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FAQs about Iwaki Pumps for Circulation 

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Related FAQs: Pump Selection 1, Pump Selection 2, Pump Selection 3, Pump Selection 4, Pump Selection 5, Pump Selection 6, Circulation Pumps, Marine Circulation 1, Marine Circulation 2, Marine Circulation 3, AerationPumps, Powerheads, Installation/Arrangement, PlumbingMake Up Water Systems, SumpsRefugiumsSurge Devices&
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Pump Trouble 2,
By Brand/Manufacturer:  Eheim Pumps, Dolphin, Hydor/Koralia Pumps, Mag (Supreme) Pumps, OceanRunner, Quiet One (Pentair) Pumps, RK2 Pumps, Sequence (Dart), Tunze,
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Equipment/Pumps/Iwaki Complaint - 2/28/2006 Hi guys (gals)!  Peter here.  <James on this side.>
I just wanted to let you and other potential Iwaki pump purchasers know about my recent saga. <Shoot.> I purchased an MD-70 (Japanese motored) via Marine Depot.  When I installed the pump, it was extremely loud - not vibration, but the fan on the back makes a very loud "whooshing" noise.  <Typical.>
The second my wife walked in from work, she said "what is that noise."  The tank is in the other room, across the house.  I removed it after maybe 2 hours of operation.  I contacted Marine Depot who told me that once the pump has touched water, they can not accept it for return as Iwaki would not accept it back.  He recommended that I contact Iwaki direct and find out if they would do a refund or exchange it for a smaller pump which would be quieter (in his words).  So I contacted Iwaki and explained the situation.  They said they would be more than happy to swap out the pump for a smaller model - I requested nothing for the difference in cost of the smaller pump.  At this point I was very happy as I mailed off the pump.  Then 2 weeks later, I call to check on the status.  This is where it goes south.  The gentleman says, "oh, it arrived last week, but I don't know if they've looked at it yet.  Let me check and call you back."  A few minutes later, I get a call and he tells me, well, the cord is shorter than it was when originally sold, and thus, they can not accept the pump back.
<Some companies do have strict policies as sad as it may be.> Now those of you who have researched the Japanese motored Iwaki pumps know that they do not come with a plug on the cord.  So when I received the pump, I went to Lowe's and bought a plug (with cord) to attach.  I cut the cord on the pump maybe 8-12 inches in order to avoid having 3 feet of excess - as I think anyone would do?  There was still a good 2 feet of slack on the pump cord.  Now they say that because the cord is shorter, that they can not resell it and thus can not accept it back.  Why don't they put a cord on the darned thing to begin with if they don't want people altering it?  IT'S A $5 CORD, HOW HARD IS IT TO ATTACH A NEW CORD?  It's a $300 pump, you would think that something this simple would be nothing compared to customer satisfaction.  I guess that doesn't matter any more. After all of the good things I heard here about Iwaki and their pumps, I must say I completely disagree.  They may last a long time, but they are by no means quiet (by any definition of the word) and their customer support is terrible.  Sorry for my rant, but I think others should be aware of what they are getting into. As for WWM - The site is great and here, customer service is top priority (and we don't even pay anything for it).  PRICELESS <Peter, thank you for the kind words, about us anyway.  I'm sure Mr. Fenner will post this on the Wet Web.  Will serve as a warning to Iwaki pump buyers not to alter the unit in any way so as to protect the warranty and/or exchange privileges.  <James (Salty Dog)> Best regards, Peter

Inline pump questions  1/16/06 Hello again Crew- <Hello Brent> I want to upgrade my current Pondmaster Mag-Drive Model 7 unit (700 GPH) with a Pan World 100PX-X (1270GPH).  Details for what I want to setup are below.  Is there a difference in the amount of heat transferred to the water between these two pumps? <Not familiar with the Pan World.>
And, can the Pan World (or other similar type pump) pass copepod/amphipod sized creatures without turning them into a puree?
<You may lose a few but most should survive.  I wouldn't expect many would enter the intake.>  
What are the advantages to these pumps (Pan World, Iwaki, Little Giant) in general?
<As I mentioned, not familiar with Pan World.  Iwaki's are a quieter and a little more energy efficient than the Little Giants.  I think the Quiet One pumps are pretty energy efficient and quiet for their modest cost.  The 4000 model puts out 1017 gph with a maximum 10' head and draws 50 watts.  A similar Little Giant will draw 100 watts.  I always look for the wattage draw when selecting a pump as the lower this is the less heat transfer there is.> Currently I have a 100 g. tank setup, but will soon be adding an additional 55 g. refugium tank.  I want to use one pump acting as the return for both tanks, keeping the possibility of flooding to a minimum in the event of a power outage/pump failure.  I will install a T-joint off the new pump (using a ball regulator for lower current in the refugium tank).  Likewise, each tank will have an external overflow connected via a T-joint at my sump.
<Better to run these individually.>
I'm still not sure if I will make the two tanks sit at the same level or not. This and related topics will need to wait for another message.  I'm glad you guys and gals are here to help!! <Well thank you.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanx, <You're welcome.> Brenton, San Francisco

Pumping uphill 10/11/05 Thanks for the continued help. Making a 150 gal. with 2 x 1.5"- 2" overflows for FOWLR (trigger and snapper). All equipment will be located in basement on an elevated platform for ease of maint., will have about 11' -12' of head, what type of pump would you recommend?  I've been looking at the Iwaki MD100RLT and the Dolphin 4700 Aqua Sea Amp Master, the Dolphin offers way more gph at that head, but is the quality equally as high? Would the returning water from either pump in a closed loop give me the necessary circulation without adding any other pumps, powerheads, etc.?  <Mike choose a pump larger than what you actually need to compensate for your closed loop system. You can control the output with a gate valve. I'd check of the Gen-X pumps, they look pretty efficient as far as gph/watt. As far as the Iwaki/Dolphin choice...I know the Iwaki's are good pumps and not real familiar with Dolphin, but never heard any negative feedback about them. James (Salty Dog)> 

Pump recommendation 3/28/04 I have a 240 gal tank to set up as a reef.  It is a tall design.  Total head pressure will be about 10 feet.   It will be located in a living area.  What would you recommend as a good choice of pump to give sufficient flow but also produce minimal noise?    <seek a Japanese made Iwaki that does 4000-5000 gph at that head (be sure to drill enough overflow holes to handle this flow)> It came with a Little Giant 4-mdsqx but it is rather noisy. <not as quiet, strong or long-lasting> Thanks L Mathies <best regards, Anthony>

Iwaki pump - 12/23/03 I recently purchased an Iwaki MD40RLT. It seems to function great, but at 4 feet of head, the return is almost too strong for my tank w/a 5'' DSB. <In the world of Marine aquarium equipment, we all get used to exaggerated claims....  Skimmers rated for a 300 gallon tank when we all know they will only handle 100, miracle additives and the like.  Well, Iwaki delivers and then some.  In my experience, either Iwaki rates their pumps conservatively or everyone else is pretty liberal, because they move some serious water for their rating!> It stirs everything up no matter where I direct the return head. <I am chuckling as I read this from having suffered through the same problem.  I see you said "the return head", singular.> Is there any way I can reduce this? I planned on using a couple of powerheads as well, rated at about 300 GPH. Any other possibilities here.. Thank you <Absolutely.  Since your drains will obviously handle the full output of the pump, I would divide the return at least in two, if not into several separate returns.  This will keep a lot of water moving, but reduce the velocity at any one point, helping keep your sand put.> HTH.  Adam>

Pumps and head loss for manifold 10/8/03 I am attempting to build a circulation manifold for my 150 gallon tank from 1" PVC. I used the Head Loss Calculator at Reef Central and came up with 11 foot of head loss for my design.  60" vertical, 12" horizontal, 5 90 degree elbows, friction factor of .018 with 1" PVC. According to the guy on the phone at www.Marinedepot.com  that accounts for an actual flow rate of 600 GPH for the Iwaki 40RLXT. For the 55RLT it would be 900 with an 11ft loss and for the 70RLT is would be 1260. My question is that it would seem I need to get the 70RLT to match my overflow box rating of up to 1400 GPH and get the flow suggested. I just wanted to make sure these numbers sounded right to you and that for a regular manifold for a 150 gallon tank, a guy would need to buy a 70RLT to get the kind of circulation you guys suggest, at least 5 times tank volume. Thanks <your estimate and assumption is correct... and know that if this is a full blown reef display, you will still need to add powerheads or a closed loop pump to the display to get into the proper 10-20X tank turnover per hour range recommended. Best regards, Anthony>

Pumps How do the Mag 18 pumps compare to the Iwaki WMD40RLXT, both are rated at about the same gph but I'm not sure how good the Mag pumps are? (they are cheaper) does the rule apply "YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR". Which would you recommend? <The Iwaki brand is generally considered top of the line by most aquarists. That being said I love my Mags, I have a Mag 12 and a Mag 18 and have been very very pleased with them. MacL> Thanks

Big Pump Noise I currently have a 180g mini reef tank with an Iwaki 100 RLT as my main pump.  I am really struggling with the noise level of this pump as the tank is in the same room where I have an entertainment system.  I have enclosed the back side of the sump area and this has made it tolerable, but I am still tempted to turn off the pump when I watch a movie because of the noise. <Could you use some type of insulation as a sound barrier. I have also seen people use mouse pads under the pump to help deaden the noise> Is there a pump with similar output that would be substantially more quiet? <Others here have spoken well for the Dolphin AmpMaster although the longevity may not be as good as the Iwaki> Thanks, Marc <Hope this works out, Don>

Pumps For Maximum Performance Hello, <Hi there! Scott F. here today!> I am a frequent reader of your web site.  It is great, thank you. <Glad that you enjoy it!> I have a question about pump selection.  I have a 90 Gallon Oceanic tank with dual built in corner overflows.  The return lines are 3/4" they are built into the overflows.  The pipes dumping back into my sump are 1.5".  Can you confirm their capacity.  I'm estimating somewhere around 2400 GPH. <That's probably pretty close.> Also, can you tell me how much water I can pump up from my sump without having a water fall sound constantly back to the sump.   Right now I'm pumping 500 GPH and it is very quiet.  I'd like to keep the sound down. <Unfortunately, the only way to really answer that one is to play with your pump a bit. Trial and error is really the only way to determine this. Every system will react differently; every system has different acoustical characteristics, too...> Also, I'm looking at the Iwaki MD40RLXT which pumps 1200 gallons at 4' head.  My stand is 30" and my tank is 24" so it is 4 1/2 feet.  Is this the right size pump or should I be looking to go bigger, keeping noise as a concern? <I have used the Iwaki MD40RLT in the past. It's a pressure-rated pump (the RLXT is designed for circulation), but pushes about 750gph. I'd hardly call it "quiet", but it is a great, reliable pump! If you are pushing against significant head, I'd go for a pressure rated pump. In my experience, the Iwaki MD55 RLT is quieter than the '40, and it pushes around 1100gph. On my current system, I am using a Sequence Dart, which is an extremely powerful, very efficient, and amazingly quiet pump. I've been very pleased with this pump so far.> Also, it is 1" PVC pipe, can I convert this to two 3/4" returns without any problems? <I would not reduce the returns, myself.> Thanks for answering all of my questions. Brent <Hope you found this information useful! Regards, Scott F.>

Moving Water! (Pump Selection) Hi!!!! <Hi there! Scott F. here today!> Have learned a tremendous amount from reading the daily questions and replies. I have a 125 AGA with home made internal overflows. They are 12 x 5 with slots cut. The slots create a total over flow area of aprox 9" linear inches with 1.5" drains in each corner overflow and .75" returns. How much flow do you think I will get into my sump with this arrangement and if not enough should I cut a few of the notches out to create more linear overflow area? <I'm guessing that you'd be able to pull at least 1100 gph or thereabouts...You could always cut out some of the "teeth" from the overflow if you are not getting the flow that you want.> The pumps I have been looking at for the overflow return is either a Iwaki MD55RLT or a Blueline 55HD. Have heard much about the Iwakis but nothing much on the Blueline? <I have Iwakis, and I have read about Blueline. They are reported to be good quality. I am a bit partial to Iwaki, myself. The MD55RLT is pressure rated, and moves about 1050 gph...Good pump.> I will also be putting in a closed loop system with a 1.5" drain and (5) .75 returns. What size Iwaki or Blueline pump would you recommend? <I'd go for an MD55RLT or an MD70...Go for the flow!> Also is it true on a closed loop system there is no head loss as in returns from sumps? <Essentially, none, or very little, depending upon your plumbing geometry!> I truly appreciate you time and responses.  Thanks Jim McCauley <My pleasure, Jim. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Multiple Skimmer Setup and Pump Selection Hi guys, <Hi there! Scott F. your guy tonight!> Love your site. I'll be quick and to the point. I am setting up a new system, either 135 gallon or 180 gallon reef, depending on what I can arrange. They will have dual overflows of 1 inch holes. I looked at all types of skimmers and cannot see how making the body of a skimmer an inch wider and two or three inches taller makes it double the performance capability. I decided to purchase two Precision Marine Bullet 1 skimmers to work together on this tank. <Fine skimmers with a nice reputation...Two skimmers on one tank! You're MY kind of fish nut!> Now I have to decide how to power these skimmers. At first I thought I would use a Iwaki WMD-4ORLT for each skimmer and a pump for the return to the main tank. Noise is a consideration for me since it is in my family room and I read that these pumps (the 40's) are fairly loud? <As someone who used an MD40 for a few years, I can tell you that they were too loud for my taste. Amazing quality; built like an M1 tank, reliable as anything- but too darned noisy for me!> In the past I have used little giant 4's and felt they were loud. So my question is should I use one bigger pump for everything, or one for the skimmers and one for return to the tank or one for each skimmer and one for the return? <Well, you could conceivably use one powerful pump for everything, and create a manifold with ball valves to power everything, or you can work out a gravity feed as well. However, I'd recommend two pumps: One pump for the system, and another for both of the skimmers, teed off for maximum control. This way, you minimize disruption to the system if you have to do maintenance to one of the components, etc.> Basically, which is better, three small ones like t4's or something like an Ampmaster or Iwaki 100? <As stated above, Id feel better going with two pumps, myself.> Will it be difficult to plumb these Beckett skimmers to work properly with one pump? <It may require a lot of tinkering with the ball valves to get the right flow in there. Experimentation is just par for the course!> Best Regards, Justin Kyllo <Hope I was of assistance to you, Justin! Good luck! Regards, Scott F

Pump Ideas Thanks for the input, the more I think about it I think that the MD55 is the better choice, by the time you add other Returns or if you do, and then the manifold itself with multiple returns up top is a lot of elbows and I bet eats up pressure fast. <That's exactly why I chose that pump!> Anything over 8 feet and the MD55 is a better choice easily, I'd bet 8 feet of pressure isn't very much all things considered!   Since you use this pump, I will sum up my other question a lot, what do you drain with? I'll try an make that my last question for awhile, instead I'll but your books and actually do all this!  Lol Take care, Mark <No problem Mark. Like I said, what works for me may not work for you! I use two 1 1/2 inch standpipes feeding into my sump. If I could do it all over again, I probably would have went with 2 two inch standpipes. Feel free to contact us any time, but do enjoy getting "lost" on the site- there's so much good information here! And don't forget to talk to your fellow hobbyists, they are your truly best source of information and feedback on "fishy stuff" ! Take care! Scott F.>

Pump for new tank question Hi Anthony, Hope you are well..  <same to you my friend> I have a question regarding a pump for my new tank. You suggested either AMP master pumps( I have no idea what/where to look for here) or Iwaki. I found an Iwaki that I thought would be just right,  <excellent... Iwakis are the best overall in my opinion> it is called Iwaki MD 70RLT and is supposed to be 1500gph however the shop that is selling it puts a ? as to if it is safe for normal circulation as they say it is designed to work under pressure (i.e feeding a filter canister or such like??) Do you know of this pump and if it's suitable as a straight return pump or not? <Iwaki makes every unit in their line for pressure or circulation (two different models for every style). You can order this pump for circulation only if you like> I also found a pump called MagDrive 1800 which guess what, does 1800 gph and is a lot cheaper than the Iwaki which makes me wonder if it is powerful enough even though it say's 1800gph, is this a suitable pump?  <sort of... and as the saying goes: good things are seldom cheap and cheap things are seldom good. I won't be surprised if you have your Iwaki 15 years from now still running... I have seen older. Yet, I will be very surprised if you still have a mag drive pump 7 years down the road. They are less durable by far... sealed motors, mag drives (not direct shafts) and impart a lot of heat into the system (about 4 degrees F). They are cheaper to buy, though, and do move a lot of water. They are also usually quite economical to operate (electricity consumption). You must weigh the factors that matter most to you> otherwise please give me a clue... If I had a pump of 1500 to 1800 gph and enough overflow holes across the back for say 2000 gph would this be o.k.? <yes... very fine> Have a nice week-end! Jenny UK <best regards to you as well, my friend. Anthony>

Pump Selection Hello fine friends, I am currently upgrading my system pump which is an Eheim 1250. This is on a 30 gallon reef with sump. I'm going with an Iwaki 20. Now this is the gray zone, which one should I get to use as my main system pump and what is the difference, the 20RLT 0r the 20RLXT? <I would get the RXLT. This is a non-pressure situation and the RXLT has slightly more gph than the RLT.> Thank you for the light you can shine on this subject, Paul <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Iwaki pump 3/30/03 Hi, Have you heard of an Iwaki MD 30RXT? I have not found anything on this pump on the net. <surprising... Iwaki is one of the oldest and best pumps in the aquarium trade. Do a keyword search of just the word "Iwaki" or "Iwaki water pump" if you like. Perhaps the model number skewed your search> The reason I ask is that an LFS have a used one for sale. Since I am not able to find information, it leads me to believe this is an old pump, which is no longer made? Do you know the GPH? Thanks, Nikki <do browse the information at the manufacturer's site: http://www.iwakiwalchem.com/ very fine pumps. I consider them to be the best around without spending crazy money. Best of luck, Anthony>

Iwaki Pump recommendations/commentary Anthony There are more sumps and pumps being put in the basement and pumping water to the next floor, and many folks wonder what pump to be used? If one is using a 180 gal reef tank a Iwaki MD100 is the pump to be used. With a 12 ft head you get 1920 gal per hour,14 head 1800 gal per hour... using an 11/4 pvc pipe on the out put of the pump and 1 1/2" return . For more water movement used a Iwaki md 40 in a close loop you can get 700 gal per hour, put two 3/4 outlets at the front of the tank. this pump can be put in basement with the md 100. Iwakis pumps are the best to used you can believe their pump specifications, many other pumps are in a gray zone for valid specs.    RGibson YOU CAN PAY LESS &YOU CAN GET LESS <Ralph... thank kindly, my friend. I am in agreement that Iwakis are time tested and true. I have sworn by them for fifteen years and am not likely to stray anytime soon. We've seen too many new pumps come and go like so many flashes in a pan. Best regards, Anthony Calfo>

Iwaki Pumps Hi: New to the hobby.  I am setting up a 90 reef and saw an Iwaki 30rlxt pump on eBay.  Plan to have external sump with red sea Berlin skimmer.  Would this pump be OK.  I am concerned because it says not for pressure applications.  I don't think my plans constitute this but I wanted to be sure before I bid.  I should not have more than 4 ft. of head pressure. Thanks, Rob C. <Head over to our sponsor pages and research the ratings and how that applies. They all have flow rate charts to help you decide this.  A return line with an attached skimmer *may* be a pressure application.  You need to figure head height, needed flow rate, etc. to size pumps. Craig>

Moving Up! (Pt. 2> Well Scott, thanks so much for the quick reply. Your "two cents" is exactly what I was hoping to get. <Glad that you found it helpful! I'd give you four cents, but I'm out of change.. LOL> I imagined that the fish you spoke of, blennies, gobies, cardinals, and the fairy wrasses would be the suggestion, which is what I was looking to do.  A few small fish will help fill out the tank just perfectly. <Yep, and there are a LOT of cool choices in these families! You'll really have fun selecting, researching, and keeping them!> But, unfortunately you did "freak" me out about the Iwaki pump noise!!! <Damn- sorry about that...But I did want to give you my honest impression of the pump. I really, really love Iwakis, and absolutely swear by them for their reliability, quality and durability, but I don't think that they are as quiet as some other brands out there. However, I continue to use them and recommend them to others for the reasons cited above.> I am hoping that since you had the RLT model for pressure applications, that maybe my RLXT will be less loud....I am crossing my fingers! <Good point, and I'm honestly not sure about that...Again remember that "quiet" is a relative term, as I mentioned before, so it may not be bad at all. I define "quiet" in pump terms as "absence of almost all sound" (yeah, I have a pretty demanding definition!) except the water. There are a number of other pumps out there that fit this definition, but they have other "trade offs" which require consideration, such as introduction of additional heat, greater electrical consumption, lower reliability, etc.> Its funny why your larger pump is quieter than the smaller one...go figure. <I have been told by a number of people "in the know" that the fan is the major noise producer in the MD40...And, yes- the MD55 is much, much more quiet than the MD40...In fact, it approaches my definition of "quiet!"> The tank is in the living room so a little noise is not a problem, but hopefully when we have guests, we don't have to try and talk over the noise!  So lets just say it is too noisy, what would you do?  Diff. Iwaki model? <There are a lot of different noise reduction techniques that you can use, including  acoustically insulating the stand, using mouse pads, etc, etc...lots of postings on these techniques throughout the internet...And, yes- I will ultimately switch to a different Iwaki model to replace my MD40 (probably an MD55) when it dies- in about 10 years (yep- THAT's reliability!)...> Smaller perhaps, although a loss of flow is not the best solution. <Try the MD40's first- please! If you are inclined to change, though, try the MD55; you can always control the higher flow rate through ball valves....Remember, also that the MD55 uses 1" fittings, not 3/4" like the MD40 does....> Don't think I want a submersible pump, seems like it will generate too much heat.  Another brand perhaps, but don't want to sacrifice quality.  Yes, it's another "two cents" question, but then that is what they pay you for...oh yeah, you don't get paid for this, well dammit, you guys and gals should! <Thanks for the kind thoughts! And, really- do try the MD40s first...They may be just fine. I guess that is the good and bad of relaying my experiences, huh? Other people may have totally different viewpoints on this. I'd hate to see you spend more money on something that's not needed...Remember, what works for me may be insane for you! As far as being "paid" for this- the satisfaction that I get from helping a fellow hobbyist avoid a mistake that I've made is pretty darn good "compensation", in my opinion! Have fun with your system, and good luck! Regards, Scott F> Thanks again, you reply was MUCH appreciated. Paul

The Sound of Silence... Ok Scott, if you recall from my previous email, we were talking about the MD40RLXT and that it might be a bit noisy....Well I was finally was able to hook them up and get them running.  Yikes, it sounds like an old fridge running!  It is tolerable, to me at least, but since I have 2 of them, my wife says NO! <Yep- she doesn't have the "reef gene", huh? LOL> She even said do whatever it takes to replace them, even if it costs $1000. <Well, with that budget, you could....> So you can imagine she does not care for the noise.  I opted to keep one of them for the closed loop, and I ordered a Velocity T4. Hopefully it doesn't heat up my 90G tank too much, but I guess I will find out.  They are supposed to be really quiet, so I guess it is worth it. <They are really, really quiet pumps. They will definitely make a huge difference, sound wise. I am a big an of Custom Sea Life Products. Obviously, you are aware that the outlets are hose barb instead of MPT/FPT, so keep this in mind when planning your plumbing hook ups. Some aquarists report that it requires a little effort to prime the pumps after routine maintenance or power failures...> Time for eBay for the old Iwaki, what a shame, its only hours old.  Maybe I should keep it as a spare, a rather expensive one at that. <My thoughts exactly....It's a helluva great pump to have for a backup!> The strange thing with the velocity pump is that the T4 has 1 inch barb fittings, and the lower flow T3 has MPT fittings?  I would of thought it would be the other way around.  Anyways, this makes it more difficult for me to fit the new pump in.  I have to do some cutting now. < Funny that I was thinking of this just a few lines ago...LOL> I wonder if flex PV can go onto a barb fitting?  Now I am rambling. <Should work fine...You may have to play with it for a bit, but it will work...> Take care. Paul <You, too- Paul! I'm sure that your new pumps will help ensure "domestic tranquility" and do a good job for the tank! Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

- Pump Selection - Hi guys hope everyone is doing well, i have a return pump question I am currently using Iwaki 30rlxt want 2 upgrade to 40rlxt but the watt consumption of Iwaki is high so I'm also considering Gen X Mak IV and that's only 55 watts @ 5 ft head pressure.  Is Gen X comparable to Iwaki, I have used Iwaki for awhile but like I said the high power consumptions. <I think the Gen-X might be a little louder, but am pretty sure they have similar specifications otherwise - except for the power consumption as you mentioned.> Thanks in advance for the help, Rommel <Cheers, J -- >

- Pump Question - Hello Crew, <Good morning, JasonC here...> I was wondering if anyone has an experience with the Iwaki MD40RLXT pumps? <Yes.> I bought two for my 90 gallon reef, sump return and closed loop circulation.  I wanted to know if they were very loud.
<Compared to what? They aren't silent.>
I am still in the process of setting up this tank so I won't know for a little bit, but my wife sees the size of the pumps and starts imagining jet engines!
<They're not that bad.>
I read that they may be a bit noisy since they have fans on them ( unlike the smaller MD30RLXT ).  They are under the tank in a stand so its not like they are out in the open, but will they be any louder than the 2 4" muffin fans used to cool the canopy?
<I'd say they would be "noticeable" but not louder than a pair of muffin fans; perhaps about the same.>
Those are the noisiest things on my existing tank now.  It is in a living room so it doesn't have to be silent, but I would like to be able to have conversations in that room from time to time. <That shouldn't be a problem.> Thank for you time. Paul <Cheers, J -- >

Suggestion on Iwaki Pump Hi Bob, how are you? <He is probably doing marvelous. He is diving in Indonesia right now. Steven Pro in his stead.> I have a 75 gallon Oceanic Reef-Ready tank that I am setting up. This is my first tank and I want to do things right. <If you are new to saltwater, might I suggest Mike Paletta's "The New Marine Aquarium" and Bob Fenner's "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist." Both are excellent.> Rumor has it that my overflow is rated at around 750 gph. All the return will run is the return. I will have approximately 4 feet of head. Can I get away with the 40RLT? <That model is rated for 750 gph at 4 feet of head, which should be fine.> If not what would you suggest? Best regards, Mike <Have a nice night. -Steven Pro>

Pumps (again) Hello WWM crew! <Cheers Brad! Anthony> I am in need of an external return pump from my sump to my 75Ga. reef tank. I have been researching various pumps and am more confused now than before I started researching.  <thanks to the shameless and sometimes misleading (and other times outright fibbing) of marketing ga-roos> I initially wanted to buy an Iwaki.  <my fave, by far.. more below and in past FAQs> Iwaki's seem to be a name that is everywhere.  <they have been around for a VERY long time and have had an impeccable reputation all along.. not an easy thing to do. The only thing that anyone can complain about is that you have to pay for their quality. No one debates that they are very durable/long loved> Yet I hear they run very hot and are not very energy efficient and are a tad noisy.  <The American made ones just a tad and relative to what? Not so to most other direct drive units. But all DD units yes relative to MAG drives (at the expense of head)> The Japanese vs. American Iwaki's have all the same specs/parts yet the Japanese versions are almost twice the cost. Makes me leery of any company that would do this. <not at all my understanding or experience with the brand for over ten years... literally a few thousand dollars spent on these pumps and even more wasted on other brands> I am looking into the CSL Velocity T3 (140watt). It would produce about slightly less 10 times tank volume turn-over rate. Is this a good brand? It sports a 2 year no-fault warranty. Nice. Heat transfer? <not familiar with the brand. The flow is somewhat irrelevant if your overflows like most folks can't take as much as they should (you'll want the equivalent of 5+ 1" drains for a reef tank on a 75 (or 2-2 1/2" inch, etc)> Little Giant 3-MDQX-SC would turn over a little more than 10x tank volume but I have heard little about this pump except that it also runs hot. <I wish I could say something nice about these pumps other than they are inexpensive and you get what you pay for. If your goals before upgrading or moving on are short-term, perhaps a LG will be OK> So many choices out there.  <too many... and indeed many good ones included> I just want a good, long lasting high, quality pump that will be easily plumbed from my sump into my 75Ga Oceanic Reef Ready tank. I would like it to have a water turn over rate of about 10 times per hour and not suck electricity like a mad man. <without the electricity issue, I have a distinct preference for Japanese Iwakis... seen more than a few last over ten years and silent. A big diff from the American version and most other DD units. If electricity is your primary concern... look only at magnetic drive units at the expense of some head (pressure) and heat transfer for most> I would really like to put this issue to bed and move on but I am get more confused at every turn. Zimmy <Then pick a Supreme Mag-drive unit for the 5 year plan and with consideration for power consumption. Else, A Japanese Iwaki will not fail you in the long view. Anthony>

Iwaki pump Hello Bob. (or any of his little helpers.) <But I look taller in movies... doesn't that count for something? Anthony> Almost everyone I asked said Iwaki's are indeed a good choice including Mr. Calfo. Thanks for your opinion kind sir.  <very welcome> Now should I buy a pressure rated pump or just their standard pump. <probably pressure rated if it is to be used as a return pump> Should I get the American or Japanese version?  <Japanese if you are willing to spend the extra for a longer lasting pump> What size would be sufficient for my 75ga. tank with a straight return from the sump to the tank. (No UV, canister filter or anything else between sump and tank)  <that you have to figure on your own a bit pending the inhabitants needs. FOWLR, reef, if reef, what are the inverts needs, etc. But the ballpark would be 800 GPH minimum... with perhaps 1500 gph max (if your overflow can handle it and you are trying to reduce the amount of extra power heads in your tank. I hope you have the equivalent of at least 4-1" overflow holes drilled I the display. Otherwise you might be restricted to a smaller pump and having extra PH in the main tank> After I buy the pump, I have but to plumb everything and I am ready for action. Man these external pumps are costly! I only hope they last a few good years. <I've seen more than a few go way over 10 years old!> Zimmy <kindly, Anthony>

Re: Question on Water Pumps Thank you so much for you quick reply. Not the answer I wanted, but better to know now... The Eheim was my first choice (I had read you opinion), however, I have had difficulty finding any in stock at the few places I found who carry them.  <A sponsor, custom aquatic (.com) now carries these> I was also considering a little more flow than what Eheim offers. Would a Velocity T3 or an Iwaki be a good substitute? Again, thank you for your help and guidance. <Hmm, a few factors to consider here... what sort of pressure and what amount of volume are you using this pump for? If you don't need that much of the former, and moderate (the Eheims come in three sizes in the West), I would go with the Eheim still... much less electrical consumption, much less heat (especially compared with the Iwaki)... and better service factor...> Hoping I won't have to bother you too much more, Hank Sauer <Never a bother my friend. Thank you for helping me be more clear, complete. Bob Fenner> Re: Question on Water Pumps That had to be the fastest reply ever... I feel like I should be paying you for the wonderful service you provide. <You are my friend. With your intelligent, caring input> I already own one of your books, I think I need to buy more if you have them out! I am a believer in supporting those who support me. <A worthy attitude> I will use this pump as a return from my sump into a 90 gal tank, a little under five feet of head. The tank is FOWLR, I was aiming to increase turnover to around 7 times per hour... Is this overkill? <Hmm, no> As always, I appreciate your time, knowledge, and willingness to share both.  I feel like we should all be calling you Yoda LOL! <I am shaped somewhat like this fanciful character... and today feel about as old! Bob Fenner> Hank Sauer

Re: Question on Water Pumps If you don't mind, one last question down this line, and I'll let you enjoy your Sunday. I don't believe the turnover on the Eheim would be enough for my needs, based on our prior discussion, and with your comment on the heat of the Iwaki, I'm leaning towards the Velocity T3. Would this be a good choice for me?  <Yes, more actual flow> I calculate 12 gallons per minute at 5ft to be 700+ gallon per hour.... our about 8 turns per hour on my 90 gal tank... <About this, yes> After this one I'll "use the force" for the rest of the day! As ever, Thank you for your help and friendship, both are highly valued. Hank Sauer <And yours, Bob Fenner>


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