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Old 07-19-2015, 11:03 AM   #1
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Sump build questions

I have had to resize my sump due to space contraints. The new size is 15 gallons, vs the 20 gallon original. From a size standpoint, the only difference is the new one is 4 inches shorter than the old (length and width are the same). I have a few questions though:

1. How far down into the sump should the drainpipes extend? Obviously they need to be below the waterline, but how far below?
2. How do I set the waterline? Is it based on the drain pipe depth, flow rate of the return (a Sicce Silent 3.0, with approx 4ft head), baffles, etc?

(I know I need to leave enough room in the sump to handle the volume of water in the overflow box plus the pipe.)

WRT the return line, I'm going to run that up and over the lip and down into the tank. I'm guessing I should drill a small hole in the top of the line under the waterline to act as a siphon break in case my return pump fails, correct? How big is a "small" hole (I'm thinking 1/8 inch or less).

I'm using the BeanAnimal overflow, hence the 3 drainpipes. See the attached for progress pics:






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Old 07-19-2015, 11:57 AM   #2
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Yes, you control the water level in the sump sections by how high the baffles are.
Your drains don't have to be under the water level, but it will help sound wise. I would think at least a few inches off the bottom.


You should have it so the drains are full open and the return pump can pump a higher volume of water than is draining. Then use a ball valve or similar valve to adjust the return flow and that is how you "balance" it.


I would strongly recommend getting a quality check valve on the return line and not rely on a vent hole to save you if power goes out. I went that route for a while but compared to a simple check valve, it's a royal pain and not as reliable.
Get a check valve, you'll sleep better at night...LOL
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Old 07-19-2015, 12:02 PM   #3
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Yeah I was thinking of a check valve. I was thinking of using 1" flex vinyl tubing for the return line w/ a check valve in line.

Would this sump design still be valid for the 15 (it was originally intended for the 20):


Note that my emergency overflow is going into the center section (if that one needs to be used, I don't care if it's skimmed or not, I just need the water out of the DT. Also, I'll be using a BRS mini reactor w/ carbon and Phosguard in there as well.
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Old 07-19-2015, 12:16 PM   #4
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Just to be complete, here's the equipment that will be in the sump:
- Skimmer - Eshopps PSK-75 (uses Sicce SE-200 pump, 357gph)
- BRS mini-reactor (uses Cobalt MJ-1200 pump, 295 gph)
- Sicce Silent 3.0 return pump (714 gph max, adjustable)

I just want to make sure I get my baffle heights and compartment sizes correct. The sump dimensions are 24x12x12.

Edit to add: I'm thinking that perhaps a 2 chamber design would work better than a 3 chamber design here. I'm not going to have any lighting underneath, so no fuge. My goal for the sump is to hold all the filtration, heater etc...
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Old 07-19-2015, 02:27 PM   #5
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No check valves should be used, they can fail, then you'd be in trouble.
What is a sump? | Melev's Reef
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Old 07-19-2015, 03:10 PM   #6
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No check valves should be used, they can fail, then you'd be in trouble.
What is a sump? | Melev's Reef
then a check valve and an anti-siphon hole would be the best solution.
redundancy is always good.
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Old 07-19-2015, 03:27 PM   #7
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If you say so.
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Old 07-19-2015, 03:42 PM   #8
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If you say so.
no, logic and physics dictates that it would be overall safer than either solution alone.
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Old 07-19-2015, 03:45 PM   #9
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No logic would not dictate that, check valves are not recommended to be used in overflow for sumps nor returns, period, not for back up or primary. More than one anti siphon holes is recommended.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:25 PM   #10
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I guess you don't know how logic or physics work.


Who in the world would put a check valve on the overflow/drain?
it would be utterly pointless and you mentioning it greatly calls into question whether you have any idea what your talking about.


I've seen lots of recommendations to use check valves and redundancy in these systems is always desirable.
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Old 07-19-2015, 04:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reefing Madness View Post
No logic would not dictate that, check valves are not recommended to be used in overflow for sumps nor returns, period, not for back up or primary. More than one anti siphon holes is recommended.
Where and what size would these be? Would they be right next to each other, or one higher than the other?

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Old 07-19-2015, 05:06 PM   #12
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Just drill an 1/8" hole straight through the pipe, 1/2" below the water line when the tank is running normally.
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Old 07-19-2015, 05:25 PM   #13
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Straight through top to bottom? Wouldn't the hole facing up potentially spray water when the return pump is on?

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Old 07-19-2015, 05:47 PM   #14
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my returns all are drilled above the water level(all 14 of my locklines).
Never noticed water shooting out or bubbles being drawn in(like venture).
Just know my tank could syphon back if they weren't their!
many use check valves but I do not.
I would wonder if the pressure of the water/valve may effect the pump on "re start?"as one of my sumps is located in basement below my 180g a good 8-10 feet of head pressure?
I also have at least one of my two returns after the split at or within 3/4 " of surface.
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Old 07-19-2015, 07:25 PM   #15
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[ATTACH]Click image for larger version

Name:	Siphon hole pic.jpg
Views:	46
Size:	13.7 KB
ID:	275381[/ATTACH]

Like these, except drill straight through pvc
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	AntiSiphonHole2.jpg
Views:	40
Size:	13.1 KB
ID:	275380  
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Old 07-19-2015, 07:35 PM   #16
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Got it thanks.

So back to my other questions re: the sump design. I'm thinking just an intake and return chamber. Or will I need 3 since I'm running a carbon reactor in it as well?

If 3 chambers, I'm thinking 8" baffles on the intake chamber and 4" between the center and return chamber. Thoughts?

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Old 07-19-2015, 09:08 PM   #17
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You'd only need 2 chambers, the intake, which would have your bubble trap, then the other chamber for all your goodies.
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Old 07-20-2015, 10:26 AM   #18
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Awesome. Thank you. WRT the number of baffles, should I use 2 or 3 to separate the chambers? Is my 8 inch height still accurate?
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Old 07-20-2015, 11:31 AM   #19
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Only need 2 baffles in the front, thats going to be your bubble trap.
8" baffle sounds ok, how tall is the sump itself?
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Old 07-20-2015, 11:42 AM   #20
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sump is a standard 15 gallon tank, 12" tall.

I'm thinking of a 1" gap between the baffles, with the intake chamber being about 2/3 of the tank, and the return section the remainder. I'd have the skimmer and heater in the intake portion, with the carbon reactor/MJ1200 in with the return pump.
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