Friday, June 18, 2021

Utilize Renewable Energy with Solar Pond Aeration


Is your pond far away from a power source? 

Are you looking to utilize clean renewable energy? 

Are you looking for potential long-term cost effectiveness?  

Perhaps solar pond aeration is a good option for you.  However, setting up a system can be complicated, expensive, and time consuming.  Below we dig into the two standard system options, touch on common components needed, and discuss solar pond air pumps.

Main components of a direct drive solar aeration system:

Solar Panels:

There are two common types of panels: polycrystalline and monocrystalline.  Polycrystalline is less expensive than the alternative but not as efficient.  In many southern states – or areas that get abundant sunshine – polycrystalline may be a good option.  For those in northern states or states that have less sunlight, most experts suggest spending the extra money for monocrystalline panels to maximize energy efficiency.  
 

Choosing the number of panels to run your solar pond air pump can be tricky.  If for example you want to run a HIBLOW HP-80 air pump (71W) for a ½ acre 8’ pond, it would be easy to assume that (1) 100W panel would be enough.  Unfortunately, that is highly unlikely regardless of where you live.  Typically, these panels are spec’d at 100W in a lab setting.  In a real life setting 100% efficiency is not realistic even if you have the panel at the right angle at peak sun.  Additionally, an inverter is needed (more info below) to convert the DC sun energy to AC which is required to run the aerator. The inverter may reduce the efficiency by 10-15% alone.  After testing some pumps here in our home state of Michigan, we found that you need 3 100W panels to run the pump consistently.  Generally, we suggest contacting a solar expert in your area to consult with, but there are formulas in which you can make the calculations yourself.
 

Mounting:  

Being able to adjust the angle of the panels throughout the year is essential to maximize energy efficiency.  Therefore, any DIYer should do their due diligence when mounting panels so that the sun can be fully utilized throughout each season of the year.  In North America, all panels should face south and be adjusted accordingly based on latitude and season.   
 

Inverters:

The DC energy from solar rays will not run the AC driven HIBLOW air pump.  As a result, an inverter is needed to convert the direct current electricity to alternating current.  As mentioned above inverters reduce efficiency, especially the cheaper ones.  Like anything in life, quality makes a difference.  One thing to consider when buying an inverter is the low voltage shut off.  Some inverters will shut off and an alarm will go off until the inverter is manually reset.  Many experts suggest installing a relay between the inverter and the solar panel which will not allow the inverter to fall below the shut off voltage.  A timer relay is also an option if you want to control the time the system will run each day (especially for battery back-up systems).

Pond aerator:

The pond aerator is the heart of the system.  Choosing the best one for your application is critical to its efficiency.  Some companies use DC driven air pumps for solar applications so that an inverter is not needed, however DC pumps are typically not as energy efficient, they do not last as long, and are not easy to rebuild like a HIBLOW.  In a real-life setting, HIBLOW manufacturers the most energy efficient linear air pump in the world.  We offer three models: HP, WG, XP.  The HP is great for ponds beyond 6’ in depth.  We recommend the WG or XP for ponds under 6’ – both are extremely energy efficient and perfect for solar.  

Check out the following link for pump sizing and more information: https://www.hiblow-usa.com/applications-guide/pond-aquaculture/

Read the full article on our website!

Monday, June 7, 2021

Solar Aeration Systems Options


Solar powered aeration system with battery back-up:

If you want your solar pond air pump to run most of the day, then a battery back-up system is necessary.  In addition to running the air pump, the solar rays charge the batteries in the cabinet.  Once the sun goes down – or if it is a cloudy day – the pump will continue to run, on average a total 16-20 hours a day.  The downside is that these systems are significantly more expensive than direct drive solar aeration systems.  They require batteries, a charge controller, and other components not necessary in the direct drive system.  Considering the number of components, maintenance can be costly long-term.  Initial set-up is also much more complicated and time consuming.

Direct drive solar aeration system:

Direct drive solar aeration systems use the suns energy to run the aeration system without the use of batteries as a back-up.  As a result, the solar pond air pump only runs when it is sunny – about 8 hours a day in most locations.  Of course, latitude and the time of year can impact the runtime.  The major advantage of this type of system is that the initial set-up cost is significantly less than a battery back-up system.  Additionally, the system will require less maintenance as there are only a few components that may need to be repaired/ replaced over time.  The downside is that the pump will not aerate the pond 24/7.  However, there are professionals in the pond industry that believe 8 hours is enough to turnover and increase oxygen levels to clear up the pond and provide a healthy environment for fish.

Read more on our website!

Monday, May 17, 2021

Common Pond Diffuser Types


Looking for a diffuser for your pond aeration system? 

There are so many options available, but here are our recommendations: 

  • Disc diffusers: Have a larger surface area than stick diffusers and often more holes.  Disc diffusers typically create more back pressure, however.
  • Membrane disc: Usually a fine bubble diffuser (some medium bubble available) made from EPDM rubber.  They are easier to clean than an air stone diffuser, but still require regular maintenance and can crack over-time.   
  • Ceramic stone disc: Usually fine bubble (some medium bubble available) and the standard go-to for aquarium, koi ponds, and ponds with a large/ dense fish population.  They can typically clog very easily and require constant maintenance. They also need to be replaced more frequently.  
  • Stick diffusers: Have smaller surface area, but typically put less pressure on the aeration system and are better for pond mixing.
  • Membrane: Usually fine bubble and made from EPDM rubber with the same characteristics as the disc version.  There are some medium pore membrane diffusers.
  • Ceramic stone: Usually fine bubble with the same characteristics as the disc version.
  • Polyurethane stick diffuser: HIBLOW’s RECOMMENDATION - Medium or course bubble diffusers usually made from polypropylene. They are durable, require little maintenance and rarely ever clog.

Read more on our website!

Monday, May 3, 2021

Selecting a reliable and effective diffuser for your pond aeration system


The main reason bottom aeration is beneficial – as opposed to a surface aerator or a fountain – is that it mixes the pond from the bottom up, while transferring oxygen into the water.  

Many industry professionals believe that the mixing is more important than the oxygen transfer itself.  Mixing evens out the dissolved oxygen (DO) at all depths and prevents thermal stratification – a barrier that separates cold water at the bottom from the warmer water at the surface.  Surface water naturally receives oxygen from the atmosphere and through photosynthesis of algae/ aquatic plants.  

If a pond has stratified, the bottom can become depleted of oxygen which prevents “muck” from decomposing and therefore can produce a smell and impact water clarity.  Also, fish will not get the oxygen they need to thrive and survive when they seek refuge from the warmer surface water during the warmer months.    

Read more!

  • If you are buying a fine bubble diffuser, make sure to clean the diffuser frequently to prevent clogging. This will provide greater life for your HIBLOW pump and maximize the benefits of aeration.
  • Always ask the manufacturer the PSI that the diffuser adds to the system. The lower the PSI level, the more air flows into the pond and the longer the aerator will last. Under 0.25 PSI is best.
  • Be careful when considering diffusers with multiple discs or multiple sticks as PSI levels can reach 2 PSI or more depending on diffuser type. Some diffusers include up to 4 sticks or membranes.


If you have any questions about your pond aeration system, please give us a call, or send an email! Phone: 734-944-5032, Email: info@hiblow-usa.com

Saturday, April 17, 2021

HIBLOW Provides Wastewater Treatment for Homeowners


Having renters this summer?

Make sure your renters know what they can put down the drain! If folks are used to a garbage disposal or a different type of septic system, they may not realize they’re causing an issue.

Use a placard in the kitchen of your rental property to remind renters that minimal cleaning products, dishwater, and wash water from produce are okay, but food waste, coffee grounds, chemicals, grease/fat, food debris, wet wipes and feminine products can clog pipes or damage septic systems.

Read more on our website!

In many onsite treatment systems, the air pump is the only moving part in the overall septic system, so it must be dependable. Working 24 hours a day and through all four seasons of the year — HIBLOW linear air pumps set the industry standard for reliability and service life.

HIBLOW USA offers support for application engineering, custom products, and inventory management. If you have a project outside of North or Central America, we will connect you with our partner offices covering your geographic region.

Questions?  Call 734-429-5618 or send us an email.

Monday, April 5, 2021

Protect Your Tenants from Septic Issues


Are you a property owner getting ready to have renters in the late spring and summer?

Just over 21 million American households rely on a septic system to handle waste. Unlike a centralized sewer system where your home sends wastewater out through underground pipes, a septic system separates and treats wastewater through a tank and then disperses it to a drain field or other means of disposal.

The last thing you want when you have renters is a septic issue. You also want to make sure, depending on the type of septic system you have, that renters don’t start putting food scraps or other items down the drain if the system can’t handle it.

Nothing ruins a relaxing vacation like a septic problem you have to fix!

Read more about preparing your rental property's septic system on our website.

Monday, March 15, 2021

Don't Be Fooled By Counterfeit HIBLOW Repair Kits!

 

Have you seen HIBLOW repair kits on Amazon or Ebay recently?

Are you sure they're genuine? 

For over a year, we've been getting reports of counterfeit repair kits being sold on the internet. Some of our customers have been fooled, and we want to make sure you don't waste your money!

Unauthorized repair parts in a HIBLOW pump will void your warranty, and will ultimately cause you more issues with your pump than you started with.

Read more about how to tell the genuine article from the fakes on our website.

Utilize Renewable Energy with Solar Pond Aeration

Is your pond far away from a power source?  Are you looking to utilize clean renewable energy?  Are you looking for potential long-term cost...