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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Gang,

I'm start to slowly collect all the components for my build. I'm looking for your recommendations on a decent pump / filter system for a water feature.

I want something outside of the viv, which I can pipe in, and with a substantial enough flow to support a small stream / waterfall in a single enclosure.

I want something which will hopefully minimize the number of water changes I need to make, and also ensure that making a water change is a simple process.

Cost wise, I would rather spend more money in return for something really decent, so don't mind more costly options.

Would an aquarium pump and filter do the job? or would I want something more focused on what I'm looking to achieve.

Thanks,

Robert
 

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depends on the size of the tank and the water volume in your pond, but I prefer Eheim 2213/2215 for paludariums with up to 15 gallons of water. I am running a cheap cheap sunsun knock off filter from ebay that is larger than a 2213, and was only $38 bucks... but it doesn't have much more power. You want a filter that is significantly over rated for your water volume, becuase you will have more lift forces to overcome than the filter is designed for. If you have the opportunity to drill the tank, this can make your filtration more reliable and efficient, since you can have your intake turn down much lower. The only problem I ever have with paludarium filtration is that the suction up and over the tank wall is hard to prime and sometimes wants to let go.
 

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the other thing to consider, is if you end up drilling the tank, you could go for a sump instead and really have a flexible solution. but you'd have to really plan ahead, plumbing for a sump and plumbing for a canister are very different projects.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
@mellowvision - Thanks for the information, that's really useful.

I'm still at plan + prep phase so I'm open to any ideas. I had planned very much on drilling the tank, yes, as I know this gives me more options, and will also cut down on the amount of pipe-work going over the top.

I'm not familiar with the different plumping setups. I'm happy to put the work into a sump of that's going to be a better option down the line.

Do you have any good resources for putting something like that together?

Thanks again.

Robert
 

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If you do a separate sump or have space and good access to a hidden section of the in-tank reservoir, you can do a lightweight aquarium powerhead like a maxijet 1200. If head height is low they flow quite a bit, tolerate being throttled with a ball valve, and don't mind chunks of material passing through them. I'd filter them just by taking an appropriate diameter piece of PVC, maybe six inches long, with holes drilled all along the length and foam slipped over it. The enormous surface area will greatly reduce the frequency of cleanings. If you need more head height, you really can't do any better than Eheim pumps for any low flow purpose, or if you can keep it totally submerged, Mag-Drives tend to be reliable. Main issue there is noise. If you're only going two or three feet, a Maxi-jet can probably handle enough flow for most people and they can be had for next to nothing. If you need more flow than that I'd probably be tempted to do two Maxijets before going to another pump if the head height wasn't that high, they're just dirt cheap and nearly indestructible. They do, of course, need to stay submerged.

In case it wasn't clear earlier / in the front of your mind, also, due to priming issues you pretty much need the pump either submerged or gravity fed (piped in below water surface level) for it to function. I would avoid drilling a hole and having it drain directly into the pump in a paludarium mainly because debris may accumulate there and clog it. It would be okay if the prefilter stuck up into the water reservoir, while still drilled through the bottom, so long as the intake remained entirely submerged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@CVB - Great advice, thanks very much.

I'm not completely sure which viv I'm looking at, most likely the new x-tall exo-terra so there will likely be a fair amount of hight that it has to reach. But with that being said I'm not likely to have the outlet for the feature at the top.

Dual pumps is an interesting idea for additional flow, I hadn't thought of that, I'll have to think about it.

I will be drilling the bottom I think, and I'm happy to put the work in to get a sump in place too.

Thanks again for the advice.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
As another question for you guys.

Assuming I'm going to use a misting system in addition to the water feature, could I use the same sump / filter for both? Tap the sump from the bottom of the tank underneath the false bottom.

That way I only have one water source to maintain.

Robert
 

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Am using the small pump referred to in the link...one of the features that can be important is that the outflow is on the top...so you can put the whole thing into a smaller area instead of having an outflow that sticks out the side so that a more curved tubing is required. I just wish I had thought about a better prefiltration method for the paladarium because the little vent areas shown get clogged ...and I have to use a small pin to get the inevitable junk out--when I notice the waterfall slowing down...
 

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I would be very concerned about using circulating system water in the misting system. While I cannot definitively say it would be an issue, I would worry it would wear on the misting pump and potentially cause clogging of the misting nozzles. Some diaphragm pumps will take pretty much anything you throw at them, but it is hard to say how, say, MistKing pumps might react to long-term use, particularly if particulate matter sneaks through your prefilter, which is extremely likely if not absolutely certain. I would err on the side of caution and use a separate misting reservoir, which you would want to use anyway if you were going to mist multiple tanks in the future. A separate reservoir filled with clean RO water is important to avoid cross-contamination of tanks.

If you're tight on space and intend to have only one tank running on that particular misting pump, you might send an email to MistKing or your respective pump supplier / manufacturer and ask them if their pump is meant to take that sort of particulate matter and whether it would violate any warranty on the product.
 

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Even if the pump could handle it, particulates and mineral deposits will quickly clog the misting nozzles. A dedicated reservoir with RO or distilled water is the only way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hello Guys,

Thanks for the sound advice. I understand completely what you're saying about the potential of blocking the misting nozzles. I'll opt for a separate reservoir for the misting setup then, that's fine.

Thanks again.

Robert
 
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