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Sump Questions


Tandor69
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Hello All,

I recently installed a DIY 10 gallon sump on my main tank after testing and practicing on a spare tank in my garage (wife called it my meth lab). I have some questions and hope I can pick some of your amazing brains!

1. What kind of flow is good for a sump. As fast as possible? As slow as possible? In and out at a medium pace?

2. All things being equal, which chamber is the best one to put the heater in? Do you put the temperature probe in the same chamber?

3. My tank is a 46 gallon bow front. I only have 4 fish in there now, so nitrates and phosphates are testing (salifert) at 0. Should I turn off the skimmer until they go up, and or I ad more livestock? I don't have a massive algae issue, just some spots of turf algae.

4. About a third of my live rock was from my 20 long that I moved everything from. The new rock is starting to show coraline algea growth. It has been running for almost 2 months. Should I leave the old rock in there longer or would it be safe to start removing some. There are a few pieces i don't want to leave in there.

5. Do you always turn off the return pump when feeding? It seems every time I turn it off and restart I have to balance my flow.

Thanks for all the help.

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1. What kind of flow is good for a sump. As fast as possible? As slow as possible? In and out at a medium pace?
2. All things being equal, which chamber is the best one to put the heater in? Do you put the temperature probe in the same chamber?
3. My tank is a 46 gallon bow front. I only have 4 fish in there now, so nitrates and phosphates are testing (salifert) at 0. Should I turn off the skimmer until they go up, and or I ad more livestock? I don't have a massive algae issue, just some spots of turf algae.
4. About a third of my live rock was from my 20 long that I moved everything from. The new rock is starting to show coraline algea growth. It has been running for almost 2 months. Should I leave the old rock in there longer or would it be safe to start removing some. There are a few pieces i don't want to leave in there.
5. Do you always turn off the return pump when feeding? It seems every time I turn it off and restart I have to balance my flow.
Thanks for all the help.


1. Minimum 3x system volume per hour. If you've got 50 gallons of water, minimum is 150gph of actual water movement (not pump rating). Most target somewhere between 5-10x maybe 15x
2. Temp probe before heater will tend to make the water in the display slightly hotter than the probe says, the slightly colder if heater is before probe. Just know this and set accordingly. If your probe is before your heater, probably set a little more like 78 than 80.
3. I would not be collecting the skimmate if you're that low on nutrients or you may end up headed for a dinoflagellate problem. Indeed you need the extra gas exchange (unlikely), I'd turn off the skimmer until you have detectable nutrients
4. You going remove some rock, but I'd be slow about it. Maybe 10% every other week done be very safe as long as you keep enough for the tank
5. If you have rebalance flow every cycle of the pump, something is wrong ...what's the drain setup? Herbie? Beananimal? Dual durso?

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk

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I am using an eshops HOB overflow. 1 inch drain to the sump with a gate valve. Right now it runs into a filter sock. 
That's the issue, a single drain will be very hard to maintain with a valve. If a single drain, you'll need to set it up as a durso with the valve 100% open.
If you get their pf-1000 or larger (two drains), then you can run it as a herbie drain and it'll be all set for the long run.

Adjust the set up to have the drain valve 100% open and you can change the pipe inside the overflow to be a durso drain to mitigate the noise. That's the best you can do with only one drain

Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk

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