Hi, I'm new to PIC's and general electronics but I've been making progress.
I've been working on a climate control system replacement for an old car which originally used a feedback system that controls a water valve, the blower speeds and some vacuum functions. So far I've managed to build a servo controlled valve and do some 12V switching of auto headlights with the Arduino and a MOSFET. (I'm using the headlight as a proxy for the blower motor before moving on to more complicated PWM for the motor)
I was very excited to get the Arduino to control the servo (RC servo) valve by using examples and tinkering with the code. I was even more excited when I managed to get the Arduino to switch a high amp load like a 12V headlight! Baby steps, but I'm learning and things are looking a lot more feasible than when I started!
I'm actually amazed by the power of these little assemblies and I'm having trouble keeping focused because of all the possibilities!
Now that I'm getting the hardware nailed down I need some nudges towards successful programming.
The system I'm working on will require a few things:
1- It will need an input for the ambient temp and: 2- It will require a "Set Point" controlled by a potentiometer and: 3- It needs to be "smart" enough to increase/decrease the blower speed based on how much difference there is between the "set Point" and the ambient temp and: 4- open/close the water valve when the "Set-Point" requires more/less heat.
For now I'm working out the blower speeds. I was thinking about having 4-5 different speeds using PWM. Most of the tutorials seem to focus on using a pot to increase/decrease speeds but I'm looking for guidance on how to have multiple speeds controlled via the Arduino. My first thought is using different pins to output different values. Pin 1- low, Pin 2- med low, pin 3 - med, etc. I understand that not all pins will output PWM but hopefully someone gets the idea.
For starters I would like to program (Or adapt some existing programs) to start out at one speed and switch through several other speeds. Similar to making an LED on, then blink, then change the blink rate etc. That way I can see the code in action and hopefully learn some things I can build upon. I'm sorry about the LED example, but it seems that I'm learning a lot by making little LED's flash.
I have NO experience with programming other than G/M code work years ago (CNC Machines) and some tinkering with HTML.
Sorry about the long post but I'm new to this and it's a bit complicated to me. I have a "fuzzy" idea about how to proceed but no real world experience.
Thanks in advance! I hpe this makes sense.