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Variable speed water pump controller

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by mtheo, Oct 21, 2016.

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  1. mtheo

    mtheo

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    Oct 21, 2016
    Hi, everyone. I'm new to these forums and not too well versed in electronics (current Mech E. student).

    Basically, what I'm trying to do is take this water pump: http://growgreenmi.com/ecoplus-3170-gph-submersible-pump-2-cs?gclid=CNuTsP78688CFYYCaQod8IgEAg and install some sort of variable resistor or controller like an Arduino to control it's gph rate.

    Has anybody ever done these controller mods before? Where do I start exactly? Do these motors have a board that controls them of is it a hard on, hard off motor?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Alec_t

    Alec_t

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    754
    Jul 7, 2015
    That web-site is blocked because it shows up as 'drugs and criminal skills' according to my ISP!
     
  3. hevans1944

    hevans1944 Hop - AC8NS

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    2,084
    Jun 21, 2012
    I didn't have any trouble opening the page.

    Lots of people in the forum do motor mods, usually for DC motors. Variable frequency drives are available for AC motors to provide variable speed control, but both the special motors required for variable frequency operation as well as the controls/drivers are expensive. You probably don't want to go there for a simple pumping application.

    The pump you cited is submersible and operates directly from the 120 VAC power line. It appears that it is not only submersible, but that submersion is required to operate the pump. The AC motor is directly coupled to a centrifugal impeller. The outlet size is 1.5" pipe, commensurate with the 1000 GPH pumping capacity. This pump is not capable of variable speed control. It is either on or off.

    I have seen similar direct-drive centrifugal pumps used with shallow water-well systems where the lift requirement is modest. Some centrifugal pumps also have inlet pipes for use above ground instead of submersed. Submersible water pumps also usually depend on the water to aid cooling of the motor. This type of pump is useful for recirculating water fountains and, perhaps, very large aquariums requiring 1000 GPH recirculating water flow.

    What are you planning to DO with your water pump? What range of flow rates do you need? Why do you want (or need) a variable flow rate? What is the duty cycle of your pump (time on versus time off)? If you can find a pump with a DC motor, then it is fairly easy to control the speed with Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) of the DC supply. We can help with that here in the forum, but I don't think the pump you linked to is suitable for PWM control.
     
    mtheo likes this.
  4. Minder

    Minder

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    Apr 24, 2015
    It appears it may be a ECM motor, Electronically Comutated (BLDC) Motor, if so the electronics are internal.
    Use a variable valve on the output.
    M.
     
    hevans1944 likes this.
  5. mtheo

    mtheo

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    Oct 21, 2016
    Oops! Okay, It can't be submergeable. I'm basically looking to hook up two hoses, and have water flow through them in a loop at different rates I decide by the controller.

    I think I found the holy grail of what I need guys: https://fragtasticreef.com/rlss-wav...tm_source=bc&gclid=CK3mkPO77M8CFQSRaQod_RsHVw

    This doesn't look like it is submerged either. Just two hose hookups which is exactly what I need.
     
    hevans1944 likes this.
  6. Minder

    Minder

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    Apr 24, 2015
    IF it capable of being non-submerged, you will need to prime it first for it to operate.
    M.
     
  7. mtheo

    mtheo

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    Oct 21, 2016
    It said in a youtube review that you can use it inline. If I don't submerge it, what's the difference? How would the pump know it wasn't submerged if I have a constant flow of solution flowing through it?
     
  8. Minder

    Minder

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    Apr 24, 2015
    That is fine if there is already a head of water above the pump intake, if you were trying to lift then it probably would need priming.
    M.
     
  9. mtheo

    mtheo

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    Oct 21, 2016
    So if I had water flowing down with gravity into the top (The intake?) and then pumping it out of the side into a loop, I would be okay with it unsubmerged?
     
  10. Minder

    Minder

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    624
    Apr 24, 2015
    Water flowing to the intake constitute a head of water present, so it should be OK.
    M.
     
    mtheo likes this.
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