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FAQs about Skimmer Pump Selection/Replacement

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Related Articles: Skimmers by Steven Pro, Protein Skimmer Impressions By Steven Pro, Marine Filtration, Mechanical, Physical & Chemical, and FAQs

All life appreciates optimized, stable conditions

Impeller for EHEIM Skimmer Pump 1260       8/12/16
Hi Guys
Could anyone help me to locate an impeller for an EHEIM skimmer pump type 1260.
It is mounted on a Deltec Skimmer and has needles on the impeller (presumably to aerate the water)
Thank You
Peter Vichos
<Mmm; if your local fish store/s can/t order it for you, I'd contact Eheim directly. I see your email addy ends in .za
so I take it you're in South Africa. I'd next try ordering from Deltec in the UK: http://www.theaquariumsolution.com/contact-us
See their contact and Worldwide Partners link at top?
Or other dealer there: https://www.eheim.com/en_GB/home
Otherwise, Germany itself.
Bob Fenner, who lives in CA and would order from Marine Depot or Live Aquaria in the US>

Canister into Skimmer. Pumps for skimmers f'     3/3/16
Hi all!
<Hey Tim>
I was thinking of finding a canister filter, with a gph rating (at the head) that matches my MJ1200 pump's rate, and plumbing it into the intake of my Remora S.
<Mmm; this will not likely work... after the canister filter, there will be too low pressure, and decreasing as time, filter clean cycle goes by. What you want, need is a dedicated pump for your skimmer>
Can't see a reason why it wouldn't work. My skimmer needs water flowing at a certain rate, it shouldn't matter where it's being delivered from.
Am I missing anything, here?
<As stated. Won't work>
Thanks much,
<Part of the reason canister filters are useful is their low head and flow characteristics... You need pressure, and steady, for a foam fractionator.
Bob Fenner>

Quiet pump. No, really. For skimmer    3/3/16
Hi again!
<Yes; Tim>
My pump on my Remora S is louder inside my tank than I would like. I like to make it quiet for the gang.
It's functioning properly, and not overly loud, but I wonder, is there is a pump that is truly quiet?
Not quiet from the outside, or in the next room, or "better than my last
one" quiet. But, actually quiet.
I mean a low decibel rating that is quiet by actual standards measuring sound, not by the internet's arbitrary amalgamations of opinions based on anecdotal impressions.
Has the quietest pump been determined? If there's a contest, I want to buy the winner.
<Likely the Eheim line... there are some nominally as quiet, but more costly manufacturers. Oh, see WWM re "Pumps for skimmers" FAQs>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

AquaC EV-180 Skimmer…Input/Output Placement – 09/03/14
Hello Crew,
<<Hey Ed>>
I had a question regarding the placement of the skimmer output in relation to my trigger systems sump. Would it be best to have the input of the skimmer in the first compartment with the Mag 7 pump taking in the raw water from the display tank via overflow and then have the output of the skimmer going into the middle compartment where I will have my miracle mud and Chaetomorpha? Or should I house both intake and output of the skimmer in the first compartment?
<<The skimmer input pump should definitely be in the first compartment drawing raw tank water as you described…and away from your refugium critters. The output is a matter of efficiency/convenience here…were it me, I would just let it drain out to the first compartment as well>>
<<Happy to share… EricR>>

Sedra 3500 Alternative for Jeff and Rob's EuroReef skimmers...     11/7/12
I run a Euro-Reef RS80 which works well enough but I am tired of replacing the Sedra 3500 pumps. The impellers rust internally which causes them to crack and swell. They also leak current after a while which trips a GFCI.
<Aye... I told the Macare family that makes/made these MANY times I would NOT have switched to this line of pumps, but stayed w/ (the albeit more expensive to purchase) Eheim line>
Is there a suitable replacement available?
<Yes; quite a few>
Sicce, Tunze, and OceanRunner are a few of the possibilities but no one seems to know if any alternative pump will fit without major modifications.
Would a 6" NWB 150 Reef Octopus be a better way to go?
<Would be; but I'd go w/ the Eheim...>
Thanks for your help,
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Deltec MCE600, skimmer mod. q.  7/6/12
<Hello Rico>
May I ask if it is possible to change the AB pump inside Deltec MCE600 skimmer to Tunze Hydroformer silence to increase performance?
<The MCE600 is a pretty good skimmer out of the box.  If the Tunze Hydroformer could be adapted to the Deltec, I don't believe any improved performance would justify the cost.>
Would a model Eheim 1260 with needle wheel impeller "external-ize" the skimmer?
<I do not know this, but skimmers are generally designed around a given water flow.  The Eheim or Tunze may put out too much flow.>
Are there any mods available for MCE600 to improve performance?
<I'm not aware of any.>
Thank you.
<You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)>
Best Wishes,

Pump Selection For Remora Pro - 06/01/12
Good afternoon crew,
<<Good Morning Alicia>>
I am writing because I have a question I cannot find an answer to on the net.
I purchased a used Remora Pro HOB skimmer for my all-in-one 60 gallon flat-back hex tank. It came with a Mag 5 pump, which I had to squeeze through the acrylic overflow openings (breaking some of the teeth). After much tweaking and fussing with the pump in order for it to fit the skimmer's intake nozzle, I got it running, but the pump vibrates loudly.
<<Mmm…perhaps due for a new impellor>>
So I was wondering if it would be prudent to run it with a Rio 1100 pump instead.
<<One sure way to tell…>>
I know that these skimmers are supposed to run with a Mag 3 or a Rio 1400, but I have a new 1100 available, not a 1400.
<<Then I say…try it and see!>>
A quick look at the flow chart tells me that at 1 ft. head (actual distance from the pump to my skimmer), a 1100 pushes 352 gph, whereas a 1400 does 367 gph. Does the 15 gph difference actually make a difference?
<<It could…though these figures are likely “generous” at best anyway and will be affected in different ways by the varying conditions of the installation, age/condition of the pumps, et al>>
Can I run this skimmer with a Rio 1100 instead?
<<I think it’s worth a try…what have you to lose?>>
By the way, my tank is somewhat heavily stocked with various corals and fish, albeit small, however, I feed daily.
<<Install the pump and see how the skimmer performs. If not up to par, do contact Jason and Steve at Aqua-C (info@proteinskimmer.com ), the makers of the skimmer. I know these guys, and they will do their best to help you match a suitable pump to the skimmer and your system>>
Thank you in advance for your help!
<<Happy to share… EricR>>

Using needle wheel pump on venturi skimmer     4/28/14
Hi all the best to everyone. I was wondering if I could use a needle wheel pump on a venturi skimmer, would it increase efficiency?
<Could likely, and maybe... there is a bit of engineering/science that one can do; or just try it out>
 If I can then I have another question. The skimmer I have says it needs a 1200lph pump to run. However I can only get either a 1000lph needle wheel pump or a 2400lph one. Should I use the 1000lph one or get the 2400lph one and maybe throttle it back with a ball valve? My tank is 315litres in capacity.
<I'd likely go w/ the smaller... as "throttling down" such pumps is impractical; in other words, decreasing outflow pressure/volume results in a loss of mixed water/air bubbles... the very purpose of the needle wheel use>
Thanks for any help you can give.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner> 

conversion?  12/1/11
Hello there,
 Maybe you guys could help me of how to convert the RIO 14Hf water pump into a skimmer pump...I need to some how attach an air hose to the intake. Is that even possible?
<It is possible, but going to pretty much be a DIY project here.  Search the net for venturi intakes for skimmer pumps.  There are many DIYing these in the BB forums.  Though to get the best action doing this does take some tweaking with the skimmer vs. pump size and the impeller itself to get a good bubble quality.>
<Welcome, Scott V.  (yeah, Bob)><<Welcome back from Guatemala. B>>

Needle wheel vs. paddle impeller   8/9/11
Hi, I had a question about needle wheel impeller vs. paddlewheel impellers.
I have a used Rio 2100 and it came with a needle wheel impeller. The Rio 2100 is rated at 700gph. I hooked it up in my sump tank for my 55gallon corner saltwater aquarium. From the sump to the top of the tank is about 5 feet and I am hardly getting any flow from the returning water pipes into the tank. Does the needle wheel drop the GPH of the pump by a lot?
<Oh yes indeed... the needle wheel is intended for mixed air and water venturi use... NOT for water movement. Won't move nearly as much volume, nor pressure.>
Should I buy a new paddlewheel impeller, Or do I need a stronger pump?
<The former>
Orange County Cali
<Welcome. Bob Fenner, San Diego currently>

Foam Fractionator Turnover Rate 3/28/09
Good morning everyone:
<Hola Wilberth.>
Mr. Bob thanks for your quick answer on fish size.
<Scott V. with you, but a big welcome from Bob I am sure.>
I have another question I didn´t find the answer in posted ones.  I have a foam fractitioner I build myself, it´s 4 ft high (cup from another one) and 11" diameter, it is skimming really dark waste. I run it with 2-750 gals/hr pumps attached to the main body and the pump that connects it to the sump is a 2250 gals/hr.
The discharge hose is 1" but I feel it is moving water too slow, should this flow be fine or should I try a 4800 gl/hr
that I buy for another system, what is the ideal turnover rate for a foam fractionator?
<The opposite my friend...I would actually lessen the flow through the skimmer. The general rule is 1-2 times your tank
volume per hour, 700 gph in your case. Some flow less, some flow more through. But if you decrease the flow I think
you will see better skimmate production.>
I send you some pictures, by the way the tank is a 350 gals FOWLR.
Thank you so much for your time.
<Welcome, and nice job on the skimmer!>
Wilberth desde México
<From Cozumel, Quintana Roo, Mex. today.>

Beckett Skimmer Pumps 2/19/09 HI, my name is Manny, first of all I must say I love your forum, it is really helpful. <Hello Manny, thank you.> I've a quick question? I have a 5' tall dual Beckett skimmer I'm using a Resun 70 md pump it's not doing too good of a job. I was told to go with a Iwaki 100 pump $ 630.00 or do you think a PCX 150 or 100 pump would do the job? And what do you think of these pumps? PLEASE HELP!! <Well, you are not really gaining any flow with either of the PCX pumps, but you certainly are with the Iwaki 100 (though shop around, $630 is steep for this pump). Do also consider something like the Reeflo Uno for this application, these are much more energy efficient, keeps your power bill down! But, before you buy anything, I would chat with the skimmer manufacturer first, see what they recommend, what may be going on here.> Thanks Manny <Welcome, Scott V.>

Re: Beckett Skimmer Pumps 2/19/09 I got this skimmer from a local LFS for 250.00 here are a few pic I believe it is a homemade. <It does look like a home jobber.> Thank you Scott for the info. Manny <Well, looking at similarly manufactured models, you want a pump putting out 1500 gph or so. The Iwaki you mention does more, you can always throttle the pump back a bit. Otherwise do consider the Reeflo pump line, like the Uno or Hammerhead...these are very nice pumps.>


Elevated Skimmer. No, elevated higher than that! 1/4/08 Hi there, I am plumbing my Precision Marine Skimmer (venturi style) into my sump. I would like to sit the skimmer on a table next to my tank (which is about 28� above the bottom of the sump), as there is not enough room under the tank in the stand or in the sump. I will be using a Mag 9.5 and will have approx 2� of rise restricted by 1 - 90 elbow and two unions and a ¾ ball valve with all ¾ inch flexible PVC. <This is the recommended pump for this skimmer, but with the head height you will add I would step this up to the next larger Mag to ensure the skimmer operates properly.> The return from the skimmer is 1� PVC with a 1� gate valve. I know the gate valve will narrow the inside diameter some here. Can you advise me'¦ will this work? <It will, but for the trouble an insurance I would go ahead and step this up to 1.5" line after the valve. The 1" valve will flow more than the typical 1" gravity line due to the pressure from the water column inside the skimmer. Stepping up the size of the drain line will ensure this can keep up too.> I know there are issues with a skimmer being too low in relation to the water level'¦ but could not find anything on WWM with the skimmer sitting at an elevation comparable to this. <It does diminish the flow available from the pump, hence the recommendation above.> I am sure it is covered somewhere on the site. There is an awesome volume of info here. Thank all of you for that! This site is my primary resource tool for all things aquatic. Scott <Good the hear, happy to help! Scott V.>

Protein Skimmer, MTC HSA-250, pump sel., maint.   11/30/08 Hi, <Hello> I have an MTC HSA-250 Protein Skimmer and while it seems like a well made, I have more problems then success stories to accompany it. I guess the root of the problem is that the skimmer appears to need a powerful pump to push such a column of water up 2 feet. I have gone from Mag 9.5 to completely failing with a Quiet One 4000 and Quiet One 6000. I would swear that there is a clog but when I take the skimmer to a sink and fill it up the water seems to flow clearly right through all the water lines. So, the questions are what is a powerful and relatively small pump that I can through into my sump to feed the protein skimmer that is not bigger than the mag 9.5 which was not easy to maneuver in my sump. <Mmm, folks report success with the Sen 900: http://www.wonbrothers.com/product/pumps/gapumps.htm though it is rated only about 100 GPH more than the Mag 9.5 at two feet of head: http://www.marinedepot.com/ps_ViewItem.aspx?idProduct=DN1111&size=7%20(700%2 0gph)&child=DN1125&tab=1> And, how can you get to the plumbing on the base that is within the lower half of the unit to clean it and make sure it is clear? I do not see anything to do unless you have a small arm that can fit down the tube. Thanks, Howard <Agreed... you have to remove the unit, disassemble to clean thoroughly. Bob Fenner>

Euro-Reef Modified Eheim Pumps For Small ER Skimmers (Not Yet!) -- 06/17/08 Hi, <<Hello!>> I have a question about the Euro-Reef RS100. <<I am a huge fan of ER skimmers'¦I own a CS12=3 with ER-modded Eheim 1262 pumps, myself>> I called them up and was hoping I could switch out the Sedra pump for an Eheim. <<Hmmm'¦the RS100 uses a ER-modified Sedra 3500 pump'¦I believe the only ER-modified Eheim pump is the Eheim 1262'¦too much pump for RS100 skimmer>> Since this pump performs much better and is quieter. <<The Eheim pumps 'are' a much better pump than many'¦agreed>> I couldn't get anyone over there. <<Keep trying'¦ I have chatted with these fine folks on several occasions'¦they were likely busy and just couldn't get to the phone>> Is this a possibility? <<I'm skeptical (unless you can get a custom mod on a smaller Eheim model)'¦but you need to speak to the folks at Euro-Reef about it>> Can you recommend an Eheim pump for this size skimmer? <<Not with the required needle-wheel or pin-wheel mod currently offered by Euro-Reef and sized for their RS100 skimmer. You could try looking around the NET to see if anyone offers a smaller needle-wheel modified Eheim pump. H&S skimmers use such modified Eheim pumps'¦1260s I believe (and about $300 a pop)'¦but this is still probably too much pump for the ER RS100 skimmer. A needle-wheel modified Eheim 1250 is what you need to look for'¦good luck. Another option would be to replace the Sedra pump that comes with the skimmer with a needle-wheel modified Ocean Runner pump of comparable size. It will be a fraction of the cost of the Eheim (though I do like those Eheims!) and I find this brand of pump very quiet and reliable as well'¦though they are a bit bulky/large. Be aware, any pump you get that was not modified/designed/intended by Euro-Reef to be used with their skimmers will very probably require some modification/imagination to get it to 'mate-up' with the ER skimmer (and will probably also void any warranties)>> Thank you. <<Good luck with your 'hunt.' EricR>>

Re: Euro-Reef Modified Eheim Pumps For Small ER Skimmers (Not Yet!) -- 06/18/08 Hi Eric, <<Sal>> Thanks for the quick reply. <<Quite welcome>> Do you know if the Sedra pump is very loud? <<They're not 'too' bad'¦no more so than a Mag-Drive pump in my experience. The single Sedra-3500 that comes with the ER RS100 skimmer would not make much noise I would think'¦especially if you take steps to limit vibration by placing the pump and skimmer body on some sort of 'resilient' material like computer mouse pads, a piece of sealed-foam insulation, etc.>> One of the reasons I want an Eheim is because I've read they are very quiet. <<They are indeed'¦there just isn't one available with a needle-wheel sized for the RS100 skimmer>> I don't want to hear the skimmer going throughout my entire condo. <<Understandable>> Any help/ideas are greatly appreciated. <<Provide some vibration dampening under the skimmer/pump and I think you will be fine>> Peace Sent from my iPhone <<Regards, EricR (sent from my work computer'¦shhh!)>>

Skimmer Pump Choices 2/11/08 With a slew of choices out there I am confused. I am presently looking at the AquaC ev120 for my 125 gallon tank. <This is a good choice for this size tank.> Also looking to purchase a rio 2100 or a mag 5 to power the skimmer. Your thoughts. <I would choose the Mag over the Rio.> BTW, noise is a factor in selecting the pump. Your thoughts pls <You may also want to look at an Eheim or Oceanrunner pump of comparable flow; they tend to be much quieter and reliable. Have fun, Scott V.>

Replacement pump for skimmer 10/29/07 I currently have a Corallife Super Skimmer 125 and need to replace the needle pump. My LFS store has an Octopus Model 3000 Turbine Needle Wheel Pump. I was wondering if this would be too much water going through the skimmer. I am fairly new to skimmers and am not sure what pump I should get. Any other recommendations would be appreciated also. Thanks <<Todd: Usually, it is best to stick with the original pump the manufacturer calls for. If your LFS cannot get a replacement part, if you do a search, you will find replacement parts online. If you don't over feed, your tank can go without a skimmer while you are waiting for a replacement pump. Best of luck, Roy>>

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