Best Automated Nutrient Doser in 2023

automated hydroponic nutrient dosing for plants

Hydroponic nutrient dosing can be challenging and time-consuming for many indoor growers. Over-fertilization or under-fertilization can cause a host of problems for your plants, including stunted growth, nutrient deficiencies, or even death. That’s why many indoor growers turn to automatic hydroponic nutrient doses to simplify the process and ensure that their plants receive the right amount of nutrients at the right time. 

Hydroponic nutrient dosers are automated systems that dispense nutrient solutions into hydroponic systems.

In this post, we’ll look at the best automatic hydroponic nutrient dosers available. Here is a summary for you to check.

NameProductIdeal ForPrice
Bluelab Pro Controllerbluelab pro controlled automated hydroponic nutrient doserProfessional/Commercial GrowersCheck Price on Amazon
Dosatron D14MZ2dosatron nutrient doserSmall/Medium Scale operationsCheck Price on Amazon
Milwaukee MC720nutrient doser automated by milwaukeeHobbyist/Small Scale operationsCheck Price on Amazon
Bonus Nutrient DoserGo belowGo belowGo below

While I have already shared the list of the top 3 nutrient dosers with you, now, if you are interested, I will try to answer all your doubts and queries related to automated dosers. You might be wondering if you need a nutrient doser or not ? Or maybe how does an automated doser even work? Is there any training required to operate such a complex device? Also, a crucial question, how will I shift from manual to automatic nutrient dosing? Let’s dig right in!

How does automated nutrient doser work?

Nutrient dosers work by mixing a pre-measured amount of concentrated nutrient solution with water and then delivering the mixture to the plants in the hydroponic system. The nutrient dosing process typically involves a few key components, including:

Nutrient solution reservoir

This container holds the concentrated nutrient solution. The nutrient solution is typically made up of a mixture of macronutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) and micronutrients (such as iron, magnesium, and calcium).

Dosage pump

This device draws a precise amount of nutrient solution from the reservoir and dispenses it into the hydroponic system. The pump can be controlled by a timer or a computerized system, which allows growers to automate the dosing process.

pH and EC sensors

These sensors measure the nutrient solution’s pH and electrical conductivity (EC) in real time. This information is used to ensure that the nutrient solution is at the optimal level for plant growth. If the pH or EC levels are too high or too low, the dosing system can adjust the amount of nutrient solution dispensed to bring the levels back into the optimal range.

Read More “5 Best EC & pH Meters for Hydroponics in 2023

Dosing schedule

The dosing schedule is a program that specifies when and how much nutrient solution should be dispensed into the hydroponic system. The dosing schedule can be adjusted based on the plant’s growth stage, the hydroponic system’s size, and other factors that may affect plant growth.

When to use an automatic hydroponic nutrient doser?

Hydroponic nutrient dosers can be used in a variety of situations where precise nutrient delivery is important. Here are some common scenarios where growers might use a nutrient doser:

Large hydroponic operations

In large hydroponic operations, it can be difficult to mix and dispense nutrient solutions manually. A nutrient doser can automate this process, allowing growers to deliver precise amounts of nutrients to their plants without the need for manual mixing.

High-value crops

For high-value crops like cannabis or exotic herbs, precise nutrient delivery is critical for maximizing yield and quality. Nutrient doser can ensure that plants receive the optimal amount of nutrients at each growth stage, resulting in healthier plants and higher yields.

Inconsistent water quality

If the water quality in a grower’s area is inconsistent, it can be difficult to maintain consistent nutrient levels in a hydroponic system. A nutrient doser can help by automatically adjusting the nutrient solution to compensate for changes in water quality.

Time constraints

For growers with limited time to devote to their hydroponic systems, a nutrient doser can be a valuable tool. With a nutrient doser, growers can automate the nutrient delivery process, freeing up time for other important tasks.

Remote growing

For growers who cannot physically access their hydroponic systems regularly, a nutrient doser can be a useful tool for remotely monitoring and adjusting nutrient levels.

Let’s check out the top 5 nutrient dosers for automating your hydroponic gardens. We will also look at some of the pros and cons each one has and if its good for beginners or only pros.

1. Bluelab CONTPRO Pro Controller

Ideal for professional/commercial growers

The Bluelab Pro Controller is a top-of-the-line nutrient doser that is known for its accuracy and reliability. It features a pH sensor, an EC sensor, and a temperature sensor that work together to monitor and adjust the nutrient levels in your hydroponic system.

User friendly interface with LCD displayRelatively expensive
Highly accurate measurementTakes some time to understand all features
Fully Automated pH and nutrient controlRegular maintenance
Compatible with various growing systemsPower outage resets setting

The Bluelab Pro Controller can be used with any hydroponic system, including recirculating, drain-to-waste, and run-to-waste systems. It is also easy to use, with a simple and intuitive interface.

2. Dosatron D14MZ2 Water Powered Nutrient Doser

Ideal for small to medium scale applications

The Dosatron D14MZ2 is a proportional dosing system that is designed for use in large-scale hydroponic operations. It works by drawing nutrient solution from a tank or reservoir and mixing it with water in a precise ratio, ensuring that the nutrient levels in the hydroponic system remain consistent.

Easy to UseHigh one-time cost
Precise dosing of chemicals & nutrientsLimited control options as compared to other dosers
No electricity or battery requiredRequire consistent water pressure for accurate dosing
Adjustable flow rateRegular cleaning to prevent clogs
Low maintenance

The Dosatron D14MZ2 is highly customizable, with various accessories and fittings available to help growers fine-tune their dosing. The system is also easy to install and operate, requiring no electricity or batteries.

3. Milwaukee MC720 Dosing Pump Kit

Ideal for hobbyist or small scale growers

The Milwaukee MC720 dosing kit is a simple and affordable solution for automating the dosing of liquid nutrients and pH adjusters in hydroponic and aquarium systems. The kit includes a compact peristaltic pump, pH and conductivity probes, and a controller that can be programmed to deliver precise dosages at set intervals.

Simple & affordable solutionLimited dosing capacity
Compact, easy to installProbe require regular cleaning
High quality and accurate pHLimited control options
Precise dosing based on time or pH/EC levelsNot ideal for large-scale or commercial growing operations
Safety features, alarms, auto shut down

You have already seen the top 3 recommendations for automated hydroponic nutrient dosers; the next one is a bonus for all of you guys. Why is this a bonus? Because this one is manufactured by a small business based of the USA and needs our support, hence we would like you to take a look at this American beauty!

Bonus : Tetraponics FLORATek 3 Pro 

Ideal for small to medium scale hydroponic gardens

The Tetraponics FLORATek 3 Pro is an American-made dosing system with proportional smart feed control for efficient dosing of nutrients and pH adjustment. It features three multi-speed pumps, which can be configured for one pH and two nutrient solutions or dual pH and one nutrient solution.

Can be used for pH and nutrient dosingHigher cost
Automatic calibration and alertsLimited options
High quality componentsMay not be suitable for very large operations

It is designed for efficient and precise dosing without overtreating and is backed by USA-based customer support.

Things to keep in mind while shifting from manual to automatic nutrient dosing

Shifting from manual dosing to automatic nutrient dosing in hydroponics can offer many benefits, such as improved accuracy, consistency, and efficiency. However, there are a few important things to keep in mind to ensure a successful transition:

Choose the right automatic dosing system

There are different types of automatic dosing systems available in the market, such as peristaltic pumps, venturi injectors, and dosing controllers. Choose the one that suits your hydroponic setup and meets your nutrient-dosing requirements.

Calibrate the dosing system

Before using the automatic dosing system, it is important to calibrate it properly to ensure accurate dosing. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully to calibrate the dosing system correctly.

Monitor the nutrient solution regularly

With automatic dosing, it can be easy to assume that everything is working fine. However, it is essential to regularly monitor the nutrient solution to ensure that the plants are getting the right amount of nutrients.

Start with small doses

When starting with automatic dosing, it is best to start with small doses and gradually increase them as needed. This will help avoid overfeeding the plants and causing nutrient imbalances.

Have a backup plan

In case of any technical issues or malfunctions, it is important to have a backup plan in place to avoid any interruptions in nutrient supply to the plants.

Overall, shifting from manual dosing to automatic nutrient dosing in hydroponics can be a great investment in your crop’s success. With careful planning and attention to detail, the transition can be smooth and successful.

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