View Full Version : Wet dry filters

02-09-2003, 05:24 PM
I am intrerested in upgrading my filtration system to a wet/dry sump set up. Does anyone out there use this type of set up. I have heard that these types of filters are much easier to maintain. I have also been told that if you don't have a drilled tank there is a chance up overflowing the sump box if the power goes out. The tank will continue to siphon water, but none gets pumped back into the tank. I s there a way around this. I don't mind spending the money on a good set up, but want to make sure I don't flood my house. Or is it just a waste of money. I like the idea of being able to conceal everything under the tank. Thanks for any help.

02-10-2003, 06:55 AM
there is a way of overcoming this if u dont want to drill a hole in your tank then have a look at an Overflow box.

02-10-2003, 09:58 AM
The overflow box is your best option... but if you don't go that way, have a look at a sump with a lid that seals shut. Ie: one with a rubber seal, I have seen these at the LFS and by sealing shut, they can't overflow. They just fill up and then the siphoning stops.


02-11-2003, 03:46 PM
I have been using a wet/dry filter in my 150gal tank for over a year now and love it. You must use an overflow box if you do not want to drill your tank. I use an old 20 gal. tank as my sump with bio balls as my filter media, the same as a salt water set up. When you set it up, the bast way to keep it from overflowing is to set the height of your return and intake at a height suitable to stop to much water from siphoning to the sump,ie. 2 to 3 inches froom the top of your main tank waterline. you do not need the sump to be completely filled, i have high and low side markings, when and if i lose power it will only siphon to just above the upper marking. Even if there is a problem i still have 1/4 of the sump to collect any excess water. It takes a while to figure the proper level in the sump for your markings but it is well worth it.

02-11-2003, 05:25 PM
How did you set up the 20 gal. to create a drip over the bio balls, and then drain into main sump?

02-11-2003, 11:34 PM
My brother-in-law built the drip box using 1/4 inch acrylic sheets to fit the depth and length leaving aprox. 1/2 of the tank at the long side and bottom for the water. He used an egg crate bottom resting on scrap pieces of the acrylic, approx 1/2"x1/2" , epoxied in place on the sides. For the drip plate he took the same acrylic and drilled holes in a diagonal pattern from the outside of the sheet towards the center decreasing in size from approx 1/2" to 1/16" towards the center. He left a 3x3 inch center section undrilled so the water entering from the top plate would not just fall through and would actually cascade towards the edges of the drip plate to cover the bio-balls with water. The drip plate is also held in place by scrap pieces of acrylic epoxied in place, just remember to leave some room so you can remove the drip plate and clean or change the bio-balls if the need arises. The top plate has a hole drilled in the center to accept a 1 1/2 inch pcv fittting to accept the 1" pond hose coming from the overflow box. In the sump he epoxied two pieces of undergravel filter approx 6" apart vertically for the foam filter, make sure that the foam filter comes to a height of atleast half the sump to catch any debris before it enters your pump.The only drilling done to the sump was in the side to accept a 1/2" fitting to connect the return hose to the sump. It's not a very hard project to do, although I didn't do it because the filter was offered to me as a sort of present, since he was getting rid of it anyway. If you decide to build it you can go to your lfs and see some that they have costing anywhere from $200.00 to $500.00 dollars, mine cost about $100.00 including the 40 dollar overflow box that i had to buy, hoses connectors and all. One problem I did have when i first set this up was that i used hard plumbing instead of hose for the return, burning out a $300.00 pump and learning a very valueable plumbing lesson in the process. I also added approx 20lbs. of "aged" gravel to the bottom of the sump from another established tank to help with the cylce time and left it in because of the added bacterial filtering it provides.