A source of informational links


   POWERHEADS  -  Their most common use is to provide extra water movement within an aquarium. For Reef aquariums, this is vital since a great many of the corals need a good deal more water flow than what can usually be provided for by a sump's return line. A few powerheads located strategically will solve that problem. Due to their being easily moved, I find them to be a good choice since I can direct the water flow as needed. Being easily removed, also means they are easily cleaned. A very important feature for me. The only down side that I see with their use is that they can be very visible and may detract from the overall look of the scenery. This can be solved by the creative use of rocks to hide them, although in doing so, you should ensure such rocks can be moved out of the way to allow access to the pump for cleaning and adjustments.

Aquarium PowerHead Reviews  -  Product reviews of some of the most popular powerheads used in the hobby.

An Overview of PowerHead Choices  -  For the purposes of circulation in reef aquaria, flow is important. Head pressure generally equates to shearing force.

PowerHead Impressions  -  These compact water pumps fulfill a variety of uses in aquarium keeping.  They can be utilized to simulate the flow of tidal currents and waves in an artificial marine environment, or they can reproduce the rippling action of a river or stream in an Amazonian biotope display.


   SUBMERSIBLE PUMPS  -  While very similar to powerheads in function, these pumps generally provide a great more pumping capacity, vital when using sumps or refugiums which are usually located well below the main aquarium and any pump has to be able to send a usable amount of water upwards. The submersible pumps are easier to install simply because there is no need to drill a hole through the side of the sump or refugium. This ease of use does come with a possible concern though. Since the motor is underwater, it could add to the heating of your aquarium's water. Which may or may not be a concern depending on your individual temperature circumstances. Of course, another concern is of having electrical motors and wiring being underwater. Any use of submerged electrical equipment, including heaters, should have a nearby GFI outlet to plug them into.

   NON-SUBMERSIBLE PUMPS  -  By far, the best choice, in my opinion, to provide water pumping capacity to your system. While the initial installment may be more involved due to having holes and bulkhead fittings installed on your sump and/or refugium, the capacity alone is worth the extra effort. Another big benefit of their use is that any heat generated by the motor will not heat your water as well as not having electrical components sitting underwater creating a possible shock hazard.

Aquarium Water Pumps, Operation, Selection and Installation    Part Two   Part Three  -  Probably one of the most ubiquitous and necessary requirements in any aquarium is the proper movement of water within, as well as to and from, the tank.

Plumbing an Aquarium  -  A very in depth article detailing plumbing terms, the equipment and how to do the installations.

How to calculate Head Pressure  -  "Head" may be simply defined as any resistance to the flow of a pump, such as the heigth the pump will have to move the water up to, as well as any bends or turns in the plumbing.

WaveMaker Impressions  -  
For saltwater reef displays, simulating wave action has always been a dream of many hobbyists.  The ebb and flow of the currents and the swaying action that they create has been a goal of many a fish keeper.


    AIR PUMPS  -  A staple in providing aeration to our aquarium water, while not in great use in larger reef aquariums, they do have their place in use with smaller aquariums when sumps or submersible water pumps are not feasible. The only concern in their use is the spray of water that a great many bubbles can create, this can be controlled by the use of my air stone bubble trap. Also, if you have to place the air pump below the tanks surface water level, be sure to install a one way valve on the air line to prevent water back siphoning into the air pump during power outages.

Air Stone Bubble Trap  -  My simple design that traps the bubbles and prevents them from making a mess.

Top Four Aquarium Air Pump Picks  -  A review of air pumps by Stan and Debbie Hauter.