Cichlid Fish Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning a little experiment for my 10G hospital/fry/etc tank. It's current housing 3 zebra hybrids, 3 plecos, and about 15 hybrid fry - all fish I decided to remove from my main display tank. The tank is near a window, so I want to try to cycle fish water through a small hydroponic tub sitting where it'll get some sun. I'll probably put some pothos cuttings in it as I have quite a few starts from some houseplants - maybe some other plants if everything pans out.

My main concern is the water flow. I need to avoid pumping 10G of dirty water into my carpet. The plants and tub will set about 1 foot above the top of the 10G tank. I'm planning to submerge a small (60 gph or less) pump in the tank and set up an anti-siphon input and and overflow output for the hydroponic tub.

Here's a quick sketch of the in/out tubing:


The input would go over the lip of the tank and end just below the overflow bulkhead fitting. In the case of a power outage, a small amount of water might siphon back thru the pump, but not much. My main concern would be the overflow opening or tubing clogging and preventing the water to drain back into the tank. I made the overflow tube pretty big (1/2" ID) and I plan on putting up some sort of screen to keep debris and root from blocking it - but I'm still nervous. I've also thougth about mounting the pump high up in the tank such that if too much water is pumped out, the pump dries out. Any other ideas?

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
521 Posts
Check out this thread. There may be some information that you can use here:http://www.cichlid-forum.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=159205

If you are worried that the pump will continue to run in the event of clogged plumbing you could rig up a switch attached to a float so that when the water in the plant tank gets to a certain level, the pump would automatically stop. I am pretty sure that you can get something like that pre made and just wire it into your pump cord.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
521 Posts
beanblog said:
Yikes... this is a little unnerving:
"A pump or solenoid rated at just 3-5 watts can destroy a float switch rated for 50 watts, locking it in the “onâ€
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I decided to run my pump line through the inside of the overflow drain tube... makes it so I only need 1 bulkhead fitting and don't have to modify the lid. I'm running it on a little 10 gallon rubbermaid tank and my 10 gallon "undesirables" tank as a proof of concept - no plants yet.

http://beanblog.com/images/aquaponics/

So far so good!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
292 Posts
looks good so far... but I would have had a lower water level in the blue container... doesn't seem like there is much room for error.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have to keep the water level high for the hydroponic part of this to work as planned. Right now the pump is high up in the aquarium, so after it pumps a gallon or so during a overflow restriction, air gets into the pump intake and stops the flow. I plan to put a float switch into the circuit soon as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I decided to increase the size fo the drain tube to 1" ID, which meant I had to replace the bulkhead. I ended up using PVC, a rubber gasket, and some silicone to get a good seal. I decided to run both the input water and the air line through the 1" bulkhead so that only 1 bulkhead is needed and the lid snaps on tight.

All seems to be working well. I tested a pump failure and a drain blockage, and in both cases the water did not overflow.

Plants this weekend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I made 5 3" holes for net pots, leaving some room around the drain for a strainer/filter. I put 4 philodendron cuttings that already had roots in, as well as a few snips of mint and catnip in the 5th, just to see how readily things will root.

Here's a few pics with the cuttings and the larger drain hose:

http://beanblog.com/images/aquaponics/2008-06-29-upgrade/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,053 Posts
Cool idea and great to see its working properly but I would suggest testing it out with other plants. Philodendron is very easy and grows under many conditions including under water.

In one of my Palidariums within less than a month I had a single clipping climbing all over everything and it was very low maintenance.

Keep up the work. These are great ideas for keeping house plants in todays day and age.

EDIT: Sorry it just dawned on me that this might not be set up to benefit just the plants :thumb: .

If it is to help keep water conditions level those plants like Philodendron and Pothos do a great job at devouring bad nutrients in the water.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,606 Posts
I have a couple Philodendron bipinnatifidum about 4-5' tall that I plan to use with a 100 gallon indoor pond.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top