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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Before and after I calibrated, I ran the pump with RO water to get rid of the air bubbles. It took me a while to do this, and then finally once I was sure, I immediately hooked up the hose (with water still bulging at the end) to my storage containers. Ever since I hooked everything up, however, I've noticed massive air bubbles in both tubes. Given that it seems pressurized, I'm not sure how I'm getting air in this.
 

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I have a Jebao DP-3. It seems to me that there are only a few places where air is likely to enter, all being where tubing is joining a connector. You may need to fill the system with tap or RO water and do some purge testing or try disconnecting the tubing and then snipping off a 1/2 inch or so at each joint to make sure that the joint is air/water tight. I have a 5L store-bought reservoir. I had to use superglue on the internal plastic intake tube joint to make it airtight, otherwise it pulled in air even before the first silicone tubing connection. I guess that you could also have a pinhole leak in the tubing?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I did purge testing before and after calibrating with RO water. There's some large bubbles past the auto-doser pumps in the outflow tubing that goes into the tank, but there's also some in the inflow tubing on the way to the pump. I'll see how far down the latter goes regarding bubbles. Initially the tubing was all one piece that I bought, so if there are pinhole leaks, it's in the tubing connected to both pumps. I'll check the connectors later, but I thought I squeezed the hosing onto the plugs pretty tight.
 

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I didn’t realize that you were bleeding the system with RO, and then disconnecting tubes. I would absolutely be bleeding and calibrating with the fert solution. That way, you don’t need to disconnect anything after calibration. It’s not like you’re wasting ferts… just pour them back into the reservoir. In any sealed system, you can’t break that seal without introducing air pockets.

With all of that said, it’s entirely possible that you are getting an air leak elsewhere, but I would start by purging all of the air in the lines with fertilizer. You should probably also recalibrate the pump using the fert mix. It will be minor, but there is a difference in density and viscosity between straight RO and mixed ferts. You don’t want the pump calibrated with RO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Whew, I feel stupid; that makes so much more sense and I don't know why I didn't do that the first time. I checked the connectors (tubing is on good), and purged them of air with solution. I'll keep an eye out over the next few days, and I'll recalibrate right now, too. Calibrated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If I get air bubbles again (these last ones were huge) I think I'll try replacing the hosing. If that doesn't work, it might be the tubing between the connectors that go into the Jebao pumps.

Yep, today I woke up and I have a four inch gap of air in one hose and an inch gap in the other. The fittings are all on tight, so likely there are small holes in my tubing. Very disappointing. I'm going to order a new one (not going t o buy another from the LFS in case it's their stock) to use.
 

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30g long, low tech, Finnex CRV, medium planted easy plants, rosy tetras, RCS, sterbai corys...
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one place to at least focus on is the part between the pump and the reservoir. at least while it's running, that part is under vacuum (pull air in), and the part after the pump is under pressure (only pushing water out). unless it's happening when the pump isn't running, it should be on the reservoir side. This vacuum can be made worse when the reservoir isn't vented.

i still have one line that does this, but probably off by less that 5% daily so i've been living with it. my tubing is the really thick, floppy surgical tube and i have a hard time believing that's it. i feel like it most likely where the white jebao tubing goes onto the adapter on the reservoir side. finding good clamps for soft tubing is also difficult. i have used very small zip ties, but even those leave a pinch near the head such that it is not a continuous clamp, so where i use them, i use 2, with the zip tie heads in opposite sides of the tube.

if you suspect the white jebao tube in the pump is leaking, you could try swapping out for the spare one, it's not impossible that either the hose or one of the two little fittings is cracked.

one more thing, did you first take apart each pump and make sure the backing plate was installed the right way on the rollers? these are famous for being put in backward, and then they back syphon. the flat plate needs to be near the pump, not away from it. mine was like that, and after i fixed them, all the cal numbers went down, so it was pumping more effectively.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
tubing is the really thick, floppy surgical tube
Are you using silicone? Mine was only advertised as 'plastic.' I've heard silicone does better but it isn't always the case for fixing this problem (I did some research before I posted).

one more thing, did you first take apart each pump and make sure the backing plate was installed the right way on the rollers? these are famous for being put in backward, and then they back syphon. the flat plate needs to be near the pump, not away from it. mine was like that, and after i fixed them, all the cal numbers went down, so it was pumping more effectively.
I saw the video talking about this, and did try it, but looking at the diagram the system provided, mine were not on backwards. I had taken them apart to make sure, and also to unpinch the hose. I'm honestly just thinking of giving up on this one and buying a better auto-doser.
 

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30g long, low tech, Finnex CRV, medium planted easy plants, rosy tetras, RCS, sterbai corys...
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Yeah, silicone. I have seen some this stuff labeled as silicone in some fish stores, but its thin and kind of in between flexibility...

After I posted I finally broke down and zip tied my leaker and it seemed to fix it... I get a couple small bubbles daily, but nothing like before.
1029685
 

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30g long, low tech, Finnex CRV, medium planted easy plants, rosy tetras, RCS, sterbai corys...
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I will say that they didn't seem loose at all, yet the vacuum still pulled it in. It doesn't take much, and that fixed it in my case. I would imagine the standard clear plastic pump tube would be worse. I had to really make sure the vents and seals were working well to get it to flow and not leak (air)
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Update: I went and sealed each entry point for the tubing, both for the regular tubing and the part included in the pump, with glue. Next day, air bubbles. I found a few spots I missed so I made sure each point was properly sealed. Next day, large gaps of air, again. The only thing I can think of is there is either pinholes in the pump's tubing or my own. This is the second time I bought tubing. I could buy silicone tubing and see if that fixes it, unless the problem is with that small bit of tubing that goes in the pump. I'm not sure what to do. It has me really stressed because staghorn algae is trying to take over big-time and that stuff is hard to remove.
 

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You're better off dosing at the wrong time than not at all. I agree that getting the auto doser working is in your best interest, but I wouldnt abandon dosing all together while you work on it.
 

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30g long, low tech, Finnex CRV, medium planted easy plants, rosy tetras, RCS, sterbai corys...
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This might sound weird, but do you have any sort of gopro or small camera you can leave going all day on a slow frame rate or taking stills every few minutes? If the line is clear and you light it right, you should be able to see where it's coming in at....
 
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