20 Gallon Sump

mountaindew

ever since Ive got my tank it doesn't seem like the sump is set up correctly.I have a 20gal high tank for the sump.My take has the overflow and diffusers already built in.My question is how do I measure where the dividers should be in the tank and how high should they be.I am using a protein skimmer .As of now the skimmer is on the one side and no dividers.Ive added some pics to try to explain my situation.How many pumps do I need in the sump
 

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ryanr

HI mountaindew, welcome to Fishlore

Not entirely sure what you're asking, but the following site is a great reference for building sumps, and their design:
 

Aquarist

Hello MountainDew and
SantaWelcome.gif to Fish Lore!

I hope you enjoy the site.

Ken
candycane2.gif
 

mountaindew

what I am trying to figure out is how far apart are the 3 chambers supposed to be in the sump and how far from the bottom and the top
 

JessiNoel21

what I am trying to figure out is how far apart are the 3 chambers supposed to be in the sump and how far from the bottom and the top

I have 4 chambers in my sump and how I did was following the link Ryan posted in his post it was very helpful.
 

ryanr

I have 3 chambers in mine. Designed using the same link at melevsreef

Be sure your skimmer section is big enough to fit the skimmer you choose - that's tip 1.

My baffles are 1" apart, with the middle baffle 1" above the base of the sump. I've attached my system design. Note, I didn't go with a DSB refugium in the end, just extra live rock rubble, and my plumbing feeds to both the right and left sections now.


tankandsump.JPG
 

mountaindew

now my built in overflow has 2 hoses coming down to the sump.If I use your design how would I use those 2 hoses.Would I need to use a uv light with this set up
 

ryanr

The two hoses going to your sump, one will be a backup/fail safe in the event that one get's blocked the pump doesn't overflow the tank. Both would drain to the same section.
Looking at your sump, it looks like it has been designed for an external skimmer and return pump?

UV - IMO are not required. Some run them, others don't.
 

mountaindew

Thank you very much for your advice.I will try something

I got my 20gal long tank and my baffles.I have the skimmer in the one side live rock in the other.On the tank can the plastic strip that is around the top of the tank be removed or is that to help strengthen the tank
 

JessiNoel21

That is your top brace so no you can not remove it sry.
 

mountaindew

I saw a thing on you tube on how to make sock filter holder and he used a plastic y pvc and he cut it so it would fit on that lip.His tank didnt have the plastic rI'm going around it.That's what made me think that would come off.Thanks
 

JessiNoel21

Acrylic you can not glass unless you put a brace around the tank but that can be more of a hassle than it is worth.
 

ryanr

JessI is on the right track. If your tank has bracing, don't remove it, it is there to stop the tank 'exploding' under the pressure.

If the tank was designed to be rimless, it won't have bracing, but these types of tanks are a compromise, and generally they're not made very tall.

The concept JessI is talking about, bracing around the edges, is commonly referred to as Euro Bracing, and can be more of a pain than leaving the original bracing in place My tank has Euro Bracing, but it was custom built that way.
 

mountaindew

Thanks for the info

I am about ready to install the sump.My inflow and skimmer are on the right side,my return pumps are on the left side.Now which section should I put the bio balls.
 

ryanr

I would put the bio balls in the inflow section, before the skimmer.

Though with adequate amounts of live rock, you shouldn't really need bio-balls. Live Rock and the skimmer is all you need IMO.
 

mountaindew

I have the sump just like the one you have.I went off of your diagram
 

ryanr

I have the sump just like the one you have.I went off of your diagram

Like mine? Where's my royalty cheque?

I don't have bio-balls in mine. If you've run it with two inputs to the sump, you could run the bio-balls where I originally planned my DSB. For some reason though, I think bio-balls aren't meant to be used fully submerged..... something I read a long time ago, I could be wrong though.
 

monkeypie102

Like mine? Where's my royalty cheque?

I don't have bio-balls in mine. If you've run it with two inputs to the sump, you could run the bio-balls where I originally planned my DSB. For some reason though, I think bio-balls aren't meant to be used fully submerged..... something I read a long time ago, I could be wrong though.
I have been looking at your diagram as well... since I am not machanically inclinded it hurts my head trying to figure things out that should seem obvious... lol
 

ryanr

I have been looking at your diagram as well... since I am not machanically inclinded it hurts my head trying to figure things out that should seem obvious... lol
Arrows indicate the flow of water. The water comes down the white piping, into the sump. The design has changed and the plumbing now 'T's into two pipes just under the tank.
It flows into the left section, where my now LR rubble gets another go at filtering NH3/NO2, and flows over the wall to the middle section.
It also flows into the right section, the little 'box' the pipe feeds into forces the water to the bottom of the sump, giving the skimmer the greatest chance of getting the water. The water is processed by the skimmer, and the water flows through the bubble-trap and into the middle section.
The return pump then pumps the water back up to the display tank (green tubes, green for Eheim ) and the two outlets disperse the water to the left and right sides of the display tank.

Check out for some cool animations, and design concepts.
 

mountaindew

The sump is finally up and running.My question is the filter sock,should it be all the way under water exept for the top.Also,where is the best place to put a siphon incase the electric goes out so the sump doesn't overflow
 

ryanr

I assume you mean a siphon break hole?

Mine is about 2mm under the water surface of the return tubes. It can take a little playing to get it right. One approach can be:
- Put siphon break holes in the return lines, a couple of mm (1/8") below water surface
- Empty the return section of the sump down to the minimum level so the pump isn't sucking air in
- Mark this minimum point (use tape, or a permanent marker) as 'MIN'
- Turn the return pump off, and let it siphon out till it stops
- Note how much water is now in the sump
- Now fill the return section with water (that you removed earlier), until it get's to a point that you're comfortable with. I suggest leaving 2" of extra space (air)
- Turn the return pump on, and let it level out
- The new level in your return section now becomes your "max" level, mark this level with tape or a permanent marker as 'MAX'

- Turn the pump off again, and let it drain again. Check where the level is. Repeat until you're confident it won't overflow.

You can also do it by maths (how I did mine) if you're more scientific about things, but always test it in practice.

I can try and take a photo of my setup tonight, to try and give a graphical representation of what I mean.
 

mountaindew

Thank you

what size gph pump would I need to pump 7ft from the sump up to the inlet on the tank

Ryan heres a few pics of the bubbling problems I'm having in the filter sock.What is a solution to this problem
 

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ryanr

What size display tank and sump?
:; Could you kindly fill out your aquarium info, it greatly helps to quickly check your setup without having to go back and forth through posts. Thanks

You want around 5-10x turnover through your sump. e.g. 50G display, you probably want 250GPH return pump as minimum.
But, you also need a pump that has a Hmax (Height maximum/head height) capable of returning the water.

7' is about 2.1 metres, the Eheim Compact 2000+ has a Hmax of 2.3 metres (about 7' 8"?), and a flow rate of between 264 and 530GPH.

I don't have a solution for the bubble problem off the top of me head. When you say it's a problem, what sort of problem. The first thought I have is to run the inlets deeper into the sock, so that it's submerged, and the water doesn't "splash" into the sump/sock, which creates the bubbles.
 

mountaindew

with the problem,the pipes are down in the sock. the problem is it is overflowing out of the top.My tank is 125gal with a 20gal long sump
 

ryanr

What flow rate have you got going through the sock?
It sounds like the flow is on the limit of the sock or pipes?

Or is it the bubbles overflowing? What happens if you remove the sock?

i.e. Is the sock filling up, and water can't get through anymore?
 

mountaindew

it gurgles in the sock and then the bubbles come up and over the edge putting water out.If I remove the sock its fine but then I have no filter.My tank has a built in overflow box and that's the flow I have down to the sump
 

ryanr

Sounds to me that the sock is the problem then.

I'm guessing it is getting clogged too quickly. I watched a youtube clip ages ago, I think the channel is "thefishguy" (he's from CA), and he was talking about socks, and that they are good, if you regularly replace them because they can clog up quite quickly. Or something like that anyways. He kinda said that using socks when you first start is good to get free particles out of the water, but then you can remove them.
 

mountaindew

I think that is the problem.Whats a good alternative to use instead of a sock
 

ryanr

I think that is the problem.Whats a good alternative to use instead of a sock

If I'm honest, nothing really. I don't use any mechanical filtration, and my water is crystal clear. Good flow in the tank, adequate sump rates, and properly sized skimmer keep my water clear.

If you really want to, maybe try some fine filter floss. It's available really cheap, and does a pretty good job.

Another thought, what size sock are you using? (i.e. how many micron?) - you could try one that has bigger pores - means it traps less, but may not clog as quick.
 

mountaindew

ok,thanks.Maybe I will just try the skimmer and see how that goes
 

ryanr

As promised, here's a photo of my sump

Sump.jpg

Red line indicates the water level if power shuts off, when water is at Max level in return (Green line). The yellow line is the minimum level.
 

JessiNoel21

20gal sump

Nice Ryan
 

mountaindew

Ryanr,I have the same sorta setup and I wanted to know what size pump do you have in there
 

ryanr

Ryanr,I have the same sorta setup and I wanted to know what size pump do you have in there

Which pump?
The return pump is the Eheim Compact + 2000 (2000LPH/500GPH)
The pump powering the Bio Pellet reactor is an Aqua One (approx 1000LPH, 250GPH I think)
And, the pump powering the Rowaphos reactor is the Eheim Compact 600 (600LPH/150GPH)

Oh, and skimmer is the Tunze 9011
 

Stolly08

Ok so I'm researching correctly... Y'all don't use a hang on filter in a sump.... Like my goal is to turn this 20 gallon into my sump for a new (about to purchase) 40g.... Like I have an Aqueon 20 with the little quiet flow filter could I still use it? Where would it be best to put it? I want to do a: water in with the skimmer/refugium/then water out.... I suppose last would fit best but I don't want to loose my copepods etc so maybe first? This is going to be a full out reef tank like the ocean... Sorry for the thread jack but it goes along with your topic in a sort....
 

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