Sort of considering the Genesis Reef Systems auto-water change device

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Vincerama2, Feb 28, 2017.

  1. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Evil Overlord

    Sort of. Maybe-ish looking at this. It's a continuous change, and I think you tell it how much water to change and how long it should take (ie; 40 gallons over 2 hours or 2 days). I believe that it is "continuous" in that it pumps water out as it pumps it in, so it's not taking out a chunk of bad water and replacing it with good water, but slowly diluting the bad water and dumping the excess.

    However, it's expensive and looks to be bulky. And might not be any better than the two-brutes method I use (empty one 44 gallon brute full of water from tank, replace with 44 gallons of fresh mix) But it might be "better" in that you can just keep your supply of salt water ready and it could continously change water all month.

    Mostly, I'm extremely lazy.

    I know someone was making their own arduino/raspberry pi version here.

    Any thoughts on that device?

  2. roostertech

    roostertech reef noob

    Are you using apex? Using DOS for AWC is pretty popular.
  3. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Evil Overlord

    Not using Apex.

    The only DOS I know is the one that limits you to 640K.

  4. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I looked into this while planning for my tank. Passed on it due to price and space concerns.

    Iirc, it uses metering buckets. 1 for old water, 1 for new, this is to ensure the same amount of water is exchanged.

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  5. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member


    See the buckets!?!

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  6. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Evil Overlord

    Yes, seems cumberson I guess, but it can do larger volume changes. The APEX/DOS thing does a tiny bit, constantly, not sure if that's what I want.

    Maybe I'll just try and streamline my bucket brigade.

    Not even sure how I could plumb the RENEW system without death-by-wife. Hmm..

    But here's a cool video of it anyway!

  7. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Another downside:
    You need your own pumps, at about 1 GPM. Not free, especially if your salt water tanks are not near the metering buckets.

    Note: Any decent peristaltic doser will work fine for water exchange.
    One in, one out. Tweak the dosing time until the amounts match.

    Any setup can drift, so you need to check salinity regularly.
  8. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    A good number of the larger tanks in the "large tank forum" at RC use this, I wonder if this is more feasible than Apex/DOS?

    Either way, I always like to use water changes as a way to remove those detritus spots that always seem to form, 2-3 corners next to rocks where everything accumulates.
  9. Vincerama2

    Vincerama2 Evil Overlord

    Yeah, and for $500-$600 ... hmmm...

    I think I'll need to get aggressive and vacuum up those spaghetti worms along with the detritus. I've been avoiding disturbing them, but at over 200 ppm nitrate, I have to get drastic about it.

  10. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Yeah, auto water changing is a good idea if you know you can't get on top of water changes, but if you have huge nitrate issues maybe being more hands on is what you need to do.
    Coral reefer likes this.
  11. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Mild auto water changes are for stability.
    Keeps trace elements and trace pollutants in range, so no need for chasing any numbers there.
    Helps quite a bit on Calcium, Alkalinity, Nitrate, and Phosphate, but is not a full fix. Those need alternate solutions.
  12. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Colorado member

    I know you said you're not running an apex but I was envisioning using their new fmm unit to do much larger water changes than can be done with the DOS.
  13. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    You are a braver man than me, I'm not sure I could give that kind of trust in their hardware to accurately read :D
  14. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Colorado member

    It just hit the market so time will tell about its accuracy. In say, a 200 gallon system, how much would it have to be off to make a noticeable difference? My thought was not for it to be a continuous WC system but a program that would be run either manually or every week or two just like you would do yourself only you wouldn't do it.
  15. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Well if you have some safeguards in place, like a pump that is at a set height so that if for whatever reason the sensor does go bonkers it'll only drain a set amount and then suck air and maybe burn out the pump (wonder what the introduction of air bubbles does to the reading too? I'm guessing it simply calculates the flow based on the velocity of water through their sensor, but that assumes the entire cross section is water (i.e. no air).

    Then where are you pumping the water to? Hope it's not a floor drain because you will create a siphon and pull out all the water from the pumps location. You could pump it into a another container, maybe one with a overflow that goes back to the tank just in case thing goes bonkers/crazy.

    But yeah I could see a "feed timer" type of setting that you just push, it does the water change maybe while you do other things, and for safeguard maybe only let the program run 10 minutes max (or whatever is close to the max value of your pumps capacity). I always did something like this with 2part top off and ATO, let pump run for 5 minutes and that was it. I could definitely see a benefit in not having to second guess how much water you take out though, but the question is if you do just that, is it worth the expense of the system? Eh... I dunno (for me definitely not, since I don't have an Apex, so it would be a REALLY expensive system).
  16. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    How big of a water change were you thinking? :eek:
    I have a 300G+ system, and my little peristaltic pumps are fine, and hardly run non-stop.
    (36 seconds every half hour to be exact)
  17. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I wouldnt use the flow meters in the FMM to do AWC. I would use the optical sensors to measure levels and use the pmup to do the pumping.

    Pump tank water out of sump till it hits low sensor. Pump nsw into sump till it hits the high sensor which should also be the ato level sensor.

    Or instead of the low sensor, use the timer and set a fixed pump on time to pump tank water out, removing the sensor (and any potential failure of sensor) out of the equation.

    Used Apex Classic is around $300.

    FMM is about $200 with the sensors I think.

    Pmup or u can use whatever pump you want on hand just hook it up to the EB8.

    Works out to be almost the same price as the Genesis

    And that's not taking into account anything else you can do with the Apex vs the ONLY thing the Genesis can do.

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    Coral reefer likes this.
  18. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I poked around with that at first, and it was not accurate enough (for me).
    Sump surface area is pretty large, so little thing like ripple breaking surface tension, bit of crud, etc, can make it drift.
    You need small reservoirs like that Genesis.
  19. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I would also note that the Spectrapure peristaltic pumps I used were dead-on similar to start with.
    I measured pretty carefully over a few days, and they were < 5% off if memory serves.
    So I ended up setting them the same.

    Strongly recommend:
    Any controller with salinity monitor and 2 relays. Apex is nice, but for cheap, go Reef Angel. ($260 base + $150 salinity)
    2 peristaltic pumps. Spectrapure = 2 * $120
    And a float switch on your salt reservoir when (not if) you forget to mix enough salt. = $5
  20. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    How is that different than using it as ATO sensor?

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