Too much flow?

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Too much flow?

Postby 2kids1dog on Sun Oct 27, 2013 7:27 am

I have a 46 gallon bow front. I have 2 circ. pumps, 1 on each end. My tank appears almost cloudy from millions of little bubbles...is this because there is too much flow, or the pumps' flow is creating turbulence? The water clears when everything is off...it doesn't appear that my corals (zoos..mostly down low) are getting buffeted too much, and I have an anemone that is wide open (more near the top of my rocks).
For this size tank should I have 2 pumps? Should I lower 1 or move 1 to a back wall? Or just get 1 pump with higher output? Looking for helpful hints :) Thanks much!!!
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby plainrt on Sun Oct 27, 2013 12:02 pm

Lol lots info missing..... What size pumps and which way are they pointed?
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby plainrt on Sun Oct 27, 2013 12:02 pm

Is sand blowing around?
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby 2kids1dog on Sun Oct 27, 2013 5:36 pm

Pumps are at ends of tank, about same height, facing in at center of tank. No sand blowing around. 1 is a Maxi-jet 900--rated for 1000GPH? and the other is a smaller Aqueon rated at maybe 700? I did just get 2 pumps that have dual heads rated higher at 1200 I think (they were used) but I have not put them in yet. Thanks for any advice!!
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby 2kids1dog on Tue Oct 29, 2013 5:03 am

Anyone else have some more suggestions?
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby Socratic Monologue on Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:21 am

I'd ask if you have any bubble corals, but I've found that a reefer's sense of humor is poor when something is going wrong in their tank :) .

It is not likely that the circulation pumps are causing the bubbles, since I doubt they're powerful enough to cause cavitation; something has to be mixing air with the water. You say the bubbles clear when everything is off, but try turning off just the circulation pumps, one at a time, and see if that makes a difference. I suspect the pumps are just distributing bubbles that are being produced by some other means (skimmer is the most likely. Perhaps the return pump/return line has a hole in it that is drawing in air.)

If you end up finding that one of the circ. pumps are causing the bubbles, it might be that the pump is placed too high in the tank and is drawing air down from the surface. This would be an easy thing to fix.
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby 2kids1dog on Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:13 pm

Thanks for those ideas...however, I don't have a skimmer in that tank. Both circ. pumps are below the surface of the water. I'm wondering if the flow is striking my rockwork, in the middle of the tank and diffusing from that?
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby Socratic Monologue on Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:41 pm

Well, if there is no other filtration/water movement devices on the tank other than those two pumps, then it must be one of them. I've seen powerheads draw air down a couple inches from the surface. You'd see a vortex above the pump, at least intermittently.

I'll take back something I said before -- I just Googled 'aquarium powerhead cavitation' and got a bunch of hits. Apparently that can happen, and may be what you're experiencing. You might read through some of what folks say about this and see if maybe that's your problem.
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby MM on Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:51 am

flow is over rated. The bull shit you see on Reef Central is just that. I have had lps and sps thrive in low flow tanks. I would suggest something in the middle. Flow helps a lot when things are going wrong. A low flow tank will get in trouble quicker but the tanks they show on RC with massive is some idiot showing off.

- Mark
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby MM on Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:54 am

short answer cut your flow in half and see if it fixes the problem, you dont need anything near what they tell you on RC. - Mark
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby MM on Wed Oct 30, 2013 11:55 am

last thought any lines that are not submerged can venturi air into your sytem. - Mark
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby 2kids1dog on Wed Oct 30, 2013 8:06 pm

Thanks for the advice everyone!! I did study up on cavitation too....what I ended up doing was pulling that pump out completely. Now I have a little bit more powerful one in there...got it used, so can't see the brand, but believe it could be rated pretty high GPH. Has a twin impeller- head design. For that size tank, 46 BF...should I use that as well as a smaller one lower down, pointed more along the back of the tank? It seems like a great deal of current, when I fed some frozen food recently and turned the pumps back on (I turn them off when I feed) it looked like a whirlpool.. Appears that current is going counter-clockwise around the tank, Should I put a "Nano" as the 2nd pump, just so there is some current but maybe not as much as there is now?
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby Socratic Monologue on Thu Oct 31, 2013 7:21 pm

I'd experiment a bit and see what works for you. Too little flow, and detritus settles out in dead spots in the tank, filter feeders don't do well. Too much flow, and you'll notice that corals aren't expanding, substrate is getting blown around, neighbors are getting saltwater on their garage roof, etc. :)
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby R33f3rMadn3ss on Fri Nov 01, 2013 12:29 pm

Socratic Monologue wrote:neighbors are getting saltwater on their garage roof, etc. :)

:shock: talk about some flow!

I would also suggest looking into the different types of flow, as there are more then one kind.
I reserve the right to at any point have my fish eat your fish.....
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Re: Too much flow?

Postby Jeromi on Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:15 am

How is no one loling at these jokes? Bubble coral bahhaaaaa :)
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