How to Build a Hydroponics System

The air lift hydroponic drip system pump is one of the great ways to water your hydro plants; it’s a lot cheaper than most other systems around and it's pretty fail safe too. This is a great little system that’s also easily made from part that is easily found, locally.


  1. 1
    Gather your supplies. Given the importance of the supplies, the following list details the things to look for in your quest to put together your supplies:
    • Find a plain old aquatic air pump. These pumps are what are called a diaphragm pump and although reliable, they do tend to lose some performance after about six months so it's worth keeping your receipt just in case it gives up the ghost, altogether.
    • Get some PVC pots. These are very cheap and hold 20 liters (5.3 US gal) “to the halfway mark” of the very best advanced hydroponic nutrients. For this PVC pipe hydroponics drip system plans, any PVC pot will do if it's hidden away in your hydroponic grow room.
    • Get 22mm PVC piping for putting in the air line. And get 5mm silicon tubing for keeping things together and stopping the pipe from floating about. You should be able to get silicon tubing in varying size from your local aquatic shop, and it needs to be 5mm inner diameter if you want to lift your hydro nutrients with only a third or less nutrient filled container. If you start with it half filled, then after 7/10 days your plants will use some. If the diameter gets any bigger, you won’t have enough air pressure to lift nutrients up.
    • Obtain T piece connectors x2. These can come from an aquatics shop although your hydroponics shop should also supply them too.
    • With this system, avoid using the usual hydro net pots, but just your bog standard PVC plant pots because you want the roots growing out the bottom where the nutrients will be dripping down and not from the sides, as they’ll grow for about an inch then die off.
    • Get some airline to connect your hydroponic air pump to your airlift pump tubing.
    • Hydro Air lift Drip System
      Get some black drip line. This stuff you’ll need as you can't make holes though normal silicon tubing. These are sold in hydroponics shops and garden centres.
  2. 2
    Measure the inside height of your now hydroponic bucket / container and cut your length of 5mm diameter silicon tubing.
    • Measure 3cm/30mm from one end and cut 3 centimeter (1.2 in) off and place one T piece to your now two piece of tubing, so you now have one three cm tubing attached to a T piece with the other piece of tubing attached to the opposite side of that T piece.
  3. 3
    Attach the air line to the last end of; yes you guessed it, the T piece connector.
  4. 4
    Now you have all four bit connected together, it's time to put your two pipes “ air line and 5mm silicon tubing,” though your 22mm “or similar” PVC piping and attach the other T piece.
  5. 5
    Build your hydro drip line that sits at the top. This stuff is sold as garden drip line or hydroponic drip feed line fro your local hydroponics shop, first measure how much you need to go though each centre of each pot that your planning on using and at the same time also mark out your hydro drip holes as well.
  6. 6
    Heat up the "non drill" bit of the drill bit and use it to make the drip holes for it all to work. You can also us a stove lighter, try to make a nice clean hole if you can just help to stop the hydroponic water solution from spitting out, and what you're left with is a nice continuous dripping action.


  • This system will give you very good results and especially if you also use an air stone as well with your hydroponic drip systems that basically work in the same manner as a +aero garden+ works, only a lot more room and your roots won’t bugger up the water pump, as there isn’t one “bonus.”

Things You'll Need

  • Air pump, aquatic air pump, nothing posh needed
  • Good Sized PVC Container, 40 liter (10.6 US gal)
  • 22mm PVC pipe “sold as overflow white PVC piping
  • T piece x2 “Aquatic Shop”
  • PVC plant pot x4, Not Net Pot
  • Air line, from aquatic shop
  • Garden drip line, also known as hydroponic drip line
  • 1.5mm drill bit

Article Info

Categories: Gardening | Hydroponics