Monday, 16 February 2015 14:53

Aquarium Sumps

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   It was not long ago that a sump was merely a place to have a pump to send water to the main tank and to provide surface skimming by having an overflow system. Of course it did not take long for a number of hobbyists to figure out that such a space could be put to many other good uses. The linked articles below provide a multitude of great ideas that you can apply to your own aquarium systems. Although you can keep a reef tank without a sump, I feel they provide many benefits such as: 
  • Increasing the amount of water in your system which can help to dilute (spread it out over a larger area) out any potential toxins untill you can fix it
  • They provide an out of the way place for all the other equipment such as skimmers,heaters and so on.
  • A section of the sump can be set aside for use as a refuge for growing macro algaes or just a home for more delicate creatures that help the main tank such as pods.
  • They make doing water changes alot easier, no need to move lights out of the way or splash it all over the glass that you just cleaned of kids fingerprints.
  • They also allow an easy way to dose your tank if you are dripping in other elements or just topping off the tank with a freshwater source.

sump2   sump3
  By lowering the water level in the pump compartment I have exposed more glass surface to the "waterfall" effect. This was done after I noticed that a few species of filament algae only grows on the interior of my overflow boxes. Once a week, I simply take a single edged razor blade and clean alternating "stripes" and throw it away. Doing so is a good way to export all the nutrients such fast growing algae uses and sequesters. 

Everything you always wanted to know about Sumps    Part Two    Part Three   -  The title says it all. A great article detailing all aspects on the use of a sump. 

OverFlows and Sumps  -  Another very good article detailing the use of overflows and sumps.

Whats in your Sump?  -  " Here is a starting place to begin considering what features you can add to your reservoir, depending on your needs and space "

 Shown below are some of the life forms that will grow in low light, high flow areas of sumps, all of which aides in filtering small particles from the water. 

Basic Sump Design



A Usual Sump Set Up
Note: Any of these setups can use drilled tanks for overflows instead of the usual overflow boxes as well as using external pumps instead of submersable types.



A Sump with Side Refugium
This design is well suited for growing mangroves in the refuge to allow for overhead room as well as to provide for a low flow environment for more delicate creatures.




Above Tank Refugium
This design is meant to allow live food to enter the main tank without having to go through a pump's impellors




Sump & Refugium Combination
This design is well suited for growing mangroves in the refuge to allow for overhead room or for equipment that is too tall to fit under the main tank in the sump.


Used by permission.  Many thanks to Charlies and Linda Raabe for their support.

Read 3589 times Last modified on Saturday, 20 June 2015 04:49
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