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[APD] automatic water changing


You mentioned automatic water changing, which is something I have been
planning on doing with my tank. I have actually run a feed and an
exhaust tube into the stand, but I haven't plumbed it into the house
yet. I really wanted this tank to run itself as much as possible. We
have a baby on the way, due in two months, and I wanted to get this up
and running while I still had some free time. I think it will be great
to sit and watch the tank with the baby (more for my benefit for the
first few months), but I won't have as much time for maintenance. Plus I
hate to do water changes. 

I figure 5 gallons of RO water every day should do nicely. My plan at
the moment is to have a small powerhead in the sump connected to a
digital timer. I will program it to run long enough to pump out about 5
gallons of water per day. Then, I have a mechanical float valve that
will shut off the flow of water when it reaches the desired level. The
idea obviously is that the water will get pumped out, and as soon as the
level drops, the RO water feed will turn on. When the pumping out stops,
the water will continue to fill to the desired level and then shut off.
That seems to be pretty foolproof, unless the float gets jammed in the
open position or something. Power outages also wouldn't affect this

My original hope was to have a system that pumped water in, and had an
overflow in the sump that would drain any excess water out by gravity.
Trouble is the level of the drain to which I will connect is too high
for this to work. The only other option is draining out onto the back
porch, but it seems like I would be setting up a mini swamp where the
water comes out. Plus, nothing would stop the inflow of water if the
drain tube got plugged, it would just go on the floor. 

Am I going about this the right way? 



PS: You're right that I like technical toys. Tinkering with them is part
of the fun for me. ;-) 

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