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Automated humidity control?

Posted by Delina z10 CA (My Page) on
Sun, Dec 5, 04 at 15:07

I just started an orchidarium in an 18 gallon tall aquarium. I'm trying to rig up a system so that I can go away for a week or two and have timers and controls handle everything while I'm gone.

The light is easy enough to do on a timer, but I'd really like to find a humidity controller that will turn on the misting system when the humidity drops below 50%. Does anyone know where I can find such a thing for a reasonable price?

Alternately, has anyone tried a PIC controller who would be willing to share plans or ideas? I'm a fair hand at electronic tinkering and can get a humidity sensor chip locally (ah, the joys of university stockrooms). Ideally I'd like a system that would come on at 50% or below and shut off when it reaches 80%, but I guess one that stays on for a fixed interval after triggering would really be sufficient.

Thanks for any ideas!


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Automated humidity control?

I don't know anything about this personally, but I know that a few people on here do, and I'm looking forward to the discussion! A simpler method might be to just have your misting system on a timer, and just figure out how often the timer should come on through trail and error. That's what I'm doing with my misting system. My terrarium is totally closed, so the humidity is pretty much always at 80-90%. I mist once every three days currently, but my husband will be installing a very small fan to circulate the air this weekend (hopefully), so then I may have to figure things out again. A totally automated system would be really cool though. Possibly expensive, but cool. =)

RE: Automated humidity control?

The simplest humidity controller I've seen is a piece of sponge (use a real sponge, not chemically treated) on a wire on a microswitch. The microswitch turns on a 24V water valve/solenoid when the sponge dries out. Make sure you make everything very robust. Put the microswitch terminals in some heatshrink or similar.

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