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aussieorchid

Air Lift Pump anyone built one

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.Looking to expand the current set-up and add another rack of tanks that will mostly be for fry from small fish and a few assorted fishies. Given the current power prices I am looking to make this a low flow cost efficient system so was looking into using air lift to pump the water around. Has anyone done this successfully. The broad idea is to have all the tanks drilled and drain to a sump which would have the air lift in it. This would lift the water approx 2m into a holding tank that would gravity feed back to all the tanks. As this will hold small fish I am not looking for a large flow of water just a slow trickle and tanks will be smallish probably around the 50L mark each. Can this be done without needing a massive air pump.

Would be keen to hear from anyone who has managed to make it work particularly the size of hose/pipe that works best and the air pump size required.

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Any reason you decided not to go ahead with it. I am just concerned I will not get hardly any flow at 2m head height

I was going to use this system on a smaller scale to run my sump but I decided to get rid of the sump. I think this system would work at 2mtr head with low flow, some trial and error :) I don't think you would need a very big air pump. I never got to the testing stage so this is only theory from my end, if you watch the other vids in that youtube link they pretty much tell you how to make it.

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Likely better using a series of airlifts and step tanks. Sort of like a reverse cascade setup. So you are moving water up a little at a time, from little tank, to little tank...... and then finally into the main one where it then drains back down to the sump.

Aweful lot of extra work tho....... I'd bail on the sump and instead just build airlift powered HOB filters for each tank........ and by that I also mean turn the sump into a tank.

before impellor driven pumps were the usual....... HOB (waterfall) filters were all air driven.

And really........ a HOB is just a side sump anyway, so the plan would still be on track. You'd just be looking at the problem of a 5cm head height........ rather than a 200cm one.

Much easier to deal with!

Edited by Donny@ageofaquariums
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Donny a HOB style filter for each tank was the original plan but then came the issue of heating the tanks when it actually gets cold here again. With a main tank at the top it can be heated as the water flows to the tanks. I think more investigation is needed and this forum has given us plenty of ideas including your idea of a step up.

Maybe a small collection tank at the end of each shelf or even half way up could solve the height issue if 2m turns out to be too much. I guess the only way to know will be to test the lifting ability of an air pump and some smallish diameter pipe.

I think a xmas project is stating to take shape.

Likely better using a series of airlifts and step tanks. Sort of like a reverse cascade setup. So you are moving water up a little at a time, from little tank, to little tank...... and then finally into the main one where it then drains back down to the sump.

Aweful lot of extra work tho....... I'd bail on the sump and instead just build airlift powered HOB filters for each tank........ and by that I also mean turn the sump into a tank.

before impellor driven pumps were the usual....... HOB (waterfall) filters were all air driven.

And really........ a HOB is just a side sump anyway, so the plan would still be on track. You'd just be looking at the problem of a 5cm head height........ rather than a 200cm one.

Much easier to deal with!

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[MENTION=14646]MDAMAZING[/MENTION] some of the marine tank keepers might know more about this but in theory I would say yes salt water tanks would froth with an airlift system. I am using this on a freshwater set up however so should not be a problem.

Forgive my spelling but wouldn't airlift cause marine setups to frof like in a protein skimmers (bind organic proteins to air bubbles) or do only Venturi effects only cause that to occur ?
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