Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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wesminsmith 10-16-2007 07:13 AM

Idea for a FW sump...
So I have some old aquarium stuff laying around...a 20 and a 5 gallon tank. I got to thinking about how I can clean up my 55 gallon, you know get rid of the filter and heater and stuff so this is what I came up with:

The water is pumped out of the main tank with a regular water pump (#1), it flows into the 20 gallon tank. There the water is heated and picked up by the Bio-Wheel 350 and filtered. Then the Bio-Wheel 350 will dump the water into the 5 gallon tank, where it will be heated again by the heater from my old tank. Then another pump (#2) inside the 5 gallon tank will dump the heated and filtered water into the other side of the tank.

Any suggestions? I know this set-up is not very economical...most people dont have extra tanks laying around but is it to complicated to be efficient? The only potential problem I see is pump #1 pumping the water in and the Bio-Wheel not being able to keep up with it and the 20 gallon tank overflowing...can I put ball valves on the line running from the pumps or will restricting the flow via a valve damage the pumps by not letting the flow at a normal rate? Any suggestions would be helpful, if I get some pumps this weekend I will begin set-up with a picture journal!


mHeinitz57 10-16-2007 03:42 PM

yeah I could definitely see some big house flooding potential here, lol. Generally sumps work off an overflow in which the water in your big tank really can only go down to a certain level before it stops draining. With your setup I could see the whole tank draining if the pump is too low. You said you want to avois having heaters and filters in the tank but now you have a big ugly pump with a power cord coming from it. I also dont see the point of the 5 gallon tank when you could just have the 350 filtering the 20 gallon tank and the water being pumped from the 20 back into the 50. That way you don't have to rely on the 350 keeping up with the other 2 pumps. To ensure that all the water is filtered you would be better off turning the sump into an actual filter itself and not just a place to hide stuff. Look at some different sump designs and get some silicone, plastic and tempered glass as well as larger filter media to create an awesome filter. I just think the risks of your design far outweigh the benefits. Personally I would just get a large canister filter and place it under the tank. SOme canister filters will house a heater or Hydor makes a heater that goes inline with the output tube of the canister filter. Just some other ideas to think about.

vidiots 10-26-2007 01:10 PM

It might be doable if you add some float switches for the pumps, because you'll never be able to exactly match the flow rate of the two pumps. You'll also have to put some syphon break holes in the plumbing to brevent the above post on flooding from happening in the event of a power outage.

caferacermike 10-26-2007 04:57 PM

I wouldn't touch it like that.

As was stated get a simple HOT overflow and allow the return pump to regulate the flow.

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