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Old 09-11-2010, 02:07 PM   #1
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Sump questions

I'm in the build stages of a 55 fresh water planted tank, and I wanted to go ahead and tackle a sump. I've got an extra 10 gallon standard tank and I was thinking of doing a diy even though I know that's kind of small. I know I can get the baffles cut at at home depot, and I've got the basic principle down, but I've got a couple questions.

Regarding the return pump, how many gph should I be looking for?

I was planning on using the sump as filtration, so what kind of filter materials should I be looking for?

What else should I be keeping an eye out for?

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Old 09-12-2010, 12:20 AM   #2
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I generally shoot for a turnover rate at 6-10x per hour. My return in my 150 turns 8x per hour. The higher the bioload the more turn over.

For filtration you could use Bioballs, sponges , or pot scrubbers from the dollar store. I would also try to incorporate a prefilter is possible...cuts down on debris and bubbles.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:02 AM   #3
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Depends on what you keep ... If you go for Goldfish & other "fat" fish, going closer to 10x turnover is better ... ie a 500-600 gph pump in your case.

A small sump might have problem with evaporation. By the time you factor in the headroom needed to contain the water from the display in case of power failure, you have maybe 5 gal of water in the sump. You might have to top that up every day or 2 with evaporation.

A bigger sump is less maintenance. If you have room, it won't cost too much to get a 20 or a 30 gal rubbermaid bin as your sump. If you want to try the 10, I would suggest making a tight fitting lid for it (and a good glass top for the display) to minimize evaporation. <And if you are doing CO2 for the plants, you will need that so you don't outgas all the CO2 in the sump.>

In addition to the bioballs, etc. mentioned, also consider polyester fiber batts s for your filter material.
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