power head question

sgould

Member
I am working towards setting up a sw tank in the next couple of months, and am researching some of the equipment needs. I am curious...what kind of total gph flow should I be looking for? I will be setting up a FOWLR tank, probably 30 gallons.
 

atmmachine816

Member
I'm thinking 20x, maybe a bit more like 30x, depends on the fish also. So probably 600-300gph total.
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
20-30x !?

Pardon me while I go adjust my online shopping cart.
 

atmmachine816

Member
what type are you getting?
 
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Mike

Moderator
Member
For a 30 gallon saltwater tank, I'd get at least 3 power heads rated at 200 gph each. More specifically, I'd run a stationary (non-rotating) powerhead in each back corner (angled down slightly) and point them towards the middle of the tank. Then run one of those powersweeps in the back middle so it can rotate to both sides of the tank. This would create some really good turbulence, aiding in surface agitation (gas exchange) and it would help force water flow in and around the live rock helping in increased bio filtration.

Maxi-jet makes some really good powerheads. They've lasted longer than any others that I've had. The powersweeps are decent, but you have to keep the rotating arm clean are it will get stuck in one position. See here: Power Sweep Powerhead Review.
 
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Mike

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Member
Also, should mention that you need to watch the water temps when running with this many powerheads. Submersible powerheads add heat to the water. Depending on the lights you use, you may need to keep an eye on the tank water temp.
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
Good info, Mike...makes a lot of sense.

I haven't bought anything yet, atmmachine, but have been eyeballing 2-3 Marineland 1140's. I just got back from vacation though, and have not yet had a chance to look into the Maxi-jets that Mike recommended.
 

atmmachine816

Member
I have a maxi-jet and a minI rio and love them both and would recommend what Mike said. Marineland makes the maxi-jets.

Mike what have you heard about the seio's?
 
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Mike

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Member
atm - I haven't used the seio's before and haven't read any reviews on them. I just checked them out on marinedepot.com and they look kinda bulky.
 

atmmachine816

Member
Ya, I was looking at my marine depot magazine and I guess they have some expensive one's when the motor is on the outside to keep the heat down and conserve on space and sends the power through magnetic waves I think it was to power the propeller, pretty cool
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
I think I am going to go with a pair of maxi-jets to start with, at 230 gph each, while curing the live rock and cycling. Unless it is just a horrible mistake, I will wait for a 3rd until just before I start adding fish.

How are the aquaclear HOB filters? My freshwater tanks all have Whisper filters, so I thought I would try something different.
 

atmmachine816

Member
I'll let Mike answer the powerhead question.

I have a aquaclear since I've read a fair amount of positive reviews on it but am dissapointed about it. I perfer my penguin bio-wheel since it's a lot quieter. The aquaclear is just noiser than the bio-wheel. Not by a lot but I just like the bio-wheel better, my preference. Both are good, it's up to you.
 
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Mike

Moderator
Member
Since you have live rock and if you have a protein skimmer, the hob power filter isn't really needed. In fact, it could become a source of nitrates if you don't change out the floss frequently. I do have power filters on my tanks, but I run them without media in them until I need to use activated carbon, and then I only run the carbon for a couple of days (2 or 3) in between water changes and then remove it.
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
In fact, it could become a source of nitrates if you don't change out the floss frequently.
Would that be monthly? More/less? I do have a skimmer, and was planning on running the HOB without carbon.
 
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Mike

Moderator
Member
I change out or rinse the filter floss at minimum weekly to keep the trapped materials from breaking down.
 

atmmachine816

Member
I do the same, but I just run filter floss for a couple days after water change to trap mixed up junk.

Mike how long do you suggest running carbon?
 
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Mike

Moderator
Member
I only run it for a couple of days at a time, when I do use it. I haven't been using it very much lately though, opting for more frequent small partial water changes.
 

atmmachine816

Member
OK thanks, all it really does is purify the water more right?
 
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Mike

Moderator
Member
to a certain extent, yes - it's good at removing the yellowing compounds from the water and reefers use it to also remove toxins released by corals as defensive mechanisms. Also, I'd recommend testing any carbon you plan on using with a phosphate test kit. Drop a few carbon pellets in the test vial and let it sit for a half hour or so and see if it tests positive for phosphate. If it does, don't use it unless you want algae probs.
 

atmmachine816

Member
OK thanks
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
You mean...there are some who DON'T want algae?!
 

atmmachine816

Member
sgould said:
You mean...there are some who DON'T want algae?!
I want coraline algae but I think I will pass on the others
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
Bunch of fair weather fish keepers...can't take the bad with the good....

Anyway...I received the first of the equipment I will need for my Saltwater tank. 2 maxi-jet powerheads, a prizm deluxe skimmer, an aquaclear filter, Saltwater test kit, hydrometer, salt mix, heater, and a partridge in a pear tree. Now I just have to start saving for the live rock. Good gad that stuff is expensive!
 

atmmachine816

Member
Yup it is, if it's not too late I would return the hydrometer and buy a refractomter, it's more accurate and a whole heck of a lot easier to read. Mike says prizm's aren't that great of skimmers and I've alos read numerous reports of them cracking and leaking to back that up, if you can I would return it and get a aquac remora, Mike says they are great and I've read tons of good reviews. If it takes a couple extra months to setup your tank but you get better equipment I would say it's worth it.

Congratulations on getting the equipment
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
I've read conflicting reviews of the prizm myself...some seem to have good luck, others not. In the end, it was a money driven decision that will have to stand for now. May upgrade down the road.

The tank itself will be next in a few more weeks. Local store has a special through the end of July that gets your choice of either the hood or the stand at half price when you buy the tank, and their tank prices are pretty good compared to the local competition. Then comes the live rock. Heaven help me if the wife ever finds out what I'm going to have to spend on that stuff!
 
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Mike

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Member
Heaven help me if the wife ever finds out what I'm going to have to spend on that stuff!
Ha!  The trick is not to mention how much it costs!  I have a "don't ask, don't tell" policy".  If she doesn't ask how much it was, I don't tell her.

Try a google search on "red sea prizm review", I think most reviews are mediocre, whereas the AquaC's and the EuroReef's get stellar reviews.  The Aquac Remora is about $60 more than the prizm, but it is soooo worth it.

One day I'd like to get a EuroReef but they are more expensive than the similar sized aquac.

With the prizm, you will have to constantly tweak the air mixture dial to get some good skimmate going and to keep it going, whereas there is really no tweaking on the remora.  On the remora you can adjust the collection cup up or down to collect either really wet skimmate or dry.   I have to clean my collection cups nightly.
 
  • Thread Starter

sgould

Member
Ha! The trick is not to mention how much it costs! I have a "don't ask, don't tell" policy".
Oh, yes! That policy is very much in effect!
 

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