Question about pump purchase....

Discussion in 'Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment' started by AngelLeah1981, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    I am needing a pump for a 120 gallon aquarium and I need it to be powerful enough so that I won't have to buy another one later but also keep in mind I'm not wanting to waste money either. lol. This is a tank that is not set up yet but I am wanting to put fish and reef in it. One lfs is suggesting I get one that pumps 1400-1500 gallons per hour and I don't know the price or brand but I'm sure it's ridiculous just like all his other equpiment prices; he is going to call me and let me know today..... and the other lfs suggests a GenX that pumps 1800-2000 gallons per hour and the cost is $120. Is this a good deal? This store usually has good prices but has other issues. lol. Do I need a better brand? Does it matter if it's internal or external? I think he may have said it's internal but I can't remember. How many gph do you suggest and what are your thoughts on this? Also, the lfs with high prices says the GenX only has 6000 which pumps 1600 and a 8500 that pumps 2250 and said the 8500 was probably what the other lfs store was talking about and his price is $199.00. He said this pump can be used as internal or external but he would use it internally because he would be afraid of it overheating ?? Any thoughts and suggestions on this would be GREAT.
    Thanks.


    2 internal overflows
    30-40 gallon sump
    probably going to do a fuge (macro algae and rock in sump)
     
    AngelLeah1981, Feb 25, 2008
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  2. AngelLeah1981

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    It does matter if it's external or internal. You can only run an external pump from your sump if you sump is drilled and plumbed for an external pump. If it's not, you need an internal (submersible) pump. I would look for a pump that pushes about 10 times your tank's water volume, so around 1200 gph. Once you take into account head space (the length of plumbing the pump has to push the water through to get to the tank), it usually works out well.

    I've used Eheim and MagDrive pumps as returns before, and both have worked well and are really affordable.
     
    Bifferwine, Feb 25, 2008
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  3. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v712/biorhythm/PIC-0337.jpg
    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v712/biorhythm/PIC-0336.jpg

    48X24X25
    I was told the next piece of equipment to buy after the tank would be the pump so I'm just assuming this is for the water that goes from the tank to the sump and back to the tank again. Here's 2 pics of the tank and the holes that are almost as big as a tennis ball. There is a plastic "box like thing" on both sides for the internal overflows each with two holes. ...just thought this info might be helpful.
     
    AngelLeah1981, Feb 25, 2008
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  4. AngelLeah1981

    Piggy

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    Did you get the parts for the overflows? I have a 120 but my overflows are in the corners. I have a 30 long sump/furge. Which I made. Your tank is taller and wider then mine. I went with a mag12 pump.
     
    Piggy, Feb 25, 2008
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  5. AngelLeah1981

    ccCapt Reef Hacker Moderator

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    I would love to know what Gen-X pump there is that does 2000gph and costs $120. I want that one....lol.

    The tank has 2 built in overflows, if they are 1", each will handle about 600 gph. So your tank can drain a total of about 1200 gph. Figure what pump you need from there, taking head loss into consideration. If you get a pump stronger than the overflows can handle, you will have an empty sump and overflowing tank.
     
    ccCapt, Feb 25, 2008
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  6. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    All I got is in the pic. I got the tank with a plastic box on each end - each with two holes. I have to buy the plumbing and bulkheads I think he called them.

    I forgot to mention this info: From the top of the tank to the bottom of the stand is almost 54 inches.

    So you've heard of Gen-X? Is it a good brand ???

    So would you suggest the Gen-X 6000 that pumps 1600 gph ??
     
    AngelLeah1981, Feb 25, 2008
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  7. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    I'm going to put macro algae and rock in the sump eventually.
     
    AngelLeah1981, Feb 25, 2008
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  8. AngelLeah1981

    ccCapt Reef Hacker Moderator

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    I use a Gen-X PCX40 external pump for my basement sump and used a Gen-X 2400 on my protein skimmer. Good pumps, but a little loud.

    1600 gph is pushing it being your overflows can only handle 1200 gph...unless you have alot of head loss. You can put a ball valve after the pump to slow it down if the overflows can't keep up.
     
    ccCapt, Feb 25, 2008
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  9. AngelLeah1981

    fatman

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    Looks like what you have is a 120 gallon AGA tank with two back wall towers with holes for two 1 inch overflows and two 3/4 inch inch return lines. The two overflows will give you a sump feed of around 600 to 900 gallons per hour of the overly rated commercial quote of 1200 gallons per hour. I would look at it one of several ways: (1) use the holes as intended with a pump rated at around 1000 gph as you will not get 1000 gph out of the pump due to head height and plumbing friction losses from pipe, fittings and valves (2) use all four holes as overflow holes which might get you up to 1000-1200 gph feed to the sump, but your pump return lines would then have to go over the top of the tank, which isn't really all that bad (3) have your local fish store drill another hole in the back wall for a two inch back wall overflow to use in addition to the furnished two larger holes made for overflows, this can give you up to 2100 gph feeding your sump, this option should pretty much prevent the need for any additional in tank circulation power heads as you could easily supply a minimum of four return lines from your sump The cheapest method is to use the tank as is is supposedly set up for which is option (1) which would require additional in tank power heads for circulation as your sump could only supply back what it is fed regardless your return pump size, a pump size of around 1000 gph would more than handle the job, I would recommend an external pump to reduce heat and would recommend you purchase on line, a Pan World 50PX-X is a great economical pump (quiet) for a standard 120 gallon setup. Option(2) and (3) would require larger pumps but would eliminate the gaudy power head circulation pumps. Cash out lay would actually be cheaper for options (2) and (3) unless you purchased cheap power heads such as Maxi-Jets. I have set up _many_ 120 gallon tanks with stock overflow systems and I guarantee if set up as intended you will not get anywhere near a 1200 gallon feed into your sump. Remember all you really need for flow through your sump is enough water to feed any equipment in your sump (skimmer etc.) and to maintain the same water parameters as in tank. That is if you want to consider in tank power heads for additional water circulation. You should consider now though if you might plan on having many stoney (hard) corals in the future as they like circulation rates around 20 to 30 tank turn overs per hour. If you do not consider that now you are condemned to the use of gaudy, ugly power heads. Also take into consideration that with the recommended amounts of live rock in your tank that you are only going to have around 100 gallons of water in your tank.
     
    fatman, Feb 26, 2008
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  10. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    Thanks so much for the FANTASTIC info. We keep our apartment 69-70 degrees at all times so would a pump inside the water be good because of that? or would you still recommend an external? I just wonder how much heat it would put off. It might actually be a good thing. ?? Thanks.
     
    AngelLeah1981, Feb 28, 2008
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  11. AngelLeah1981

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Not all internal pumps will heat up the water. If you buy one that has a tendency to heat up, it may heat your tank up enough that your heater won't have to work as hard. If you want an external pump, your sump will have to be drilled for it. Most sumps aren't, so most people use an internal pump.

    If you read descriptions of pumps, many internal ones will say "will not heat up the water" or something like that, because it's usually considered a bad thing.
     
    Bifferwine, Feb 28, 2008
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  12. AngelLeah1981

    fatman

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    All submersible pumps will produce heat, as will all external pumps. Submersibles have nowhere to channel that heat but into the water, an exrenal pump can channel most of the heat to the surrounding air. Turning electricity back into mechanical energy (electricity into a pump) is far from 100 percent efficient. That is why most electric motors have built in fans. That and the fact that heat further reduces a motors life expectancy. A submersible pump could be more efficient, however aquarium submersibles are basically just the same pumping design as external pumps. Basically they are both just centrifugal pumps. The submersible is just sealed. Anyway that is probably more than you wanted to know. Pumps put out heat constantly therefore it will be putting out heat when other heat sources are supplying heat. Such as your lights. Heaters are really most important because they provide consistency. They should allegedly always keep the tank water temperature the same. Picture your tank during the hottest part of summer, without air conditioning, with the lights on over your tank, plus the pump heating up the water. Now figure that your pump is a 100 watt pump and it is probably 60 percent efficient (really that is a good efficiency). So that is 40 watts of heat going into your tank 24 hours per day. Of course if it is to much heat, you can use a fan to cause evaporation from your tank to provide cooling, but then you have to pay for running the fan. Viscous circles everywhere. Submersible aquarium pumps are cheaper to produce and are therefore cheaper to purchase. Not better or more efficient, just cheaper. Not cooler running (they both basically produce the same amounts of heat), but cooler to the touch as water is a better thermal conductor than air (meaning water holds and transmits heat better than air). Remember also, that powerheads aso are putting out heat. They are even less efficient than larger submergible pumps. Probably around 40 to 50 percent efficient. I live in Alaska and I still have heat problems with my 120 gallon tanks at times (summer), and I do not use power heads, although I am presently using TurboFlotors in tanks and they require submersible pumps. I run around four hundred watts of external water pumps per tank though, and using submersibles would be like running a 160 watt heater 24 hours per day. The only thing 100 percent efficient with a tank is the electric heater. You put 100 watts of electricity in and you get out 100 watts of heat energy out. 1 Watt per second in gives 1 Joule per second out. They are essentially the same.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2008
    fatman, Feb 28, 2008
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  13. AngelLeah1981

    AngelLeah1981

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    whoops sorry.
     
    AngelLeah1981, Mar 4, 2008
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