Uncanny interference w/ pH controller
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Old 12-19-2004, 01:48 AM   #1
Rolo
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Uncanny interference w/ pH controller


I've read about controllers receiving interference from electronics; the pH display will suddenly go haywire and way off.

But I've got something different. In my stand there is a el cheapo strip light that I'm sure is powered by a magnetic ballast. With my SMS122 I noticed it will turn on early whenever I turn the strip light off. This happened 8/10 times. I tried all the other electronics around and the canister filters do the same thing, except 9/10 times. So I guess it is EMI since only magnet driven electronics do this.

The pH controller is tripped on ONLY when I turn the in-stand strip light or canisters OFF. Turning them on or their constant use doesn't affect the pH controller in anyway.

So this really is not a problem. The on-off cycle of the controller simply gets shortened one cycle and then returns to normal.

Just wondering, anyone else have this happen?
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Old 12-19-2004, 03:49 AM   #2
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I have it happen ocassionally, but I'm not sure of it's EMI, the ripple in the power from turning on 260 watts of lighting or just a coinkydinc.
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Old 12-21-2004, 03:25 PM   #3
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I looked into that too, if it was just a power ripple. But the 4x65w aqualight or 250w ebo-jager heaters don't cause any interference. Strange. It's only magnetic electronics for me.

I remember why I posted this now. I've heard that the ETH in-line heaters make a 'click' when turning on and was wondering if this is some magnetic implication. Does anyone experience interference on there SMS122 caused by this heater?
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:04 PM   #4
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Can you move the stip light further (10 or 15 feet) away from the controller and try it - leaving the power connections the same? I know, probably easier said than done...

But if you are correct about the EMI, at that distance you should see a sharp drop-off on your 8/10 hit rate. If it remains at or near 8/10, you might have a power issue.
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:12 PM   #5
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Already done. I removed the under-stand light strip for good. It wasn't really needed anyway. Since the filters run 24/7 they don't pose a problem either.

Last concern is if the ETH heater will cause problems since it cycles on and off through the day.
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:18 PM   #6
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I've got a Hydor that does indeed go "click" when it turns on, and it is mounted, ohhh maybe 1/2" away from my SMS 122. I haven't noticed anything unusual since I move it there.

But that's kind of why I was hoping you'd do the test! The community would know if there was anything to watch our for, and I could rest easier on my heater placement.
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Old 12-21-2004, 04:28 PM   #7
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I don't have this heater yet. Still wrapping up holiday shopping and if there enough $ left (sigh) I can order it today. If I do it will be here Thursday or Friday so I'll let you guys know then how it turns out.

This type of interference doesn't appear to be a problem anyway. I'm glad not to be getting haywire pH readings!

Still would like to hear more input!
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