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Old 05-05-2020, 08:42 AM   #1
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Windham NH
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Leaky leak! Automatic/moron-proof tank fill

Hey there, found a bug in my build! We ran into an issue today, I believe for the second time, where our tanks leaked. Water pouring out from under the floor... nasty.

We have six, 13 gallon fresh tanks plumbed in parallel. We use PEX-A for the entire plumbing setup- they are all joined together top and bottom, for drain and equalization/air line. The tanks:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01B88JT5E

On fill the tanks are rarely even, most of the water fills from the tank closest to the inlet outward. As it fills, the increased pressure starts to make it fill slower, and the other tanks begin to fill. Something like below

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Well, the leaks that happened today came from the sensor holes. We have top-entry tank level sensors inside two tanks at each end. The one on the left leaked horribly.

Now I thought that the air line, being PEX-A like the rest of the plumbing would be sufficient to cause overflow to exit the tank, pouring water all over the moron standing outside waiting for the tanks to fill, signalling them to stop filling. This is happening too late- the tanks inside are actually bulging long before they evict the air from these lines, pressurizing the tanks themselves and forcing water out the sensor holes.

It seems I forgot from my foray into aquaponics that for any pressurized line of water, one needs a double-sized line to comfortably handle the same volume of water using gravity, and that I'd need my air lines to act like gravity lines.

So I can and probably will use the 1 1/2" holes to make a gravity fed drain, I'm just wondering if there's an electronic fill valve I could use, or if there are better options. Not fun imagining what all that water under the floor is doing....

Thanks.
kazetsukai is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2020, 10:42 AM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
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Bummer! I'm sorry to hear about that. I haven't plumbed my water in yet and was wondering whether to pressure-fill or gravity fill. Pressure fill appeals to my need for speed but your experience certainly paints it in a different light. Good luck with the repair!

What kind of level sensors and indicators are you using?
AzironaZack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2020, 05:06 PM   #3
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
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Did you vent the tank at the far end from the fill fitting to outside?
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Old 05-05-2020, 05:10 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Windham NH
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Chassis: International RE
Engine: International T444e
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kubla View Post
Did you vent the tank at the far end from the fill fitting to outside?
Yeah, they all share an air line to equalize, this goes outside. Its not big enough to work, I don't think.
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