Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   sump help please (

burbanmama 05-12-2009 11:01 AM

sump help please
Story of the tank:
About 2 weeks ago my brother texted me and asked if I wanted a fish tank. He said they guy described it as about 4 ft long and a foot wide. I presumed fresh tank, they were just giving it away. Thought that would be nice. We went to pick it up on Saturday (5-2-09) and discovered it was a 6ft 120 gallon salt tank, with everything except fish and water(including tons of rock).

I have no experience with salt tanks. My husband had a little with a 30 gallon tank at our high school 10 years ago. So his knowledge is not a lot, and what he does know is rusty. We have gotten a little help from a local fish shop. We weren't expecting this big of a tank, and especially not salt. So we are on a very low budget. But we always wanted a salt tank and had this wonderful opportunity dropped in our laps.

We set up Saturday night. Had the water tested Sunday, and it had already begun to cycle. By Wednesday it was ready for fish (thanks to the previous owners keeping the sand and rock well). So Thursday we got a clown and two damsels for starters. Friday we noticed funky algae growing. Talked to the lady at the fish shop and she told us what to do with what we do have (black stuff on the rocks, and just wait) and what may come.

Then we started having trouble.
Reading the "understanding Sumps" sticky has helped me know more of what I am talking about. But I really have no idea what kind of equipment I have.

First we noticed bubbles from the outflow. I had been told that bubbles mean you need more water. So I added some more, to the point that we can't add anymore water. Still bubbles. There seems to be air in the return lines. This occurred after we put a siphon break in the return line. But where we were shown to put it was above the water line. Could this be causing the bubbles?

Saturday I noticed the sump seemed to be losing siphon from the overflow, it wasn't moving the water a quickly as before. Then it completely stopped. I got it started again and it was ok for several hours, then it stopped again. This has been going on since then. To keep it going I have the overflow at a slight angle. This is causing excessive noise (the annoying bubbling brook) but at this point I'm happy to hear that and see bubbles because it means the water is flowing through. Does anybody know what I can do???

We have a skimmer, but it is not yet set up. We were told we didn't need it yet and to wait about 6 months.

I'm trying to figure out what my equipment is. The pump in the sump says CA 1000. what I'm finding in internet searches is it is a Catalina pump.
Skimmer is a Remora Aqua C.


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