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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 950 gph max pump. My tank is 90 gallons with 90 pounds of rock.
I was getting alot of noise from the drain outlet and the toilet flushing sound from the drain stand pipe. A couple of people told me to throttle down the pump to much gph for that drain.
My question is does it make any sense to thottle down the pump, is there any damage to the pump, can and is it a good idea to keep the pump at full speed, also the standpipe is adjustable, what does adjusting it do?
The toilet flushing noise went away but the drain hose is still noisy.

The tank setup is 90 gallon g2 skimmer with 350 gph pump. 2 koralia 3 jets, 30gallon sump, and the stupid bio box which if i get rid of where do i place the drain line.
I am brand spanking new last tank I had was a 20 gallon fresh water tank(dont laugh)
I just finnished filling it up yesterday.

Any help please.
 

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Hey there,
I just set up my new 90gal on Sunday. I'm running a Mag Drive 9.5 return pump. The overflow accessory kit I bought had an adjustable standpipe and that allows you to adjust the height of the water inside the overflow box. The lower the water level the, the louder the "waterfall" you create as the water cascades down. I didn't like the adjustable one so I adjusted it to the desired height, removed it and replaced it with a solid piece of PVC of the same length.
As for throttling down the pump, most everyone does it without any real adverse effects that I've seen or heard of but if you're looking for an alternative solution you can put a T fitting in the return line that goes from the pump back up to the tank. From the T, just have another pipe with a ball valve that can allow you to redirect some water from the pump directly back to the skimmer section of your sump. This will allow you to have less flow through your overflow, making less noise, without actually throttling back your pump. You'd just be redirecting some of the flow.
Here's a pic of my plumbing, you can see that I did it on mine.

You can also kind of see it in this video if that helps

Hope that helps, good luck.
Justin
 

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Fyr Fishy
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Honestly, the 950gph is way more than you need for a sump return pump. I'm kind of surprised your drain can keep up with your pump as a typical drain on a 90 gallon tank is 1" and only capable of about 600gph flow. Regardless, your return pump should be roughly matched to the skimming capability of your skimmer. Any extra water running through your sump is just dirty water being pumped back into your tank.

As for gating down the pump, it's going to depend on the pump itself. Essentially, gating down the return is just seen as additional head pressure by your pump. If your pump has a decent head pressure rating, you should be OK. If it is not rated to pump much of a head, you may end up making it work harder than it is designed to.
 

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Fyr Fishy
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that mag 9.5 will use less electricity and it will be less wear and tear on the pump if you scale it back with a ball valve thatn if you ran it wide open with zero head pressure
I have no personal experience with the Mag pumps, but how does that work Fly? It seems that increasing resistance would make the motor work harder which would in turn use more electricity and cause more wear. Do they cavitate or run away when they have zero head pressure? I believe you, I'm just trying to figure out the physics behind it...
 

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I have no personal experience with the Mag pumps, but how does that work Fly? It seems that increasing resistance would make the motor work harder which would in turn use more electricity and cause more wear. Do they cavitate or run away when they have zero head pressure? I believe you, I'm just trying to figure out the physics behind it...
if it were a DC pump than what you are saying would be true, but for some reason AC motors behave differently. if you look at any AC pump that shows power usage per head pressure. if you go to the Reeflo page you can download a flow chart for their pumps. it also lists wattage used at various head pressures. you will see that as the pump reaches maximum head pressure the wattage goes down pretty significantly.

G~
 

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akarusso,
What type of pump do you have and if you're running a skimmer what type and what is the gph rating?
Thanks,
Justin

Honestly, the 950gph is way more than you need for a sump return pump. I'm kind of surprised your drain can keep up with your pump as a typical drain on a 90 gallon tank is 1" and only capable of about 600gph flow. Regardless, your return pump should be roughly matched to the skimming capability of your skimmer. Any extra water running through your sump is just dirty water being pumped back into your tank.
fyrfytr1717,
In my case having the mag drive 9.5 I have a max gph of 950 just as akarusso does. I don't know what pump he has or his head loss. I ran my head height and plumbing through the head loss calculator on Reef Central and I have a flow rate of 579 ghp running through my 600 gph max overflow. I'm running an Octopus NW-200 skimmer which has a pump rated at 792 ghp. Mind you it's not going to move that much because of the air intake however it should be in the ballpark of the return. Additionally, not all of my overflow goes to the skimmer section, some is diverted to refugium which decreases the flow to the skimmer as well. I'm certainly not trying to be argumentative, just offering another view of the situation. :) I had to choose between the mag 9.5 and 7 and decided it would be better to have a little too much "power" that could be throttled back/rerouted rather than risking too little. That's just my opinion of course.

Fly Guy,
I too am a bit surprised to hear that you'd do better to throttle back the pump rather than run it wide open. I hope you didn't misunderstand my suggestion to reroute any excess return water back to the skimmer area, I'm simply suggesting reducing the load on the pump by diverting maybe 50-100 gph back to the skimmer. It seems that reducing the head pressure would not increase wear and tear. Perhaps I've misunderstood you. You mentioned running zero head pressure, was that just a hypothetical situation to suggest that zero load would do damage to the pump? What about normal operating conditions, do you suggest that throttling back is still preferable to decreasing head pressure by rerouting?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks everyone. My skimmer is pump is350gph. Whhen I first started all the oumps the pump was wide open and the water in the over flow would go up and down with everydown it sounded like the toilet flushing with surge of water from the drain pipe.
I throttled back the pump to about half. the up and down stopped and no more gushes of water in the drain. The flow stoped significantly, but I have to koralia 3 powerhead that move the water. I am I correct in saying that no mater what I do to the durso standpipe at the end of the day the resovoir is not enough to handle 950 gph from the mag pump. Right?
 

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if it were a DC pump than what you are saying would be true, but for some reason AC motors behave differently. if you look at any AC pump that shows power usage per head pressure. if you go to the Reeflo page you can download a flow chart for their pumps. it also lists wattage used at various head pressures. you will see that as the pump reaches maximum head pressure the wattage goes down pretty significantly.
G~
Hello Geoff,
We must have been posting at the same time. If I understand you correctly you suggest that as head height increases power consumption decreases with AC pumps. Assuming I'm understanding you correctly and I've downloaded the correct chart, "Pressure Biased Pumps" and I'm reading it correctly... That's a lot of assumptions, I'm seeing that only one of the four pump models, the Manta Ray, behaves that way. The rest seem to increase power consumption (wattage) as the head height increases. It is still early here on the west coast so please correct me if I'm seeing this wrong.
Thanks,
Justin
 

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Thanks everyone. My skimmer is pump is350gph. Whhen I first started all the oumps the pump was wide open and the water in the over flow would go up and down with everydown it sounded like the toilet flushing with surge of water from the drain pipe.
I throttled back the pump to about half. the up and down stopped and no more gushes of water in the drain. The flow stoped significantly, but I have to koralia 3 powerhead that move the water. I am I correct in saying that no mater what I do to the durso standpipe at the end of the day the resovoir is not enough to handle 950 gph from the mag pump. Right?
Hey there,
You're correct,the overflow will never be able to handle 950 gph due to the limitation of the diameter of the piping used to make the stand pipe. If you were to drill your tank's overflow drain hole larger to accomodate larger pipe you could then build a larger standpipe. That's neither here nor there, you don't need to do that because you aren't running 950 gph if you have mag drive pump and 90 gallon tank on a stand. Your head height is likely similar to that of my tank meaning you're running around 600 gph +- a few gallons. You can calculate it using this head loss calculator but be sure to come right back to TRT, I'm not trying to convert anyone.
http://www.reefcentral.com/calc/hlc2.php
By the way, how do you like your Koralia 3s? I just ordered two 4s and I'm worried it may be a bit too much flow but I was reassured that if i aim them toward each other they'd just make a great "vortec", changing around the water direction a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
When you say I am not running 950 its beacuse of the head hieght? i had to throttle back the pump. Should I have not thottled it back?
I am brand new to this hobby.
The koaralia 3 I was told at the pet place, to aim them down toward the front of the glass. They seem to be moving the water just fine.
 

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You can definitely throttle it back if you like, it shouldn't hurt anything. I'm only suggesting that you aren't running 950 gallons through it. Someone above suggested that the pump we're running on our 90 gallon tanks is too large for the set-ups we have and I'm suggesting that it's actually not a bad match. It simply needs to be throttled back a little or rerouted as I had suggested before. Again, I would rather have too powerful a pump that I have to throttle back a bit rather than too weak a pump. This is just my opinion, I realize you're new to the hobby so you should do a bit of searching to gather other opinions as well. I'm not sure if this forum has one but many forums have reef chronicles where members discuss their own set-ups. I've looked over a number of chronicles of others who have 90 gallon tanks to see what type of pumps, skimmers, and other equipment they are running. You could check out this forum's chronicle section http://www.reefsanctuary.com/forums/reef-chronicles/
but remember, come back to TRT, it's a great forum also. As a matter of fact, I just checked, TRT has it's very own section like this called "Tank Specs" here's the link
http://thereeftank.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=7
Hopefully this helps you get some idea of what others are doing as well.
Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you corrado007. I have one more question. My drain pipe feed into a bio box that has a flter and carbon adn purigen.
Would you recommend that I get rid of the bio box and pipe the drain line directly into the sump?
 

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Thank you corrado007. I have one more question. My drain pipe feed into a bio box that has a flter and carbon adn purigen.
Would you recommend that I get rid of the bio box and pipe the drain line directly into the sump?
If by bio box you're referring to a chamber full of bio-balls, then yes, I'd personally get rid of them. Reef keeping goes through various paradigms as do most things in life, what once was thought to be best is not necessarily as good today. From what I understand bio-balls are pretty much a thing of the past and many people are moving to a simple sump with three sections: overflow/skimmer, return, and refugium. LR (live rock) in both the display tank and in the refugium along with macro algae in the refugium (and sometimes miracle mud etc...) are very popular means of filtration. If you do a search on bio balls and you'll find some useful information. Here's one thread to get you started
http://thereeftank.com/forums/showthread.php?t=101375&highlight=bio+balls
I hope that helps,
Justin
 
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