Aquaponic Gardening

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I would like everyone to tell us a bit about the pumps you have used and what you think of them.  Please post your reviews, I can't afford to buy that many pumps for testing so we should all share what we have tried.

(If anyone can review, from actual experience using the pump please, the Quiet One pumps, I'm interested to know what you think of them.)  (I'm also in search of a small low wattage pump that doesn't get clogged for use as backup aeration as an alternative to using air pump aeration.)

Some of the information I think we should include in our reviews
1-Brand/model of the pump
2-flow rate at some head height
3-watts
4-size fittings
5-submersible or inline or both
6-Special feartures
7-How long you have been using the pump
8-What you think of it's performance.  (Does it get clogged too easily?  Is it really nice and quiet?  That sort of thing.)
9-Would you recommend it to others?  If so what situation?
10-If you have a picture of your pump handy please share it.

Not every pump is appropriate to every situation.

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I will start by reviewing my large system pump

Sweetwater SHE 2.4 (That is the Aquatic Eco Systems model number, I notice they use different numbers than sometimes)
60 GPM @ 6 foot
220 watts @ 10 foot 1.9 amps at 115 volts
1 1/2" fittings
Inline pump (not self priming so addition of a priming pot at high point before pump and check valve below water line would be needed when drawing from an in ground water tank)
This is an energy efficient quiet running pump. It costs a bit extra in the first place but will save money in the long run compared to an above ground swimming pool pump.

I've been using this pump For about two years (since the first free pump died and I got the electric bill and realized I needed to replace it with something more efficient.)

I would recommend this kind of pump to anyone with a 1000 gallon to 2000 gallon system who wants to run an inline pump. I probably could be running my system with the next model size down.


Here is a cheap little pump that I own several of. They are little so don't expect them to run a large system. But I've found these guys to be very durable and for the little tiny jobs, I still recommend them for the price and electricity usage.

258 GPH Submersible Fountain Pump From Harbor Freight Tools
It is just barley big enough to run a Barrel-ponics set up (no excess flow really to spray back into the fish tank) since it takes just about all this little guy has to lift the water up to the top.
20 watts
1/2" fittings
I've used it as both provided the seal is in good condition it can be used inline but check the seal before depending on that and make sure there is no extra pressure against the fittings or the seal will fail There is not much holding the pump together around the seal. I always remove the sponge filter that comes with those pumps but a pump bag might then be needed with really small fish.
I don't recommend using any sort of flow regulator on any pumps even through this one comes with one.

I've been using these little pumps in various applications for about two years. All of them that I have purchased are still functional even after quite a bit of abuse.

For small applications where the pump can be kept clean, I do recommend these pumps. I even used one for my solar water heater set up and I would have expected the heat to kill it but it didn't though I didn't heat the water too hot. Do not expect too much flow from one of these little pumps though. The biggest system they are really suited to is really aquarium sized.

Up sizing on the plumbing and turning the pump off for a few minutes each day to let it backflush will greatly improve function and reduce the need for cleaning.

Again, these are tiny pumps and I don't think they will suit for much bigger than a 25 gallon fish tank or at max a standard barrel ponics system (provided supplemental air is used.)
Danner Supreme Mag Drive Pump MD7
400 gallons per hour at 6' head
60 watts
1/2"
Both submersible or inline use (I've only used mine submersed)

Since it's mag drive, something getting caught in the impeller won't burn up the pump, just simply stop it working.

I've been using this little one for about a year.
It isn't the pump I had wanted to buy when I got it but the one I wanted was not in stock.
This little pump seems to work fine for what it is. The plumbing is rather small though and with this pump in particular, I can see a huge increase in flow rate if I up-size the plumbing. Leaves and debris can easily clog this pump so a good cage to keep it from blocking up could be a good idea.

For the price and wattage it uses, I don't know that it is worth recommending to people but other than it getting clogged easily, mine has worked fine for me.

Now for a cheap pump let me review the
Wayne Rup 160 1/6-Horsepower 3,000 GPH Oilless Submersible Utility Water Pump
Cost about $50
This one is harder to find the actual pump curves or power usage information
At one point (going from memory here) I think I found something that said it would move about 30 gallons per minute at 5 foot head (about half of what my sweet water pump does.)
And it uses 300 watts (plenty more than the sweetwater pump)
1 1/4" (comes with an adapter to hook to a garden hose but don't use that, the pump barley moves any water through a garden hose the times I tried it.)
Submersible only, it's a sump pump.

It is oil free so basically safe for fish operations.

I've had this pump for about a year but I have not used it that entire time.
It sucks just too much electricity for what it provides. I keep it on hand as a utility pump or emergency backup.
I did have it running for a while doing timed operation on the quarantine system. Up-sizing the plumbing definitely improves performance. Still it is an electricity hog for what it pumps. And it is NOT quiet. As a cheap pump to have on had for emergencies, fine, but I do not recommend it as a primary system operation pump.

I have another sump pump in operation in my system for over a year and a half now.
Water Ace R33WU
Submersible Waterfall pump 1/3rd HP
1900 GPH @ 5 foot (this one I believe where as the wayne rup was supposed to deliver quite a bit of water but the least restriction would shut that pump way down.)
Full load amps 2.3
1 1/2" but comes with adapters for 1 1/4" barb fitting or 3/4" hose fitting.
Submersible only sump pump
continuous duty only when submerged in at least 5" of water but can pump down lower. (Mine is controlled by a float switch so it can regulate the flood and drain in the grow bed in which it is situated.)

Been using this one for over a year and a half (it replaced a cheaper sump pump which corroded away immediately after the warranty period.)

It is a good pump for what I have been using it for. It is quiet and can pump a lot of water in a short period of time. I would not want to pay for continuous operation on this pump however. It has never clogged and will shut it's self off if it over heats due to the float switch being fouled and not shutting it off properly.

Sorry no picture to share.
Quiet One 4000
I just bought one and hooked it up in my front porch system to feed Nate's Zipgrow towers hanging there.
I can't really share much about it yet as I just got it.
I can say, not impressed with the instruction manual but I suppose I can say that about almost anything manufactured in a country speaking a different language now days.

The pump seems solid and I have it installed submerged. I am probably using almost 5' of head so expect it is giving me around 500 gallons per hour. That should be plenty of flow for a 100 gallon tank. I expect this pump could even support a 300 gallon system. I will probably test out that assumption later this summer.

Will have to re-visit this pump after I've had it for a while.

Well, I've had that Quiet One 4000 pump running on my front porch system for a little while and I found it delivers way more than enough water to irrigate the 4 Zipgrow towers, I've had to re-adjust things so more water bypasses back to the fish tank so I'm sending less water to the towers. This pump will easily handle a 100 gallon system even pushing the water up over 6 foot of head. It is low enough wattage to make putting the entire system on battery backup and option instead of only having air for backup. I think this water pump bypass spray is probably also enough additional aeration that I probably don't need the air stone in the tank even with the catfish. Once I get the numbers in that tank down to a sane stocking level, I'll test it out without the air stone as well.

Anyway, I was happy enough with this pump that I've gone and gotten two more. These two other pump will be running my 300 gallon system. (Actually, if running a simple 300 gallon system, I could probably be running just the single Quiet one pump but since I don't currently have a repeat cycle timer to do the cycles I would want to operate my indexing valve, my plan is to run two of these pumps. One will feed the indexing valve and the other will feed the towers.)
By the way, one of these 50 watt pumps can actually operate the 1 1/4" aquaponic indexing valves so long as there isn't too much head for it to contend with. This may be running the lower limit of flow rates for the indexing valve.

TCLynx said:
Quiet One 4000
I just bought one and hooked it up in my front porch system to feed Nate's Zipgrow towers hanging there. I can't really share much about it yet as I just got it. I can say, not impressed with the instruction manual but I suppose I can say that about almost anything manufactured in a country speaking a different language now days.

The pump seems solid and I have it installed submerged. I am probably using almost 5' of head so expect it is giving me around 500 gallons per hour. That should be plenty of flow for a 100 gallon tank. I expect this pump could even support a 300 gallon system. I will probably test out that assumption later this summer.

Will have to re-visit this pump after I've had it for a while.
Franklin Ford and I are using Laguna Maxflo waterfall/filter pumps. They are rated for solids lifting and continuous running. They also come with a three year warranty. Another year when bought from AZ ponds online. The warranty just doesn't cover the impeller, you buy replacements cheap.
So far the pumps are very quiet, I can't hear it over the air pumps anyway. Frank's Maxflo600 uses 32 watts and my Maxflo900 uses 65 I think.
One of the features I like about this pump, besides the warranty, is the quick connect fitting. It has shoulders for 3/4,1", and 1 1/4 tubing, you just cut to the one you want and click it on. cleaning and replacing are going to be easy.
I will try to update this in a few months. Three weeks so far aren't much time for a good test :)

Got any links to sites with pump curves for this pump?

Richard Wyman said:
Franklin Ford and I are using Laguna Maxflo waterfall/filter pumps. They are rated for solids lifting and continuous running. They also come with a three year warranty. Another year when bought from AZ ponds online. The warranty just doesn't cover the impeller, you buy replacements cheap.
So far the pumps are very quiet, I can't hear it over the air pumps anyway. Frank's Maxflo600 uses 32 watts and my Maxflo900 uses 65 I think.
One of the features I like about this pump, besides the warranty, is the quick connect fitting. It has shoulders for 3/4,1", and 1 1/4 tubing, you just cut to the one you want and click it on. cleaning and replacing are going to be easy.
I will try to update this in a few months. Three weeks so far aren't much time for a good test :)

TCLynx, I am having trouble copying the link, but AZponds.com where I bought it has the chart of head flow rates.

http://www.azponds.com/New_webpages/New_subpumps_Classic.html

OK, got it lol.
Ok, I said I would come back to this. I like these little pumps. Been working great for both the front porch towers and the 300 gallon system towers.

As to running an indexing valves with them. Well, the 1 1/4" 6 way outlet valve body didn't work reliably with that little pump but I've been running a 1 1/4" 4 way valve body with a 3 way cam and a gravity stem for over a week with that pump and it seems fine. I'm now even testing the regular stem in the same valve with that pump and it is working fine too.

I did get a couple sizes larger of these quiet one pumps and they seem to work well on the indexing valves I've tested them on. Right now I'm recommending the Quiet One 6000 to run the 1 1/4" 6 outlet body indexing valves and if using a gravity stem one could get away with using the Quiet One 5000.

TCLynx said:
Quiet One 4000
I just bought one and hooked it up in my front porch system to feed Nate's Zipgrow towers hanging there.
I can't really share much about it yet as I just got it.
I can say, not impressed with the instruction manual but I suppose I can say that about almost anything manufactured in a country speaking a different language now days.

The pump seems solid and I have it installed submerged. I am probably using almost 5' of head so expect it is giving me around 500 gallons per hour. That should be plenty of flow for a 100 gallon tank. I expect this pump could even support a 300 gallon system. I will probably test out that assumption later this summer.

Will have to re-visit this pump after I've had it for a while.

I've had this pump for 6 months now.  It's a Beckett 325gph submersible.  I'm running a CHOP2 with 7 5" koi in about 100 gallons of tank and a 60 gallon media bed for a total volume of about 130 gallons.  I have about a 4' head to lift from the sump up to the media bed.

At first this pump was more than enough to power the CHOP2, with enough force left over after splitting off to the media bed to create a decent flow into the fish tank.  After 6 months of bio-slime buildup, it is no longer strong enough to keep a good current flowing in the fish tank.

It is very easy to remove the outlet and screen for cleaning; which I've had to do several times.  For all the crud and leaves that float around in my sump, this pump has done pretty well with solids.  It is a magdrive, but the impeller is a disc with raised curved walls...not like the other design which is more like a propeller with blades that can get tangled and jam easily.

I have no idea how much energy it consumes though and can't find the info anywhere.  Comes with a handy 16' long cord.  Seems decently quiet, but I have nothing to compare it to.

I just purchased a QuietOne 1200 to replace it.

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