View Full Version : plumbing question..

11/13/2008, 10:15 AM
alright, first time setting up a sump.. ive gotta mag 5 return pump, whats the best way to plumb it, pvc or flexible tubing?.. im looking to add a scwd, and use locline as the return output.. im just not sure about where i put ballvalves and any other specialy plumbing part needed, (maybe one to prevent backflow from the display to sump..).. any adapters needed to plumb the locline into tubing.. thanks for any advice.. chris

11/13/2008, 11:19 AM
When I did my sump I used a foot long piece of vinyl tubing to go from my PVC to the Mag pump. It would flex enough to let me pull the pump out for cleaning/replacement. I also made 45degree angles on each bend insread of 90's..... just a little better flow and probably easier on the pump.

11/13/2008, 11:28 AM
Use a short threaded nipple, a ball valve, flex tubing and barbed nipples off the pump discharge to reduce noise associated with solid piping. The ball valve also gives you both isolation for cleaning and a way to throttle flows if need be.
If you plan to go up and over the back of the tank into the LocLine then you will probably want to use PVC for that so it sort of forms to the top edge and supports the weight. For backflow as long as you keep the returns close to the surface no check valves or drilled holes are needed, you will only backsiphon a small bit of water until the returns are exposed to atmosphere and that can be contained in the sump easily. Check valves fail and are a fals sense of security at best same with drilled holes that require cleaning and will still fail when a snail parks over the hole.

11/13/2008, 11:43 AM
What's the size of the tank?

I've often heard, and currently employ, that using a bushing right at the pump outlet to double the plumbing size will greatly increase the flow rate of the pump. They're cheap, under $1 at the hardware store, so I'd plumb it with a bushing and then PVC after that.

Also, do NOT rely on a check valve, plumb it in such a way that back siphoning is not credible (with appropriate siphon breaks in the plumbing as necessary).

11/13/2008, 03:11 PM
wow thanks for all the feedback.. its a 29 gallon tank and 29 gallon sump.. so starting after the return pump we got bushing, small threaded nipple, ball valve, maybe flex tubing up to the scwd, then pvc after that to locline... hows that sound?.. i went with the mag 5 just to be safe but theres gonna be a fuge in the sump so im hopin the scwd and locline and 3 ft of head loss well put it at a good rate, then ill just makeup for the rest with powerheads..am i even makin sense? ha

11/13/2008, 10:32 PM

11/14/2008, 04:55 AM
Forget the mag 5 with the swcd. There just isn't enough flow to power it. A mag 9.5 would probably be a better fit for you.

11/14/2008, 09:06 AM
have u had experience with a mag 5 and a scwd?

11/14/2008, 09:53 AM
The SCWD by itself will cut your flows 25-30% even without any vertical head on the pump. The Mag 5 pumps a maximum of 500 GPH at 0 head, use it as a return with the typical 5-6 feet of head due to both vertical piping and the assorted fittings and the flow is down to 200-250 max, probably closer to the 200. Now add the SCWD and you are down to maybe 150 at best.
I am not a fan of Mag pumps for several reasons including heat generation, power consumption and noise but say you switch to a Ocean Runner 2500 or Eheim 1260. The 2500 or 1260 would give you about 350 GPH at the 6 feet of head and with the SCWD probably about 275 GPH. Both use less power than the smaller Mag 5, create less heat and are worlds quieter.

11/14/2008, 10:30 AM
yea i have ran a mag 12 with a scwd for years and on a 55 it was just barely enough.

11/14/2008, 03:36 PM
thank you for ur opinions.. so if you were in my situation with a 29 gal, 29 gal sump, and a mag 5 for a return, how would you plumb it to get the most out of what you got?.. thanks

11/15/2008, 06:09 AM
I'd leave the mag on the return and get another mag to run a CL

11/15/2008, 10:15 AM
the tanks not drilled.. anything else?

11/15/2008, 10:38 AM
Not sure how much this will be but..... put ball valves right before each return and right after each drain. If you run a chiller or UV place a ball value before entrance and after exit. Place valves anywhere you think you may need to shut off water supply in the future for repairs or maintenance. IMO you really can't have to many. It really saves a headache later when you learn more and wish to replumb, refit or add hardware (reactors etc.), it makes it much easier. A true union check valve is a must on the return pump. If in the rare case it fails your drain lines should have small holes in them to prevent excess draining of the tank. As far as intricate plumbing is concerned, should you need tips for your 90 in the future please contact: [email protected] He is amazing and spent a lot of time with me over the phone when I was plumbing my 125. I wanted to DIY as I felt I would learn so much more about maintaining my own tank (this is my first one). He is pretty well known in the aquarium hobby. Good luck.

11/15/2008, 11:31 AM
Never use a check valve! They are a falsesense of security and will fail, usually at the most inconvienient moment. Always design andconstruct your returns properly and a check valve or little drilled holes are not necessary.