Does this setup make sense - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 9 Old 02-24-2010, 01:21 PM Thread Starter
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Does this setup make sense

This diagram follows some beginner's research. We are wanting to cool and create current in a shallow tank (8" water depth). Are the powerheads (x2) redundant to the pump in the cooler? (I am assuming coolers have pumps) Is it ok to connect the cooler and cannister serially?

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post #2 of 9 Old 02-25-2010, 09:26 AM Thread Starter
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Well maybe the question was cryptic. I am wondering about

(1) the 2 heads being used to create crossflow in the tank

(2) waterflow through the cannister filter and cooler, one after the other.

Thanks for any opinions on this!
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post #3 of 9 Old 02-25-2010, 09:36 AM
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unless i missed something....why would you want a cooler??? most fish enjoy temps between 72-82 degrees....
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post #4 of 9 Old 02-25-2010, 09:46 AM Thread Starter
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We are collecting fish and invertebrates from streams around here, nothing tropical. Water temp is usually 60's-70's.
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post #5 of 9 Old 02-25-2010, 10:16 AM
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if this is going to kept in a house you may be able to get away without a cooler....i keep my house at 65-68 degrees....the water would be the room temp which might be ok....

I don't know much about coolers (except the ones that hold beer!)

i would think one powerhead may be enough, if any at all.....

others will be along, I'm sure to send lots of pics!
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post #6 of 9 Old 02-25-2010, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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My idea for cooler temp came from this old thread from here and another on a different site.

Does this dollar sunfish have a problem?
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post #7 of 9 Old 02-26-2010, 03:38 AM
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As far as I know, most chillers are "in-line" devices. To get one to work, you'd want an input hose in the tank going down to the chiller, which works via gravity siphon (a pump/powerhead isn't needed) but then you need a pump to pump the water back up and into the tank. Since you're using a canister filter there, that should work as your pump. So yes, the first powerhead in the line is not needed.

If I were you, I would put the filter before the chiller for two reasons:
1) You'd have clean, debris-free water going through the chiller which should prevent problems with the chiller and
2) A warmer environment in the canister filter will promote better bacteria growth. The water leaving the chiller will presumably be colder than the actual tank temperature, so you'd have some pretty cold water in the canister in your drawing which would probably negatively affect bacterial growth.

Edit: you don't need the other powerhead, either. The canister filter has its own pump and will be able to pump the water back into the tank.

I would set this up by putting the intake for the filter/chiller line at the far end of the tank, use a spraybar for the canister at the near end and maybe use the powerheads at the near end facing the far end to generally cause current to go in that direction (essentially aiding the spraybar). How many powerheads/where you put them/how powerful they are/if you even need them is all a function of how powerful your canister filter is and how much flow you want in the tank.

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Last edited by iamntbatman; 02-26-2010 at 03:41 AM.
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post #8 of 9 Old 02-26-2010, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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I agree about switching the cooler/canister. One concern is that with a 30 gallon tank, I won't get much water movement from a smaller (30 gal type) canister. I thought I would find a passive (gravity) canister if there is such a thing and let the powerheads do the work.

If the canister pump can move enough water, I am happy, preferring the lowest powered and simplest arrangement. Do you think the diagonal flow I drew will not be effective?

What is the point of the spray bar?
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post #9 of 9 Old 02-27-2010, 12:32 AM
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The spray bar basically turns the output into a horizontal line rather than a single point where all of the water is coming from. People use them for various applications, but I think you'd get a more controlled flow from one end of the tank to the other by using a spray bar than having just a plain ol' output nozzle on the return hose.

The diagonal flow is better than no flow, but I think it'll create dead spots or eddies in the upper left and lower right corners.

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