Automatic water change system. Will this work?
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Old 03-31-2014, 06:20 PM   #1
AlanLe
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Automatic water change system. Will this work?


Hey guys, I'm planning to setup an 80 to 100 gallons in my living room. The automatic water changing system is as follow:


The solenoid will be on a timer. Water will be changed on a daily basis about 5 gallon each day.

Please let me know if this will work or if there is a best way to do it.

Thanks!!!!

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Old 03-31-2014, 06:41 PM   #2
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The basic principle of adding water while relying on an overflow drain to remove the excess water works very well as long as the overflow doesn't depend on maintaining a siphon. I used that principle on a tank that had been drilled at one end, where I installed an elbow fitting with the top of the elbow inlet at the water level I wanted to maintain. I never had a problem with the system.

It looks like you are planning to let the RO unit work continuously, with a solenoid valve to control when it allows flow into the tank. Is that correct?
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Old 03-31-2014, 06:56 PM   #3
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Solenoid on a high pressure RO system or is this a smaller ~90gpd or smaller system? RO systems vary greatly on input/output quantities depending on incoming TDS and the age of the filters/resins; so putting it on a timer isn't going to give you an accurate amount of water being changed. I wouldn't use a solenoid personally and the store I manage wouldn't instal a system like this but would rather have the RO system fill a reservoir with a float valve; a sump pump or aqua lifter on a timer would control the top off (my preference by far is an aqualifter, slower more gently water changes with more control over fill rate and no worry about running the pump dry).

Like Hoppy mentioned an overflow that relies on a U Tube could possibly fail being started and stopped so frequently - a drilled tank/build in overflow would be safe.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:18 PM   #4
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How about a timed switch on a valve to drain and a top off switch to fill, ro should go into a storage unit before filling the tank
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:45 PM   #5
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AlanLe - I see no major problems in your system. You may want to use a conventional indirect acting solenoid on the high pressure fresh water supply to the RO system. If,on the other hand, your valve is on the RO water line (lower pressure) there are other direct acting valves that will work at lower pressure. Just make sure you match the valve opening and closed state pressure ratings to your system.


If you are relying on water changes to periodically flush your tank of nutrients/waste etc this system will consume a huge amount of water.To effectively dilute waste with water changes its best to do batchwise (ie 25-50%) changes periodically. For this you will need a different drain arrangement -preferably a side or bottom drilled drain with a pipe intake at 25 to 40% water level height. The drain pipe will also need to be on a timer valve to drain the water out to the top of the intake. Then this will close and the RO water solenoid can kick in. This is the system I use on my 200 gal - although on a 30 gallon sump.The system dumps the entire sump to the drain and refills every 2 weeks.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:22 PM   #6
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Alan, I will build a water change system too, but different approach.
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Old 04-03-2014, 10:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReluctantHippy View Post
Solenoid on a high pressure RO system or is this a smaller ~90gpd or smaller system? RO systems vary greatly on input/output quantities depending on incoming TDS and the age of the filters/resins; so putting it on a timer isn't going to give you an accurate amount of water being changed. I wouldn't use a solenoid personally and the store I manage wouldn't instal a system like this but would rather have the RO system fill a reservoir with a float valve; a sump pump or aqua lifter on a timer would control the top off (my preference by far is an aqualifter, slower more gently water changes with more control over fill rate and no worry about running the pump dry).

Like Hoppy mentioned an overflow that relies on a U Tube could possibly fail being started and stopped so frequently - a drilled tank/build in overflow would be safe.
I'm planning to setup the tank in my living room. Not sure where I can place the water reservoir. Do you think it is to far if I do have the R/O and reservoir in the garage and run the water line into the living room? This is about 60 feet.
Quote:
Originally Posted by rezco View Post
AlanLe - I see no major problems in your system. You may want to use a conventional indirect acting solenoid on the high pressure fresh water supply to the RO system. If,on the other hand, your valve is on the RO water line (lower pressure) there are other direct acting valves that will work at lower pressure. Just make sure you match the valve opening and closed state pressure ratings to your system.


If you are relying on water changes to periodically flush your tank of nutrients/waste etc this system will consume a huge amount of water.To effectively dilute waste with water changes its best to do batchwise (ie 25-50%) changes periodically. For this you will need a different drain arrangement -preferably a side or bottom drilled drain with a pipe intake at 25 to 40% water level height. The drain pipe will also need to be on a timer valve to drain the water out to the top of the intake. Then this will close and the RO water solenoid can kick in. This is the system I use on my 200 gal - although on a 30 gallon sump.The system dumps the entire sump to the drain and refills every 2 weeks.
The water pressure coming from the R/O unit is about 40 to 50 PSI, I'm assuming. The solenoid I'm looking at has a rating of 200PSI. I should be safe. The tank I'm buying has a built in overflow. However to do the automatic water change system, don't you need an add-on overflow to direct the excess water to the drainage?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettatail View Post
Alan, I will build a water change system too, but different approach.
Hey man can you give me some details?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
The basic principle of adding water while relying on an overflow drain to remove the excess water works very well as long as the overflow doesn't depend on maintaining a siphon. I used that principle on a tank that had been drilled at one end, where I installed an elbow fitting with the top of the elbow inlet at the water level I wanted to maintain. I never had a problem with the system.

It looks like you are planning to let the RO unit work continuously, with a solenoid valve to control when it allows flow into the tank. Is that correct?
Yes, R/O water will be controlled by the solenoid. The concept is simple, when Solenoid is on, R/O water will get filled into the tank and excess water will go into the the overflow then to the drain. I have'nt done this before and I don't know how safe it is to rely on the overflow. I don't want to flood my living room. All I want is to have a clean water changing system without the need for me to bring in the siphon and water hose.
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Old 04-04-2014, 01:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanLe View Post
[B]...40 to 50 PSI, I'm assuming. The solenoid I'm looking at has a rating of 200PSI....
The 200PSI is the max pressure rating which is no the concern. Every solenoid type valve has a min pressure at which it will open when activated in some cases its 5 psi or higher so you should not see any problems with your setup.

Below is my suggested setup for a auto leveling drain (one for overflow as a safety). The shorter pipe will drain the tank down to its level once the drain valve opens. Its pretty easy to put this and the RO water supply on timers and get a nice water change.

This is fairly failsafe. If the drain valve malfunctions then the plant will drain to to the 20 or 40% change level but your fish and plants will still survive.

Also I suggest to keep the RO supply on a very low flow setting (ie 0.25-1 GPM). The reason for this is that if the overflow drain is ever blocked and the Ro water supply is on it will be able to handle the slow influx of water in the tank. This will also help your flora/fauna acclimate to the fresh water that flows in.
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Old 04-04-2014, 03:19 AM   #9
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I have the sump, there will be a branch valve on the return pipe,turn the valve, water will pump out the sump instead of going back to the fish tank. Switch back the valve once water in the sump gone
There is a float valve in the sump, connects to filter, and refill water slowly back in the sump, stop when water meets the right level.
no solenoid.

and I am thinking about another more complicated version, use pressurized co2 and it is fully automatic, there will be acuator involved, will give detail if it is possible.
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Old 04-04-2014, 02:15 PM   #10
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Make sure you replace filter cartridges when they're due. You wouldn't want chlorine to get into your tank.
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