Hacking a Zip Hydrotap

Hello Makers!

I have recently purchased a refurb Zip G5 Hydrotap – (thinking I got a deal…)

Unbeknownst to me at the time I bought a “Boiling Filtered” Model and not “Boiling…and filtered”.

So the my hydrotap out of the box can ONLY do boiling water… naturally the missus is not happy as the majority of the reason we wanted a tap in the first place is to get filtered water - we dont want to drill another hole through the benchtop either.

So what we ended up doing … as a workaround… is to buy a seperate water filter but route one of the flexible housing through 1 of the 3 water outlet holes from bottom of the hydrotap… good we are making progress.

Now that we have filter water… to control its access involves opening the cupboard beneath the sink and manually turning a tap…

What I am now exploring is to somehow switch on/off water without having to open the cupboard Nor having some sorta wired button.

In my mind… we either do something wirelessly… some sorta sensor… or leverage the existing unused buttons on the Zip tap itself.

Additional information.
The Zip tap itself has a usb connection to a command centre that sits underneath the sink… anyway we can “intercept” the signal or some other method to figure out one of the unused button is pressed?

Ideas? …

Hi Peter,

Unfortunately, USB is a fairly hard protocol to sniff :frowning:, there are TONS of different device types a peripheral can enumerate as. Here are 2 approaches I can think of:

  1. Hook up an oscilloscope and grab the hefty USB spec documents and figure out exactly what is being sent. Ben Eater has some excellent videos where he goes over how a USB keyboard works using this method. He leaves out the boring bit of poring over the spec documents, that’ll be up to you :wink:
    How does USB device discovery work? - YouTube
    How does a USB keyboard work? - YouTube
    If you don’t have scope with this capability, cheap logic analysers run on sigrok, and it reports some USB capability, I haven’t used it though so YMMV.
    Protocol decoders - sigrok

  2. Hook up the tap to your computer, and pray it enumerates as a serial device, and use PuTTY or TeraTerm to see if it spits out text when you press buttons. Additionally if it enumerates as something else like HID you may see it in device manager too. Note there’s a little bit of danger here as Zip may be being naughty and using non-standard voltages. Unlikely but keep it in mind.