A simple auto topup system.
Posted 06 June 2010 - 08:43 PM
I came to the conclusion that I wanted a simple system that would not burn the pump out when it ran dry and would have a backup sensor, should the main one fail.
To avoid complications with mains isolation and safety, I based it on a 12 volt system and utilised and old plug in PSU as the supply.
I managed to source a very nice little 12v dc brushless pump (90gph) from a nice china man and some float switches and a couple of boxes and plugs from RS.
Everything else was found lying around in my various bits boxes.
Tip:- never throw anything away, you never know when it will come in handy.
So, the unit consists of 3 parts. The PSU/Indicator, the sensors and the Pump.
Here is a picture of them all together and ready to go.
Now the individual bits.
The PSU/Indicator. This is where all the wiring comes together and the other 2 units are plugged in. there are 2 indicator LED's, one for power and one for pump operation.
The sensors. As you can see, there are 2, of which one is slightly higher than the other and wont operate unless the lower one happens to stick in the "on" position. The water depth can be adjusted by sliding the rods up and down on the pipe clips. The back of the head has a clip on it, so it can be attached to the aquarium glass.
Finally, the Pump. Again, this has its own sensor which works in reverse to the others, meaning that if the water level gets too low in the top up tank, the pump will stop operating.
For those of you who may be interested in wiring one up, here is a simple circuit diagram. If you can tell which end of a soldering iron gets hot, then you probably have sufficient skills to wire it up.
Thanks for looking.
Posted 07 June 2010 - 11:01 AM
Look well made, how much did all the parts come to?
Its hard to say what the total cost would be as some of the bits were hanging around the house.
The floats were about £5 each and the pump was $27 inc postage (very nice too) the boxes cost less than £1 each. Acrylic tube is cheap and so are plumbing clips. The leds were robbed of an old circuit board, but they only cost pence in any case.
The PSU was out of my scrap box.
Posted 07 June 2010 - 08:07 PM
Are you going to have it powered constantly, or run it on a timer?
I suspect as you have the safety cut out float switch above the motor it will be powered constantly.
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NO LIVE ROCK IN HERE EITHER!
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