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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a continuous drip water change set up on my tank.

Im having some problems with the drain.

From the sump of the tank, i run a flexible drain line to the floor drain in the laundry room. The aquarium shares the floor drain with the washing machine. Stuffed into the floor drain, I have a 2 inch drain pipe with a T; on the left side of the T is the washer, on the right side is the aquarium. It's a T, so the top has been an open cap.

When the washing machine drains, the back pressure causes water to spill out the top of the T and all over the floor; if the top of the T were plugged, the water would back up the fish tank drain and potentially reach the fish tank!!

So I disconnected the fish tank drain from the T and capped both ends of the T; now the washer goes cleanly down the floor drain without any backup. But the fish tank drain is just sitting there, draining onto the floor next to the floor drain. It seeps through the cracks and down the drain, but it has no capacity; if I increase the drip rate from 0.5gph to 1.5gph, the floor drain basin overflows because water can't seep between the concrete and the pipe that fast..

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So.. Ive been trying to think of solutions. I capped the fish tank side, put an open vertical pipe on the T; and noted that the washing machine water backs up that pipe about 8 inches vertically before it has the head pressure to drain at the rate the washer is pumping water. My fish tank drain is more than 8 inches high. I wonder if it'd never be a problem; until the floor drain plug and the washer backs up all the way into the fish tank.

I thought about putting a check valve in the fish tank drain so that when the washer turns on it cannot run up the fish tank line; but I suspect that a valve like this could be clogged by a snail. Snails have made it all the way down the fish tank drain line and into the floor drain basin. So surely they'd make it into any in-line check valves and cause them to fail; then I'm back at washing machine water in the sump.


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