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View Full Version : Saltwater Mixing - Lets see what you got


gobytron
03-06-2015, 09:45 PM
Looking for ideas.

I'm down to one very small tank now but will be setting up a few larger tanks and plumbing them into a common sump in my basement again.

The BIGGEST pain for me is/was always water changes.

It got to the point that I HATED doing them but had to do a 30 gallon change every other week when I started to get hair algae which meant a lot of heavy lifting and wet socks.

I would not get back into this hobby beyond a nano without coming up with some kind of system for mixing saltwater automatically.


Who's got something they want to share?

Aquattro
03-06-2015, 09:49 PM
I mix in a 50g drum. I siphon from tank to bath tub with a hose. Move hose to 50g tub, connect to pump, pump 50g back into tank. Drink coffee during process.

gobytron
03-06-2015, 10:06 PM
That sounds terrible...:wink:

except for the coffee of course, which is always welcome.

Thats basically what I was doing but in a 30 gallon blue drum.

I would almost ALWAYS forget I was making RO water and wind up using all the towels in the house to clean up the mess.

This is why i want to implement an automatic system, so at least I can set and forget...

Tn23
03-06-2015, 10:08 PM
I fill a 40g garbage can full of Rodi water. Dump salt in and let it mix with a power head.
I then use a hose pump the water straight into the toilet and then move the hose into the pre mixed salt water and pump it back into the tank. All while browsing on canreef on my phone :)

gobytron
03-06-2015, 10:11 PM
Anyone with systems that are at least somewhat automated?

You guys are just making me want to give it up entirely...lol:lol:

daplatapus
03-06-2015, 10:15 PM
I love mine. Won't ever not have one, but I've got tons of room.
Old/existing one:
http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2013-04-30073154_zpse375acad.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2013-04-30073154_zpse375acad.jpg.html)

http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2013-04-30073121_zps743d8df9.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2013-04-30073121_zps743d8df9.jpg.html)

New/in progress:

http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2015-03-05%2017.50.58_zps4rwsws0w.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2015-03-05%2017.50.58_zps4rwsws0w.jpg.html)

Set up with this bad boy:
http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2014-07-13093427_zps702fa2a5.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2014-07-13093427_zps702fa2a5.jpg.html)

reefwithareefer
03-06-2015, 10:35 PM
I bought 2 of the same pumps. One for waste and one for new. I mix my salt in a 50 gal the basement. The waste pump is plugged into the Apex and sits in the sump. The new salt pump sits in the 50 barrel and is plugged into the apex as well.

All the next events happen when the powerheads are set to the lowest speed, and return pump is off as well, so the fish can eat while the water change happens.

The apex turns on the Apex AFS at 6:56 am, this dumps the fish food into a funnel that is connected to a 1" pipe. The end of the pipe is in front of the external return pump inlet. The pellets fall down the pipe and are sucked up by the return pump and pushed into the DT.

The Apex then shuts down the return pump at 6:58 am, the sump fills up for 2 mins, then the waste pump goes on for 3 mins. This pumps out 3 gals. The hose is connected into my house plumbing with an ABS barbed wye.
The waste pump goes off and then the new salt water is pumped from the barrel to the sump for 3.07 mins. I made sure this always adds a little more water then less. This way my ATO does not come on. I have a low and high water floats hooked up to the apex BOB in case the pumps do something wrong. There is also an Apex water detector set up at sump area. Everything is on an email alarm if something goes wrong.

Once new salt is done pumping, the return pump starts up one min after.

This happens every two days.

been doing this for 6 months or so and all works great

gobytron
03-06-2015, 11:02 PM
I love mine. Won't ever not have one, but I've got tons of room.

You got my attention...

I also have tonnes of room...3000 sq ft house and nobody else on the mortgage to tell me what i can and cant do...


I see your pictures....can you break down what it is you are doing there please?

saltdog
03-07-2015, 12:18 AM
I love mine. Won't ever not have one, but I've got tons of room.
Old/existing one:
http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2013-04-30073154_zpse375acad.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2013-04-30073154_zpse375acad.jpg.html)

http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2013-04-30073121_zps743d8df9.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2013-04-30073121_zps743d8df9.jpg.html)

New/in progress:

http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2015-03-05%2017.50.58_zps4rwsws0w.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2015-03-05%2017.50.58_zps4rwsws0w.jpg.html)

Set up with this bad boy:
http://i1177.photobucket.com/albums/x353/daplatapus/2014-07-13093427_zps702fa2a5.jpg (http://s1177.photobucket.com/user/daplatapus/media/2014-07-13093427_zps702fa2a5.jpg.html)

Hey what is that and where did you get it?

daplatapus
03-07-2015, 12:30 AM
The apex turns on the Apex AFS at 6:56 am, this dumps the fish food into a funnel that is connected to a 1" pipe. The end of the pipe is in front of the external return pump inlet. The pellets fall down the pipe and are sucked up by the return pump and pushed into the DT.


Hmmm, for some reason I've never thought of doing this, lol. I bought the Apex AFS during the boxing day sale but haven't hooked 'er up yet. I may have to borrow that one :)

Gobytron:

I'll explain this the best I can. Feel free to ask anything and/or criticize my thought process too. I'm learning a bit as I go and changing a few things I don't like about my existing set up. So, first up the 2 barrels: the one to the left is my RO/DI water. My RO/DI system will be mounted to the wall on the left - I haven't got it moved yet but probably will be by the end of the weekend. Right at the top of that barrel I'll be drilling the float switch that will turn the RO/DI on and off. Right now in my 30 gal bucket I only turn it on every 2 or 3 weeks for a day, depending on how fast the auto top off uses it up. I'm using a Tunze Osmolator as my ATO. LOVE IT! So nothing there will really change.
On the right is my SW barrel. Once a month I'll have to re-fill this and mix new SW. But it should last a month I figure. I'll get to that in a sec.
In the middle I have my Reefflo Dart. I have a line coming from each barrel, each with their own ball valve, tied to a "T" that goes into the pump. From the pump I go up and back into the SW barrel. Check my build page for the pipe I have inside. I just posted it this morning.
So when I want to fill my SW barrel with fresh RO/DI water I close the valve between the SW barrel and the pump, and open the FW to pump valve. Turn on the pump until the FW is empty and theoretically the SW is full. Turn off pump :)
Close the FW barrel valve and open the SW barrel valve and now you have a re-circulating pump. Into the pump from the bottom of the barrel and into the barrel at the top. Pour your salt in and let the pump run a while to mix. I'm thinking of having the pump on my Apex and have the pump come on once a day for a half hour to keep things mixed and aerated.

Now comes the part that will be new to me, the dual head peristaltic pump. It's rated at 100 gpd. So in theory I could actually change the entire volume of the barrel in a day, bit I'm going to be aiming for 3 gallons via a timed plug on my Apex. I'll be running roughly a gross water volume of 300 gallons a figure between display and sump. 3 gallons for 30 days is 90 gallons. My barrels are 100 gallons, so I should have some leeway. The pump has 2 individual heads so they pump exactly the same amount. So one will pump from that little 1/2" valve you see on the far right at the bottom of the barrels, through the dual head pump and into the return section of the sump.
Then on the other head of the dual head pump, I'll draw water from the filter sock area of my sump, through the dual head pump and into a drain I have plumber right where the pump sits.
So once a month, I'll need to re-fill the SW tank and fill the RO/DI water. Other than that I think that's it.
Ask away, I'm sure there's questions or comments

daplatapus
03-07-2015, 12:33 AM
Hey what is that and where did you get it?

I'm assuming you mean the dual head pump?
I got it from here (back when the Canadian dollar was MUCH better lol):

http://www.lockewell.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1_6_30_33&products_id=161

saltdog
03-07-2015, 12:53 AM
Where did you get the dual head peristaltic pump?

saltdog
03-07-2015, 12:54 AM
Oops sorry

daplatapus
03-07-2015, 12:56 AM
I got it right from Lockewell.
LOL,

reefwithareefer
03-07-2015, 01:32 AM
Hmmm, for some reason I've never thought of doing this, lol. I bought the Apex AFS during the boxing day sale but haven't hooked 'er up yet. I may have to borrow that one :)

Gobytron:

I'll explain this the best I can. Feel free to ask anything and/or criticize my thought process too. I'm learning a bit as I go and changing a few things I don't like about my existing set up. So, first up the 2 barrels: the one to the left is my RO/DI water. My RO/DI system will be mounted to the wall on the left - I haven't got it moved yet but probably will be by the end of the weekend. Right at the top of that barrel I'll be drilling the float switch that will turn the RO/DI on and off. Right now in my 30 gal bucket I only turn it on every 2 or 3 weeks for a day, depending on how fast the auto top off uses it up. I'm using a Tunze Osmolator as my ATO. LOVE IT! So nothing there will really change.
On the right is my SW barrel. Once a month I'll have to re-fill this and mix new SW. But it should last a month I figure. I'll get to that in a sec.
In the middle I have my Reefflo Dart. I have a line coming from each barrel, each with their own ball valve, tied to a "T" that goes into the pump. From the pump I go up and back into the SW barrel. Check my build page for the pipe I have inside. I just posted it this morning.
So when I want to fill my SW barrel with fresh RO/DI water I close the valve between the SW barrel and the pump, and open the FW to pump valve. Turn on the pump until the FW is empty and theoretically the SW is full. Turn off pump :)
Close the FW barrel valve and open the SW barrel valve and now you have a re-circulating pump. Into the pump from the bottom of the barrel and into the barrel at the top. Pour your salt in and let the pump run a while to mix. I'm thinking of having the pump on my Apex and have the pump come on once a day for a half hour to keep things mixed and aerated.

Now comes the part that will be new to me, the dual head peristaltic pump. It's rated at 100 gpd. So in theory I could actually change the entire volume of the barrel in a day, bit I'm going to be aiming for 3 gallons via a timed plug on my Apex. I'll be running roughly a gross water volume of 300 gallons a figure between display and sump. 3 gallons for 30 days is 90 gallons. My barrels are 100 gallons, so I should have some leeway. The pump has 2 individual heads so they pump exactly the same amount. So one will pump from that little 1/2" valve you see on the far right at the bottom of the barrels, through the dual head pump and into the return section of the sump.
Then on the other head of the dual head pump, I'll draw water from the filter sock area of my sump, through the dual head pump and into a drain I have plumber right where the pump sits.
So once a month, I'll need to re-fill the SW tank and fill the RO/DI water. Other than that I think that's it.
Ask away, I'm sure there's questions or comments



It works really well, spreads the food evenly and the AFS does not have to be set up on the DT.


I do small changes everyday , just so I do not have to have two barrels etc, Even though the RO/DI is connected to 2 barrels and a 5 gal bucket for ATO. All have float valves and shut off valves with J Guest fittings, so I can interchange, or disconnect quickly to move etc.

FishyFishy!
03-07-2015, 04:40 PM
Here's mine

2 40 gallon Brutes, 2 150W heaters, 1 powerhead and a Mag 24 to tie it all together. Also use a 5 stage BRS RO/DI with an upgraded 150 GPD membrane.

Plumbed directly into my tank/ato upstairs. Probably the best thing I have done yet. Actually makes water changes fun!

http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c38/bilmaga/20140426_120313_zpsk9dfujgq.jpg (http://s24.photobucket.com/user/bilmaga/media/20140426_120313_zpsk9dfujgq.jpg.html)

http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c38/bilmaga/20140426_121713_zpsyci85tgs.jpg (http://s24.photobucket.com/user/bilmaga/media/20140426_121713_zpsyci85tgs.jpg.html)

http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c38/bilmaga/Mobile%20Uploads/20140531_161447_zpsiw1nbkrf.jpg (http://s24.photobucket.com/user/bilmaga/media/Mobile%20Uploads/20140531_161447_zpsiw1nbkrf.jpg.html)

You can see here where it goes left into the water change sump, or right into my ATO resevoir

http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c38/bilmaga/Mobile%20Uploads/20140506_214144_zps7gvjio0d.jpg (http://s24.photobucket.com/user/bilmaga/media/Mobile%20Uploads/20140506_214144_zps7gvjio0d.jpg.html)


I usually leave all the valves set so that I can just flick a switch upstairs and it fills my ato resevoir. When I want to do a water change, I just divert all the valves from the saltwater mixing barrel on the left. Best thing I did was run an extension cord up to my American DJ powerbar for the water change pump. After everything is set up downstairs, I just go upstairs, and turn the pump on.

Im working on a video that outlines how I do a water change. But I also have a video in my tank journal that shows me topping up the ATO resevoir if you want to check it out.