Created sensor for Pellet Hopper that sends me a text.

Discussion in 'Pellet Smokers' started by backyardsmokin, Mar 24, 2015.

  1. Owning a JB is nice, but I have three problems when it comes to knowing when I need to add pellets.  
    1. The current sensor sometimes reads a gap in the pellets as the hopper being empty, cause the alarm to go office accidentally
    2. The external alarm can be a bit noisy and i don't want to piss off the neighbors during the night
    3. The remote system does not alert on if you need more pellets unless you look at it.
    I solved #2 by putting an on/off switch on the external buzzer. I circumvent #1 and #3 by periodically going to the smoker mixing the pellets and refilling the hopper.

    But, now I have a solution for #1 and #3.  I have been playing with a tiny micro computer running Linux and with a sensor, a few parts from Radio Shack and a program I found online I have created a sonar based sensor that reports the depth of how empty the hopper is.

    I have the sonar sensor velcroed to the underside of the hopper lid.  The sonar reads the depth of the hopper every 5 minutes.  If the depth is greater than 9 inches then it sends me a text.

    If anyone is interested in learning in more detail how I did this, please feel free to PM me.  If there is enough interest, I will post how I did it in this thread.

    Now I just have to start adding temp probs so I can track and be alerted for temps.

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