This is Part #15 in a series of blog posts about my 225 gallon peninsula tank build.
Peninsula reef tanks can present challenges when it comes to providing sufficient circulation for corals, especially SPS. It can be unsightly to have pumps on a viewing panel so many folks place them on the end panel.
With my six foot long tank I have to push a lot of water so my plan was to really beef up circulation. I started with four Ecotech MP40’s. Each pump can push 5,000 GPH of water. I put two near the bottom of the tank and the other two near the top. They were placed 3-4” from the corners of the tank.
Experimenting With Different Modes
I tried various modes, starting with the Short Pulse mode. Over the years I have always used this mode on my Ecotech pumps since it creates a nice surge. But the Short Pulse mode could not deliver the amount of flow I was seeking across the six foot long tank.
I also tried the Gyre and Reef Crest modes but again they did not move enough water. To solve the problem I decided to swap out the two MP40’s near the top with two Ecotech MP60’s. Each pump is rated for 9,000 GPH.
And the Winner Is?
I played around a lot with the different modes and settled on the Gyre mode. All four pumps were set at 100% for this mode.
I felt the Gyre mode pushed the most water and I really liked the clockwise and counterclockwise flow patterns. I thought it would be my best bet to keep detritus suspended and deliver nutrients to my corals.
Will I need to break down and add some pumps at the other end of the tank when my corals start growing? I really want to avoid this but it might be possible to hide the power cords with some cord covers on the top of my stand.
One final thing to note about circulation are my two Red Dragon 100W return pumps. Each pump is rated for 2,400 GPH.
They are set to only 50 watts since a higher speed would drop the water level in the sump too low. However, 50 watts per pump still adds a lot of additional flow to the tank.
If you would like some help with a new tank build, including help designing a custom aquarium, or help re-configuring your current setup then you can visit this page for more information. And if you are looking to add some equipment, I do sell GHL, Pax Bellum, Reef Octopus Calcium and Kalk Reactors and Royal Exclusiv products, including Dreamboxes, which is the equipment I use and recommend. I also sell Reef Brite metal halide and LED fixtures as well as Maxspect & IceCap Gyres.
As for additional insights and information, please explore my many other reef tank and SPS related articles as well as my YouTube channel. For an even deeper dive into reef tank care you can check out my Reef Keeping Master Class. This online course is an immersive and one of a kind educational tool designed to help reef aquarium hobbyists build and maintain a beautiful SPS reef tank. The course is a series of video presentations with some supplemental video from my YouTube channel. There are also quizzes to help students retain and understand the information presented in the course.
Need some frags…..I can help with that as well 🙂 Please visit my SPS Frag store to see what is available.