Cheap, Low-powered air pump to run a fish room

ChrissFishes01

I'm looking for a relatively cheap and power-efficient air pump to run sponge filters in all my freshwater and brackish tanks. It'd be running to 6 different tanks, with two sponge filters in my 55, one in my 20 long, one in both of my 10's, one in my 5.5, and one in my QT. The air line would span across the room (hopefully), so the gang valve would probably just be mounted to the wall in a neutral area where I could get to it easily.

I'm looking for something that's going to last quite a while - I don't know if a piston pump is the right way to go or not, as I've always used power filters. The only reason I'm switching to sponges now is because I'm having issues with blowing breakers with all my HOBs, heaters, and lights going. I've staggered the lights and taken heaters out of tanks that don't need them (livebearers, mostly), but still, I blow a breaker once a week or so.
 

kallililly1973

Not sure about an air pump that would run all that but you may be able to get an electrician to add a sub panel to strictly run your fish room if that’s an option
 

ChrissFishes01

I wish it was - but I'm a renter. My "fish room" is actually a converted bed room, with everything meant to be removed without a trace when it's time to leave.
 

CHJ

Air pumps, LED lights, and HOBs shouldn't be blowing breakers, that is heater's job if the circuit is over loaded. What else is on it?
When it comes to plumbing your house/shop for air you have Jehmco Central Air Pumps or if you can't afford that, everyone also loves Alita.
 

ChrissFishes01

Air pumps aren't. 8 HOBs, 7 heaters, and several high-powered reef lights are

I'll look into Alita!
 

Mr. Kgnao

I use a Danner AP60 to run a 400 gallon and a 10,000 gallon pond with pressure to spare; an AP20 should be more than enough for your purposes now, while leaving you room for future expansions.

Honestly though, with that many tanks, I'd probably just get a small air pump for the 55. And then divide the air from another pump among the rest.
 

ChrissFishes01

So, you think that an easily available pump from a chain store (for example, a Fluval made pump) would be enough to pump air around the room to the smaller tanks?
 

CHJ

So, you think that an easily available pump from a chain store (for example, a Fluval made pump) would be enough to pump air around the room to the smaller tanks?
I run a whisper 150 per 3 20 gals in a rack and they do not bubble aggressively. I think if I ran one for 2 racks I would not have enough air.
 

Mr. Kgnao

So, you think that an easily available pump from a chain store (for example, a Fluval made pump) would be enough to pump air around the room to the smaller tanks?

Depends on the room I guess. Smaller air pumps can be had for quite a reasonable price though, so if the answer is no, adding another pump wouldn't demand a substantial investment.
 

kallililly1973

I run a couple dual outlet Unicef air pumps and they do a great job. One runs a single corner sponge and a dual sponge in my 55 and another one runs a dual sponge and a Marina breeder box in my cory fry tank both have done well for over 6-8 months.
 

ChrissFishes01

I work at Petsmart, so while I'm at work today, I'll look around for a suitable pump.
 

Sanderguy777

I got an Alita al 6a used that works too well. I had it on one tank, with one air stone (my whisper pump was too wimpy and got too loud). I got what I thought was a lp, but was just a diaphragm pump, but now I have it on a 60 gallonwith 2 high lift matten filter pipes, and a large sponge filter. It is way too loud in my room, but it REALLY puts out a lot of air. The Hygor (some hydor wanna be) pump that was supposedly wonderful didn't put out enough for even two sponges, much less the two matten filter lift tubes. I plugged this in and opened all 3 valves all the way, and I have enough volume for 2 or 3 more sponges at least! (And that's with cheap air stones, not good Neverclogs or anything)
 

jake37

By far the heater is the most expensive (power wise) item. They tend to use 10 to 40x more than filters, air pumps, ... Even decent led lights will use significantly less power than heaters. Worse heaters come on in burst and when they all come on there is an immediate high amp draw. I had to run an extension cord from a plug on a different circuit into the room.
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Anyway I doubt you will save a huge amount of current switching from filter to air pump; but most of the air pump are decent - you will probably want to get a couple. I'd just get a whisper - some are better (noise) and might last longer - mine are only a year old it will take a few more years to have a long term reliability comment. For 6 tanks i'd get to a pair - maybe a pair of 40's - depends on the size of your sponges at all. I'd start with one in case you dislike the noise or air power. Most of the major brands multiple models with different amount of power. If you don't like whisper you could try hygger, fluval or whatever. I have a couple of whisper and a Koller - nothing wrong with the koller but I think I prefer the whisper - blue is just nicer than black.
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Also just be aware that if you find a model/brand that you like (for example whisper 40) it doesn't mean you will like the smaller or larger size there are lemons in all model lineups so be sure to check those reviews. Sadly reviews that complain of noise are more difficult to evaluate since noise is relative.

I'm looking for a relatively cheap and power-efficient air pump to run sponge filters in all my freshwater and brackish tanks. It'd be running to 6 different tanks, with two sponge filters in my 55, one in my 20 long, one in both of my 10's, one in my 5.5, and one in my QT. The air line would span across the room (hopefully), so the gang valve would probably just be mounted to the wall in a neutral area where I could get to it easily.

I'm looking for something that's going to last quite a while - I don't know if a piston pump is the right way to go or not, as I've always used power filters. The only reason I'm switching to sponges now is because I'm having issues with blowing breakers with all my HOBs, heaters, and lights going. I've staggered the lights and taken heaters out of tanks that don't need them (livebearers, mostly), but still, I blow a breaker once a week or so.
 

Sanderguy777

As far as noise goes, you can look at the manufacturer's data (usually there ain't none) but also there are apps for phones that can measure decibels and give an idea about how loud this or that is. They aren't as accurate as a real meter, but they can tell you this is pretty much this much louder than that.
 

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