Loud Sump Discussion

Bill Nye

New member
I am setting up a new reef ready tank and cannot for the life of me quiet the noise of water entering into my sump. This tank employs the typical 1 inch drain with the 1 1/4" stand pipe. My return pump is a mag 5 and the return line has two 90 degree angles in it.

I have read countless threads about how to make a durso quiet and I have had no success with this at all. I upped my 1 inch drain line to 1 1/4" piping for a reverse durso and it was still unbearably loud. I dont feel like I'm trying to pump a lot of flow through my overflow. I used the calculator on the front page and it estimated about 300 gph after loses. Even when I throttle back the return pump with a valve it is still very very loud.

I have been thinking about switching to a "modified" herbie but see that many people think its dangerous since your emergency drain is wet. I have also read without having your emergency drain wet herbies can be difficult to properly adjust and since I only have two holes I wouldn't be able to have both.

I guess I will just number my questions to make it easier.

1) When I insert a piece of air line tubing into the hole I made in the cap on my drain it immediately starts flushing repeatedly until I remove it. What is the cause of this ? Do I need a bigger tubing?

2) Do modified herbies need alot of adjustment to keep the balance between the return and the drain? The thing I really like about the durso is more stable but I can't live with this crazy noise!

I have been tinkering with different drain configurations for about a week now and want to get my set up started but can't do it until this noise business is settled. There are so many people who use durso overflows I know there is a solution I'll just be damned if I can figure it out. :headwally:

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

rffanat1c

New member
The only thing that quieted mine is a filter sock. My reverse durso didn't do much nor did a deep pvc pipe into the chamber where the tank drains. My mag 7 is loud but you could put a silicone pad under it to reduce vibrations.
 

Bill Nye

New member
Thank you for the reply.

I find that the mag 5 is pretty loud but it is honestly droned out so badly by the sound of water entering the sump I haven't even thought about silencing that yet.

I am not really sure what people mean by the filter sock method? I have a filter sock (without plastic ring) and I tried attaching it to the end of my drain pipe and it really didn't do anything.
 

rffanat1c

New member
Hmmm. Mine is made out of polyester felt my wife sewed for me. It is on the end of my drain pipe that goes in the sump. The pipes exit sites about 6" under the water line. When the sock is off lots of bubbles rush to the surface causing noise. The sock traps all those bubbles and slows the flow down hence quieting the noise. You need to change these at least every other day or stuff gets stuck in them and starts to break down causing nitrates to rise. I ultimately solved mine by putting the tank in the basement and not next to my couch!! I liked it next to the couch but it made tv hard to watch, lugging water up and downstairs was a chore and it's less stress on the fish because it's much quieter in the basement. I don't see it as much but when I do it's more of a treat. Plus all my stuff for the tank is down there so it's a bunch easier to maintain.
 

Bill Nye

New member
Interesting. I guess I will try to buy a couple off of BRS and see if it helps I am really desperate at this point.

I have been searching for pictures of sumps to see what people do and many look like they either have hard pvc or spaflex running straight down into the sump. Are these people dealing with loud tanks or am I just cursed.
 

Dapg8gt

New member
If you have 2x 1" holes run a herbie. It's not at all difficult unless you don't use a gate valve. I have 2 holes and run a full siphon and a 100% dry emergency ( well until it needs to be tweaked lol) . It's not rocket science but it sure is quiet=).

Mine may need a tweak once a month if that and it's literally just a nudge open or closed. I can't stress enough the need for a gate valve, if you try to run it with a ball valve it will be a nightmare . use of Tru Union gates are imo a good idea and make sure your siphon is exiting about 1" below the sump water line.
 
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ca1ore

Grizzled & Cynical
I'm not entirely sure what you mean by a 'modified' herbie? Do you mean making the drain into a siphon without the backup? If that is what you mean, it's a REALLY bad idea as you will have a flood (or your pump will run dry). Probably your best bet would be to run a standard herbie, but this would mean directing the return over the back of the tank because the herbie would need to use both bulkheads. Whether one runs a dry backup or a trickling one seem to be a popular source of debate. Some folks believe that by running the backup wet, you are putting yourself at greater risk; others that said risk is negligible. I am in the latter camp, however, there is no data one way or the other (beyond personal anecdotes) so it comes down to what makes the most 'sense' to you.
 

rffanat1c

New member
Id guess dealing with them. The only way to quiet it is with a sock or slow the flow of the drain. Problem is if you put a valve on there, something will eventually plug it and cause your tank to overflow. You could try reducing your pvc gradually in diameter. Mine is all 1 1/4" pvc. I could have reduced from 1 1/4" to 3/4" but I don't have the room for all those joints. I did put a union joint on the horizontal piece making taking it apart a breeze.
 

jay13

New member
i run my pvc drain under water in the sump. totally quiet. had to play with the depth a little or the durso's burped. its about two inches under the surface and is in a filter sock to catch bubbles and debris.
 

Bill Nye

New member
I think I'm honestly just going to go with a herbie and plumb the return over the back of the tank. I will not be satisfied unless its totally quiet and it seems like a full siphon system is the only way I'm going to do it.

When I say a "modified" herbie I am referring to the emergency drain having a trickle running down it. If I were to do this should I use the 1 inch drain or the 3/4" return as the main siphon?
 

A sea K

New member
I think I'm honestly just going to go with a herbie and plumb the return over the back of the tank. I will not be satisfied unless its totally quiet and it seems like a full siphon system is the only way I'm going to do it.

When I say a "modified" herbie I am referring to the emergency drain having a trickle running down it. If I were to do this should I use the 1 inch drain or the 3/4" return as the main siphon?


This is exactly how I set up my tank. Its been running since 9/10/14 and last week was the first time I had to make a minor adjustment to the gate valve.

For the system to be "tuned" correctly you will always want a trickle going down the emergency.

Use the 3/4" line for the siphon and the larger 1" for the emergency. This is how mine is set-up and it will easily handle all that a Mag5 will do ( i use an Eheim 1250 but had a Mag5 online for a little while). One tip is to use sch40 pvc, it has a thinner wall thickness and therefore a larger ID. Probably the most important thing is to use a 1" gate valve and bush it down to fit the 3/4 pipe, set up this way it will give you the maximum allowable flow.

Very pleased with my Herbie set-up, it has been silent and almost completely trouble free from the get-go.
 

Bill Nye

New member
This is exactly how I set up my tank. Its been running since 9/10/14 and last week was the first time I had to make a minor adjustment to the gate valve.

For the system to be "tuned" correctly you will always want a trickle going down the emergency.

Use the 3/4" line for the siphon and the larger 1" for the emergency. This is how mine is set-up and it will easily handle all that a Mag5 will do ( i use an Eheim 1250 but had a Mag5 online for a little while). One tip is to use sch40 pvc, it has a thinner wall thickness and therefore a larger ID. Probably the most important thing is to use a 1" gate valve and bush it down to fit the 3/4 pipe, set up this way it will give you the maximum allowable flow.

Very pleased with my Herbie set-up, it has been silent and almost completely trouble free from the get-go.

May I ask how you set up the return? I have a deep blue tank and stand and was wondering if you had the stand as well. It is kind of a poorly designed stand (as you know if you have it) and only has four small holes in the back for wires and tubing to exit. I wanted to hard plumb most of it but looks like I will need to go with vinyl tubing.
 

ca1ore

Grizzled & Cynical
For the system to be "tuned" correctly you will always want a trickle going down the emergency.

Use the 3/4" line for the siphon and the larger 1" for the emergency.

I think the 'give me dry or give me death' crowd would demur. If you do run a trickle backup, make sure to keep an eye on it make sure said trickle does not become a rush. Agree that siphon should always be the smaller of the two pipes since it can handle greater flow for a given diameter.
 

tommyboynj

New member
Go with the herbie. It 99% silent. I actually let a small trickle run through my emergency line. It breaks the surface tension in the overflow box and gets all the surface scum into the sump. It's perfectly safe. The emergency should have no valve. 1 in pvc will handle a lot of flow under full syphon.
 

SGT_York

New member
The "modified herbie" works perfectly, set the gate valve so the water level is just below the emergency line. when the water level goes down after a few weeks adjust it one last time, you want the goal to be just slightly below water opening that way very little water goes down the drain, and the water level never gets low enough to hear the overflow water. Did one of these for three years no problems at all. That is after I put a lid and screen on the overflow to keep the snails out.
 

Bill Nye

New member
Thanks for all the info everyone it is greatly appreciated.

Just for giggles I decided I would play with my durso one last time just to see if I could get it quiet and I actually got it to a level that would not drive me totaly insane but I am going to go with a herbie anyway as it seems like a far better set up even though I have to run the return over the back.

Anyway I ended up using a t to create a reverse durso about half way up my drain line in the sump then used a street elbow to go from 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch piping then put a piece of piping in it and connected that to another t that was oriented vertically so that the top would be barely breaking the surface of the water and the bottom would be submerged.

Other than being so much plumbing in my sump I can't fit my skimmer it would have worked out ok I think.... :angryfire:

That being said order has been placed with BRS:

1 x 1" Spears gate valve
1 x Return Jet
5 feet of silicone tubing
2 x 1" to 3/4" Reducing bushings
 
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A sea K

New member
Nicely done!!
Your going to like the silicone tubing, its VERY flexible making it real easy to work with and as an added bonus will also help in reducing noise from the return pump.
 

Bill Nye

New member
Ok so I finally got all the plumbing in from BRS and WOW is all I can say...

I never imagined that my sump could be so quiet and it would be so easy to do. I do still have one problem and its related to the return area of my sump. I didn't include a ball/gate valve on the return hose because I figured I wouldn't need to meter it back but it seems the Mag 5 is a little too ferocious and is sucking the water level in its area pretty low.

I figure I could either add a ball valve or just replace the pump itself. It doesn't seem to make sense to have an oversized pump and restrict it since you are wasting electricity when you could just be using a smaller pump. Can anyone recommend a pump in the ~400 gph range? The mag pump itself is fine but is pretty loud. I would prefer if it still had the 1/2 inch outlet so I could attach my 3/4 silicone tubing to it no problemo.
 
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