BEST Pumps & Wavemakers for MAKING TANK WAVES

BRS

Do you care whether or not you have wave action in your reef tank?

  • YES

    Votes: 257 40.5%
  • SOMEWHAT

    Votes: 179 28.2%
  • NO

    Votes: 192 30.2%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 7 1.1%

  • Total voters
    635

ReefChasers

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Two neptune wav pumps can produce a pretty nice standing wave. Run one in pulse at 0.5 interval and the other on pipeline at 0.4 interval, it will rock and roll pretty nicely!

Assume the same can be done with off-set time steps with MPs as well.
 

revenant

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I have one of my Current eflux 2100gph pumps at the top of my tank (5ft 100gal) on the right side on pulse mode and does make waves ... I have crazy good surface movement.
 
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Gingernjuice

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I had a jebao rw-8 on one end of a 6ft 125 that would create waves, so much that it concerned me that much movement of that much water in one direction at a time may create problems.
 

Reefvision

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Good point, sloshing water cant be good for the silicone.
Especially if you get silicone that maybe is chewed abit by like say urchins . So I try and get no more than 1” wave on each side (6’tank) . Also , for me the dual overflow seems to not get too loud this way.a panel leaking would be catastrophic!!
 

Treefer32

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So, I've read a lot about waves not necessarily being a good idea in aquariums because of the force it puts on the glass. Some tanks are rated for it and some may not be. I have a 350 gallon aquarium that has a lifetime warranty, but, I'm pretty sure there was a warning that excessive waves moving water from one side of the tank to the other could put too much pressure on the seals. 350 gallons shoved to one side then back to the other seems like a really bad idea in my opinion... Now, maybe smaller tanks can handle it? However wouldn't the water volume to glass thickness and seals be scaled down and up in the same ratios? If so, are any tanks safe to run wave motions?

That aside. I do not run waves. I have two gyres churning at the top of the water just to break the surface tension and create circular patterns of flow. I'm planning to get two more so I would create two concentric spheres of circular water flow on each end of the tank with two MP 40s pushing water from the back to the front into the circular patterns. The goal here to keep corals fed, and moving in a water motion. However, this does not create waves.. At least not like what we're talking about here.
 

kevin318

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THIS POST IS ABOUT GETTING AN ACTUAL WAVE ON TOP OF YOUR WATER. NOT RANDOM FLOW.

Today let's make some waves by talking about the best equipment for making waves in our reef tanks. Like literal waves, not just flow. Many hobbyists believe that producing waves in your reef tank is beneficial in that it, in some degree, is more like the ocean, helps keeps detritus from settling and keeps food suspended in the water column. Let's talk about it!

1. What are the best pumps and wavemakers for making waves (not flow) in your aquarium?

2. Do you care whether or not you have wave action in your reef tank?


wave action video via @Rhoads238
I do care because many of my corals require flow and if I am attempting to emulate the ocean......well than I should have wave action. I use and love the Jaboa OW series. Easy set up, easy to maintenance, plenty of features, easy set up, you can set the direction in many different ways, very inexpensive, super quiet, and last a really long time.
 

sghera64

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So, I've read a lot about waves not necessarily being a good idea in aquariums because of the force it puts on the glass. Some tanks are rated for it and some may not be. I have a 350 gallon aquarium that has a lifetime warranty, but, I'm pretty sure there was a warning that excessive waves moving water from one side of the tank to the other could put too much pressure on the seals. 350 gallons shoved to one side then back to the other seems like a really bad idea in my opinion... Now, maybe smaller tanks can handle it? However wouldn't the water volume to glass thickness and seals be scaled down and up in the same ratios? If so, are any tanks safe to run wave motions?

That aside. I do not run waves. I have two gyres churning at the top of the water just to break the surface tension and create circular patterns of flow. I'm planning to get two more so I would create two concentric spheres of circular water flow on each end of the tank with two MP 40s pushing water from the back to the front into the circular patterns. The goal here to keep corals fed, and moving in a water motion. However, this does not create waves.. At least not like what we're talking about here.
And I would also be worried about the torque leverage this cyclical motion places on the stands that hold those tanks above the floor.
 

Dragon5704

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I use my FX-4 return angled upward to push water from the Emperor 400 return on the right side of tank, which creates a wave on top of the water to the right. I use a Koralia 1150 wave pump on right side of tank midway down on glass to push water back to the left which created a circular motion inside the tank, so there are no dead spots through the live rock.
 

sghera64

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I've used Jebao RW and QPS pumps to make waves, but found the actual water movement around the corals and over the rocks was too patterned and detritus found places to hide.

I've switched more of my water motion to RP-M (Reef Breeder) pumps. I like to randomize and vary their intensity through the day F0, F1 F4 and F5. I have 3 of these along the back wall of an Oceanic 135 Gal with two QPS-5's in the corners to help move water across the top to the overflows. While it is really cool to see the LPS polyps sway to the motion of wave action, it seems more healthy for the system to create random laminar flow that varies from high to low flow.

I notice the Tang gang gets to work and really attacks algae on the rocks during F0 (no flow on the RP-M pumps) . That tells me that even very low flow has value in a reef.
 

Ludders

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Surprised by the votes of this poll leaning more to yes, but I do not care in the least about any perceived wave action on the surface of the water.
I like surface agitation, but go for a tidal gyre flow in my setup, moving the point of turbulence within my reef.
 

Montiman

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I love my wave box. I would love another one on my smaller tank as well. I have personally seen tanks that are over 15 years old where the silicon looked brand new. Granted these were not cheap tanks usually old Lee Mars but as most people don't even run a tank this long I think the fears are exaggerated.

The wave box eliminates all dead spaces and frees up detritus for my other pumps to blow off the rocks. I also find the wave box to be my preferred water mover for seahorses and anemones because it doesn't have continuous suction and unlike a simple pump pulsing, the water exits where it enters so anything sucked against the grate will immediately be explled on the next pulse. I have never seen an anemone or seahorse get sucked into a wave box.
 

saltyhog

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The entire ocean as a singular mass is in a constant standing wave of sorts, just dictated by the moon.

Tidal movement is very slow and completely different than wave/surge . It's nothing like what we're talking about creating with our pumps. What we create is only present in a very narrow and usually shallow corridor.
 

East1

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Tidal movement is very slow and completely different than wave/surge . It's nothing like what we're talking about creating with our pumps. What we create is only present in a very narrow and usually shallow corridor.
All I’m talking about is some kinda mechanic that puts a body of water into harmonic motion, this ensures all coral are not subject to eddies and so the entire surface is in contact with moving water, whether it’s a slow standing wave or a complex fast one, the entire ocean also exists in a state of harmonic motion hence my statement
 

dru312

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I run 5 powerheads in my 120 all on pulse. Several are on wave modes. This gives me great random flow. On 2 linked powerheads I change the mode daily for even more random flow.
My 120 today.
20210729_165513.jpg

20210729_165452.jpg
Acros LOVE flow and yours look great!
 
BRS

When is the last time you purchased cleanup crew critters?

  • Past few days

    Votes: 15 8.6%
  • Past few weeks

    Votes: 38 21.7%
  • Past few months

    Votes: 70 40.0%
  • Over a half a year

    Votes: 25 14.3%
  • Over a year ago

    Votes: 25 14.3%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 2 1.1%
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