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Sump Plumbing Help Needed

Discussion in 'Do-It-Yourself Projects & Hardware' started by Verminator89, Jan 28, 2019.

  1. Verminator89

    Verminator89 Jack Dempsey Enthusiast

    Aug 16, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Hellooooo! First post in nearly 6 years (probably!)

    Im trying to plumb a sump. Local plumbing shops have palmed me off, local Aquarium shops directed me to said plumbing shops and videos and threads I've come across haven't given me the confidence/answers i need.

    Has someone a good guide to reference too, or can I have some things explained.

    1) if the hole is 2", i need a 50mm/2" bulkhead yes? (sounds daft i know), some things I've seen state internal measurement and i don't know if that means size bulkhead up/down according?

    2) said 2" bulkhead will hopefully fit 2" hole, and easiest thing i can do is buy 2" PVC pipe and it will fit that bulkhead?

    3) bulkheads, some have screw ends others flat and pipes push in? Pros/cons of either? Does it really matter? Is there a specific fitting i should be looking for (terminology?)?

    4) a general list of items I'd need to buy to do all this would be helpful as once again I've not yet found a definitive helpful list to go off.

    Im not the most DIY orientated person, and have zero experience/knowledge of a sump other than its better for larger bodies of water. Plus the tank i have is predrilled, so im sumping it.

    Someone help a poor lost soul out!
  2. Colin_T

    Colin_T Member

    Jan 26, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Perth, WA
    Where are the holes in the tank?

    Normally you just get a fitting that fits in the hole, then silicon it in place. Make sure there are no bits sticking up on the plastic where it meets the glass. Some people put a thin layer of rubber between the pvc pipe fitting and the glass.

    You want the sump to drain faster than the pump can push water back up into the tank. If the pump is too powerful, the tank will overflow and you will need to fit a T-piece and tap into the return pipe that goes from the pump (in the sump) to the tank. Having said this, you want a pump that can easily do the height so buy bigger and add a T-piece & tap. Most pumps don't pump the water they state so try to get a slightly bigger pump rather than a small one.

    Sumps can be used to hold extra water, filtration media, heaters, protein skimmers (for marine tanks), plants, rocks, basically anything that normally goes in the main tank.

    The sump must be able to hold the water that drains from the main tank when the power goes off. So when you first set it up, fill the tank up so the water level is at the top of the drain pipe in the tank. Then fill up the sump and turn the pump on.

    Monitor the water level in the sump and make sure it doesn't drop below the pump.

    You have to top up the sump or tank on a regular basis. If you fit coverglass to the sump it will reduce evaporation and minimise mould growth on the stand under the tank.

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