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Pond system in need of help

Discussion in 'New Aquaponics systems - DIY' started by TexaNAZ, Mar 19, 2017.

  1. TexaNAZ

    TexaNAZ New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2016
    Messages:
    5
    Country:
    United States
    State:
    Arizona
    City:
    Phoenix
    1200 gallon pond running since June 2016 in Phoenix Arizona USA (gets hot!). 32 sq ft F&D GBs (2) with hydroton, 70 sq ft F&D GBs (4) with river and lava rock, 30 sq ft flooded GB river rock (stand pipe only which is good for algae and duckweed). Running 2866 GPH pump for 15 minutes per hour during daylight hours (was reduced in winter). Elevations at top of diagram below.

    Honeymoon has ending and solids are building up. Lost 21 tilapia to ich due to low temperature, low water level, pond was covered so not inspecting fish and while cleaning in response to ich outbreak found small decomposed fish. Ich has been resolved with temperature and salt (and lost fish).
    Notable issues:
    *Current filter consists of large plastic cage (3' X 2' X 2') covered in two layers of evaporative cooler matting sitting in pond
    * pump located inside filter cage
    * long pipe runs with small pipe (1 1/2")
    * plumbing is buried so syphons difficult or impossible
    * grow beds on west side of yard not connected
    * sumps and elevated drums not connected (just options).
    See layout below
    [​IMG]
    Seeking method to connect pond to filter and/or sumps at end of pond (perhaps a sump could be utilized for filter). Able to install pond bottom drain if necessary. Manifold leads to bottom of sumps. [​IMG]

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  2. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2016
    Messages:
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    Country:
    Australia
    State:
    Queensland
    City:
    Jimboomba
    Hi TexaNAS,
    I buried a plastic 44 gallon drum , it's the lowest point in my system any pond over flow runs into it . Inside is a submersible pump with a float switch . It fills and drains approx every hour or so . The pump empties the drum in around 40 seconds , a big pump saves power by draining the tank quickly. It lifts and returns the water back to the highest point in my system . It serves several purposes , aeration , circulation , filtration and being underground not only does it add to my water holding capacity its insulated by the soil its buried in. Deep water holds it temp very well so I'd try and keep that pond as full as practical . Grow beds exposed to baking direct sun work like giant water heaters. In the peak of summer shade cloth roofs over GB's are a saviour in climates like ours . A little solar pump used solely for the purpose of water circulation on the bottom of your pond would solve that debris accumulation issue for you and in my ponds I've found mechanical filtration a must have also or your GB's will clog.
    Cheers
    Hope that helps.
     
  3. TexaNAZ

    TexaNAZ New Member

    Joined:
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    Country:
    United States
    State:
    Arizona
    City:
    Phoenix
    Thank you!
    Is your pump on a timer or is the float switch activated at a certain level at which the pump turns on? Do you have an auto fill so the float switch will always turn on at some minimum frequency? This could solve a lot of problems (brilliant).
    Yes, the original intent of deep water sumps was for thermal protection.
    Is the buried drum utilized for filtration? I had thought i could put a stand pipe in one or more sumps enabling filtration in the sumps but just can't wrap my head around how to do it.
    I could also have a sump feed stand pipe in the pond surrounded with filter material. I'm sure someone has figured this out and I was hoping to find a simple solution.

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  4. Danscraft

    Danscraft VIP Supporter

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    398
    Country:
    Australia
    State:
    South East Victoria
    City:
    Frankston
    Just my thoughts from my smaller set up. I think the key is to avoid the sump tank as being the bottom sediment tank. I have sediment filter tanks set a step above ground level. They 300lt so I can isolate, empty and tip them over for easy blast cleaning.
    The sump tank is the lowest under ground level and its the cleanest tank. No bottom sediment.
    Only because the flushing of auto syphons are always flushing in and the run off the fish tanks as well. Its very turbulent basically I think that may be a key. All the matter doesn't settle in the sump it get distributed through all the other gathering mediums. Or discarded bottom settle muck as I do with my radial flow filter above ground level.
    2c.
    Dan
     
  5. Ringer

    Ringer Active Member

    Joined:
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    Country:
    Australia
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    If you use a pump like this in a drum sump , no sediment can accumulate they draw from the base. The switch's lead is length adjustable so it can be set to depth .
    A sump in essence is just a water holding vessel , I use a pre-filter on the inflow of the sump as well. Personally I like to keep different processes separate , an aquaponic systems sump to me is just a water tank used as a resovoiur to accommodate the requirements of a flood drain system.



    image.jpeg
    Cheers
    Hope that helps
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2017
  6. TexaNAZ

    TexaNAZ New Member

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    Country:
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    City:
    Phoenix
    Thanks Ringer that's practically the same pump as mine. I like separating the clean sump from the solid filter. I will have to figure out how to plumb a filter in at low elevation relative to pond. So it may be below ground but I could put a drain in the bottom of the filter to remove solids. I think it has to be buried because it needs to be large enough to filter sufficiently also low enough for gravity flow.
    So do you have an auto fill? Otherwise i suspect water frequency would be decreased until refill occurs. I love the idea though.

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    Ringer likes this.
  7. TexaNAZ

    TexaNAZ New Member

    Joined:
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    Country:
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    City:
    Phoenix
    Thanks Danscraft as well- your advice will be followed. I will have to be creative with my sump pre filter to allow gravity flow from pond to sump. I think that means bury a drum for radial flow filter and tap the bottom of the drum for a cleanout.

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