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Thread: DIY - Fogger Water Reservoir

  1. #1

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    DIY - Fogger Water Reservoir

    Many of us here have made use of the DIY fogger system in order to increase RH in enclosed growing spaces. Unfortunately depending on your location and/or settings, the water can potentially drain rather quickly. In my experience I have to usually refill a 5 gallon bucket once a day in order to keep my chamber humidified. Granted adding an air conditioning duct in the chamber decreases the RH but it is my only means of cooling for now. Needless to say having to refill the bucket daily is no different than having a needy girlfriend!! Adding to the mess, should I have to leave for more than a day or two, there is a chance that my RH would crash until I could refill the bucket.

    I went out and purchased a few bits and parts at my local lowes to attempt to create what is essentially a large water reservoir (much like a toilet water tank). Using a float valve, water enters the bucket until the floater rises and closes the valve cutting off water entry from the reservoir.
    Below are the items I purchased and assembled along with some pictures. I don't believe this requires MUCH explanation or different angles but if the design isn't clear, please ask and I will gladly post a short video/extra pictures. Just tried it out and it works like a charm!


    1 - 32 gallon trash can (you can go bigger if you want but I chose this due to space constraints)
    2 - I.D. Hose Barb MIP Adapter 1/4" x 3/8"
    1 - 90 degree Brass Pipe Elbow (Brass will not rust)
    1 - Float valve (purchased online, the smaller the better as this had to fit in a 5 gallon bucket)
    1 - 1/4" hose (length as needed)
    1 - Bag of hose washers (plastic)
    1 - Tube of silicone (waterproof, you can NEVER have enough!)

    Be sure to drill the holes in the bucket and trashcan SMALLER than your pipe fittings. It is better to thread the plastic and seal any small leaks with silicone and a washer than it is to have a large hole with a bad leak. Also be sure to try your new system before putting it to use!! No one wants a 32 gallon mess to clean up
    If you find any leaks (drips or streams) simply empty both your bucket and reservoir and apply a generous amount of silicone around the seams.








    Thanks for looking

  2. #2
    Kyle's Avatar
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    Not bad, good sir, not bad! I'm in that "refill the 5-gallon every day" boat, so I've been looking at ways to remedy that. What I'd really like to do is use a couple float switches (redundancy FTW... *looks in Butch's general direction*) and hook it right up to the RO unit. But this is much simpler and much more feasible right now, so I might have to seriously look into this. Just, refilling the large reservoir would be a PITA, but I guess refilling a giant one once a week might be easier than refilling the 5g every day. And certainly better for vacationing and such. I'd like something like a 50g reservoir though, lol. GO BIG OR GO HOME. XD

    Just a thought, you can easily DIY a PVC bulkhead using a couple electrical conduit fittings and O-rings. Might produce a better seal than the brass fittings and plastic washers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyle View Post
    Not bad, good sir, not bad! I'm in that "refill the 5-gallon every day" boat, so I've been looking at ways to remedy that. What I'd really like to do is use a couple float switches (redundancy FTW... *looks in Butch's general direction*) and hook it right up to the RO unit. But this is much simpler and much more feasible right now, so I might have to seriously look into this. Just, refilling the large reservoir would be a PITA, but I guess refilling a giant one once a week might be easier than refilling the 5g every day. And certainly better for vacationing and such. I'd like something like a 50g reservoir though, lol. GO BIG OR GO HOME. XD

    Just a thought, you can easily DIY a PVC bulkhead using a couple electrical conduit fittings and O-rings. Might produce a better seal than the brass fittings and plastic washers.
    Glad this was worth the post, I did setup my fogger based off yours after all! Hopefully it's useful to others as well. Butch actually did suggest going straight to the RO tank route, unfortunately just wasn't an option for me. Plus I use straight tap water for my fogger and just clean the sediment on a routine basis. Saves on my filter expenses! :P
    If you can DEFINITELY go the 50gallon route. I almost went with a 55gallon tub but the pricing was a bit steep for my taste. I forgot to mention all material included here cost me under $45. Very happy overall. As for the PVC vs brass, I toyed with the idea but was turned away for 2 reasons. For one I bought the float valve online, meaning I was stuck with whatever I could find in store in terms of fittings and 2 I was afraid that over time the PVC would become brittle and eventually snap. So I went with brass. The valve came with a rubber washer and hex nut so it snaps on the bucket nicely but I went ahead and added some silicone for added caution.

    One thing to add to the design in terms of Butch proof redundancy, an overflow preventative measure wouldn't hurt! It doesn't seem to be of a great necessity at the moment but I'd like to add that in just in case...you never know!

    Edit: Another option I'd like to explore in the future is a larger fogger tank, 5 gallon is nice but makes a tight fit for a float valve + fogger. I won't bother toying with 2 float valves!
    Last edited by F R e N c H 3 z; 06-20-2012 at 08:45 PM. Reason: spl

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    Kyle's Avatar
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    Derp, I failed to realize the valve's fixture itself was brass. LOL. Nevermind me...

    I've also toyed with the idea of using a big trash can as the humidifier itself. I don't know anything about the math behind it, but I am suspicious you'd need a larger fan to cope with that much air space once the water level gets low. I don't know. Regarding the RO hookup, I would also have to deal with like 30 feet, which I believe I would need a booster pump to accomplish. That project starts getting rather expensive rather quickly, haha. I suppose it might be worth it in the long run, however, never having to fill a humidifier again. Ohhhhh man, I'm already dreaming!

    Now that I'm really thinking about it, I guess I could theoretically move the humidifier closer to the RO unit. Could cut that distance down to, say... 6 ft. That would probably be just fine without a booster... Could also build a stand to elevate the humidifier 3ft off the ground, or so, and install a drain line for that extra security if one of the valves fails to shut off... Damnit, man! I'm not in a position to be thinking about spending more money! XD

    But oh how the prospect of never refilling that thing sounds nice...

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    Have you considered using straight tap water? I played with the idea of hooking up directly to a water line and use the same design as a toilet tank. Only problem would be as to how to rig the vertical floater (dont think a float valve would work unless you had a large diameter) and the proximity of the water outlet to humidifier (REALLY don't want a hose dragging across the house LOL).

    Nothing hurts to have blue prints ready

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    does this rag smell like chloroform to you? boxofrain's Avatar
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    has anyone tried to recover the water lost from the A/C by draining it back into the reservoir?
    "the memories of a man in his old age, are the deeds of a man in his prime"

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    Quote Originally Posted by boxofrain View Post
    has anyone tried to recover the water lost from the A/C by draining it back into the reservoir?
    Yup, water seems pretty clean at 21ppm. Over time though I wonder if metal deposits would accumulate. The condensate alone isn't enough to keep the water level filled... unfortunately lol

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    Kyle's Avatar
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    I never bothered to consider tap water because I was afraid of hard water deposits slowly forming on everything, plants included. My tap probably isn't hard enough (~60ppm) to do that, not for a very long time at least, but regardless of that, I'm probably too lazy to keep up with cleaning the reservoir out in the first place, lol.

    @boxofrain: I thought about that just the other day. I had to redo the drain line from the house's central AC (it was missing the drain... why is it I have to fix all the stuff so-called "professionals" installed for me?). When I turned it back on, I noticed the stuff wasn't even just dripping out of the line, it's a steady flow... that's a whole lot of water over the course of a day. I think I'll collect it and test the ppm, 'cause that might be an awesome re-usable source of water. But during the hottest days, it just might be enough to refill the humidifier... which would be awesome.

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