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Old 02-19-2016, 03:21 AM   #1
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Overflow box help

Hey guys I really really wanna add a sump to my aquarium. Only problem is it's a 7 year old reef and the tank isn't drilled. tired of cleaning this canister every weekend. I really wanna add a sump but too scared of the horror stories of overflows and destroyed floors. I'm on the 4th floor and the ONLY thing holding me back from getting a sump is the fear of it overflowing in a power outtage. Any advice you guys can give?
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Old 02-19-2016, 06:01 AM   #2
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You are very limited without drilling you could however run a basic syphon system that will simply loop over just make sure you drill a syphon break hole
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Old 02-19-2016, 06:41 AM   #3
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Overflow box help

I've never used an overflow box before but ive got a DIY PVC overflow. It's very low profile and ultra quiet, it doesn't disturb us at all in the living room. It's cheap and easy to setup and as long as you setup he overflow and the sump properly you won't have to worry about flooding if either the overflow or return pump fail.

Where most people have issues is that they don't leave enough room in either the DT or Sump to hold extra water should something fail. In my setup I have 10gallons of room to work with in the sump. Which may not seem like a lot but there isn't any possibility that my overflow would allow more water to drain if the return stopped working.

Edit: and to add another detail which was mentioned above. Your return line placement and fail safes are important as well to prevent back siphon. Which is easy enough...I know people use siphon break wholes but I think they are risky. I prefer to place my return (which is all PVC) just above the waterline with elbows. This way no water can back siphon because it never has the chance. If in the case your overflow stops working and then your return pump fails because it was running dry/low and the return line was submerged due to your return sump section being empty then water will only back siphon so much thanks to the solid placement of the return line. The other great thing about it is that at a certain point where the water gets low the elbow will naturally start sucking air and break a siphon on its own.


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Old 02-19-2016, 09:41 AM   #4
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if the tank is acrylic you can drill a drain hole in the back wall and use a bulkhead fitting and mount an overflow box. That is how mine is and yes, I did do some drilling on the tank with water and critters in there.
other than that, there are lots of boxes available that seem to have good records.
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Old 02-19-2016, 02:02 PM   #5
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Why worry about that? A nice CPR HOB overflow with an aqualifter pump to make sure it doesn't loose siphon. It's what I run flawlessly.
Then get a sump, you make sure it has enough room for the water to filter into the sump. It really isn't that hard to do. I've lost power several times and never had any issues with it. System starts back up on it's own without issues.
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Old 02-19-2016, 02:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniperhank View Post
Why worry about that? A nice CPR HOB overflow with an aqualifter pump to make sure it doesn't loose siphon. It's what I run flawlessly.
Then get a sump, you make sure it has enough room for the water to filter into the sump. It really isn't that hard to do. I've lost power several times and never had any issues with it. System starts back up on it's own without issues.

+1
Have been using a eshopps overflow box for nearly a year with no issues. Took a little time to get the noise level to nominal. But this was a one time issue.

My return is 3/4 inch below the water line. If backward siphon is created by power loss it's broken well before is an issue for the tank.


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Old 02-19-2016, 06:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniperhank View Post
Why worry about that? A nice CPR HOB overflow with an aqualifter pump to make sure it doesn't loose siphon. It's what I run flawlessly.
Then get a sump, you make sure it has enough room for the water to filter into the sump. It really isn't that hard to do. I've lost power several times and never had any issues with it. System starts back up on it's own without issues.
My lfs said those were bad cause the Aqualifters stop working or get clogged....
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Old 02-19-2016, 07:10 PM   #8
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A bulkhead overflow is always safer than one using a siphon. But you can make either work.


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Old 02-19-2016, 07:24 PM   #9
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wish I could drill my tank but it's a established reef 7 years old
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Old 02-19-2016, 07:42 PM   #10
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My lfs said those were bad cause the Aqualifters stop working or get clogged....

There are several ways to stop a siphon from draining your tank.
One of the easiest is on your return pipe drill a small hole right below the water line. If a siphon ever begins to drain your display tank it will reach the drill hole and break the siphon.

Just make sure there is extra room in your sump for 1-2 gallons of water.


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