Sump Water Level and Pump Noise

mlsherrill

New member
Hello...

I am starting my first saltwater tank and have some questions about my sump. I have a 90G bowfront that I purchased used with a 30x12x18 sump and a 800gph pump for the return.

I recently filled it with RO/DI from my LFS and fired it up for the first time. With the way the sump is designed, the water comes crashing into the chamber like Niagra Falls and starts knocking the bio-balls all around against the glass. I fiddled with the valve on the return and got the noise to go down, but the water level in the sump is much higher. Based on my drawing of the sump, does it hurt anything to have a higher water level? (Water level B?)

Also, after about an hour, the pump starts getting really loud, I think it's vibration. I'm guessing that maybe a piece of rubber mat under it would help with this?

Any suggestions/comments would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
 

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murfman

New member
1st, I would get rid of the bio balls and use live rock rubble. The rocks are heavier and will slow the water flow down. You can also put a ball valve in the drain to the sump to control water flow.

By raising the water level in the sump, you stand a chance of overflowing, should your tank power go off. I looked at your pic of the tank and are the drain lines coming out of the bottom? If so, should you loose power, you will drain the whole tank into the sump.
 

bnhd3

New member
can you post a picture of the sump? what kind of pump do you have? is this going to be a fish only or reef tank?
 

mlsherrill

New member
Thanks murfman...

The drain is acutally a standpipe (sorry about my picture), so unless I'm confused, I don't think it will overflow in case of power failure. I have turned the pump off and the water level rises, but there is still a good 3 inches of room left in the sump.

If I use rock rubble instead of the bio balls, should I have them fill the last chamber and the lower water level?
 

mlsherrill

New member
bnhd3 - I do not have any partial pictures of the sump with me. I do not think I could take a picture of the whole thing as it is a very tight squeeze in the stand.

From what I could read off the pump (utilizing a flashlight and mirror because it's in the bottom corner of the stand) it's a C-AO pump and max flow is approx 1111gph, standard is 816ish gph.

I would like to eventually have a reef tank.
 

illal

New member
definitly get rid of the bio balls...as far as the water level just turn off your pump and see where the water level ends up if it doesnt overflow make a mark and top it off to this mark everytime...just becareful and dont go turning the pump off with a sump full of water
 

matasw

New member
I'd definantly remove the bioballs. Also if your picture is drawn correctly i'd extend that flex tube so that the water enters more towards the bottom of the tank instead of the top.
 

mlsherrill

New member
Matasw - The flex tube connects to the sump with a fitting drilled through that wall in the sump. I don' t think I can make it any lower unless I just disconnect it and put it down in the sump so it is perpendicular to the bottom of the sump instead of parallel. If I do that, will it help reduce the noise of the water entering the sump?
 

here4g2

New member
Take a piece of 3/4" flex hose and stick it into the bulkhead where it comes into the sump.Worked for me.Definatly toss the bio balls.HTH
 

mlsherrill

New member
here4g2 - thanks for the suggestion - I will stop by the hardware store and pick up some 3/4" flex hose.

Other than the risk of flooding, is the higher water level OK in the sump for filtration? As I stated before, I have turned off the pump with the higher water level and do not see a risk of flooding.

Any other adivce is appreciated.

Thanks - Michele
 

mosesbrown

New member
From your original posting, I am confused as to why the sump would be any more full if you are pumping less water into your display tank. I thought that the rate of the return pump would determine flow low rate back into the sump and consequently the heigth of the water in the sump.

If this is wrong, would someone please let me know? and how this really works.
 

matasw

New member
If the flex tube from the over flow is near the top of the water in my experience its going to create a lot more noise. I have mine about 6 inches below the surface of the water. Most of my noise comes from it running down the PVC not from when it hits the water.

As long as you wont flood if the power goes out I don't see any harm to having the water level in the sump higher. The more water you can fit in your sump the better off you'll be IMO.

I wouldn't replace the bioballs with anything. I would put as much LR as you can in the sump but the bioball's don't necessarily have to be replaced with anything. At least get them out :)

moses, if your pumping less water into the display then less will be going down the overflow. Thus the water level in the sump will rise. Your right, the flow of the return pump will pretty much determine the height of the water in the sump. But if your pumping water slower the water level in the sump will rise because it isn't going to be leaving the sump as fast.
 

PatMayo

New member
Re: Sump Water Level and Pump Noise

<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9307629#post9307629 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by mlsherrill
Hello...

I am starting my first saltwater tank and have some questions about my sump. I have a 90G bowfront that I purchased used with a 30x12x18 sump and a 800gph pump for the return.

I recently filled it with RO/DI from my LFS and fired it up for the first time. With the way the sump is designed, the water comes crashing into the chamber like Niagra Falls and starts knocking the bio-balls all around against the glass. I fiddled with the valve on the return and got the noise to go down, but the water level in the sump is much higher. Based on my drawing of the sump, does it hurt anything to have a higher water level? (Water level B?)

Also, after about an hour, the pump starts getting really loud, I think it's vibration. I'm guessing that maybe a piece of rubber mat under it would help with this?

Any suggestions/comments would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

If you are building a Fish only with live rock tank, the bio balls won't make much difference. If you are creating a reef tank then I would get rid of them.

Regards,

Pat
 
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