The Power of a Button
Being able to stir your compost mixture with a push of a button is one of the best features OGO™ Compost Toilet has to offer. We dove into the solids bin and compost mixture in “Let’s Talk #2,” which will give more in-depth about what goes in your solids bin, but today we are talking about how it works.
What electrical components are in an OGO™ Compost Toilet ?
- The Power Button – Let’s start with the push of the button. Our power button has two functions, it will light up when the urine bottle is full and will send a signal to start the 12v motor. With the power button pushed it sends the signal to the 12v motor and begins to spin a series of cogs.
- As the motor spins it is linked with the bottom of the solids bin. As these cogs are engaged, they move the agitator’s arms, stirring the compost mixture inside the solids bin. The motor works on a 12v DC power 9.0-15.0 voltage system. It has an average draw of 1.8 Amps and a rating of 5 Amps. It has been tested to function between (-20°C/-4°F) to 60°C/140°F) temperatures. The motor will only run when the button is pushed and is connected to a timer to only run for 45 seconds. Older units would be running for 2 minutes, but you can read about this change in our press release. The most common problem we get is, “My motor will not run/only runs when I hold the button.” These problems are usually traced back to the beginning of the installation and the polarity getting switched. Meaning the red (+positive) wire from the unit did not get hooked up to the red (+positive) terminal from the battery and/or the black (-negative). It is similar to putting the batteries in your TV remote wrong, it just won’t work unit switched, but once this happens in the older units that do not have the updated timer, it will trip the PTC fuse and short out the timer. Unfortunately, these shorts over time will cause the fuse to degrade and start choking out the current to the motor. So, if your unit is not spinning the full cycle, not spinning at full speed, or not turning on, it is probably due to the timer/fuse/motor relationship. These were some of the major reasons for changing the timer to alleviate these problems of being possible. If your unit is not working correctly, disconnect and contact us immediately, our team can typically troubleshoot over the phone and get a warranty claim started the same day and replacement parts shipped out immediately if needed.
- Urine Sensor- We use a sensor to signal the LED light on your unit’s power button. It will light up to notify you when your urine bottle is full. A capacitive sensor is an electronic device that can detect solid or liquid targets without physical contact. To detect these targets, capacitive sensors emit an electrical field from the sensing end of the sensor. Any target that can disrupt this electrical field can be detected by a capacitive sensor. The sensor has a sensitivity dial that has been calibrated to detect when the liquid levels rise, however, if your sensor light is always on or if is not detecting the liquid levels, your sensor will need to be recalibrated. This is done quite easily and is explained further in this downloadable guide. Remember when adjusting the sensitivity of the sensor trial and error is needed. You will want to either keep an eye on the levels after each use or use water to ensure the indicator light is coming on when it should. Failure to do so may result in overflowing your urine bottle.
- Ventilation Fan- The component that keeps everything moving so to speak, your unit’s fan is designed to be quiet and run continuously. This helps with moisture control and keeping the compost mixture in an anaerobic state. More about the compost mixture can be found here, in that article, you will find out more about why you need airflow. The fan is a little guy that you will find sitting behind your vent housing on the corner of your unit. It is 40mm(40x40x10mm) and some specs are Fan Speed: 3500 RPM (±10%) RPM Rated Voltage: 12 Volt Rated Current: 0.02A Noise: 14.00 dBA Airflow: 4.3 CFM Fan Air Pressure:1.79 mm H2O Fan Life: 40,000 Hours at 25℃, CERTIFICATIONS: CE RoHS Compliant. The fan will draw about 0.48Ah per day. The fan is a good indicator that your unit is wired properly and is ready to go. we will dive into ventilation, moisture, and installation in future articles.