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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got two Eheim Classic 600's for my new 120g tank and I'm having a devil of a time getting them primed. I've been trying the manual way by sucking on the pressure side and connecting it to the rest of the pressure hose once I see a flow filling up the canister. I then plug it in once I see the canister fill up and watch as it starts to push water up the pressure hose, but it never seems to get all the way to the spray bar. I saw it leak out just a bit from the spray bar, but it never got all the way.

The manual talks about removing the "tap"... what is this?

The canisters are sitting about 3' below the bottom of the tank. I am using some extra piping (roughly 10' between the tank and canisters)... I tested this config in my garage before installing it and it was working fine.

Any ideas?
 

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I leave all hoses connected at the canister, make sure the valves are open and actually suck on the end of the tube that connects to the spraybar. Once you hear water rushing into the canister it should fill up pretty quick. Just hold the outlet side over the tank as it fills in case some starts to pour out. Then connect the spray bar.
 

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I'm pretty sure this is the same filter as the 2217. The 'tap' should be the double tap quick disconnect fittings that allow you to control or shut off the flow. Also used to separate the 2 hose halves to make maintanance easier.

Try emptying the water out of the filter and priming the filter again but before connecting to the spray bar, allow the water to evacuate all the air by placing the output hose into a pail. Once you get a good stream of water, put your thumb over the hose end and then reconnect to the spray bar.

If the canisters are 3 feet below the tank bottom, why is there 10 feet of extra piping between the tank and canisters?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Deeda said:
If the canisters are 3 feet below the tank bottom, why is there 10 feet of extra piping between the tank and canisters?
The canisters are in a cabinet on the other side of a wall to the side of the tank...
 

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Swamplander said:
Deeda said:
If the canisters are 3 feet below the tank bottom, why is there 10 feet of extra piping between the tank and canisters?
The canisters are in a cabinet on the other side of a wall to the side of the tank...
I think using the filters this way is going to be extremely inefficient & cause all sorts of flow issues. They are not intended or designed to be operated this way.

Any chance you can relocate the filters properly? How about some pics of the setup?
 

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The extra piping may cut down the efficency slightly but it will not have any effect on priming other than taking a few seconds longer. If you are getting water to flow from the tank into the can and up to almost out of the output, it is my thinking that you are not dealing with a priming problem. At this point when you plug the filter in, there should be water pumped out. Once you see the water in the output hose, open all the valves on the tubing. Europe calls them "taps". If any are closed you will get no flow of course. Otherwise, if the pump does not force water out when plugged in, it would seem time to check to make sure the impeller is turning. Do you feel vibrations when you plug the filter in to run? If so, try rocking the filter around some on the odd chance there is a bubble of air where the impeller sets. If the impeller is setting in water and turning, there is very little it can do but pump water.
 

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Deeda said:
Swamplander said:
Deeda said:
If the canisters are 3 feet below the tank bottom, why is there 10 feet of extra piping between the tank and canisters?
The canisters are in a cabinet on the other side of a wall to the side of the tank...
I think using the filters this way is going to be extremely inefficient & cause all sorts of flow issues. They are not intended or designed to be operated this way.

Any chance you can relocate the filters properly? How about some pics of the setup?
If he is using tubing it should be a non-issue. Even if it is lower than the optimal 3' the inlet head and outlet head produced by the water column negate each other.

If he is using rigid piping then as long as he doesn't have a ton of fittings it will still work and you can work around this using larger diameter pipe too.

The pressure loss is greatest in fittings. Reduce those, use over sized pipe, or use flexible tubing and you should be golden.

I expect the priming issue is there is air getting into the inlet at some point during the process.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the feedback guys. So I've temporarily reloaced a canister filter (Eheim 2217) to be next to the tank just below the bottom of the tank. The goal is to just get it working... then I can add the complication of longer tubing. See the following picture:

http://e1fkqw.bay.livefilestore.com...352BB7-1D42-F838-216E-6FDFDB4CBC55.jpg?psid=1

#1 is the intake, #2 is the spraybar. There are a pair on each side of the tank. I've hooked up the right side to the caninster you see on the right side of the picture. The tubing is the stock green tubing it came with... roughly 5-6' with one quick connect coupling (what it came with). Here's what I'm doing:

  • Empty filter
  • Water filled up in tank just below the spray bar (I've got the nicer Eheim spray bar and intake tube)
  • Connect the outflow pipe to the canister & open the tab valves
  • Open the spray bar valves
  • Manually suck the pressure side to get a flow going from the tank into the filter... when I stop sucking the flow is still going
  • Connect the pressure coupling tap making sure the valves are open... water is still flowing into the canister filter
  • When the canister gets close to being completely filled, I plug it in
  • The canister starts to push a little water into the pressure hose, but it stops pretty soon and the flow from the outflow stops

Can you see anything I'm doing wrong?
 

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May not be waiting quite long enough. I would wait while the water flows donw to the canister, fills it, and works it's way up to the level of the tank water. At that point it will stop as the water levelos are even. This should get all the air out of the canister. Shaking the can around to see if you get any more air might help. when you plug in now there may be air still at the top of the can and when it reachs the pump the pump stops working as it can't push air, only water.

To avoid sucking on the tube , you can just fill the intake tube with water if you like. Normally during maintenance you will close the bottom valve and leave the water in this tube so you don't have to look at a lifetime of sucking on it. With water in this tube it will siphon any time you open the valve. One could, in theory, use this tube to do water changes if you wanted to take the disconnect apart each time.

I guess we do know that the output tube is open and not stopped up by something?
 

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I went back and looked at the phote more carefully. Is the canister setting on a slope so that the lid is not level or is that just an illusion? If it is, I would suspect there is a bubble of air which is keeping the pump from working. Perhaps as simple as setting the can so that the outlet tube is the highest point so that air will bleed out and up to the tank? I do think air is in the system somewhere causing the problem. Air in the pump will definitely stop it pumping.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The canister is level... I even tried setting it on the floor.

Just tried it another three times. The flow is going while the canister is filling up but it eventually stops. It acts like there is an air leak in my outflow as the outflow pipe fills with air from the tank to about 1' down the pipe. Thinking another test might be to try connecting the OOTB outlfow or just putting the tubing directly in the tank.

Frustrating as I expect working with the canister filters shouldn't be this tough...
 

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Maybe we need to make sure which tubes we mean by outflow. I think of input going from the tank to the canister. Output being from the canister to the tank. When both the tubes ends are in tank water and the tube pulling water from tank to canister is filled, open thevalve between this tube and the canister, then open the valves on the other tube. Water will rundown to the canister pulling more from the tank. When the canister is full water will begin to run up the second tube toward the tank. All this time air will be forced out of the spray bar in the tank. When the canister is filled, you should be able to plug in the canister and it should pump water.

Sorry for your frustration. You are correct in that it really should be simple. Even if there was a leak in one of the tubes, it should either work and you get air bubbles in the output or water comes out somewhere. Suggest you might want to varify that all valves are open. Can you blow air through the tubes when you open valves and not when you close them? That would tell you if you have them opening and closing correctly as well as tell you if they leak. Normally with the handle across the tube, they are closed, aligned with the tube they are open.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
PfunMo - I did have my terms wrong... I was referring to the tank when I was saying out/in whereas you're talking about the canister. I take it you are the right and I should be speaking from the perspective of the canister.

So I did a little test and I think I've confirmed I've got a leak in the Eheim Installation Set I tube (the one that pulls water FROM the tank TO the canister). I unhooked it and replaced it with the stock that came with the canister (the green one). Then I tried repeating the same process and sure enough everything worked EXACTLY as it should. See the following for reference:

http://e1fkqw.bay.livefilestore.com...75434B-613F-6F5B-4E8E-960CB9FC1ECC.jpg?psid=1

That says to me there's some sort of an air leak in the Eheim advanced installation set (the vertical dube in the background you can see in the above picture, just abvoe the hollowed out curcle in the wall). Not sure where it is coming from, but definately found it.
 

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I,ve been following your thread,anytime someone has priming issues with their eheim it catches my attention,only because of the issues I was having with mine.Anyway glad you found the problem,it would be like sucking on a straw with a hole in it,now you have to find the leak,maybe its a simple thing like a twisted o-ring,cap one end,holding vertical , pour water in it ,you should see water coming out somewhere,good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
newforestrob said:
I,ve been following your thread,anytime someone has priming issues with their eheim it catches my attention,only because of the issues I was having with mine.Anyway glad you found the problem,it would be like sucking on a straw with a hole in it,now you have to find the leak,maybe its a simple thing like a twisted o-ring,cap one end,holding vertical , pour water in it ,you should see water coming out somewhere,good luck
That's a great idea... thanks! I have one canister working now sitting next to the tank. I'm going to go back and try to get the other one working from the cabinet 10' from the tank with a lot more tubing using the OOTB intake tube that came with the canister. Giving it a shot tonight... for now, I've got to get some work done :)

I'm certain it's an air leak problem as the OOTB intake tube that came with the canister has zero connection points where air could leak out. If that works, I'll know my original design works and I just need to find the air leaks...
 

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Sounds like a winner. It sometimes is so simple once we find the cause. I spent thirty years working for people whose first question was how long it would take to fix. My answer finally became a bit rude. Something like"thirty minutes, once I find what's wrong." Sometimes it took several days to find what was wrong, though. Hope you are on your way, now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
PfunMo said:
Sounds like a winner. It sometimes is so simple once we find the cause. I spent thirty years working for people whose first question was how long it would take to fix. My answer finally became a bit rude. Something like"thirty minutes, once I find what's wrong." Sometimes it took several days to find what was wrong, though. Hope you are on your way, now.
Definately... big thanks to the help from you and the rest in these forums!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
EUREKA! The root of the problem was the Eheim Intake Sets (the nice ones that aren't included with the Eheim 2217 canister filters). What I had done was push the vertical tube FLUSH with the grey upside-down device that also hooks to the intake tube to the canister. The vertical tube pieces have vertical plastic pieces inside... those were breaking the seal of the top-most o-ring. When I loosened it up and made it look like the picture on the front of the box it came in, it worked great! The instructions even said to make it flush... oh well.

Then I hooked everything up where the canisters are connected with 10-14' of tubing and it's working exactly as expected. FINALLY!!! See the attached... canisters are in the cabinet below the sink on the left side of the wall, tank to the right. Top part of the tank is about 6' off the ground. Picture is dark as I used my phone... more detailed pix coming once the tank is all setup (and I take care of the cloudy water):

http://e1fkqw.bay.livefilestore.com...53058D-CFFD-0AED-6DCB-D2C62BDF2965.jpg?psid=1
 

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That cloudy water's fine with me. I keep some around most days! Now wasn't that simple? OH, man! Why do we do this stuff?
 
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