Sump Size for a 55 gallon tank

bdrou
  • #1
Forum,

If I build a sump what size would be recommended? (For a 55 U.S gallon fish tank).
 
agsansoo
  • #2
Basic rule for sump size is 1/3 the volume of your display tank. ( really not sure who makes up all these rules ... LOL ) So around 15-20 gallons.
 
sgould
  • #3
I thought it was Dino...
 
bdrou
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
Repliers,

Thank you very much for the info, I'm still trying to decide if I should make one.
 
offminded
  • #5
how do you plan on making one? I am looking into sumps as well and the ones that I see cost somewhere in the $100 - $150 range.
 
agsansoo
  • #6
Custom built sumps are pricey. My second sump was a 10 gallon acrylic ($100), which cracked one week after I installed it. My third custom sump was a 10 gallon glass tank with only one baffle. Cost only $35.
 
offminded
  • #7
is it possible to do a 10 - 20 gallon sump made from a glass aquarium?
 
agsansoo
  • #8
is it possible to do a 10 - 20 gallon sump made from a glass aquarium?

Yes ! Many many people do this every day. My first sump was a 5 gallon glass tank.


119.jpg

To make the baffle I use replacement window plexiglass siliconed to the glass sides. Works great.
 
offminded
  • #9
wow...that's awesome...how many chambers do you have in your sump? on a scale of 1 - 10...1 being super easy and 10 being don't even bother...how easy or difficult is it to build?
 
agsansoo
  • #10
My first sump (pictured above) was a 2 to build. The hard part is figuring out how to keep it from overflowing. It was only a 5 gallon tank with no overflow box ! I got wiser on my second sump. The trick is to have the largest return section possible, without overflowing the main display tank, should the return pump stop running. (I'm baiting you for the next question) LOL
 
bdrou
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Forum,

I had thoughts about this sump idea and was wondering would a styro foam box be suitable for this purpose.^-^
Bryce
 
agsansoo
  • #12
No ! But a plastic container would work.
 
Gozer_1
  • #13
I'm, very slowly, building a sump fuge out of a 20 gal glass tank. I'll be using plexiglass baffles. I'ts tough to fit all you want into one little space. I want the biggest possible fuge space, but I also want my skimmer and other junk down there. Not to mention having enough room for the return pump. That 20 I'll be using seems to shrink every time I think about it.
 
bdrou
  • Thread Starter
  • #14
Forum,

I have a 55 gallon saltwater fish tank, my stand has a wall in between it (in the bottom to make two sections) would it be unsafe making two holes for piping in it? Or is that even used for support?

Bryce
 
Gozer_1
  • #15
You'd be fine drilling a couple holes. That does support the middle of the tank but it's not going to hurt with just two holes. Just make sure you leave as much space between each hole and to the edge of the center support as you can.
 
bdrou
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
Replier(s),

Thanks for the information.

Bryce
 
JRDroid
  • #17
So I am considering rehoming the occupants of my 10 gallon tank and turning it into a sump for my future salt water tank. The tank will either be a 40 breeder or a 55 gallon standard. I am comfortable drilling glass (I have done it, be it smaller holes, before) so I am thinking of drilling the tank so I don't have the added cost/hassle/unsightlyness of an overflow. My questions are as follows:

Would a 10 gallon sump even be worth it on a tank that size?

Would a 10 gallon be large enough to house a skimmer and a refugium?

Where on the display tank is it best to put the holes, near the top or bottom?

If I convert my 55 instead of buying a new 40 breeder I could get a 20L, 20H, or 29 gallon to use as the sump. I know the rule of "bigger is better" for salt would say the 29 is the best choice, but which tank has the best foot print to make building a sump easy?
 
funkman262
  • #18
Any sump is better than no sump. I'm using a 10 gallon sump for my 10 gallon tank so it is possible but I don't think it would be very convenient for a 55 gallon tank. You may only be able to put a few gallons of water in it to compensate for power failures (the pump turns off but the display tank continues to drain a bit). I doubt you'd be able to fit a protein skimmer in there. Of course, the bigger the better. I know you want to make use of the 10 gallon since you're not using it for anything else but if you have the space for something larger than I'd recommend using that instead. As far as the BEST footprint, I can't say. There are so many designs for sumps it's unbelieveable. You might want to start here for ideas. And I can't help you on drilling suggestions because I used a pvc overflow.
 
JRDroid
  • #19
the issue isn't that I want to use the 10 gallon (its in use with platies living in it), its that I can't afford to buy a new tank AND another tank to use as a sump.
 
funkman262
  • #20
I'd say, purchase the display tank and set it up to run with a sump. Meaning, drill the tank, plug it for the time being, and get all of the plumbing needed. Pretty much, pretend that you have the sump except no water is exiting the display tank. That way you can just install the sump after you can afford it. But now that I think of it, the tank for the sump would be such a small portion of the cost of setting up a saltwater tank (especially one of that size) and if you're worried about the cost of the sump then you might not want to bother with a saltwater tank at all. I've easily invested $700+ in my 10 gallon tank that isn't even stocked yet (money from student loans lol). Granted, most of the cost was from my DIY projects on this tank but if you consider lights, protein skimmer, live sand, live rock, powerheads, pumps, clean up crew, fish and especially corals for a tank as large as you want, I don't even want to imagine the costs involved. So you can see why for the betterment of your future tank I'd recommend to just bite the bullet and get the largest tank you can for your sump or you'd probably end up replacing it down the road anyway, costing you more money, time and aggrivation.
 
JRDroid
  • #21
I am not going to do corals (at least at first), I am doing FOWLR, so I do not need to spend as much on lighting, and obviously no corals. I have priced things out and I realize the cost is high. I am getting the tank at the $1 per gallon sale, and I am not going with top of the line equipment. I am going to use a CoraLife venturI skimmer, and Aquatic Life expandable, individually reflected t5 lighting system. That way I only have 2 bulbs and save cost while its a FOWLR tank and I can cheaply expand to 4 or 6 bulb if I decide to keep corals. I already have 2 power heads for my 55 gallon that I am not using.
 
agsansoo
  • #22
Monmouth, since this is only FOWLR I would just use live rock/ live sand and a canister or HOB filter. A protein skimmer can be added later on when you decide to add corals. Remember water changes are very important too. I have a 65 gal. tank with a custom 10 gal. sump. So flow through a 10 gal sump is no problem. I also ran a Eheim 2227 wet/dry canister filter when I first started. This is idea for a FOWLR setup.
 
funkman262
  • #23
I wish we had some more saltwater experts like agsansoo here ;D

Monmouth, if you decide to turn the 10 gallon into a sump, it's not that difficult. I don't have a protein skimmer in mine so I'm not sure how much space you'd need for it. You can check out my DIY sump/refugium in my sig. It literally took no time to do and only cost me a few bucks for the glass baffles.
 
JRDroid
  • #24
I am very relieved to hear I don't need a protien Skimmer for a fowlr. I will probably just buy a nice hob then and save up for a 20-30 gallon sump and add all that if/when I add coral. That will help me afford a better Skimmer like a reef octopus. This will help me get it up and running sooner!
 
Stang Man
  • #25
That 10 gallon is not an efficient size for a 55 gallon you will have water on the floor!! You will need a 20 gallon show or a 20 gallon standard tank depends on what tank you have to put a sump under the bigger the sump the better that will fit under the tank. Do some mesurements and do the shopping. Soon as you are ready let me know and I will help you design the sump and you can do it yourself and savve lot's of $$$$$$
 
susaneckert
  • #26
OK in my 29 G tank stand I only have a 10 1/2 inch opening. What size of sump should I be running with a tank this size I do not want water on my floor that would not be good for the wooden floors . Should I just make one out of acrylic for the width door and just make it tall?
 
MikeNTX
  • #27
Kind of an old thread. You might be better served if you start a new thread and wait on some saltys to come answer your questions.
 
susaneckert
  • #28
Thanks Vinnce will do that
 

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