Water changes using pump?

Discussion in 'Cleaning and Maintenance' started by Colorado, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. ColoradoValued MemberMember

    Hi all,

    So I bought an Aqueon water changer, but it won't suck water up the ~30 feet and up a flight of stairs to the nearest sink. Has anyone had luck at distance and up 8-10 feet? Am I doing something wrong?

    Assuming that this may be too great a distance/height, I'm looking for alternatives to hauling buckets. Does anyone use one of the multi-purpose submersible pumps like the Marineland Maxi-jets for water changes. I've got a laundry drain maybe 5 feet away and at the same height as the tank. I could just run some tubing from the pump to the drain and away we go, right?

    Any ideas. Would gravel cleaning with the pump kill it--the various bits of debris and junk that gets sucked up?



  2. grfresconeroValued MemberMember

    Just curious , is this for your column, how high is it , you can clean it with the pump ,must put a filter between the gravel and pump but still might get clogged,and why the distance is it from treated water supply?

  3. oscarsbudWell Known MemberMember

    I use a power head to empty the water out of the tank. I run a line from the outtake to the bathtub and use it that way to empty it out. Then I put the power head into a 5 gallon bucket in my tub and the other end into the tank and refill it that way. I adjust the tub water to the temp I want and let it fill the bucket. I add a full dose of Prime to the tank when I start refilling.

  4. ZeeZWell Known MemberMember

    Why have I never thought of this?!

    Time to find a powerhead.
  5. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    Using a pump in conjunction with a water changer will allow you to drain one tank and fill another at the same time.
  6. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    You're fighting gravity! Any siphon system would struggle trying to go against gravity. :giggle:

    Using a powerhead, you still have an issue with the height you are trying to drain to. Powerheads have a Hmax (Height maximum) that they can pump to. You should be able to get a powerhead to pump to your laundry sink though.... I don't think regular detritus would hurt the powerhead, but sand definitely would chop away at the impeller, reducing its efficiency.

    I use a powerhead to drain my sump when doing wc's on my reef tank (can't use a siphon, as it is at ground level, no gravity to work with)
  7. ColoradoValued MemberMember

    Thanks for all the replies--sounds like I can try this out.

    As to why its so far from treated water... I live a house that is 115 years old. My little home office, really more of a "man-cave," is in a basement with no bathroom or utility sink--just the laundry. Nearest water is the bathroom upstairs. After two back surgeries I don't want to carry multiple full buckets up and down.

    To spare the pump, I'm thinking I can use a regular gravel vac/siphon and then pump it out to the laundry drain leaving any big debris on the bottom of the bucket. I can still use the Aqueon to fill from the bathroom sink. It will be maybe six linear feet and perhaps 3 vertical which shouldn't be too hard for a decent pump.

    Thanks again,

  8. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    Anything around 80GPH plus should be able to go about 5' up.... linear doesn't really have an impact.
  9. Disc61Well Known MemberMember

    I use a pond pump, cost about $25 at Lowes. one of the better investments i have made in fishkeeping. drains my 75 gl in about 10 minutes if not less ( never really timed it)
  10. ColoradoValued MemberMember

    Disc61, I was just at the Lowes website. A pump pond seems like a good bet. Most of the ones I'm seeing that aren't too much money should do a PWC in a short time (150 gph, so ~15 gal in 6 minutes for a 25% change). I'm also thinking now that I might be able to just put splitters on the feeds for the washing machine and fill the tank from those--or from a bucket I fill from the feeds so I can make sure the temp is right and add some Prime. Gotta do something pretty fool-proof. My wife is already giving me the eye regarding messing with the laundry at all. I think she is having visions of a flooded basement when my jury-rigged system goes kablooey. Sigh.
  11. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    At least the flood would be in the basement ;)
  12. JRC3Well Known MemberMember

    I use these to pump from my mixing vessels to my tanks.  

    They don't have enough lift to pump up 8-10' and to find a pump to do that will be larger and expensive.

    The Harbor Freight pump would be great to pump to your laundry drain. The pump has suction cups so you could stick it to the inside glass. It also has variuos fittings for different hose sizes for the output. I don't think detritus would cause any problems and maybe some small sand sized hard chunks would probably pass too. Though you may need to figure out how to attach a hose to the intake of the pump to gravel vac. I can't remember right of hand how it is setup. You could also do a regular gravel vac into buckets and then pump the water from the buckets to the drain. All the debri would settle to the bottom of the buckets and you could dump that outside, in a toilet, or down the sink drain.

    Fot $13 bucks I'd try it. I think for an extra $5.99 you can get like a 1 or 2 year no questions replacement warrwnty on the pump too.
  13. ColoradoValued MemberMember

    Sounds good. I'll check it out. There's a harbor tools in town I think.
  14. JRC3Well Known MemberMember

    Might as well print this coupon for 20% off. Hey, $2.60 is $2.60. LOL

  15. ColoradoValued MemberMember

    Thanks JRC3. Any money I save can just be spent on more fish stuff. :)

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