Circulation Pump in ATO Reservoir

nickkohrn

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I’ve noticed that my ATO reservoir becomes lined with a slippery substance over time, which I believe is a type of bacteria. I’m wondering if keeping a circulation pump in the reservoir will help reduce the buildup, or even prevent it altogether, by eliminating stagnation.

Do you keep a circulation pump in your ATO reservoir?
 
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Greg P

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I used to keep a circulation pump in my ATO reservoir and also had a bacterial slime buildup.
I sterilized my RO unit and the reservoir, and removed the pump.
I also added a lid to keep evaporation down and dust to a minimum.

I'm now careful to use clean hardware to fill my reservoir (pump and hose, bucket or whatever) and I'm over 4 years bacteria-free
 
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nickkohrn

nickkohrn

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I am in the process of moving into a smaller system, so I ordered a nice Trigger Systems 10g ATO reservoir that has a lid over the main opening, and it has a lid where the cords enter the reservoir, so I’m hopeful that it will minimize the unwanted entry of household debris.

I’m glad to know that you found a solution that works for you. I was surprised at how gross the sides of my current reservoir felt the first time I noticed it.
 

Greg P

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I was surprised at how gross the sides of my current reservoir felt the first time I noticed it.
It wasn't just on the glass in my case;
It was all over the ATO pump, hose and power cord, as well as all in-water portions of the circulation pump. Plus the low level float switch and sometimes there were even shards of bacteria floating around the water column.

I'm sure I was pumping the bacteria straight into my return section !!
 
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nickkohrn

nickkohrn

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It wasn't just on the glass in my case;
It was all over the ATO pump, hose and power cord, as well as all in-water portions of the circulation pump. Plus the low level float switch and sometimes there were even shards of bacteria floating around the water column.

I'm sure I was pumping the bacteria straight into my return section !!
I, too, noticed it all over my in-water equipment. I noticed it when my hand brushed up against the power cord of my ATO pump; it felt quite slippery, and I noticed a sludge-like material stuck to the sleeve of my shirt.

Now that I have a microscope, after battling Ostreopsis, I’m tempted to take a closer look at it should I come across it in my new system.
 

Johnd651

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I used to keep a circulation pump in my ATO reservoir and also had a bacterial slime buildup.
I sterilized my RO unit and the reservoir, and removed the pump.
I also added a lid to keep evaporation down and dust to a minimum.

I'm now careful to use clean hardware to fill my reservoir (pump and hose, bucket or whatever) and I'm over 4 years bacteria-free
How did you sterilize it?
 

Tastee

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I had the same on my RO reservoir when I emptied it whilst extending my RO station after it had been up and running about 18 months. Everything got a good clean in that process (but not a sterilise) so it’s gone for now.

It would be interesting to understand what type of bacteria it is. It could not be a problem at all if it is not suited to SW as it would immediately die off. It may actually be beneficial. Or it may be harmful.

My guess (and that’s all it is) is one of the former two as I never saw any issues in the tank I was topping up daily from it.
 

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