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Re: [APD] float switches/overflow prevention

Consider relying on a passive control instead. Are you
using an overflow box or is the overflow built into the

If the former, one way to help protect against a blocked
skimmer comb is to put a down tube through the bottom of
the in-tank box with the top of the downtube at or just
below the bottom of the comb/skimmer. This not only
provides an alterante path for water into the overflow, it
helps to draw into the filter system debris that collects
lower in the water column. Where the downtube passes
through the floor of the skimmer, one need not have an
absolutely water tight connection, a tight fitting
connnection will do in many cases. A o-ring on the top and
bottom of the hole, fitting tighting on the tube should  be
more than adequate.

With a "built-in" overflow the same function can be
acheived with the sue of intake holes lower in the barrier
and the use of a stand pipe in the overflow chamber (which
can also help make the system much quieter, too, espeically
ifyou use a Durso or Stockman type standpipe).

Lastly, the sump should be sized so that if the water level
in the tank is nearly too high, then the water level in the
sump, which will then be lower, will reach down pump inlet
level, which would then reduce the flow thorugh the pump.
This might mean that you will wnat to place a short riser
on the pump inlet inside the sump, depending on how high or
low the pump is located on or in the sump.

In either case, this is not a surefire method of prevention
of intake blockage; it relies on your keeping the intakes
relatively clear of debris. Ime, skimmers tend to require
more checking and cleaning than intakes lower in the water
column and the two-layer approach privdes significantly
more safety than than the single skim-from-the-surface-only

Using electro-mechanical float valves is another means if
you can find one that can handle the turn-on current of the
pump (or use a suitable relay). Most that you will come
across that are not tremendously expensive will rely on
magnetic reed switches, which usually max out at about a
amp, iirc. But this is not a surefire method of preventing
overflow as the float can become stuck if not kept clean
and free of debris.

In any event, a modicum of diligience and period inspection
is called for.

Good luck, good fun,
Scott H.
--- jamesdfo <jamesdfo at yahoo_ca> wrote:

>   Hello Fellow Plant Fiends ! :)   I have been away
> from the list for some time, but am getting ready to
> start up my tank again. After breaking down my 90g
> planted tank back in May of '02 for the move when I
> purchased my house, I am way beyond ready to set it
> all back up. In the meanwhile, I have built myself a
> new tubular aq stand/cabinet, and have added a wet/dry
> filter.My question relates to the risk of
> overflow/flooding. Being as I now have 90g +
> ~15g(approx vol of sump),theoretically, if enough
> plant matter/debris were to plug the return, one could
> have more water entering the aquarium through the
> spraybar than leaving through the standpipe. I would
> be much more secure if I had some sort of float switch
> rigged up to shut down my Rainbow-Lifeguard 1140GPH
> pump should the water level get too high.
>    I'm hoping others here have already done something
> along these lines, so any pointers,leads on sourcing
> parts etc, would be most welcome:)
> Thanks in Advance
> James (Western Canada)
> http://www.connect.ab.ca/~jamesdfo/
> Find your next car at http://autos.yahoo.ca
> Find your next car at http://autos.yahoo.ca
> _______________________________________________
> Aquatic-Plants mailing list
> Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com
> http://www.actwin.com/mailman/listinfo/aquatic-plants

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