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I found a 100 gal tank on craigslist and i wanted to make a sump for it rather then buy a canister filter to keep the cost down a bit. I have a few question.

1. What size tank should i use for the sump?

2. Can i use an overflow box or would i have to put some bulkheads?

3. How many chambers would the sump need?

4. I have heard of people losing a lot of water or having to add a lot of water, how can i prevent this?

5. I will be using a power head as a return pump, will that work?

If someone could post pics of their own DIY sump to help give me ideas or just to give me an example i would greatly appreciate it, I am extremly excited to get started on this sump.

Also what can i use as filter media? and what works best?
thanks in advance
jasson
 

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1. Personal preference. I have a 23 gallon, but wish I had a 55...a lot depends on what you want to spend, and how much you can fit in your stand

2. Either or. Benefits to both. I have an overflow box and it works just fine. Be prepared to do hofer gurgle busters or durso standpipes to quiet them, and then tweak them until they're quiet..but thats relatively standard overflow box or not

3. Again depends on how you design it. A simple wet/dry can make do with two in all reality. 3 usually is plenty-a 4th chamber that is empty for heater, UV sterilizer and the pump is nice if you've got a big sump

4. Cover it/seal it, make the water level so that your evaporation will never run below your pump. evaporation is a part of life in any tank-a sump is just worse because there is more turnover and more water surface-area and thus more chances for it to evaporate.

5. Highly doubtful. On a tank your size, with a regular sized stand, you need at least 500-600 gph to effectively get the water up. Remember the more stress a pump is under the more noise it makes too and the more heat it generates. There are plenty of calculators floating around for GPH with drain and return
 
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