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Plumbing and Sump design


Eckreef

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I am setting up a 40 gallon breeder (36x18x16) which is "reef ready" with custom overflow. Just finished making a Durso standpipe for overflow.

I am now ready to build the sump (20g long) and plumb the overflow and return.

I am definitely not a plumber so any suggestions/comments would be greatly appreciated. I would appreciate the forum's input before I start building.

Attached are my sketches for the sump and plumbing.

The sump is modified from my research on the web with a lot of ideas taken from Melev's site.

My big questions regarding the plumbing...

Is 1" PVC for the overflow and 3/4" for the return adequate.

In a lot of pictures of sumps I notice that either the overflow or return is tee'd over to circulate extra water to the refugium. Is this necessary and if so does it matter which?

Also, I have read to glue everything possible to prevent leaks/microbubbles. Obviously I want to balance this with being able to take it apart or remove a pump for cleaning. Suggestions on the best way to do this?

Thanks for the assistance,

John

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You don't need a valve on the overflow/suction side. Your pump will determine how much water flows through, and only the pump will do that. You can only suck down what the pump puts back in, end of story.

The reason many of us will "Tee" our return line back towards the the sump is because we have pumps that are too large for our systems. Maybe your overflow cannot handle your 2,000GPH pump so you recirculate he water through the sump instead of pushing it all back into the tank. Some of us do it so that half of our water must go through the sump/fuge a second time to help run it through the skimmer or whatever to give it more contact time, thus becoming cleaner before going back to the tank. Some folks want their fuge to run super slow, as do I, so I tee off a very small amount of water to my fuge from my return line thus giving me greater control. You should only need one valve on the entire system and that is only if you wish to tee it to another area and need to throttle that area. Most tanks need no valves under them if only a sump, skimmer, and return pump. The important thing is to match your pump to your tank, and in your case I'd be searching for something around 5-600GPH and your 1" and 3/4" lines are perfect for that.

Glue everything. You don't need primer cause you are going to be using all new parts in a non pressurized system. I suggest if you wish to remove the pump for clang that you install a union about 6-8 inches about the pump. Don't worry about needing to clean the rest of the piping. About the best thing you can do is plan to cut it out and replace it every 5 years. It should not build up any faster than that. I've removed and torn down about 30 systems that had been running for years and all ran fine with the original pipes still in them.

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So your skimmer dumps back into the same compartment? shouldnt it dump over to the return? then the fuge slowly feeds the return aswell? correct me if im wrong on this.. i understand the idea to skim the water then feed the fuge, if that were the case should you have another compartmemnt before the bubble trap? and shouldnt the bubble trap be on the other side of the fuge by the return? if you want the skimmed water to feed the fuge you can feed it back from the return and plumb a loop back like caferacermike suggests and run it back to the fuge and return it back to the return compartment slowly. i would fear my water wont have enough contact time with the fuge to do its job if the flow was to fast..

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Just something to think about that I saw in my research.

http://wetwebmedia.com/SystemPIX/PlumbingPix/Oneinchart.htm

That link is pure bullsh*t. Sorry. I've been running 1" drains with 900GPH for over 7 years in the same system now. I've been running 1" drains in several aquariums with no problems for several more years. Every manufactured reef ready tank up to 90g uses 1" drains and now these clowns say it isn't good enough? I'm hard pressed to count the amount of tanks I know that use suction lines larger than 1".

Nano my ***.

I'm not a pipefitter or anything.

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Matt,

From what I have read, the skimmer only skims a fraction of the overflow water so the majority of the flow to the fug is "raw" water. I will probably eliminate the tee'd return to the fug and keep things simple like caferacermike suggests. That would eliminate the need for a bubble trap. My thoughts on the original plumbing diagram was to have the flow to the fug from the return as far away from the return as possible to eliminate bubbles. Maybe others can weigh in.

caferacermike,

Thanks for your suggestions. When you say a union...i assume you mean a slip-slip and not threaded?

I understand your point on the ballvalve for the overflow...would it help with quieting the overflow.

I have read several setup threads and several people commented that it took a lot of tweaking of the overflow valve and size of the hole in the durso to get the right combo to keep it quiet. I installed my durso tonight with just straight flex hose to the sump to see how the durso sounded. Still makes a lot of noise. it kept flushing and I kept increasing the size of the hole in the endcap...finally got it to 1/8" before it stopped flushing but now it has an audible - "loud" sound of pulling in air.

The tank will be in my office so I would like it to be quieter. From my reading it appears that this is a big problem for a lot of people with built in overflows. Anything that would work better?

Thanks again,

John

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all my return goes through the skimmer. i have from right to left my fuge/return/skimmer chamber i have a T from my tank to the sump/fuge i have a ball valve on both ends and a union and a ball valve directly after the bulkhead from my tank. to stop the flow if need be. the T goes into the skimmer chamber and the other side goes into the fuge i bairly have the ball valve open for the fuge. and nothing passes over from my skim chamber to the return that doesnt pass through the skimmer its self. from the return line it goes through a phos reactor with phos and carbon then to the tank.. as far as making it quiet. mine is quiet. i have 2 peices of PVC from both sides of the T 2 inches below my water line where the water goes into both the fuge and skim chamber. i have very little noise from my sump/fuge..

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I've just finished my 40 breeder, I have a 40 gal sump. My plumbing is an 1 1/2 overflow and two 3/4 inch returns on a squid.

My return pump is a mag 9.5 full open

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I dont know if this will help,good luck.

Jason

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Im also running a 1.5'' overflow, and a 3/4'' return with a Mag 9.5 wide open. I also have a 150 gallon tank. My turn over seems fine thru the sump. I agree that 1'' overflow will work for just about any normal application. Most tanks my size run dual overflows, but I wanted to save the run so I had a good place for my wavebox.

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I do agree you should glue all your plumbing and just use union fittings in the places you think you might need to take apart. I would do away with the tee on the return Its not really needed. Also the baffels should probably be switched. Have your bubble trap on the return side, as it's not going to matter if you have bubbles in your refugium. If you have 1 baffel on the return side any and all bubbles will spill over into your return chamber. Now I dont want to sound like I know everything about sump design because I dont, but I say this because I have micro bubble problems on my 90 gal from the design you have but my 40 gal has NO microbubbles whatsoever. This is just my opinion take it for what it's worth.

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Yeah Durso set ups do quiet the water noise but can lead to the sound of air being let in. Here is what I prefer to do. I drill the end cap for 1/4" NPT threads, you don't actually need to tap it since it is so thin. I then screw on a 1/4" M thread x John Guest ball valve into the cap. I then run a length of RO tubing down over my sump. Placing it over the sump just in case water ever got diverted into it. This allows the air to be pulled from inside the stand and hushes the sound of air being pulled into the Durso. You can also regulate the flow by adjusting the valve. I need to pull my valve off about once every 2 months and clean it of salt creep.

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Ditto on everything said. One inch should be fine. Put the bubble trap before the pump. Mike's airline from the durso works great. I like the tee with a valve back into the sump, but it is not nessecary.

What return pump are you going to use? I would suggest a mag 5 or 7 or anything with similar flow.

It is ok to not use PVC primer but I like to use it and think it is good practice. Mike and I disagree on this, even if he is a pipefitter.

I does not really matter if you skimmer dumps in its own chamber or not. Double skimming your water is a good thing.

Volume calculations:

36x18x4 = 2592 / 231 = 11.2 gallons

This is the number I would use to calculate the maximum amount of water that will overflow from your tank if there is a power outage. Basically 4" of water from the tank. Make sure you have 12 gallons of space in your sump to make sure there is room for full overflow.

11.2 gallons x 231 = 2592 / 30 / 12 = 7.2"

Meaning you should have 7.2" of empty space in your sump when it is running at normal levels.

Oh, finally, use schedule 10 PVC for your overflow. It has a thinner sidewall and therefore more volume than standard sch40 pipe.

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Thanks to all the "pipefitters" out there for great input.

I will try the valve addition to the Durso and see if I can get it quieter. If that doesn't work, I was contemplating getting another 40gal tank (selling the one I have) and drilling the back and installing overflows like Shane has at Fishy Business. He does them himself and I was impressed at how quiet they are.

I have already glued my Durso together with the main section being 1.25 inch sched 40 PVC. Will the sched 10 make that much of a difference?

I will rearrange my sump baffles as suggested.

From Prof's post:

[ I like the tee with a valve back into the sump, but it is not nessecary. ]

Do you mean tee the return back the sump or the overflow?

[What return pump are you going to use? I would suggest a mag 5 or 7 or anything with similar flow.]

I have a mag 5 but am getting a lot of vibration noise. Tips on eliminating this....

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Yeah Durso set ups do quiet the water noise but can lead to the sound of air being let in. Here is what I prefer to do. I drill the end cap for 1/4" NPT threads, you don't actually need to tap it since it is so thin. I then screw on a 1/4" M thread x John Guest ball valve into the cap. I then run a length of RO tubing down over my sump. Placing it over the sump just in case water ever got diverted into it. This allows the air to be pulled from inside the stand and hushes the sound of air being pulled into the Durso. You can also regulate the flow by adjusting the valve. I need to pull my valve off about once every 2 months and clean it of salt creep.

Can I get all these parts at Lowe's or Home Depot?

Can you post a picture of this setup?

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It's only 2 pieces, a valve and tubing. JG%20Ball%20Valve%20Shut%20Off.jpg It has threads on one end and slip on the other. Buy about 6 feet of $0.09 RO tubing. The valves are about $4 at Lowes. Drill a hole into the cap of the durso that will allow you to twist the valve threads into it. Slip the RO on to the valve and then drape it behind the tank and suspend it over the sump. Water should never flow through it, but if for some reason it should, better to drain into the sump. You simply adjust the amount of air pulled through the valve and it adjusts the water level in the overflow. if it "flushes" let more air in, if the water fills the overflow, close the valve a little.

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Swap out the Magdrive internal vibratory heater for an Eheim pump. That will get rid of the teeth jarring noise coming from under your tank. Will probably prevent your foundation from cracking as well.

LOL :D

Would you recommend the Eheim 1260 (635 gph) or 1262 (900 gph) for this tank?

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1260 would be plenty. The 1262 can really move some water and is what I use on my 75g, hint with my 1" plumbing. I hate to say it but online is half of retail price. Big Al's used to blow Eheim out the door for almost cost.

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Yes, the tee from the return side of the pump.

A little foam pad under the mag will help with vibration. Recycle those old mousepads smile.gif

Mousepad for internal or external pump....i.e. is it safe to put a mousepad in your sump?

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