2 return pumps one return line

Discussion in 'Bulk Reef Supply' started by Mrx7899, Jan 3, 2018.

  1. YumaMan

    YumaMan Member

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    I like the idea of redundancy in aquatics because if something can go wrong, it will eventually go wrong. I'm tempted to add a second pump with a check valve in parallel with my main pump (which has a check valve already), and using a controller to switch the second pump on only if the first pump fails. This extra precaution might just a reef, and I will have one less thing to worry about. Hmmm...
     

  2. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    It just recently had this happen to me. It was a fairly new Sicce Pro. The rotor fractured in half while running. Working fine when I went to bed, woke up to it not working.

    After experiencing this I would have designed my new tank a little differently. I currently have a single return but I should have drilled 2. One pump for each return. That way if a single pump failed I would still have 50% flow. No messing with check valves, flow unbalances or other issues from running pumps in parallel.
     
  3. michaelrc51

    michaelrc51 Active Member

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    You’ll still need a check valve so that when the 1 pump stops pumping the other pump won’t push water towards the not working pump.
     
  4. pluikens

    pluikens Active Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Would you still consider check valves on each return? In the second scenario, the return for the failed pump would still be submerged in the DT siphoning water down into your return section of your sump. The second pump running would be pumping up a mixture of water that went straight from the DT down your first return pump plumbing and also any water that went down the overflow and through your sump. I don't know what you had planned for pumps so I don't know if the one running pump would have enough flow to get water over your overflow if it's also being siphoned down the one return where the pump isn't running. What about having two pumps plumbed as you described but running them at 50% so one could be ramped up if the other failed or using simple check valves on each return plumbing to keep a constant siphon from occurring?
     
  5. pluikens

    pluikens Active Member Build Thread Contributor

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    If I read correctly, the two pumps plumbing would never intersect so no one pump would push back through another.
     
  6. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    True. I should have been more clear. You wouldn't have to worry about the flow from one pump forcing the check valve shut on the other pump.

    I always run check valves on my return. Even though my sump has room I prefer not to have that water backflow into the system when I do maintenance.
     
  7. pluikens

    pluikens Active Member Build Thread Contributor

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    I like this idea then, especially if most tanks are going to have more than one bulkhead used for returns. Were you thinking of using AC or DC pumps or a combination? I think this could be more redundant meaning no difference in flow rate through the sump if two DC pumps were used that were individually capable of the total desired flow and just run at 50% of that when running together. So if via flow meter, power usage, or other methods you noticed one pump no longer functioning, the other pump could be turned up to give you the same total flow through the sump. I know the cost would be greater and 50% flow would likely be sufficient for a few days (esp. if you were targeting something like 10x display volume on a good day) for you to swap out a new, smaller AC pump but do you have thoughts on that?
     
  8. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter Reef Squad Leader Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I hadn't given it enough thought but I would probably do 2 AC pumps. Just not a fan of DC pumps for return applications. Variable speed has its advantages, but I'm not sure a return pump is one of them.
     
  9. Mrx7899

    Mrx7899 Well-Known Member

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    Just picked up a 225 I'm going to run 2 return pumps one on each return line.
     
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