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Old 05/23/2018, 06:36 PM   #1
prosper
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making water changes easier with plumbing?

im in the design process of my 90 gallon upgrade, and I'm trying to make all maintenance easier and faster. the biggest pain in the *** (as anybody with a reef tank knows) is water changes. but Id seen people with auto water changing systems... Im 16 and I have no where near enough money to blow on one of those things but I still want to make water changes easier. my idea was put a 10 gallon below my sump empty with a Bunch of powerbeads. this would be for mixing salt. this tank would have a pump in it and the pump would push water into the main display. then I would probably put a T valve on the overflow main drain line, (I'm plumbing it for Herbie) and off of the T valve run hose off the stand. this way I could just mix the water in the 10 gallon and then pump it up and turn the t valve so all the water I pumped up would go into the system, and the water going down the overflow would be drained into a bucket, removing it from the tank.
I came up with the idea in English the other day and drew it out, but I can't figure out how to plumb the "return" from the mixing tank to the DT without drilling another hole for a return in the tank, or getting one that hangs on the back. does anybody have any suggestions on making this work? also has anyone done anything similar that could give me some advice?
I hope this is on the right topic...
thanks,

Prosper


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Old 05/24/2018, 12:22 PM   #2
Vinny Kreyling
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Prosper, using 2 identical buckets makes things easy.
Mix new water in 1 bucket until ready.
Drain into the other bucket with a siphon hose & then refill with a pump & the same hose used to drain.


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Old 05/24/2018, 03:20 PM   #3
Apotack
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Can you post a sketch of what you are thinking of doing?


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Old 05/26/2018, 05:59 AM   #4
prosper
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apotack View Post
Can you post a sketch of what you are thinking of doing?
I've been trying to but I can't figure out how to upload photos on a Mac...


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Old 06/01/2018, 02:22 PM   #5
FullBoreReefer
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Plumb a tee and a valve into your return line, and also a valve going to your display. Then add a hose barb. Get a length of hose or tubing to reach out your window, to a sink, drain, whatever. Push your hose on, close the display valve and open your drain valve. Turn on your return pump and pump the water out.


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Old 06/01/2018, 02:56 PM   #6
JZinCO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FullBoreReefer View Post
Plumb a tee and a valve into your return line, and also a valve going to your display. Then add a hose barb. Get a length of hose or tubing to reach out your window, to a sink, drain, whatever. Push your hose on, close the display valve and open your drain valve. Turn on your return pump and pump the water out.
I'm setting up my plumbing and I actually did this.

Just past my main drain bulkhead, I put in a tee and barb connection. The main line runs to the sump. Before it gets to the sump there is a gate valve to work the siphon for the return.

When I need to water change, I will close the gate valve. So water redirects through the hose (and into my bathroom).

Originally I wanted to tee right off of the return pump. But the plumbing just didn't work out for that. As long as I have the return pump running during a water change the effect is equivalent--water level will fall in the sump to a predetermined level.
The only downside is that I am gravity-draining instead of the pump doing the work directly.
Normally, I must have gravity draining fast enough to keep up with the pump to prevent overflowing the DT. But I have an emergency drain that will make handle any flow in excess of the gravity draining.



Last edited by JZinCO; 06/01/2018 at 03:04 PM.
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Old 06/30/2018, 02:48 AM   #7
laverda
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Keep it simple. Remove the water as you described. Than just pump the new water in to your sump. As long as the pump is not to big it should not be an issue.


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Old 06/30/2018, 08:11 AM   #8
lapin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prosper View Post
I've been trying to but I can't figure out how to upload photos on a Mac...
For pictures i have to jump thru hoops. First i make them about around 100kb with photoshop, as suggested in the drop down. I have slow internet so it helps anyway. I hit "go advanced. manage attachments". When that box pops up I chose my picture and hit the upload button. Then it tells me to login again. Im all ready logged in ....grrrrr. So I login again using that screen. Then I have to close that screen after it redraws and thanks me and all that stuff. I then go back and hit "go advanced" and manage attachments again. Then it will let me upload a picture. Then to post I have to login again. It is so weird.


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Old 06/30/2018, 08:17 AM   #9
lapin
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I make it simple. I have 1 pump to pump water out of the sump and 1 pump to pump fresh mixed into the sump. I turn off my return pump. Water fills to a marked level in my sump. I pump out the amount I want to change. Then pump in fresh mixed to that marked level.


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Tank sizes, 2-10's a 55 and one that's about 500gal

Current Tank Info: Interior decorating happening
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Old 07/01/2018, 08:42 PM   #10
reefteaser
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115 gal display, emerald 39 sump. I use a 6 stage RODI hooked up to a nearby bathroom sink and mix new salt water next to the tank. I run a hose from the tank to the toilet in the same bathroom to siphon out 24 gal. The siphon hose is plumbed to a 90 degrees elbow with a length of hose (screen at the end to avoid drawing in a fish) that breaks the siphon at a level equal to 24 gal removed (this took some trial and error to get right). There is a mixing pump in the new water that gets hooked to another (shorter) hose to pump in the new water. Connecting and disconnecting the portable RODI filter is the toughest part, and itís really pretty easy. Itís stored in a nearby closet.
Under 3 hours to fill the mixing tub, a few hours to let it mix, and about 20 minutes to drain and refill, another 20 minutes or so to clean up and DONE!
Getting the RODI filter was one of the best equipment purchases I ever made. Going out to buy water and transporting it was a PITA, especially as I live on the second floor. I canít believe I did it for so long before I got the filter.


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Old 07/05/2018, 01:16 AM   #11
Steve175
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May not be possible in your case, but I absolutely love my WC system and highly recommend it. I added a series of 3 tanks with a constant pump from the sump to the 2nd and 3rd. The 3rd drains into the 2nd, the 2nd to the 1st and the 1st back to the sum. The 2nd is a cryptic refugium [unlit LR] and the first a very, very, very DSB. The 3rd is my mixing chamber for new SW. When is time for a WC, I close the valve to the 3rd tank (so the water pumps only into the 2nd) and I open a valve to drain the 3rd to the sewer. Then I pump in RO add salt and mix x 24h (one of my systems heaters sits in the 3rd tank). Then I open back up the 3rd tank to the system. The best part of this system is that for (inevitable) emergencies, I have identical tank water which I can isolate and add back to the sump. Highly highly highly recommended system. In my case, the 3 tanks are each 150G and I have a dedicated reeflo pump on the 3rd system running 24x7 which both mixes the new SW when isolated and actively pumps the tank to the sewer when valves opened. But something similar can be done on a smaller scale. Big picture: if done correctly, it will increase the volume of your system (= stability) and allow for always ready, ideal, perfectly matched emergency SW. In fact, I have occasionally used the 3rd tank for an emergency QT until I could get my regular QT up and running (ultimately pumped from that same now isolated tank).


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Current Tank Info: 2 separate 250G bowfront rimless ELOS tanks plumbed to 260G sump, 220G refugium, 220G frag, BK DeLuxe 300, 400W MH x4, closed loops, 3/4hp chiller x2, Phos reactor, Kalk reactor, Charcoal reactor, Ca reactor, 60G surge tanks, & a huge elec bill

Last edited by Steve175; 07/05/2018 at 01:28 AM.
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Old 07/09/2018, 03:17 PM   #12
clevername2000
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Since i live in a condo i cannot have the perfect water change station where EVERYTHING is in the basement and all i have to do is flip a switch. However i made my life so much easier by doing a couple things.
First i make my water in a rubber made tub, then mix my salt.
Bought a pump with a 8 foot hose AND a foot switch (you know, the kind you have for a christmas tree lights) put pump in tank and turn on pump with my foot... into waste buckets.

Then take pump out of tank and then put into the fresh saltwater. Turn pump back on....

DONE.
Its still work hauling buckets, but most of the time its just me standing there waiting for buckets to fill or tank to get emptied.

best sub 50$ water change solution


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