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Thread: Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

  1. #1
    New Member IndoorMang's Avatar
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    Question Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

    So I have 6 5 gallon buckets filled up with wonderful ladies. I upgraded to a bigger air pump a few weeks ago when the 70 LPM gave up. I now have one of the big 110 LPM commercial pumps and it runs at about 45 to 50 db. The challenge is I have the grow room on the 2nd floor of an apartment. The buckets seems to echo vibrations through the floor so downstairs there is a very significant hummmm. Much louder than in the room next to the pump. I have tracked this down and its the buckets for sure. I have tried raising the air stones (2x2 inch cylinder stones)so they are not touching the bottom of the buckets. helped a bit but not enough. then I bought the rubber floor mats that you put in a kids room so they don't get hurt. the 1 foot squares that lock together like a puzzel. Stacked them so there are 4 under each bucket (4 inches of soft rubber). Helped a little but still loud as hell down stairs. I even went to a 45 LPM pump but the sound only dropped a bit, still to darn loud. So my question. How bad would it be if I were to run the pumps on a timer. Something like 10 minutes on then 50 off around the clock. Would this be ok? or am I going to see problems? I just started the timer tonight and figured I would ask while I let it run tonight. Really hope this is ok, I can deal with 10 min of racket every hour but a constant hum won't cut it. Are there any other suggestions for reducing the sound I have not thought of yet? thanks in advance for any help you can offer.
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    420 Member LEDBud's Avatar
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    Re: Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

    The plants will live with reduce air but they will not thrive and root disease is more likely

    The pumps motor noise is being transmitted to the buckets via the hoses.

    If the pump is rated for 110 lpm you need to provide it with enough air stone surface area to flow it.

    I suspect you are using the pump improperly and have too few and too small of air stones hooked up to it with the resulting back pressure causing the noise and vibration and or is one of the cheap pumps with fins which happen to be the noisiest models on the market

    I use the 70 L pm Eco air PA-60 pump with two 9 inch air stones & six 5 inch stones for the reservoir and a GH dual diaphragm 40 L pm pump with four 5 inch stones , one in each 5 G bucket and everything is quiet including the bubbles oddly enough.

    IMO its either your pumps or a lack of air stones for them , for instance a 110 LPM pump should have like sixteen 4 inch air stones to flow without creating excessive back pressure.

    My 60 L pm pump is rated for three 9 inch x 2 inch air stones more so the 9 inch x 2 inch stones are rated to flow 20 L pm each.
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  3. #3
    New Member IndoorMang's Avatar
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    Re: Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

    Quote Originally Posted by LEDBud View Post
    The plants will live with reduce air but they will not thrive and root disease is more likely

    The pumps motor noise is being transmitted to the buckets via the hoses.

    If the pump is rated for 110 lpm you need to provide it with enough air stone surface area to flow it.

    I suspect you are using the pump improperly and have too few and too small of air stones hooked up to it with the resulting back pressure causing the noise and vibration and or is one of the cheap pumps with fins which happen to be the noisiest models on the market

    I use the 70 L pm Eco air PA-60 pump with two 9 inch air stones & six 5 inch stones for the reservoir and a GH dual diaphragm 40 L pm pump with four 5 inch stones , one in each 5 G bucket and everything is quiet including the bubbles oddly enough.

    IMO its either your pumps or a lack of air stones for them , for instance a 110 LPM pump should have like sixteen 4 inch air stones to flow without creating excessive back pressure.

    My 60 L pm pump is rated for three 9 inch x 2 inch air stones more so the 9 inch x 2 inch stones are rated to flow 20 L pm each.
    I will try a smaller pump this weekend with some diy soaker hose ait I plan on making. Thanks for the info. I'm curious, I didn't see an air flow rating on the stones I have, is that something that the manufacturer include or is it an estimate? Sounds like it would be very useful.

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    420 Member LEDBud's Avatar
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    Re: Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

    Each inch x inch of stone area flows .9 Cu.ft of air flow

    1 cu.ft of air = 28 Lpm

    The 9 inch x two inch stones had their rating of 20 L pm on the manufactures box.

    I learned the .9 area Lpm information on a professional air stone site that sells quality stones for use with aquariums and ponds.

    If you use stones in the future

    Hose size matters shoot for the largest diameter hose for the main run to alleviate pressure losses with the off shoots being the smaller hose.


    A long length and or small diameter of the tubing rob psi pressure from the pump . so size it wisely or do as the Pros do and run a large diameter hose as the main line with the smaller for the feeder lines

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    Re: Running air pump on a schedule rather than 24/7 for DWC?

    I have a a similar DWC systen that I built,using a Blue Diamond ET-30 pump. Sound went from loud to no sound or vibration at all on second story house.

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