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Topic: Ultrasonic sensor to determine water level? (Read 11 times) previous topic - next topic



I'm planning to build a water level sensor for my watertank of my espresso machine... And i was just wondering about, if a ultrasonic sensor can be used for this propose? Or is this a stupid idea? :smiley-red:

Maybe one like this:


I have searching the net, but i cant seem to find any clean answer...


I don't think ultrasonic sensors work well in enclosed tanks. An infrared proximity sensor would be cheaper with the small distance you're dealing with. To measure the water level you can add some type of float that would sit on top of the water that the IR sensor would reflect off of. The voltage from the transistor will vary with the distance measured.

No specs on this one, but just to give you the idea of what you're looking for:
Sparkfun.com sells a better selection with more detailed documentation.


Yeah, you're probably right...

Your idea could work, but how big do you think the float object minimum should be?   

The watertank is 25cm deep... Sensor will be placed right above the water. approx 1cm..

Anders 2009

I have dealt with the exact same problem, but for a 20L tank and found several threads in the subject of water level measurement on this forum. Search around and you will find a lot of good input.

All-in-all, I have decided to go for a float with a neodymium magnet on it and measure the magnetic field strength using a Hall effect sensor. This has the added benefit that your electronics can be outside of the tank, provided it is plastic. IR will probably work as well I guess.


Nice approach... Haven't thought of that one  8)

I could also fit a line of fx. five reed sensors  on the outside of the tank, with a floating magnet in the water.. The resolution aint that good, but it would work...

But i think i will go for the IR sensor... Just because i can...  :P

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