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    i need simple water level indiactor

    Hi guys , i need a water level alarm circuit to use it in the radiator tank of my car , i want the alarm getting ON when the water level is in the middle . and i prefer a discontinuous beeps sound as indicator .
    Thanks

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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    The circuit is probably the easy part - all depends on what sort of budget you have and how fancy you want the output.
    On the other hand putting a sensor into a pressurised radiator system may be a different story. For a start, you need to create a pressure seal around the wire to the sensor - certainly not impossible but unless you know what you are doing this is a source of failure.
    Then you need to know the type of sensor. A quick Google search shows that there are many different types of internal radiator design but all of then try to maximise the surface area and most seem to fill the exterior space of the radiator. Therefore you need to think about how the sensor will work (and under pressure - again not a big issue but a consideration).
    What have you tried so far?
    Susan



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    I have experience in electronic and i jave a lot of components .
    first i want to confirm if there is any risk on my car for this operation .
    And i found a lot of water sensor circuits using transistor and leds but i want to add a beep alarm to the sensor circuit , to alert me when the water leve are in the mid.
    If you have a working circuit please give me .
    Thanks



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    first i want to confirm if there is any risk on my car for this operation...
    Of course, yes!

    The radiator chamber is under high pressure and high temperature.

    The water (ethylene glycol mixture) does not evaporate much (it is completely sealed). (I have not checked the level in my car for months)

    Once the radiator stops working, the oil temp will rise and there is already a built in sensor for the oil temp.

    You have to make a hole in the cap and seal the electrical level wires (coming out via the cap) with some strong glue (use a wire that has the insulation that can stand high temp on a continuous basis)

    Do not forget that water is a corrosive liquid and is extremely corrosive at high temp.

    What is your idea for the level sensing? Two wire open ends getting shorted together?



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Hi,

    What about an air filled ball with metal surface inside the radiator chamber ... and an inductive sensor outside to detect the "good" position of the ball.

    Some coffee machines use a "swimming magnet" inside the water tank and a reed switch outside.

    Klaus
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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    In many projects, the suited solution is quite related by the mechanics of the apparatus, which in other words will dictate the constraints; For example, in some cars there is an auxiliary reservoir of the radiator made of semi transparent plastic (and you check and fulfill from there the 'water' level), while in others the only access is made by a screewed cover located directly on the body of the metal radiator.
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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    and an inductive sensor outside to detect the "good" position of the ball...
    Most radiators I have seen are metal (with Al cooling fins) and it will be tough to use an inductive sensor. Also, the cooling coils go inside and a float may simply get stuck.

    Perhaps a miniature version of the fuel gauge sensor may work but I am (as usual) not so sure.



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Hi,

    The radiotor in my car has a black box at one side. I assume it is to collect the water flowing through the radiator, make the connection to the water hose and it has an opening (screwed) at the top to check and refill the water.
    I assume it is a plastic box, but now that you write this..I'm not sure.

    The inductive sensor won't work with a metal case.

    Klaus
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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    My vehicle has a low coolant light. There is a float switch mounted inside the plastic expansion tank next to the radiator. Conveniently the manufacturer designed it where it can't be removed. I had to buy whole new tank. Also the cap is a pressure relief type cap. If you have something similar I would be leery of drilling a hole in the cap to mount a sensor.



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    My vehicle has a low coolant light. There is a float switch mounted inside the plastic expansion tank next to the radiator...
    I shall take another look at my radiator and report back. Expansion tank is a good idea and makes sense.



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Hi,

    Can I ask why you need the circuit? Unless the radiator is faulty/leaky and you (like many others at one time or another) have to keep stopping to fill it with water before it runs/burns dry, this sounds like app-itis - If you don't really need it, but you do need a timely reminder, an alarm on a mobile phone is a far less complicated solution to trying to measure a liquid level that rises and falls, gets really hot, is a circuit with twists and turns of different widths here and there, will not appreaciate any little part breaking or blocking something (I can visualise thet latter with far too much ease)...

    It sounds like a fun challenge to contemplate but beginning to seem like an ATEX level circuit. Sorry to sound negative, I think an alarm on a phone or a cross marked on a paper yearly calendar is far more efficient (and sensible) here. Would using a temp sensor glued to the outside of the expansion tank be some way of inferring anything? I doubt it, but just to suggest something other than buoys or wires in boiling antifreeze... Good luck, though, it's a genuinely interesting design proposition.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Where possible, I think this should be approached as an external design, if possible - you get rid of loads of problems at once. The expansion tank is usually transparent, isn't it? It has been in cars I've seen. Long (desperate) shot: If the tank is transparent and the antifreeze is opaque enough in colour, maybe an LDR on one side and an LED (sorry, but it's an idea) on the other, to trigger a comparator when the car basics are turned on if the LDR passes a voltage, for example; if so, I'd set it to trigger the comparator on a lower than Vref signal to trigger the beep or an LED near the dashboard, etc. I'm guessing not all car radiator tanks are transparent plastic, maybe. Also, shame a magnet in a floating ball or fixed into a track inside the tank (like kettle design to show water level) and a reed relay on the outside can't be done.



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Low coolant alarms are more of and early warning system. Even if you check the fluid regularly there's no guarantee that you won't develop a leak right after you checked it. Better to have the low coolant alarm than the high temp light come on. We have Murphy float switches on the day tanks(expansion tanks) of every engine on the vessel I'm on. If you bust a hose the alarm on day tank will give you time to shut engine down before the engine runs hot.


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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Transparent radiator hoses are available.


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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Quote Originally Posted by BradtheRad View Post
    Transparent radiator hoses are available.
    Seems like it has possibilities if this is in reference to d123 suggestion. I imagine you could get a low level indication on the radiator inlet hose when the motor is off. I'm not sure how well it would function if the coolant level drops while the engine is running. Since I've never seen a coolant system with clear hoses I couldn't guess what the fluid stream on the radiator inlet hose looks like when the coolant level is low. I watched a YouTube video on a product called "killer glass". Maybe this is the same clear radiator hose your referring to. In the video they install led backlights to shine through the colored antifreeze.



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    I shall take another look at my radiator and report back...
    My car, a not so recent Hundai, also has the same anatomy- a plastic expansion tank and the filling cap is in the middle. I cannot imagine (and I really do not want to) how I can modify the cap or the tank...

    Better to discard the original idea of installing a coolant level monitor. This is best done by the manufacturer...



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    Re: i need simple water level indiactor

    Quote Originally Posted by c_mitra View Post
    My car, a not so recent Hundai, also has the same anatomy- a plastic expansion tank and the filling cap is in the middle. I cannot imagine (and I really do not want to) how I can modify the cap or the tank...

    Better to discard the original idea of installing a coolant level monitor. This is best done by the manufacturer...
    I have seen where some people have installed low coolant switch in expansion tanks. They used a switch similar to the EICOS lf122-40 float switch. Basically you drill a hole in tank and fish the wire and switch through the tank opening. You then sandwich the tank with rubber gaskets and plastic nut. But I agree that this could possibly cause problems down the road. Expansion and contraction may cause the gaskets to leak over time. You also have to be cautious that you don't over tighten and strip the threads if they are plastic. A switch with metal threads imo would be better in that regard but probably more expensive. I ragged on the manufacturer for not making the switch removable in my vehicles expansion tank. But they probably molded it in so there would be no chance of it leaking. There is just a wiring plug that connects to bottom of tank.



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