Aquarium Circulation Pumps | That Fish Place - That Pet Place

Find answers to frequently asked questions regarding aquarium water pumps
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Even strong pumps take a great deal of effort to move aquarium water around effectively. Resistance from the liquid itself, rocks, decorations and other surfaces all serve to impede the flow considerably and allowances must be made to provide more pumps than were probably thought necessary. This is especially true of reverse-flow systems where water movement is barely detectable without extra pumps.

Whilst airstones can achieve limited circulation by bringing the 'stale' bottom layers of water to the surface, it is impossible for them to duplicate anything like the surge or turbulence required, only specialist pumps or powerheads can do this. As a guideline, the number of circulatory pumps can be considered as follows: two for a 3ft tank, three for a 4ft tank, four for a 5ft tank, five for a 6ft tank, and so on. Larger pumps with a flow control are preferable as the volume can always be reduced on a larger pump, whereas it cannot be increased on a smaller one.
There are also multifunctional power heads and fish tank pumps available that are designed to circulate water through under-gravel filters and protein skimmers. While it's not necessary for most freshwater habitats to have flowing currents, fish tank aerators and aquarium pumps can help oxygenate your pet's water.
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If you are keeping a larger aquarium (over 40 gallons) then you may want to consider using a closed loop system. Basically this is when water is taken out of the aquarium and fed directly into an external pump and then returned to the tank. The return to the aquarium can be through a hole that is drilled into the side of the aquarium or simply over the back with a plastic pipe. Technically, a canister filter is a closed loop, but for these discussions I will be referring to circulation pumps only. Some advantages to this method are: Connect the timer-controllable circulation pump to a timer or wavemaker for custom aquarium water movement
Photo provided by FlickrTunze Turbelle Nanostream Water Circulation Pumps boast very silent operation and include a Magnet Holder for secure aquarium placement
Photo provided by FlickrConnect the timer-controllable circulation pump to a timer or wavemaker for custom water movement in your nano-reef aquarium
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If I decide to use a circulation pump it will be used only at the top of the water. I have a glass-bottom aquarium without gravel or substrate to make cleaning efficient and fast and it will only be a very small pump ie. 240gph, not the 850gph unit I was previously considering. Thanks for your feedback.External pumps, such as these Turbelle pumps by Tunze, work well for larger aquaria. They circulate large amounts of water with less heat gain than comparable internal pumps.Water movement plays a key role in maintaining fish health in freshwater and marine aquariums. Good water movement is also essential for aquatic plants, corals and even live rock! There are many benefits to increasing water movement in your aquarium with circulation pumps and wavemakers.Water circulation is important for keeping fish, corals and even live rock healthy and thriving. We’ll explain the multiple benefits of water movement and how best to position submersible pumps in reef and marine aquariums. But first we need to describe the three types of submersible water pumps available to the marine aquarist.Over on the eGullet forums, several people have reported good results with aquarium bubblers. The advice is to use the air hose directly into the bottom of the tank, without any airstone. You don't need much agitation to circulate the water. I did that for a while when I was between pumps one time, and I had no problems with uneven cooking in a large (~40l) pot.The wireless series circulation pumps lets you target and control water flow anywhere in your aquarium. Whats really cool about the Vortech is that the pump motor sits outside the tank while the impeller and blades sit inside your tank being powered by the same magnet that holds it together. This eliminates unsightly wires in the tank and greatly reduces motor heat transfer into the water. The wireless controller makes it easy to adjust the variety of flow characteristics until you find the settings that are just right for your reef.