Greywater systems

I've been looking into setting up some greywater systems in my house to save money and water, my problem is that I also plan to make my own laundry soap using a combination of Fels Naptha soap, washing soda, and borax. what would I need to do to this water to be able to use it on plants? My yard is slowly becoming entirely garden that is usable for food, herbs, or other usable plants and I don't want to poison my foods or animal foods. Anyone that can help direct me to information on this would be greatly appreciated.

Topic by Marcaine Art   |  last reply

Heating system for the floor?

Changing the tile in my bathroom and need to find a good brand for the heating system...i installed one 5 years ago but it doesn't do the job any more?

Question by greenfuture   |  last reply

Micro-Hydro System

I will post all my updates on builing a full microhydro system here.I am NOT posting on my previous thread: more info, you may post here, But check the old thread first, because there is a lot of background information there.Kabir

Topic by mhkabir   |  last reply

Am I on some kind of "watch-list"? Answered

I posted an innocent question here And a Forum topic here Yet they haven't turned up... yet L

Question by lemonie   |  last reply

Is there a point system on instructables answers? Answered

There is on yahoo answers.

Question by bowmaster   |  last reply

wooden deck lift system?

Is there a simple method for making a pulley/lift mechanism for hauling up groceries, firewood, deck furniture, etc. from ground to 2nd story? needs to be off-set from deck rail by 2 feet. hand cranked? thanks.

Question by connivermann   |  last reply

Terrace Cooling System - Ideas

Hi, my name is Michael and I'm from Austria. Nowadays we have about 38°C (100°F). We have a Terrace which has a area of 33m² (355.21ft²). This terrace has a roof, which consists of polycarbonate plates. We have the problem that it is very hot on our terrace although we use awnings. Now I've discovered some ideas how i could cool down our terrace. The first one could be a water cycle, with a container and a pump. Then the pump could pump up the water. The water flows down the roof and flows back into the container. I don't know if this is a efficient way to cool down our terrace? The 2nd possibility I discovered is water mist. I found this video to show the principle: I don't know if it is possible to sit underneath the water mist without getting wet?? I just want some Ideas and oppinions. Maybe some of you have realized their own cooling system? I know how to program an Arduino and other microcontrollers and I am able to develop electronic circuits. So I think i have the basic knowledge for building such a system, but I can't decide which principle i should use? I am sorry for my bad english skills, but i hope that you can understand me.  Thanks in advance Mike

Topic by MiKe1753   |  last reply

3 axis rotation system

Hello everyone! I was hoping someone here with better understanding of engineering or just a fresh take on the problem can help me out. Im working on this art project where I have a metal ball, aproximatelly the size of a basket ball, and i wanted to make it rotate continuously on a stand, in a way that all sides of the ball were shown eventually. I've thought about this 3 axis sytem where each axis would rotate in turns to keep the ball rolling in diferent directions. Basically its like the insides of an analog mouse where the ball would rotate the gears and give the input of the location of the pointer, except here the gears should rotate the ball. I've been trying to build something close to that with some K'NEX and a simple rotation engine that came with it but im not getting nowhere. I thought of building the gears myself but im finding it hard to come up with a plan. What would the gears be shaped like? What size? what distance between them? Even with trial and error would take me forever @.@ Anyways, any input, ideas, comments apreciated, Thx!

Topic by raposa   |  last reply

how can i connect photo interrupter and dc motor to arduino l293d?

Im making a model of roller door garage opening system and will be using the following componentsmotor -;=motor&form;=KEYWORDinterrupter -;=interrupter&form;=KEYWORDarduino - L293dI need help inorder to connect the motor and interrupter to the arduino which should run the motor in both directions. Basically the motor should rotate the shaft in both directions to open and close the garage door, the purpose of interrupter is the let the motor know that the door is closed or open and i need suggestions as to what i should be using as sensor which could detect any object interrupting the closing of the door and stop the motor. If you suggest me a sensor please also tell me how to connect that sensor to the arduino

Question by pavan5859   |  last reply

Water dispenser or cooler Pump system ? Answered

Hi everybody, i am searching to pump the water from the 5 gallon water dispenser bottle but this time from the ground level, to a small water (2 liters ) tank above the water cooler (maybe  2 meters height from the ground level) . So can anybody help me  to find the ideal pump to do the best job ? and there  is any pump that stops just after the small tank is full? I need an electronic trick to make the pump works on 2 different modes _ the first continuous mod that stops only when the small tank is fully filled _ the second mode is the button mode, so if i pushed down the button the pump will work and if released it will stops ! So can anybody help me how to make the small electronic panel or just guide to a similar one ! !!Pls community help me urgently Pls !!

Question by vwtm2006   |  last reply

What is the best manufactured hydroponic system for amaeturs?

I'm interested in trying hydroponics to grow some tomatoes and peppers but no absolutely nothing about it. I'd like to start out with a manufactured system first to see if it's something I really want to pursue. I've spent hours trying to figure out who has the best system for a reasonable price. Any suggestions? Thanks.

Question by pickled   |  last reply

Blade Tip Power System for wind energy...

I'm looking at adding a not too obtrusive wind generator to a house I just bought. One of the best I have come across is the honeywell BTPS (Blade Tip Power System) - it isn't as sleek looking as a lot of the turbines I am looking at, but it seems like a good concept to me. can't believe that this company is the first to come up with the concept; has anyone here seen any other similar systems, designed to run in the lower speeds/altitudes common in a smaller residential setup, but generating decent power?

Topic by karossii   |  last reply

Peeponics doggy urine nutrient cycle system

Hi, I have a dog at home who uses a litter tray. It's basically a large plastic water run off tray with some AstroTurf. Currently, I have a pump that draws off liquids and deposits them into an empty soda bottle, which I flush down the toilet. But I was wondering if there is an easy way to convert the urine into nitrates which I could use in an aquaponics, or peeponics, system? Possibly using an attractive under water garden in a 25 gallon fish tank?

Topic by jmlidea   |  last reply

Closed system-conductive heating of pool with solar

Hi clever folks, We've been reading the Instructables for making solar hot water systems to heat a swimming pool (4000 litres) in our very shaded backyard (in Australia). We like the idea of using a coil of black poly pipe or garden hose laid out in the sun to heat up and then pumping this through the pool during the day, but the thought of bacteria building up in the pipe has struck fear in us! Sooooo....we may need another plan. I've read way too much on Legionalla and now think it would be safer to have a closed system. What we had in mind is a network of thin poly pipe either in 2D or 3D that would float (or be weighted slightly to sit in a good portion of the water "column"in the pool) and connect this to a long length of black polypipe that would receive solar heating. Obviously this would be a heating system that takes place when no one is using the pool (i.e. when the kids are at school). We'd keep a pool blanket on to insulate it too. When someone wants to use the pool, which would typically be in the evening for us, we'd remove this so-called radiator. Hopefully it would not be too heavy as the thin poly pipe network will be filled with water. tempting to try it this weekend. We just would love to hear from folks that have knowledge to share on these topics. Thank you, Elise

Topic by ebb_au 

how to create a CD of your operating system (win xp prof) with ability to install?

I want a spare xp prof. disk. Just the operating system , that I can install on my blank desktop

Question by dreamer301   |  last reply

Does anyone have an underground water storage system?

I have four 55 gallon plastic sealed top drums barried in the ground. They are meant to store water from my washer and rain water. I have a 3" inlet running in line to the four barrels. On the other side I put 3/4 inch PVC to an inch from the bottom of the barrel. The PVC is meant to get used something like a straw in your soda. I have the straws in line to the water pump. The problem I am having is that the pump requires to be primed to work. How can I keep it primed? It would be great if there was a valve that closed when the barrel was near empty. That way the pump would continue to pump the water from the other barrels and never loose its prime. Any ideas here????? Again, these are sealed toped barrels. I cannot open them to put a sump pump at the bottom, not to mention, a sump pump couldn't supply the pressure needed for my sprinklers. Thank you in advance for any advice! ! !

Question by Mikestime22   |  last reply

I want a home cooling system effective for Temp. upto 46 centigrade.

I am in need of an effective and simple home cooling system to stand with outside temperature upto 45-47 degree centigrade. How an evaporative cooler can be made more effective. my email is

Question by vivekgade   |  last reply

Can I use an old computer as a security monitor? Answered

I am building a security system and I have an old Dell running windows 98 and with an Intel Pentium 3 processor and I was wondering if there was any way to configure it to send emails, text messages, etc. when the security system was tripped? The system will have an output port for each sector that will go high when there is an alarm in that sector. I was wondering if there was any way of writing some king of program to have the security system connected to the computer in such a way that each output on the security system would be connected to an input on the computer and when a specififc sector was tripped, it the computer would register that pin, and send a corresponding message for the sector? ( for example: the living room security output is connected to input one on the computer, the kitchen, input two, etc. when there is an alarm in the living room, input one goes high (or low, that could also be used) and the computer registers that input one has changed and sends a living room alarm message)? Thanks!

Question by mad magoo   |  last reply

how do you build a good trigger system for a lego gun? Answered

All my lego guns explode when i fire them to manning times got any suggestions ?

Question by legomman200   |  last reply

Does anyone know how to make traditional Korean floor heating systems? They are called ondol.

I am going to build a house next year and I need information on how to build ondol, a traditional floor heating system.

Question by SupramanIV   |  last reply

Sandia, Stirling Energy Systems set new world record for solar-to-grid conversion efficiency

31.25 percent efficiency rate topples 1984 recordALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --On a perfect New Mexico winter day -- with the sky almost 10 percent brighter than usual -- Sandia National Laboratories and Stirling Energy Systems (SES) set a new solar-to-grid system conversion efficiency record by achieving a 31.25 percent net efficiency rate. The old 1984 record of 29.4 percent was toppled Jan. 31 on SES's "Serial #3" solar dish Stirling system at Sandia's National Solar Thermal Test Facility.The conversion efficiency is calculated by measuring the net energy delivered to the grid and dividing it by the solar energy hitting the dish mirrors. Auxiliary loads, such as water pumps, computers and tracking motors, are accounted for in the net power measurement."Gaining two whole points of conversion efficiency in this type of system is phenomenal," says Bruce Osborn, SES president and CEO. "This is a significant advancement that takes our dish engine systems well beyond the capacities of any other solar dish collectors and one step closer to commercializing an affordable system."Serial #3 was erected in May 2005 as part of a prototype six-dish model power plant at the Solar Thermal Test Facility that produces up to 150 kilowatts (kW) of grid-ready electrical power during the day. Each dish unit consists of 82 mirrors formed in a dish shape to focus the light to an intense beam.The solar dish generates electricity by focusing the sun's rays onto a receiver, which transmits the heat energy to a Stirling engine. The engine is a sealed system filled with hydrogen. As the gas heats and cools, its pressure rises and falls. The change in pressure drives the pistons inside the engine, producing mechanical power, which in turn drives a generator and makes electricity.More here:

Topic by ewilhelm   |  last reply

Is the effluent produced by a biogas generator enough to feed plants in a hydroponic system?

I'm looking at various ways to grow food free/almost free in a small space.  I would like to grow enough veg to feed myself comfortably. Hydroponics in a vertical farm set up would allow me to grow lots of veg in a small space, trouble is I now need nutrients to feed my plants. After much reading, it looks like I could anaerobically digest all my food waste (including meat, diary, plant stems and anything else that decomposes) in a biogenerator. If I use the resulting liquid effluent, would this alone be sufficient to grow healthy plants.  Are all the nutrients they need going to be in sufficient proportion and are they all in an accessible form for plants. Will I need to add bottled nutrients from a store to top it up? Another question is if the effluent is safe or a biohazard?  My reading so far suggests that most pathogens are killed off in the anaerobic process. Is there anyone who has tried anything like this already? So far I can only find people who are fertilising crops in soil with the effluent. Any comments are greatly appreciated. P.S: for those who do not know what a biogenrator does/is.. a quick description.  Its a sealed tank filled with water, waste (shredded) is added, naturally occuring bacteria in the water (not dependent on oxygen to survive) breakdown the waste into their nutrient parts, methane is also produced by the bacteria (methane is CH4, carbon is in the waste and hydrogen is in the water), the methane can be tapped off for burning and the old liquid can also be tapped off, supposedly this liquid is an extremely good nutrient source, though I don't know if it could sustain plants grown hydroponically on its own.

Question by sloth456   |  last reply

CAN I USE BARB WIRE for RADIO DOG FENCE ABOVE GROUND ? With GUARDIAN PG-250 Pet containment system. Answered

I am trying to get some Information on radio dog fence. Can I use an existing barb wire fence as the dog fence antenna wire ? (above ground) Can I use a combination of above ground heavy gauge #12 barb wire and the manufacturer supplied #20 underground wire ? Have 5 acres total, currently 2 acres is fenced with barb wire for horses. So I would like to use the existing fence by connecting it to the Guardian underground system and also use the underground system to enclose an additional 2 acres for the dog. Have a new dog that has not yet been trained with the underground system.

Question by TOKEN4460   |  last reply

Does anyone know how to make a 3-phase wind power generator interface with a home's electric system?

I have a project in which I want to hook up a 1000Watt wind power generator to a home, but I don't know how. What systems are needed?

Question by    |  last reply

Can a home made AC unit be run through a mini fridge?

When making an air conditioning unit, would it be possible to run the system through the inside of a mini-fridge, rather than a bucket of ice? maybe drill some holes and put the system inside, in a little bin of water.

Question by roboman827   |  last reply

I want to set up a hydroponics system but don't want to buy commercial nutrient or medium. Answered

Can i just flood the soil the plant is growing in for a temporary portion of the day? I don't have a problem with the pump, just buying the nutrient / medium. Can i just use soil and wet it down really well once a day and then drain it (out the bottom)? Would floating soil in the water being circulated through the system work? I could empty water / put more soil in on a regular basis.

Question by Toulouse   |  last reply

I am trying to make a gravity water system for some chickens, how ever, its not working and Im not sure why.

Ok the first one works for dogs and cats The second one is for chickens The others are what I have tried and they dont work Why? I know it has to do with the vacume and the vent hole in the bottom of the pan. The short bucket has one 7/8" hole and it overflows till it reaches the top of the holding container. The tall system has 5 of these holes. Both have lids and should make a very tight seal. so what gives

Question by Shenanigans   |  last reply

Solar Hot Water question - How can I control the temp of my hot tub when using a solar hot water heater set up?

I am building a solar hot water system for my hot tub. It will be independently plumbed to keep the original heater and pumps intact and operational. My question is, how can I get the solar system to turn on only when the hot tub is cooler than a certain tempurature and have it turn off if the water being returned from the solar system is colder than the hot tub's current temp? Any ideas would be appreciated!

Question by Walke2jd   |  last reply

hot water side smells all of a sudden -

On a well with a Hydrogen Peroxide and water softener system.  Warm water side smells sulfury or nasty all of a sudden.  Plenty of salt in softener and plenty of Hydrogen Peroxide being pumped into system.  Due to softener, the watre heaters never had their anode rods installed - so not coming from there.   What is causing the recent smella nd how to remove? 

Question by bebolf   |  last reply

Advice needed on adding a Wind Turbine (generator) to a DIY PV Solar System.

I have bought a 12 volt FD-300 300 watt wind turbine to add to my 12 volt DIY solar setup. The solar setup consists of 3 home made 70 watt panels on a single axis tracker charging 6x 12 volt 85 ah batteries wired in parallel (510 ah total) through a 20 amp controller. I run a 12 volt fridge/freezer (120 liter) and my now 12 volt (was 240 volt) evaporative air cooler (cools our 3 bedroom house) off the controller load output. The wind turbine has an inbuilt regulator. The instructions for the wind turbine tell me to attach it's + and - wires directly to it's own dedicated terminals on the battery bank. This is of great concern to me. How can this be done when the batteries are already connected to each other and to my systems controller? If it can be done without damage to the batteries would I still run the appliances through the load output on my controller? Would the different charge limiters cause an issue? My controller cuts out at 13.7 volts while the turbines controller would want to allow a charge of 14.1 volts. The two controllers also have different lower limits. As you can see I'm confused and in desperate need of quality advice. Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Topic by Rob Patterson   |  last reply

How can I heat my unheated basement using the existing hotwater pipes but without altering the hot water system? Answered

My basement is freezing as it doesn't have a radiator. Its does however, have two 3m hot water pipes from the central heating system above running accross the ceiling. How can I use the heat from these without altering the hot water system? I was considering encasing them in ducting and using a 12v fan to blow cool air in one end and warm air out of the other. Thoughts? Would painting them with a specific paint help? I need ideas. I'm FREEZING! :D

Question by Tassle   |  last reply

selective room heating?

I just turned on the heat before going into my room to go to bed. My roommate and I are in about one fourth of the whole house (and will be for about six hours), yet every room is being heated. This seems like a huge efficiency problem. Are there commercial systems out there that can heat selective rooms? If not, are there ways of making such a system? Can I just tape cardboard over the vents?

Topic by moisture   |  last reply

Need a portable solar system to recharge my electric car that has 6 batteries?

I would like to create some sort of portable solar recharging device for my NEV. I was thinking I could mount the solar panel on the roof (or is that just crazy) and then wire it to the recharger that could be carried in the trunk. When I stop somewhere, I can just plug the solar charger into my car and have it recharge as I'm out to eat, at the beach, or wherever I've gone.

Question by    |  last reply

I want to set up a carbonation system for making soda. What stores can I go to in order to get the necessary materials? Answered

I'm looking for a local store to find the materials I need (hoses, regulators, pressurized container). Specifically, I guess some type of chain store (I doubt any of you know the local stores where I live). I checked Ace Hardware and Home Depot, but neither had the stuff I need.

Question by Hadokendude   |  last reply

Real-life Back to the Future 2 hoverboard

French artist Nils Guadagnin has built his very own hoverboard based on the hoverboards in Back to the Future II. It's pink, it's a board, and it actually does hover when placed on its platform. Integrated into the board and the plinth is an electromagnetic system which levitates the board. A laser system stabilises the object in the air. The board is hovering with the help of two CLM-1+ levitation modules made by Crealev. Hoverboard Project via geekologie

Topic by fungus amungus   |  last reply

Help me understand the wiring for my 12 volt system on my Chinese scooter?

I was trying to put new lights on the scooter and the guy helping me hooked them up and they didn't work so he tried to wire it differently and in the process smoke came from the hand brake lever and now nothing works!!! Please help me understand the whole principle.

Question by    |  last reply

How can I clean out the crinkly pipes in a forced air heating system?

I live in an RV and am allergic to dust and animals - the forced air heating plays havoc with my allergies. Is there some kind of duster on a flexible rod I could use to get rid of some of the accumulated muck that's doubtless in the tubes? Or something I could stick on the end of a carbon fiber tent pole? The ducts are about 10' long, curve around 90 degrees (over the space of a couple of feet) and are similar to the vents you get from dryers.

Question by ImmortalSoFar   |  last reply

Help to make a self watering drip irrigation system (using an air well+gravity pressure drip irrigation)

Hello, lately I have become interested in DIY drip irrigation systems and have begun building one myself. The I started thinking:" wouldn't it be great if I didn't have to manually fill up the tank?" and remembered that there was already a very low tech way to get water: the air well!! Well, why not put the two things together? The air well collects the water and then this is distributed to the plants through the drip irrigation system. Obviously people have already thought about this (here's a link to a great project, but I was thinking if there was a way to build something even less technological, i.e. with no pump (I would rather use gravity instead) and no special condenser, but rather something made from recycled/easy to get parts. After all I don't live in a desert, so a less efficient system would do just fine. It's just so that I don't have to carry heavy buckets of water to quench the thirst of my synergic garden. Cheers

Topic by wilson14 

VAWT a new way to wind generation

Guys need help to realise its feasiblity and pros & cons. This project will comprise of a renewable energy source which is controlled by TI msp430 controller by closed loop system. This renewable energy source will use a magnetically levitated vertical axis wind turbine with single phase permanent magnet alternator made by our team. There will be 3 stationary wind guide vanes/flaps of concave shape on the outer periphery of turbine. These vanes will be controlled by dc gear motor for constant wind flow and protection against high speed winds. Using perturb & observe MPPT algorithm on DC-DC boost converter, constant DC voltage for GRID integration is made. A lower energy Bluetooth module will send data on user computer about whole system parameter, hence making the whole system to be smart and hence data is saved in database.

Topic by nitcool   |  last reply

Solar Heat in Cold Climates

Cool Energy is making a solar power and heating system that works in cold climates. Hooray!  It makes use of a highly efficient Stirling Engine.SolarHeart

Topic by whiteoakart 

Can you make a masterkey out of a change-key? Answered

I was wondering if you can turn a change-key into a masterkey. ( A change-key is a key that works only one lock in a masterkey system)

Question by DIY Dave   |  last reply

Battery power

I am attempting to calculate my amp need for my garage in order to set up a 12v battery system. Using the formula; Watts / voltage = amps drawn, I have hit a question. If using a 12v battery system and converting to 110v, should I be using 12v or 110v in the formula?Example; 100 watt light bulb / 110 volts = .91 amps. Nice!But if I use the 12v; 100watt light / 12v = 8.3 amps.I'm believing I would be drawing 8.3 amps from the battery to power this light.Plus the converter draw...Please tell me which is correct?

Topic by olddawg   |  last reply

Proposed Evaporative Air Conditioner

Have an idea for a Evaporative Cooler.  In most conventional coolers a fan pulls warm air through a panel that is constantly soaked in water, the water pulls the heat from the air.  Another form of this system is the simple "Mister Jets" that spray a fine mist into the air which pull the heat from the air dropping the temperature.  My idea is a combination of the two... See Image. The concept is simple... - Fan pulls warm air in and forces it into the body of the cooling unit. - A mister sprays a fine mist that combines with the air pulling the heat out. - To remove the fine air molecules a synthetic membrane (like pond filter material) is used to collect the vapor and allow the air to pass freely through. - The resulting water will make its way down the membrane and drip into the water basin below. - The pump will then recirculate the water back through the system. Seems like an easy enough system, the only problems I can see are... - Mildew - Leaks - Filter doesn't remove all the water So let me know if you guys think this will work.

Topic by scubaru   |  last reply

Soda carbonation?

Hi I want to carbonate my own soda with co2 (everytime I use yeast it comes out wrong/disgusting). I know I need a co2 tank and a keg, but what do I need in between? (simplest system possible).

Question by rushfantomsawyer   |  last reply

charge controller

Question for you all. I have a solar powered spot light I really like, when it's charged up. It has a 6vdc 4ah battery in it and I wish to re-charge it from my 12vdc system. Source power will be my 12vdc 160 ah battery and I'm thinking of using my extra 12vdc charge controller with a 3.5 ohm / 1 watt (or better) resistor attached to reduce the power to 6vdc. I believe that will work, but I don't know if the controller will know when the battery has reached capacity? The other thought is to just by-pass the 6vdc battery and run the light from the 12vdc system (using the resistor to reduce the power). Any thoughts?

Topic by olddawg   |  last reply

How To Build an underground sandbag bunker complete with sewer and well and air Filtration system for under $2,000

I,m Planning On Building an underground sandbag bunker that will protect against most natural and man made disasters i would use bricks or concrete but that is to expensive and concrete bunkers are prone to leaking and molding unless you have a proper vapor barrier on all sides of the walls and foundation and the roof i am going to make my walls out of sandbags and have good strong posts every few feet or so to prevent cave ins the posts will be good strong 8 inch diameter logs also for the roof I,m going to use 8 inch diameter logs and on the roof i,m going to put 4 feet of packed dirt on it to act as a radiation shield my walls are going to be covered in plastic sheeting or polyethylene or both on the outside for a vapor barrier to prevent moisture from entering in a layer of plastic and polyethylene sheeting in going to cover the bottom of the hole then the floor frame goes on top of that and then i pack the frame with straw for insulation then another layer of plastic and polyethylene goes over that then the plywood goes on last and is screwed to the frame with woods screws i make sure the whole frame is wrapped in polyethylene sheeting and plastic sheeting then once the floor is in place i caulk where the floor and the walls meet with silicone for the roof i put vapor proof sheeting like plastic sheeting or polyethylene down first then the logs then straw for insulation then more vapor proof sheeting then dirt on top of that for the sewer i will use a pipe running from the toilet into a big pit with a lid on it and a pipe coming out of the lid with a fly screen on it for the vent pipe and of course i will reinforce the sewer pit so that it don't cave in and have a drain field and have a door for the bunker that can be locked or barred from the inside and for heat a barrel stove any ideas you may have any comments and suggestions would be greatly appreciated any problems with my plan please let me know because I,m looking for them so i can fix them in my plans

Question by    |  last reply