Is there a big difference in overflow boxes? What I mean is, are there different companies that make them (I assume there are), and are any better than others? From what I was told today bt the person at the fisth store, I would be better off having them. He explained it to me and even showed me on two different tanks how they operated (one had the boxes and the other had what he called a "siphon" setup). Also, according to him, the biggest difference between having them on the back or in the corner was more a personal preference. Is this pretty much true? The way I see it, if there is any viewing from the side, the corner units will somewhat block your view, especially when you add the live rock around it. I'm amazed at how much I learn everyday about all this. I'm more and more excited about starting up, even though I know I still have quite a bit to learn about it all. Thanks again for all the help I've been getting here from all of you!
Overflows are very important. They make it so you can put all your gear under your tank. You can't put a proper skimmer on the tank so you need a sump under the tank. This is how the water gets there. Overflow boxes are much nicer than just a hole in the bottom with a long piece of pipe. Hong on boxes work well and are made by hundreds of manufacturers. Center or corners does make a difference. A 500g cube benefits from having it directly in the center of the tank. That way it can draw from all areas. tanks that are longer than wide generally have the corner overflow. Tanks that are more square benefit from center overflows. This is because long tanks will generally push wastes from one end to the other with currents. Square tanks need to pull the wastes in. Also skimmers work by removing only the last 1/4" of the water in the tank. That's where the oils collect. So the water in the sump coming from an overflow is that water.
Can you get by without them? Yes. Will your tank prosper? Probably. Will your life be so much easier and tank maintenance a breeze that you will actually enjoy the time spent with your tank? Yes. Would I recomend a drilled tank for even a 30g? Yes.
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