The Super Reliable Automatic Portion Control Cat Feeder

Finding a good, reliable automatic cat feeder these days can be quite a nightmare! You spend your hard-earned money on supposedly good feeding machines, but they fail to perform satisfactorily.

You experience the all-too-common issues such as hugely inconsistent portion control, inferior construction, grossly inaccurate timer, etc.

So long story short, just by chance, I came across this automatic portion control cat feeder. The machine is pretty funky looking and it’s manufactured by a company called “Super-Feed”.

Super-Feed's CSF-3XL Portion Control Feeder for Cats

 Click Here to View Full Product Description

 

I felt somewhat skeptical at first because number one…it doesn’t look like your typical pet feeding machine, and number two…I’ve never heard of Super-Feed before, and I don’t like the name…

Anyway, at the time I had some extra cash to splash thanks to my freelance gigs, thus I decided to splurge some of that dough for my loveable, yet insanely annoying cats. Besides, reviews of this machine were overwhelmingly positive so I reckoned, “what the heck, I’d give it a shot!”

Okay first up, I have to give my thumbs up to the feeder’s capacity which is pretty generous. How generous? Around 24 cups per refill and that is equivalent to 1.8 gallons! Such a big capacity is ideal for a lazy person like me because I don’t have to constantly reload the hopper with dry cat kibbles.
 
With the CSF-3XL’s sizeable capacity, you’d probably need to do the refill like once every few weeks. Say for example, you set the feeder to automatically dispense half a cup of kibbles twice a day. So that’s one cup per day, and the machine can supply up to 24 cups.

This means a kibble reload is in order every 24 days. Isn’t that insanely convenient? What’s even more convenient is the feeder’s portion control function.

It’s quite consistent in doling out the amount of dry food calibrated by the user for each cycle. Although I’ve noticed sometimes it does give out slightly more/less food per feeding cycle.

Portion accuracy is not a hundred percent spot-on I’m afraid, but darn near close enough. As pointed out by the manufacturer with the silly name, this machine can’t absolutely guarantee totally precise distribution of food.

For your info, the shapes and sizes of kibbles will affect the machine’s portion control accuracy. The manufacturer claims that the portion control cat feeder works exceptionally well with round or square-shaped kibbles, and I find that to be the case.

My cats love the “Go!” brand dry cat food and the CSF-3XL feeder’s portion distribution is pretty accurate with this particular brand. I think it helps that the Go! kibbles are somewhat round-shaped.

This feeder can be calibrated to dispense near any amount of portion you want for up to 24 hours. Maximum number of feed cycles is 48 per day with intervals at every half an hour.

For me, 48 feeding cycles per day is totally overkill, but other users might find that amount of cycles useful, especially for cats with special needs. Case in point, my friend Deb has a cat that requires about 9 small feedings per day.

So she configured the machine to dole out 1/8 cup of kibbles every 3 hours. As for me, I set it up to dispense 3 cycles a day and at half a cup per feed. The 48 feeding cycles is made possible because the feeder comes with a decent quality indoor analog timer (see picture below).


automatic portion control cat feeder analog timer

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The timer has a useful red LED light so you’ll know whether it’s on or off. It’s programmable and gives you the ability to configure that massive number of feeding cycles every 24 hours. Now I gotta say…the CSF-3XL automatic portion control cat feeder isn’t exactly beginner-friendly.

 I’m not saying the thing is super difficult to set up, but the initial portion adjustment takes getting used to. It’s not something that you can take out of the box, and within a couple minutes you’re able to figure out how the portion control works. I found the portion control feature a bit tricky to calibrate in the beginning.

Also a little assembly is required before you can set it up. Don’t worry the assembling process is simple. Assembling instructions are included so just follow along. However, as mentioned above, the portion control configuration is pretty tricky.

To tell you the truth, it took me roughly 20 minutes to figure out how to get the desired portion for each feeding cycle. God only knows how many times I had to keep pressing the reset button and fiddling with the feed dial in order to obtain the portion I wanted.

Good news is you can find a URL on the cover of the user manual which provides access to an easy-to-follow video tutorial that teaches you how to properly calibrate the portion control function. The video helped immensely!

 Even better news…The portion control adjustment is a one-time thing. You just set it once and then forget about it…unless of course, you accidentally hit the reset button or you switch to a different kibble size.

By the way, kibble size and the length of time the machine’s chute remains open are the two determining factors of the CSF-3XL’s portion control feature. If the chute stays open for exactly one minute, that equals to approximately a cup of kibbles dispensed.

So from a portion distribution standpoint, the machine is super flexible and highly reliable. The construction is exceptional too. Not many portion control feeder for cats possess such heavy-duty build.

This machine in particular is constructed of various metal parts as well as highly durable plastic materials.

The machine is also highly secured, which means even the most devious food obsessed cats will not easily be able to break into it. Also, you may purchase an optional protective chute cover for that extra security.

From my experience, the cover isn’t necessary because the feeder is way too tough to break, and mind you, my cats are very obsessed with the GO! brand dry cat food.

Two things I dislike about this auto dispenser. One: it can’t be operated with batteries so if there’s a power outage in your area, then your cat is screwed! No food for the poor thing until the power comes back.

Fortunately, you don’t have to keep readjusting the feeding cycle/portion every time a power outage occurs. Feed cycles and portion amount that you calibrated earlier will resume when power is restored.

The CSF-3XL dispenser comes with a 6-foot cord AC adapter which is a low voltage one to ensure your pet’s safety.Two: The portion control feature could be more user-friendly.

Like I mentioned earlier, the proper calibration took me around 20 minutes to figure out. I wish the feature wasn’t so tricky to set up first time around.

All told, I’d highly recommend this portion control cat feeder. The price tag is a little on the high-ish side, but it’s totally well worth the money because it’s reliable, works great, and the exceptionally sturdy construction means this unit will hold up for plenty of years. No point buying a 40 dollar feeder that fails within 6 to 12 months.

Click Here for CSF-3XL Automatic Portion Control Cat Feeder

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RIP Benz

Jul 2014

 This site is dedicated to the memory of tough boy Benzee, Chocho, Ruru, Nemo and her awesome little kitties.

2004 - 2014

 
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