I am afraid

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I am afraid

Postby spbreeder on Sun Feb 27, 2005 9:50 pm

I think I have the plumbing done on my sump. I haven't glued the pvc yet. I am afraid that I have done/will do something wrong and the water will go all over. I haven't gotten the fuge drilled yet so I just capped off the pvc leading to it thinking I left enough room connect it when it gets drilled. I have a ball valve on the return do I need to put them on the plumbing from the overflows? I am thinking not, but just checking. I was looking for a chicken $h!@ icon but there isn't one. Any advise?
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Postby Ereefic on Sun Feb 27, 2005 10:57 pm

I would not put valves from the overflows, your only asking for trouble. The overflow will only handle to a certain point. If your pumping too much threw it, the tank will overflow because you can't drain it fast enough. I really can see no need for them on the drains. *Bok Bok* :)
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Postby tapper of spines on Mon Feb 28, 2005 11:03 am

A few things:

- did you put couplings in on the input and output of the pump, or is it hard-plumbed all the way? I always put couplings in on both the input and the output of my pumps so that they can be removed to be cleaned or replaced. Something to think about.

- if you aren't comfortable with your plumbing skills I would suggest having someone who's done this before preview it before you glue it together

- you don't have built-in overflows. If the siphon breaks on your external overflows then your return pump might drain your sump and overflow your tank. I have the same problem. I put a float switch on my tank, and wired my return pump to it so that if the siphon breaks and the tank level rises it will shut off the return pump. You should consider one too.

- have someone nearby the first time you turn it all on, so that when it starts to overflow all over the place you can turn it off quickly. ;) I always have an extra pair of eyes around when I redo some plumbing. You never know what you might miss.

I know I'm making things complicated, especially with the float switch, but I consider the extra peace of mind worth it (it's saved my marriage many times ;) ). If you'd like, you can come over to our place and see how I've done it. It might give you some ideas.

HTH
TOS
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Postby spbreeder on Mon Feb 28, 2005 12:19 pm

I have union joints on each overflow and on the sub. return pump. Can you explain the float switch thing and wiring in a little more detail please. Thanks, Denise
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Postby tapper of spines on Mon Feb 28, 2005 2:26 pm

I'll describe it in more detail tonight. I may even find the time to make a cute circuit diagram, if that would help. How's your electronics? ;)

TOS
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Postby spbreeder on Mon Feb 28, 2005 3:12 pm

Ok. I can figure most things out. When we need to replace lighting I am the one who does the rewiring. Paul is afraid of electricity. I had a powerstrip mounted in the stand, but it was in the way so I moved all the electric to two powerstrips, one on either end of the stand, both out of the way and accessable. Denise
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Postby tapper of spines on Mon Feb 28, 2005 10:49 pm

This is for those of you out there who do not have built-in overflows in your tanks, and use an external overflow. If for some reason your overflow should fail you run the risk of having the return pump in your sump overflow your display tank. This circuit is hooked up to your return pump, and will turn off your return pump if the water level in your display tank starts to rise. It works very well on my tank.

Here is a picture of the circuit diagram controlling the return pump.

Image

A float switch is placed in the tank, at or above the normal water surface level. The polarity and height of the float switch is set such that the switch is open when the level is normal. 120V power is hooked up in series with the float switch to power a relay if the switch is closed. We could alternatively wire it the opposite way, such that the float switch is closed all the times, keeping the contacts of the relay closed. We wire it the above way, however, because there is no sense in running power through the float switch if don't need to.

120V power is hooked up to a double pole double throw (DPDT) relay, and the leads to the pump are hooked up to the normally-open position. In this configuration the default state of the system is for the pump to have power. Again, alternatively we could hook it up such that the pump is connected to the normally-closed position, and run power through the float switch, but this is wasteful and unnecessary. The normally-closed leads of the DPDT relay are left unwired.

We could also get away with a single pole single throw (SPST) relay, and only hook up one of the leads of the pump. This would work just as well. I made the picture the way I did because this is the circuit on my tank. I used a DPDT relay because that's what was available when I built it.

If a U-tube should fail for some reason, such as the siphon breaking or a snail getting lodged in there, and the level in the tank starts to rise, the float switch will close. This will send 120V power to the relay, closing the relay and removing power from the pump. This setup has saved me many gallons of water, and much damage to our apartment.

One might ask: why use a relay at all? Why not just run the power through the float switch? You could do this IF the float switch is rated for the currents that the pump draws. Most float switches are pretty small, however, and can't handle the current. Hence the need for a separate relay.

Let me know if you have any questions. :D

HTH
TOS
Last edited by tapper of spines on Tue Mar 01, 2005 9:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby tapper of spines on Mon Feb 28, 2005 10:53 pm

Well, what do you think? Is this helpful?

TOS
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Postby tapper of spines on Tue Mar 01, 2005 9:53 pm

Did you glue it? :D Or are you waiting?

TOS
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Postby spbreeder on Wed Mar 02, 2005 11:00 am

I am waiting, now more afraid than ever. :( :shock: :?
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Postby tapper of spines on Wed Mar 02, 2005 12:05 pm

Another question: were you planning on any baffles in your sump? Now's the time to install them if you are. I'd recommend them.

What can I do to help alleviate your fear?

TOS
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Postby MattK on Wed Mar 02, 2005 12:10 pm

Nice diagram TOS.

I made a similar circuit for my kalswasser auto topoff setup. The only difference I see is, I used a 12VDC control for the relay coil. Personally, I perfer working with low voltage around salt water instead of 120VAC.

Radio Shack has both types of relays, and since wiring them up are the same, I recommend going with a 12VDC coil over the 120VAC coil. You'll need a 12VDC supply to run it, which run around $10-$20 depending on current amount. You won't need much current, so buy the smallest one they have. I used one from an old anwser machine which met it's maker a while back so I didn't need to buy a new one. (Just make sure it says 12VDC and it'll be fine.)

Edit: Another thing I forgot to mention. When using 12VDC relays, you'll need a diode across the coil to prevent flyback voltage. I used a 1N4003 standard rectifier diode with the white band on the plus voltage side.

Matt
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Postby tapper of spines on Wed Mar 02, 2005 12:20 pm

Matt brings up a good point. The running assumption in my explanation is that the relay is run on 120VAC power. This is not necessary. Choosing a relay that runs on 12VDC instead is a good idea. The circuit diagram I provided would be identical, you would just change out the bottom AC voltage source and put in the 12VDC source.

Thanks Matt!

TOS
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Postby spbreeder on Mon Mar 07, 2005 1:20 pm

I am confused. I kind of understand the concept but I think it would make more sense to see what you are talking about. Maybe you should host April :lol: .
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