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wkndracer 04-05-2009 06:48 AM

Trickle Filters
I'm looking seriously at a larger tank and system. It includes a large trickle filter, submersible pump and 29g tank for the sump. Opinions / experienced voices please.
This filtration is usually applied to saltwater systems so it will / won't work? Why?

Have I mentioned lately how much I love this forum and everybody in it? :icon_mrgr

inkslinger 04-05-2009 06:55 AM

Ask around the Tom Barr web site there are a few people that use sumps there for large tanks.

wkndracer 04-05-2009 08:47 PM

Trickle filter sump

Have I mentioned lately how much I love this forum and everybody in it? :biggrin:

Cocobid 04-06-2009 07:23 PM

Check out Michaels tanks his 240 is most impressive. Have been to his home and personally viewed the tanks. He also has a blog.

wkndracer 04-09-2009 01:00 AM

Finally after NOT finding any information on setting up and or maintaining a trickle filter on a planted tank I emailed Mr. George Booth. He kindly responded today and I'm very grateful.

Last night I surfed for hours, doing searches, running into one dead link after another unless it was saltwater related. The specifics of how to set it up still allude me with regards to how to minimize CO2 loss.

But like the flipping Xfiles 'I know the answer is out there.'

nokturnalkid 04-09-2009 02:42 AM

I think that all trickle filters will outgas your co2 as long as you are dissolving the co2 through a reactor. Maybe if you mist, you might stand a chance of keeping your co2 up. Another thing to consider is a enclosed sump. That should work fine. You may not even need to do a trickle filter since they are geared more towards biological filtration. All the bio filtration you are gonna need should come from your plants.

wkndracer 04-09-2009 02:51 AM

Large CO2 loss? I now think "NOT"
When properly set up, they do not remove much CO2.

I believe this man knows what hes talking about and CO2 loss is no longer an issue I'm concerned with:thumbsup:

I'll be setting up a trickle filter on my next tank instead of a canister. :icon_mrgr

nokturnalkid 04-09-2009 05:15 AM

Hehe...shows what I know.

Cactus Bastard 04-09-2009 07:13 AM


Originally Posted by wkndracer (Post 825344)
When properly set up, they do not remove much CO2.

as long as "properly set up" means properly set up for a planted tank :icon_wink
Just be aware that most trickle filters are intended for reef tanks, and include far too much aeration. Our applications are different.

wkndracer 04-09-2009 07:40 AM


Originally Posted by Cactus Bastard (Post 825517)
as long as "properly set up" means properly set up for a planted tank :icon_wink
Just be aware that most trickle filters are intended for reef tanks, and include far too much aeration. Our applications are different.

The link posted above is to George Booth's article on set up for CO2 injection and a case study.

Cactus Bastard 04-09-2009 07:45 AM

Yep, and he had geared his setup towards a planted tank. I just wanted to make sure nobody taking an off the shelf sump (intended for a reef tank), would expect negligible CO2 losses.

Aqua Dave 04-10-2009 10:55 PM

The question you should be asking is why do you need a trickle filter? Reef tanks use it for biological filtration. A planted tank should have enough surface area within the tank for bacteria that you don't need supplemental biological filtration. Most people leave out the trickle part and just have a sump. If you go ahead with a trickle filter then you'll need to make sure it is fairly well sealed. Otherwise the CO2 will likely off-gas into the air. I ran a trickle filter on my 150 for a time and went through CO2 quickly. I switched to just a sump and now go several months on a CO2 tank.


ldk59 04-11-2009 02:18 AM

Short answer is "Yes, it will work" ...

You'll have no need for the *tower* or *trickle* portion though. The sump however can be used as a very effective part of your planted tank filter system ...

Sumps are a very convenient location for chemical and mechanical filter media as well as probes or other devices that you want located directly in the path of water flow but out of sight ...



wkndracer 04-19-2009 07:50 PM

Web searches are making me dizzy LOL. Trickle filter to sump configuration changes. Trying to decide how many dividers and what size. Also the tower is leaving. The box is an Oceanic model 150plus with the tower centered on the side. No matter how I adjust my plans for compartment dividers I just donít like the layout. I want to run end to end as that makes the most sense to me as opposed to a half tank loop back. The spill chamber for the tower is just too oddly sized and shaped to work out. Most search results either contain skimmers or more equipment than I think I'm needing. Wanting either to use a sock on the intake or use coarse foam, floss divider something to catch debris and easily dealt with for removal / replacement while in service then into a chamber containing moss and or grow area for starter plants. Then another media option possibly two and out to the display tank. So about 4 or 5 sections. The return pump is external through a bulkhead so the whole tank is available for division leaving a couple of inches for return clearance.
Pump sizing also, thinking 1000gph is needed with 3í of rise, piping and manifold restriction. If itís too strong valves can be throttled to adjust that, just donít want to be caught short.

sunfire99 04-19-2009 08:59 PM

Mike, Here's what I did on mine. You could use the area that I filled with bio media for a moss refuge/filter. I do that on salt tanks with Caulerpa algae. Since the baffle are really only being used to force the water down and back through the next stage of the sump, they can be closer than 2" as mine are (i want to get a hand in to clean if needed). Many reefers are now using 1" baffles in an attempt to control bubbles which aren't nearly the problem for f/w. It's interesting you mentioned the moss grow area as I had considered it, but decided I wanted to keep the sump barebottomed to help control buildup of detritus which seems to collect badly in sumps IME. You will almost always need more pump than you think for the return. Go big and ball valve it down if needed.

You're at the fun part of sump design, getting to make it exactly how you want it., Good luck.

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