and incontinent.
If you are reading this you know that none of the sprays, repellants, etc do anything at all and should be removed from the market. But dog-gonnit, the Scarecrow works.
There are a few minor things you should know, however. First, if you care about the Scarecrow leaking, be sure to assemble the unit with Teflon tape. Second, the Scarecrow is entirely plastic, right down to the spike that you drive into the ground. Not a big deal perhaps, but if your ground is hard you won't be hammering the Scarecrow into the dirt. Finally, if your yard is good sized you'll probably need two so crap avoidance has its price.
--And don't forget to run your hose in such a way that you can turn the water off before you approach the Scarecrow, because it will spray anything in its path; birds, the mailman, anything. This raises some interesting possibilities if you are plagued by door to door salesmen.
640 of 658 found the following review helpful:
Awesome product **Read this if your problem is Deer!!!!**May 15, 2008
By A. Fisher
"SC Garden Man"
First off I would tell anyone that this product truly works. If you have any hesitation, my review along with all the others should be proof enough.
I purchased the Scarecrow Sprinkler last year after coming back from vacation to find a brand new shade garden I had planted completely decimated by local deer. We have a family of about 8 deer that I try to keep away, but my neighbors have other agendas. They "feed" the deer with corn which attracts them and frustrates me more and more [if Contech invents a neighbor deterrent, please let me know ;) ]
After mourning the $500+ I lost in plants and shrubs, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I started with "deer-b-gone" or some sort of "organic" deer repellant. It washes away, isn't cheap, smells bad and flat out doesn't work.
I then came across the Scarecrow and decided to give it the old "college try". Well folks, IT WORKS. No more deer, but uh-oh a flaw. Just like others, you have to remember that the Scarecrow is there or "BAM" YOU WILL GET HIT WITH A BLAST OF WATER. It has gotten me, my kids, my wife, a landscaper, our exterminator and one of our neighbors.
LADIES and GENTS..I have the solution to this problem!!!!! What I realized is that the deer only do their dirty work from dusk to dawn. I thought what if I can get my sprinkler to only work during those hours and shut off during the day. Then I researched to see if there was a water timer that allowed for extended watering times. Say hello to this Orbit timer from Amazon.com Orbit Lawn & Garden Hose Digital Watering Timer And Valve #62001to use in conjunction with the sprinkler. It has completely flexible functions that allow the water to only turn on from say 8 pm to 8 am. It only turns on the water flow to the sprinkler. It will only use the water if the sprinkler motion sensor is set off so no wasted water. At 8 am, the timer turns off the water flow and NO ACCIDENTAL MIDDAY SHOWERS!! Then it kicks back on at 8 pm for another night of protection. These are the times I used but I may need to adjust a bit since I do sometimes make early or late strolls through my garden. You can set to whatever times you need to have it on and off based on your own situation.
So there you have it. Use this product in conjunction with a flexible timer and you get the benefit of excellent deer/pest protection while avoiding many of the minor flaws mentioned in other reviews.
460 of 490 found the following review helpful:
It WorksAug 15, 2004
By Franz Metcalf A couple thoughts on this very useful product which I feel slightly guilty about downgrading to four stars:
First, the thing works perfectly, at least for me. Before the Scarecrow, my neighbor's (big) dog left a (big) present on my lawn, every night. Since the Scarecow, never, not once.
Well, okay, once, but that leads to comment two:
The trouble is that the Scarecrow cannot distinguish between me, enjoying my garden on a fine Summer's day, and the dog, doing his thing in the middle of the night. This means that I need to be very careful to set up access to the Scarecrow from behind, so I can turn it off and not get soaked every time I walk across the lawn. Once, I forgot to turn it back on, and, sure enough, that night the dog had done its thing.
Of course this is both a critique and a compliment: the Scarecrow really works. It's just not entirely convenient. Still, I wouldn't be without it and Amazon has it for a great price and free shipping. Can't beat that.
137 of 143 found the following review helpful:
GREAT - BUT PLEASE READ FEEDBACK ADVICEJul 26, 2011
By Gary AL. I gave this 4 stars instead of 5 only because if a person doesn't know about how to circumvent its problems, they wont be happy.
We are very pleased with the results we got from using the Scarecrow for our dog problem. It is extremely important that people who buy it read the feedback. It is cheaply made; so if you don't follow the advice in the feedback, you will most likely have a negative experience with it.
I am happy I read every single feedback before purchasing it. I listed below the alterations we made, some of which we saw on the feedback and some being our own ideas. Therefore, my feedback is lengthy, but will help your greatly.
First I'm listing the alterations that EVERYONE must do when you buy the Scarecrow. Later I tell you optional alterations for making it work better for your particular circumstance:
Go to the store and buy:
1. Extra rubber hose-end washers (enough to replace their existing plastic washers and for additional doubling up on washers--more explanation below). 2. Teflon tape. 3. A metal stake. You can use a piece of galvanized pipe, a short length of pre-cut rebar, or a concrete-form stake. We used the concrete-form stake that someone left behind. 4. A high-quality hose reinforced inside. Standard hoses will swell up and eventually split or pop off the hose fitting. We have had no problem with the reinforced hose. Since they seem to only come in long lengths, we just bought hose ends and made one for our Scarecrow and one for the yard.
Instructions for the above items BEFORE putting the Scarecrow into the ground:
Pull out the cheap plastic gaskets inside the fittings and replace each one with TWO better quality gaskets from the store. The reason for this is that they built the threaded fittings too long so that when you screw on the hose and sprinkler, they don't quite reach the gasket. Two of them will take up the gap.
Next, wrap Teflon tape around each of the protruding threaded fittings. If you've never used Teflon tape, here is some help. Gently pull out a good length of it, maybe a foot long. Cut it with scissors rather than trying to break it off. Breaking it off makes it stick together instead of lying flat, making it harder to work. Then keeping it flat, carefully wrap it around the fitting over threads in a clockwise direction (or the same direction you will be twisting on the hose end), wrap several layers around and around. If you only put on 2-3 layers, it will not be enough.
Next, pound your metal stake into the ground. The reasons you are using this instead of just putting the plastic stake into the ground are these. First, if you have hard ground, you will mostly likely damage the plastic stake or the Scarecrow motion detector trying to force it into the ground. (You are not suppose to push down on the motion detector.) Second, if you have soft ground, then each time the water is activated, it will give a little push against your unit and eventually loosen it in the ground. Then the Scarecrow will not stay put.
(There is an optional plastic pipe included in the box. We replaced the plastic stake that goes underneath the Scarecrow with the plastic pipe because of the leaking of the extra hose fitting. The extra hose fitting is so you can run another hose to somewhere else that isn't controlled by the Scarecrow. The cap provided is difficult to get to stop leaking. So we screwed the optional pipe underneath the Scarecrow and put the hose on the bottom of the pipe. The drawback is that when you clamp it onto the metal stake I recommend for pounding into the ground, you have to be careful not to overtighten it around this plastic pipe due to possible cracking. If we have to move the Scarecrow or adjust it, we plan to get galvanized fittings to replace the plastic pipe.)
Now you are ready to attach the Scarecrow. First slide on two metal hose clamps over your stake. Now hold the Scarecrow so the stake is lined up against the metal stake and the unit rests on top. Tighten the hose clamps so they are snug. Now adjust the aim and tighten the hose clamps so it won't move.
Now we are ready for the optional alterations we made. If you plan to use it to make a large sweep across your lawn, you may not need to do any of the following. Our situation was twofold:
First, we needed the Scarecrow to work at a close range. Like all rain-bird-style sprinklers, they are angled to shoot upwards about 45 degrees in order to reach a distance. The problem with this is that if the animal crosses in front of it within about 10 feet, it won't hit it. I saw this complaint in some of the other feedback. To solve this, my husband bought a 45 degree angle galvanized pipe fitting (1/2"). He took off the sprinkler and put on the pipe (again, using Teflon tape). He then put the sprinkler on the end of that. As he screwed the pipe on, he kind of angled it to the side a bit so it would change the angle of the sprinkler. It looks kind of strange since the end result is that the sprinkler kind sits off to the side. This worked great. The sprinkler now squirted low so it covered the area where the dog tended to go onto our lawn to do his business.
The above solution to the Scarecrow not working at close distance now prevents it from spraying more than about 15' or so. We've been waiting to see if the dog figures out that he just has to walk down further and then can do his pooping. So far he hasn't. However, if he does, we plan to add a T pipe on top so that our low-aiming sprinkler can come out one part and we will add a short length of reinforced hose to the other part of the T and put a normal metal sprinkler into the ground. This way, we will have two sprinklers running from the top of the Scarecrow, one for close range and one arched for distance and both coming on at the same time by one Scarecrow.
Our Next Problem Solved of needing to narrow the field of water shooting:
Our situation is that we have a 4' wide strip of lawn running along the side of our house. Our neighborhood is very old, so the houses can be close to a property line. In our case, the lawn had our house on one side and the neighbor's driveway at the edge of the lawn. Even though the neighbors deserve to get sprayed when they drive up and down the driveway (it's their dog that poops on our lawn every single day, twice a day), we don't want to waste water and we don't want to create a war since this is our only problem with them. Anyway, we replaced the plastic sprinkler with a standard metal rainbird sprinkler, because the metal sprinklers have metal wire tabs that you can move them to limit the width of the sprinkler. Since our lawn strip is so narrow, we didn't want the sprinkler to move side to side at all, so my husband moved the tabs together and tie-wrapped them so the sprinkler would be stationary. He also cut the spring on top of the metal sprinkler and tie-wrapped the flap back so the water would just shoot out solid instead of pulsating.
Solution to our last problem of two-wide of a motion detection:
Since our lawn strip is narrow, we didn't want the neighbors setting off the motion detector every time they drive and down their driveway. It will waste water and also wear down the battery. I cut out two squares of plastic out of a black garbage bag and my husband put one on each side of the detector window and taped them with black electrical tape leaving the center prism exposed so it has a more pin-pointed kill zone. I don't know how long the tape will last, but it has done well for a month now even with our summer thunderstorms. Using this method, he narrowed the field of "vision" down to about a half-inch in the middle. It works very well.
We set the sensitivity to 7-1/2 which is perfect. When I want to mow the lawn strip, I just place a thick or dark hand-towel over the lense to prevent detection. That way I don't have to keep turning on or off anything.
So that is end of our alterations. Bottom line is that the dog poops on our lawn no more and so I don't hate the neighbors every time we have to pick up the poop every single day.
UPDATE: We put the Scarecrow away near end of November so it won't break when we have freezing weather. I was afraid that the dog would start pooping there again. However, we were pleased that he developed the habit to go in his own backyard. The whole spring through fall was very successful eliminating this problem. Love the scarecrow.
Just a side note. Since they let their dog loose all the time, our neighbors on the other side of them had nothing but trouble with the dog chewing up everything in their yard and chewed up 4 pairs of their shoes on their own front porch plus hauled off their brand new dog bed! I felt so sorry for them having to deal with this, especially since they have very little income. Finally, another neighbor told the owner that he better tie up the dog; because if he catches him in his yard again bothering his chihuahua, he would shoot him. The problem dog is part pit bull, so he probably meant it. Well, that did it, so none of us have problems with him anymore except that he barks more being tied up. I feel sorry for dogs who have idiot owners. It isn't the dog's fault. They are just doing what dogs when inconsiderate people don't bother training them.
Hope all this helped you.
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