HOB refugium pump not pulling air

Discussion in 'Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment' started by Jason4, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. Jason4

    Jason4

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    I just set up a Odyssea HOB refugium/skimmer and the power head (Odyssea 250) is not pulling any air threw the pump. The air line actually fills with water. I can blow air threw the line but thats it. whats the problem?The tank is 30" long and the Refugium is 24" long
     

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    Jason4, Sep 9, 2010
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  2. Jason4

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    Where is the hose hooked up to? I cant see it in the first picture.

    Usually on skimmers, the airline plugs into the intake on the pump so that the air gets chopped up by the impeller.
     
    bjohanson1234, Sep 9, 2010
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  3. Jason4

    Jason4

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    Its hard to see, but it is on the pump
     
    Jason4, Sep 9, 2010
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  4. Jason4

    Rcpilot

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    If I can't see the airline tubing - then you got it in the WRONG spot bud.

    It needs to go INTO the strainer intake so that the impellor SUCKS the air in and then chops it up before sending it into the skimmer.

    I suspect you have the airline plugged into the OUTLET line on the pump. That's going to pressurize the airline with water and not allow any air in.

    Like this bud: :Cheers:
     

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  5. Jason4

    Rcpilot

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    You might need to purchase an intake strainer like this:
    Ameka Aquatics

    Just push the foam pre-filter over the outside. Wash it off in old tank water each week when you do a water change. Most people siphon the old tank water out and into a bucket. Rinse the pre-filter sponge out in that water so it doesn't kill the beneficial bacteria living on it. Re-install.
     
    Rcpilot, Sep 9, 2010
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  6. Jason4

    Jason4

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    Your right, I had it hooked up wrong :frustrat: The pump came with a strainer and now ( thanks to your help) is hooked up correctly and working perfectly.
     
    Jason4, Sep 10, 2010
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  7. Jason4

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    Glad you figured it out!!!!
     
    bjohanson1234, Sep 10, 2010
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  8. Jason4

    Rcpilot

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    Now you need to adjust the airflow.

    Notice if you cut the airflow almost completely off, the skimmer body will only have a few bubbles inside. Go ahead and slowly cut down the air flow until the bubbles have stopped.

    Now notice that you can open the air intake line slowly and see the bubbles. Take note that as you open the air intake line - more and more bubbles will be produced and the skimmer body will look like white foam inside.

    Keep going with the air intake. Open it up even further and further and further. There will come a point where the line is open TOO FAR and it will actually FOUL the impeller blades. You can see the bubbles reduced to lower amounts in the skimmer body. At this point, the impeller blades are barely pumping any water at all. They are too fouled with air to do much actual water movement. The other issue is the skimmer body is usually NOT a white haze of foam at this point. Most of the time there is only a thin column of bubbles coming out of the pump tube and into the skimmer body.

    So take care and OPTIMIZE the air intake line. Spend the time to properly adjust it for maximum bubbles WITHOUT fouling the impeller. I always liked to spend the time and find that sweet spot where it is producing so many bubbles that the entire skimmer body looks like it's filled with foamed milk.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2010
    Rcpilot, Sep 10, 2010
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  9. Jason4

    Jason4

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    I thought i had the mixture correct last night, the bubbles were coming to the top of the collection cup tube and after a few hours of running the cup already had gunk in it. This morning i checked on it and the bubble level was at the bottom of the tube. I guess i need to push the cup down as well.? Right before i got the skimmer working i did some rock work and water was cloudy, maybe thats why the skimmer was so productive at first.
     
    Jason4, Sep 10, 2010
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  10. Jason4

    bjohanson1234 .........

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    It can take weeks to fine tune a skimmer. It is just trial and error.
     
    bjohanson1234, Sep 10, 2010
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  11. Jason4

    Rcpilot

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    Many skimmers will also have an outlet adjustment dial. This dial will adjust how fast the water/bubble/foam can EXIT the skimmer body. Usually, turning the dial clockwise will reduce the amount of water/foam that can escape/move out of the skimmer body. This puts a little back pressure on the skimmer and forces the water/foam to rise up higher in the skimmer body and enter into your collection cup. By turning the dial completely closed, you can force the skimmer to fill your collection cup almost instantly.

    Conversely, turning the dial all the way out and allowing free flow through the skimmer body will reduce the pressure so much that the water/foam simply runs through the skimmer very fast. So fast, in fact, that it can never collect any skim and force it up into the collection cup. The water level inside the skimmer body would be noticeably low and you would not collect any skim at all.

    So you have an air intake dial, to adjust the amount of bubbles in your skimmer body, and you have an outlet dial to adjust how fast the water can escape the skimmer body and go back into the sump.

    The first thing I do is adjust the air intake and get the foam inside the skimmer body so that it looks like foamed milk. THEN turn the outlet dial to adjust how fast the water escapes the skimmer. Basically, get the foam working good and then use the outlet adjusting dial. By tweaking and fiddling ---- maybe even a few 4-letter words ---- you can adjust a skimmer to work very efficiently. It just takes a little time.
     
    Rcpilot, Sep 10, 2010
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  12. Jason4

    Badvegan

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    i really like these HOB fuge/ skimmer combos but have noticed that if you are not using either the oddysea or an eheim pump that they do not work very well (the oddysea 250 is an eheim clone in case you didnt know)

    The only problem with the pump is that the ceramic needlewheel shaft sometimes breaks and good luck finding a replacement. I guess what i am trying to say is go ahead and order another powerhead or two for back up, honestly at these prices you might as well.
     
    Badvegan, Nov 30, 2010
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