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musaabi

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Hey so I just installed a Coralife 3x Twist UV sterilizer with with an aquatop pump rated for 317 gph with max head pressure of 50 inch (AQUATOP NP-305 to be exact). Water flow seems to trickle out so I tried calculating water flow and I’m seeing about 4 gallons per hour which is wayyyyyyyy lower than the suggested 100-200 gph limit of the sterilizer. Im using half inch clear tubing for this setup and have about 3 inches of tubing from pump to entry and 6 inches for the output side but I’m mind blown it would produce such little flow. Is anyone running this UV sterilizer and if so what size pump are you running on it and what flow are you getting? The UV sterilizer is twisted on the inside to “maximize” contact so I’m wondering if the twisting inside is causing such a massive drop or if it’s just a really bad pump that can’t get anywhere near it’s rated flow. Also, I’ve tried running the twist vertically and horizontally hoping the horizontal position would reduce the pressure
 
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TexanCanuck

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Assuming that you disassembled both the UZ sterilizer and the pump prior to installation (to make sure there is no packing material or other foreign objects inside them), I think the problem is with your pump.

I can't find any formal specifications for that pump online other than what you included in your original post (317 gah and 50" max head), but just those two data points sound an alarm bell for me.

As an actual pump engineer myself (I work in the Oil & gas industry and deal with these kinds of things all the time ... just on a much larger scale), here's what those two data points are saying:

1) If you installed that pump in a body of water (so that the inlet was submerged) but didn't attach ANYTHING to the discharge pipe, you should be able to measure 317 gallons per hour out of the discharge in the vertical direction
2) if you now install a vertical pipe to the discharge of that pump that is the same diameter as the discharge itself, for every inch of vertical length added to that pipe, the flow rate of the pump will decrease non-linearly
3) once that pipe was more than 50" above the surface of the water at the inlet, there would be NO water exiting the pipe.

In other words, this pump produces such little discharge pressure than anything more challenging that a straight pipe 50" vertical would stop all flow from the pump.

Now ... I know you are thinking that you are not installing the UV sterilizer vertically and that you certainly aren't using 6 feet of pipe to do it ... but actually you are! Every time the water has to flow through a fitting, a piece straight pipe, or any device (such as the UV sterilizer) ... even if they are all horizontal ... you actually create an "equivalent" increase in static vertical head. And this increase in static vertical head is actually greater for flexible tubing than it is for rigid pipe ... and it is different for PVC than it is for silicon (for example). So, given the spiral design of this sterilizer (which actually increases the length of the path that the water has to flow when moving through it), and the need to hose a bunch of barbed hose fittings and flexible tube to plumb it all together, I would not be surprised AT ALL to learn that you have added enough static head to plumbing that the resulting in very little flow!

As it turns out, I think you've effectively demonstrated that the plumbing you are using has added 50" of static head to the pump!

So ... guy buy yourself a bigger pump.

When you do, look for a pump that provides a "Pump Curve" on the box or in the manual that shows you the shape of the curve between head and flow ... then find one that give you 200 GPH at 50 inches (6 feet) of head.

Read this for more information:

 
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musaabi

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Assuming that you disassembled both the UZ sterilizer and the pump prior to installation (to make sure there is no packing material or other foreign objects inside them), I think the problem is with your pump.

I can't find any formal specifications for that pump online other than what you included in your original post (317 gah and 50" max head), but just those two data points sound an alarm bell for me.

As an actual pump engineer myself (I work in the Oil & gas industry and deal with these kinds of things all the time ... just on a much larger scale), here's what those two data points are saying:

1) If you installed that pump in a body of water (so that the inlet was submerged) but didn't attach ANYTHING to the discharge pipe, you should be able to measure 317 gallons per hour out of the discharge in the vertical direction
2) if you now install a vertical pipe to the discharge of that pump that is the same diameter as the discharge itself, for every inch of vertical length added to that pipe, the flow rate of the pump will decrease non-linearly
3) once that pipe was more than 50" above the surface of the water at the inlet, there would be NO water exiting the pipe.

In other words, this pump produces such little discharge pressure than anything more challenging that a straight pipe 50" vertical would stop all flow from the pump.

Now ... I know you are thinking that you are not installing the UV sterilizer vertically and that you certainly aren't using 6 feet of pipe to do it ... but actually you are! Every time the water has to flow through a fitting, a piece straight pipe, or any device (such as the UV sterilizer) ... even if they are all horizontal ... you actually create an "equivalent" increase in static vertical head. And this increase in static vertical head is actually greater for flexible tubing than it is for rigid pipe ... and it is different for PVC than it is for silicon (for example). So, given the spiral design of this sterilizer (which actually increases the length of the path that the water has to flow when moving through it), and the need to hose a bunch of barbed hose fittings and flexible tube to plumb it all together, I would not be surprised AT ALL to learn that you have added enough static head to plumbing that the resulting in very little flow!

As it turns out, I think you've effectively demonstrated that the plumbing you are using has added 50" of static head to the pump!

So ... guy buy yourself a bigger pump.

When you do, look for a pump that provides a "Pump Curve" on the box or in the manual that shows you the shape of the curve between head and flow ... then find one that give you 200 GPH at 50 inches (6 feet) of head.

Read this for more information:

That’s a lot of information but really good. I’ll have to try with another pump. Everything was cleaned before hand. I actually had a lower flow pump before that I replaced with this. Third time is the charm?
 

Weasel1960

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Assuming that you disassembled both the UZ sterilizer and the pump prior to installation (to make sure there is no packing material or other foreign objects inside them), I think the problem is with your pump.

I can't find any formal specifications for that pump online other than what you included in your original post (317 gah and 50" max head), but just those two data points sound an alarm bell for me.

As an actual pump engineer myself (I work in the Oil & gas industry and deal with these kinds of things all the time ... just on a much larger scale), here's what those two data points are saying:

1) If you installed that pump in a body of water (so that the inlet was submerged) but didn't attach ANYTHING to the discharge pipe, you should be able to measure 317 gallons per hour out of the discharge in the vertical direction
2) if you now install a vertical pipe to the discharge of that pump that is the same diameter as the discharge itself, for every inch of vertical length added to that pipe, the flow rate of the pump will decrease non-linearly
3) once that pipe was more than 50" above the surface of the water at the inlet, there would be NO water exiting the pipe.

In other words, this pump produces such little discharge pressure than anything more challenging that a straight pipe 50" vertical would stop all flow from the pump.

Now ... I know you are thinking that you are not installing the UV sterilizer vertically and that you certainly aren't using 6 feet of pipe to do it ... but actually you are! Every time the water has to flow through a fitting, a piece straight pipe, or any device (such as the UV sterilizer) ... even if they are all horizontal ... you actually create an "equivalent" increase in static vertical head. And this increase in static vertical head is actually greater for flexible tubing than it is for rigid pipe ... and it is different for PVC than it is for silicon (for example). So, given the spiral design of this sterilizer (which actually increases the length of the path that the water has to flow when moving through it), and the need to hose a bunch of barbed hose fittings and flexible tube to plumb it all together, I would not be surprised AT ALL to learn that you have added enough static head to plumbing that the resulting in very little flow!

As it turns out, I think you've effectively demonstrated that the plumbing you are using has added 50" of static head to the pump!

So ... guy buy yourself a bigger pump.

When you do, look for a pump that provides a "Pump Curve" on the box or in the manual that shows you the shape of the curve between head and flow ... then find one that give you 200 GPH at 50 inches (6 feet) of head.

Read this for more information:

Not wanting to hijack the thread however looking for clarification on the pump curve in your referenced article. I am finding MANY manufacturers only give max flow and head height but no flow curve. is a linear approximation a fairly reasonable alternative that can provide good results?
 

TexanCanuck

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The true "pump companies" will produce these charts but you need to look for them on the manufacturer's websites.

Here is what Sicce publishes for their Syncra Silent line (for example). Frustratingly, they don't publish this on the US website, but if you go the their corporate website they do.

1640100712492.png


Notice how steep the slope of the lines are? This is typical of a centrifugal impeller with a straight blade ... the flow rate falls off incredibly quickly with increasing head (restriction)
 
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Weasel1960

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The true "pump companies" will produce these charts but you need to look for them on the manufacturer's websites.

Here is what Sicce publishes for their Syncra Silent line (for example). Frustratingly, they don't publish this on the US website, but if you go the their corporate website they do.

1640100712492.png


Notice how steep the slope of the lines are? This is typical of a centrifugal impeller with a straight blade ... the flow rate falls off incredibly quickly with increasing head (restriction)
Thanks for info. I find it odd that aquarium pump manufacturers aren’t consistent publishing info within their own company let alone having an industry standard for info on the specifications.
 
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