How to build DWC recirculating deep water culture hydroponics 5 gallon bucket

How to build DWC recirculating deep water culture hydroponics 5 gallon bucket

quick video on how to build your own hydroponic recirculating deep water culture system DWC with 5 gallon buckets under 200 dollars.
this took me a few hours at max to put together once i had all parts ready to go. I am in no way a professional so feel free to make your own adjustments to make your hydroponics dwc system better. as i mentioned in the video, i would stay away from pvc if possible due to the weight they add and possible strain on the buckets and leaks they can cause. not to mention if u accidentally bump into them u can rip apart the whole system.
hydroponics is a great way to grow as the plants get maximum water / air and nutrients at all times. Downside is that if you have any leaks and water drains out your plants are gone. Keep an eye on them at all times.

CRAFTSMAN 30-Gallon. $19 ( similar item
VIVOSUN Air Pump 950 GPH 32W. $45 ( )
6 air Stones $30 ( )
Uniclife 80-550GPH. $19 ( )
6 – 5gallon food grade buckets $27 ( ) similar item
6 – 6 inch net pots for 5glln bucket. $25 ( ) similar item
1/2 inch pvc union $3.50 ( ) similar item
1/2 pvc ball valve $3.00 ( )
10 of 1″ rubber grommet. $12.00 ( ) use bulkheads
10 of 3/4 ” rubber grommet. $9.00 ( use bulkheads
3/4 and 1/2 pvc pipes 10ft each. $5.00
Grand total. $192.50 ( some prices have changed since video was made)

Extra items u might need
Deburring Tool ( ) if using bulkhead then this is a must to get clean lip
Southern Ag – 05171 ( ) must have if not chilling water to 68 degrees
Uniclife 1000 GPH Sub Inline Water Pump ( ) this is a bit faster flow
ANDGOO Oil Filter Pliers Set ( ) ( for bulkhead installation )
Bluelab MONGUA Guardian Monitor ( ) ( amazing product to monitor EC)
Clay Pebbles, 40 Liter Bag ( ) best price i could find for clay pebbles
Drip Irrigation Tubing 1/4 ( ) instead of clear air tubing
Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System ( ) use ro water if possible
Aquatic Life DI Cartridge ( ) DI filter to get near zero ppm water




What do you think?


Written by Aleksandar

Video MakerContent AuthorYears Of Membership


  1. So tell me how you are feeding a late flowering plant and a brand new plant in the same system? How are you going to flush the finished plants and not starve the new ones??

  2. I love your videos you're very informative. I am in the process of building three bucket system. These are three rope totes almost 30 gallons each but I have no idea how I'm going to return them because they are in line can you help me out please give me a few ideas on how to construct it. Thank you

  3. Hey thanks for the video. I've been a drain to waste coco coir guy for a few years, after soil, and now want to move to true hydroponics (indoor growing). This video is part of my investigation and it really helped out in visualizing the setup part. I have two chilled reservoirs. The problem with a straight up DWC (ie isolated totes), is the heat + light issue in my experience of keeping algae/mold/crap under control. I have chiller coils in the 2 current ~ 45 gallon each res's and want to cycle the nutes through the reservoirs to keep the temp under control, plus much easier to check EC and pH. I agree with the grommet issue you highlighted. Thanks again for posting the video.

  4. Good work man. So you have the water feeds going to the bottom of the buckets, from a submersible pump connected directly to the output inside your reservoir? So the returning water is strictly gravity fed, from top of each bucket? Correct?

  5. Hi! I think you can actually use the air pumps in the reservoir and it will oxygenate the water you are actually pumping. Water will circulate oxygenated from the reservoir.

  6. That reflectrix material is a lifesaver on the buckets. It’s kept my temps down about 10 degrees in the buckets in a small greenhouse that can get toasty for my lettuces.


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