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  1. #1

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    Default What Is The Best Way To Set Up A Sump Filter System?


    0 Not allowed!
    I知 planning to get up a 90 gallon tank. I知 still deciding whether I should use canister filter or set up a sump system.

    If I get my first sump is it better to buy a complete system rather than DIY? What specific feature should I get for the sump? How many dividers should I have for the sump?

    Do I have a drill a hole on the bottom of my tank? How does your tank filter input and output design look like? Do i have to adjust the tank output flow rate to the sump to the same flow rate as the sump pump?



    I知 using the 4 JC&P LED light for $47 for my 90 gallon
    https://www.amazon.com/JC-Aquarium-L...3&sr=8-12&th=1

  2. #2

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    2 Not allowed!
    I’m not the sump professional but I will share some of my limited knowledge on the subject.

    Choosing the sump/design really just depends on how much money and effort you want to put into it, and what you’re wanting to use it for. If you have a decent budget and don’t mind spending $200+ dollars you can buy a premade sump. If you are more frugal and feel comfortable DIYing a sump they are not that hard, a lot of people will buy a cheap/used tank for the sump, cut out some acrylic baffles, and then silicone them into place.

    The amount of baffles/sections isn’t really that important. The most basic and common design is something like this:

    C74A2C2A-9479-4554-947B-339A8C98C03B.png

    It is simple but a starting point. It really depends on what you want to put in the sump. Lots of saltwater setups have multiple types of media reactors and a protein skimmer and will opt for a design that has many divisions so they can put each device in its own section. Others prefer to take a simplistic approach and will use the basic design and turn the main chamber into a large refugium filled with macro algae (saltwater) or fast growing plants (freshwater) to absorb excess nutrients as they flow through the sump.

    You can drill the hole in the bottom of the display tank, if you want, or you can drill the back glass or even skip drilling altogether and opt for an overflow that hangs on the back of the tank. Really just depends on the look you are going for and how much time and money you want to put into it. I prefer the hang on option simply because it is easier.

    Your choice of overflow (drain) will depend on what you want to use for your return pump. The overflow needs to exceed the flow rate of the return pump, or else the pump will fill up the display tank faster than the overflow can drain it and you will flood the tank and your room. You will also want to opt for a setup in which the overflow can handle a bit more than the pump is providing. Lots of people will push the overflows to their limits and it will create a very loud and obnoxious gurgling noise as the water drains down the plumbing.

  3. #3

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    1 Not allowed!
    A simple sump doesn't require dividers. Just mechanical filtration in the beginning like a sump sock and a pump at the end.

  4. #4

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    1 Not allowed!
    Biofiltration has got to go some where but I guess you could contain the media in a mesh bag on the bottom of the sump.

  5. #5

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I want to have like 3 open sections, and maybe i can keep some plants too to filter the water.

    so what do u usually have your pump flow rate at? for a 90 gallon plus

    Screen Shot 2019-07-11 at 3.28.47 PM.png

    So i guess i need an overflow box, sump, and pump for the sump?
    I am planning to use an overflow box that does not need to drill a hole in my tank. Does that mean i need a siphon break for the overflow tubing? to get the air out?
    I am also planning to get the sponge section, bio media section, do i need two sections for the sump input and output?
    How do you usually clean the sump?

  6. #6

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    1 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by Taurus View Post
    Biofiltration has got to go some where but I guess you could contain the media in a mesh bag on the bottom of the sump.
    For freshwater applications the usual go-to for sump media is rock rubble, especially lave rock due to its natural porosity. No media bag needed; just dump the rubble into one of the sump's chambers. The baffles prevent the rocks from moving to other areas of the sump. :

    Quote Originally Posted by lampro View Post
    I want to have like 3 open sections, and maybe i can keep some plants too to filter the water.

    Opt for fast-growing plants. Faster the growth, the more nutrients they will absorb. Hornwort, water sprite, hydrocotyle tripartita, water lettuce, all decent growers that don't really need to be planted in any substrate. You can float them in your sump with a high-output CFL or LED bulb and they should grow fairly quickly.

    so what do u usually have your pump flow rate at? for a 90 gallon plus

    You might get differing opinions on flow rate but a nice target is at least 4x the size of the display tank. So if you have a 90gal tank you want your filtration to be 4x90 = 360 gallons per hour. This flow rate will ensure that your filtration system is turning over the entire tank's volume at least 4x each hour. Some people like to go way higher, some go a bit lower. Too high can be stressful for the animals depending on their species if they prefer calmer waters, and too low can lead to inadequate filtration (elevated ammonia, suspended debris/cloudiness). I personally find 4x to be a good starting point. I suggest a pump that has adjustable flow rates so you can tune it to your specific liking. For an overflow, I'd get something rated for a higher GPH than the return pump that way you can always crank things up in the future if for some reason you feel that what you started with is inadequate.

    So i guess i need an overflow box, sump, and pump for the sump? Yes and PVC for the plumbing and silicone for seals (make sure the silicone is inert, GE Type 1 silicone is good, stay away from anything that says anti-mold/mildew)

    I am planning to use an overflow box that does not need to drill a hole in my tank. Does that mean i need a siphon break for the overflow tubing? to get the air out? Most HOB overflows will come with a tube to suck out the air trapped in the U-pipe. It's a simple process. You just stick the tube up into the top of the U-pipe and then suck the trapped air out. Siphon break is achieved by placing your return nozzles just above or below the water's surface. That way if the return pump fails and the water reverses back down your return line, the nozzle will break the siphon as soon as it comes out of the water.
    I am also planning to get the sponge section, bio media section, do i need two sections for the sump input and output? As Rocksor mentioned, you can use a filter sock. The socks fit over the drain pipe (where the water enters the sump) and will catch most of the yucky particulates/mulm/detritus before it enters the rest of the sump. As for additional chambers/sections for the drain and return, it depends on how you want to put in the sump for filtration media. If you have a refugium type section that contains plants and/or substrate, having baffles separating your pumps from that section will keep the water that is draining into the sump from blowing everything all over the place and also prevent the return pump from sucking up plants and substrate and blowing it back into the tank. The baffles and bubble traps are really just designed to streamline the flow through the sump so things aren't getting tossed around and whatnot. If you're going to just toss a filter sock on the drain pipe and dump a bunch of rock rubble for your bio media, you don't really need a bunch of chambers, like rocksor stated. If you're going to try a refugium with plants and stuff I would recommend at least one baffle right before the return pump to minimize the chance of sucking crap back up into the tank.

    How do you usually clean the sump? This really depends on what you fill it with. Placing a filter sock over the drain pipe is one of the best ways to keep the sump clean from detritus from accumulating. When the sock becomes dirty, wash it out in bleach and then let it sit out in the sun for a few days to break down whatever chlorine is left in it. Some people put the filter socks into their laundry but if you have a spouse you may want to see how they feel about you throwing dirty fish poop into their washer hahaha Other than the sock, cleaning is just as simple as a quick vacuuming here and there where you see debris collecting. I usually only have debris collect in the first chamber where the drain pipe dumps the water into the sump; I've never really cleaned out the other sections. If you incorporate a refugium (plants) then you will occasionally have to trim/remove portions of the plants once they overgrow the sump but that's it.

  7. #7

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    1 Not allowed!
    Here is just a really simple setup that utilizes a filter sock for mechanical filtration and a large main chamber for your bio media or plants, with a single bubble trap right before the return pump to limit things from getting sucked back up into the tank. The more baffles you place in the sump will increase the cost of materials and time to build it. I like keeping things simple but if you feel the need to divide it up into more chambers you are more than welcome to. Just know it isn't really necessary.

    sump basic.jpg

    Edited to add that the filter sock isn't supposed to be completely submerged like that haha You want it to be raised up out of the water a bit so that the crud doesn't just come floating out of the top of it.
    Last edited by BluewaterBoof; 07-11-2019 at 09:51 PM.

  8. #8

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    0 Not allowed!
    Just FYI about the silicone:


  9. #9

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    i am more worried about the "hang on back overflow U tubing section might have air gap that blocked the drainage flow, then it would be a disaster. or maybe the drainage suddenly stop and it wouldn't flow again unless i manually siphon the air out from the u tubing.Screen Shot 2019-07-14 at 12.19.18 AM.png

  10. #10

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    0 Not allowed!
    I watched this guy on youtube for hang on back overflow sump system. It is the simplest tutorial i seen so far. If you have know any simple installation one for beginner let me know please.

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