Excuse my month long hiatus. Although I have had many new products to test out, I didn’t want to become one of those reviewers who will literally review anything. Plus, I’ve really been hankering to do another diy project.
So, I present to you: How to build a temperature controller!
I am using this temperature controller for another upcoming DIY project of a fermentation chamber, but it can also be used for fish aquariums, reptile tanks and many other things.
I got this all purpose digital temperature controller from Ink Bird. They have exceptional customer service and this product is superior in quality compared to other brands I have seen. If you’d like to order from them, click here. If you’d like to order another product of theirs, click here. I highly recommend them!
After this temperature controller came in the mail, I headed over to RadioShack to get a project box 6inx8inx3in for $8.99, a 3-pack of 18 gauge wire that was green, black and red for $8.99, and a mini terminal strip that was $3.49. I also headed to Walmart to pick up a wall outlet, a wall outlet cover and a 6 foot extension cord, all for less than $4.
Step 1: Measure and Cut
Measure and cut out a spot for the temperature controller (I just used a drill to make holes and popped it out but a dremel would be ideal). Then drill the holes for your thermostat probe (left cord) and extension cord (right cord).
On the top plate of the project box, measure and cut out a spot for the wall outlet (towards the back part of the top plate).
Step 2: Mounting Hardware
Now, after you’ve finished cutting your holes, mount the temperature controller in the front using the orange clips (included with the controller). Insert the thermostat probe and extension cord (I cut the female plug end off and discarded it) in the back of the project box. Be sure to leave enough slack in the wires to be able to tie a knot so they aren’t able to pull through the back of the box, while still having enough wire to connect to the back of the controller. Finally, mount the wall outlet to the top plate and attach the wall outlet face plate.
Step 3: Wiring
The way I have mine wired runs both outlets as cooling. If you want to use cooling and heating, you have to break off one of the brass tongues that connect the two screws together on the wall outlet (you can use a pair of needle nose pliers to wiggle it off).
Now, to start the actual wiring: Cut off (2) 6in pieces of the red wire and (1) 6in piece of green wire. Connect one of the red wires to port number 1, which would be your hot wire. Connect the second red wire to port number 7, which would be one of your cooling wires. Connect your green wire to port 8, which will be your cooling relay wire. Twist the exposed wire of wire port number 1 and wire port number 7 together at the end, then insert the twisted wire into the terminal strip and tighten the screw on the terminal strip to lock the wire in. Connect the green wire in port 8 to one side of the wall outlet.
Cut off (1) 6in piece of black wire and (1) 6in piece of green wire and insert the black wire into port 2. Connect the green wire to the other side of the wall outlet. Twist the exposed wire of wire port number 2 to the end of the green wire. Connect the green and black wire into another port on the terminal strip and tighten the screw to lock the wire in.
Connect one of the extension cord wires opposite to the red wires on the terminal strip, tighten the screw to lock the wire in. Connect the final extension cord wire opposite to the green and black wires on the terminal strip, tighten the screw to lock the wire in.
Step 4: Finishing
Screw the top plate to the box and mark your cooling and heating outlet, if you wish.
Tada! We’re all done!
Be sure to comment on your experiences. And if you have any questions or concerns don’t hesitate to ask!
***Please refer to the instruction manual included with your temperature controller for set up and operation.***