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Old 10-13-2013, 11:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Hi everyone!

Ok, I recently purchased a 12 volt macerator [waste water pump].

It requires a full 20 amps @ 12 volts to work properly. I have tons of computer PSU's laying around...including some rated at 850 watts.

Is there someway to set up a computer PSU to run a 12 volt macerator @ 20 amps? I think that would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 240 watts...

Is it do-able?

I am open to any and all ideas.

Thanks,

Soar
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:30 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

I'm no electronic grad or anything, but a PSU can handle a current of 60+ amps depending on the unit in question (850 for sure). So that being said, I believe it should work. I know resistance has to go in there somewhere, but I've powered lots of things up that were 12v off a PSU before.

Somebody correct me if I'm wrong of course.
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Old 10-14-2013, 08:27 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

I don't think the wire gauge on a pc power supply can actually handle 20 amps for those intended purposes, wire length and resistance would be a major factor in that circumstance. Inrush current could easily exceed the output of a pc power supply also. You'll be better off using a marine battery for that purpose
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:32 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe C View Post
I don't think the wire gauge on a pc power supply can actually handle 20 amps for those intended purposes, wire length and resistance would be a major factor in that circumstance. Inrush current could easily exceed the output of a pc power supply also. You'll be better off using a marine battery for that purpose
Wire up 2 8pins to the 12v source like a video card. That's 300w capable right there. Just need to be grounded properly.
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

The inrush amps on that type of motor would fry a pc power supply if it could even start it, your usually looking somewhere between 50 to 150 amps inrush on that type of motor. The macerator is usually designed for marine/rv use... a waste water pump for boats and rv's (although most rv's use gravity to dump waste water) Can't recommend using a pc power supply on a boat either if this is the case

You should not attempt to apply computer operations to those of electric motors
http://www.techtransfer.com/resources/wiki/entry/3156/

When you use things out of their designed purpose, then do not be surprised when you run into problems
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Are you sure about that? Seems like an awful lot of pull during start up, for something so small. I'm looking at one online and it looks no bigger than an aquarium pump, which I have run on a PSU before.

Small leads too.
14 AWG, 17.5” [44 cm] Red +, 18.5” [47 cm] Black -
Fuse: 25 Amp Recommended

Obviously his may or may not be different, but that's for a single inlet. I think the inrush would be more like 30, for a 20a requirement. Considering, it's not a very big motor and shouldn't need that much of a surge to start.
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Old 10-14-2013, 01:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

The one I saw weighed 5 lbs, not an aquarium pump size, was for use in pumping waste water from boats. Without a motor controller, inrush can be 5X the rated amps. With a controller it can be within 125% of amp rating.
I think the op needs to be more specific by providing a manufacture and model number

Quote:
Small leads too.
14 AWG, 17.5” [44 cm] Red +, 18.5” [47 cm] Black -
Fuse: 25 Amp Recommended
Your house wiring is 14AWG with 20 amp circuits. The wire gauge on a pc power supply is 18AWG (about half the size as 14 AWG) and the economy psu's have 20AWG
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:52 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Guys,

Thanks for the info. Wow, now I am not so sure it would work. I have been reading how other people open the PSU, solder all the same colored wires together, then run a thicker gauge wire to the stand offs. I think it may work, but I never considered or heard of inrush.

Here's the exact macerator I purchased and am using:

Flojet 18555000A Portable Waste Pump : Amazon.com : Automotive

Lots of complaints about normal 12 volt, 20 amp RV circuits not being able to handle it.

So many people are resorting to using a battery with a trickle charge...and I was hoping to avoid using a battery.

Our new RV does have a power supply/converter that is clearly rated at 12 volts and 40 amps. So that should be enough, but I did not want to add more stress the this power supply. And that is why I would like to use a nice computer PSU if possible...

I have been reading a lot since I posted. What do you guys think of this example/article:

How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply

Ok, hoping for a good solution...

I learned a lot from this tutorial video:

Please help me if you can.

Thanks,

Soar
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe C View Post
The one I saw weighed 5 lbs, not an aquarium pump size, was for use in pumping waste water from boats. Without a motor controller, inrush can be 5X the rated amps. With a controller it can be within 125% of amp rating.
I think the op needs to be more specific by providing a manufacture and model number


Your house wiring is 14AWG with 20 amp circuits. The wire gauge on a pc power supply is 18AWG (about half the size as 14 AWG) and the economy psu's have 20AWG
Yes I know what gauges those are, what I had posted was off the description for one of the pumps I had Googled.

Quote:
Originally Posted by soarwitheagles View Post
Guys,

Thanks for the info. Wow, now I am not so sure it would work. I have been reading how other people open the PSU, solder all the same colored wires together, then run a thicker gauge wire to the stand offs. I think it may work, but I never considered or heard of inrush.

Here's the exact macerator I purchased and am using:

Flojet 18555000A Portable Waste Pump : Amazon.com : Automotive

Lots of complaints about normal 12 volt, 20 amp RV circuits not being able to handle it.

So many people are resorting to using a battery with a trickle charge...and I was hoping to avoid using a battery.

Our new RV does have a power supply/converter that is clearly rated at 12 volts and 40 amps. So that should be enough, but I did not want to add more stress the this power supply. And that is why I would like to use a nice computer PSU if possible...

I have been reading a lot since I posted. What do you guys think of this example/article:

How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply

Ok, hoping for a good solution...

Please help me if you can.

Thanks,

Soar
I personally would not do it. My parents RV burnt down from an electrical fire and my dad happened to be an electronics/audio engineer. So with all the crap I've seen him do (I even trusted him to hard volt mod my cards) and something like that still happened, I cannot within my own mind say go ahead and do it.
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Old 10-19-2013, 04:30 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Can I use one of my power supplies to power a 12v macerator?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PP Mguire View Post
Yes I know what gauges those are, what I had posted was off the description for one of the pumps I had Googled.

I personally would not do it. My parents RV burnt down from an electrical fire and my dad happened to be an electronics/audio engineer. So with all the crap I've seen him do (I even trusted him to hard volt mod my cards) and something like that still happened, I cannot within my own mind say go ahead and do it.
Thanks for the heads up. We moved into this ranch about 4 months ago. I found wiring throughout the property that was done by someone with their head up their bottom. Death traps everywhere. The sickening pat of it all is that the previous owners both died in a house fire here 3 years ago.

So I will be more careful that usual.

I think I will use my HEATHKIT BATTERY ELIMINATOR IP-2715. I built it in the 1970's and used it to talk around the world on a bootleg CB and massive linear. With a PDL antenna, we were cranking out over 50,000 watts at the time. The HEATHKIT BATTERY ELIMINATOR IP-2715 was able to crank out 12-13 volts, 15 amps, peaking at 25+ amps.

I think it may do the job....

Soar
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