No bubbles - hectic noise!!!?

Discussion in 'Protein Skimmers, Mechanical Filtration' started by Lowflyer, 4 Feb 2009.

  1. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer

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    Hey guys, I just got my skimmer running, but the RIO pump on it is making a hectic noise and is not sucking bubbles at all. I have connected the airline tubing to the inlet pipe so the pinwheel impellor can chop the bubbles up, but no air is being sucked in at all, what could be the problem. The pump is pumping water through the skimmer nicely and I can control the height of the water quite nicely, but no luck with bubbles, and the pump is making a heck of a noise, what could be wrong?

    HELP!!!
     
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  3. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    Hi Luke - please post some pics? Of the pump, how it is connected, and what the skimmer looks like inside with the pump running? Perhaps the venturi on the pump is blocked? Does it HAVE a venturi air valve?
     
  4. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    I can't post pics right now Jacques as I have disconnected it and lights out, mom is about to fall asleep and the thing makes a hectic noise. Is a venturi the place where the airtubing fits onto the pipe that sucks water through?
     
  5. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    Is this a brand new pump? if not the venturi could be blocked - they usually do over time.
     
  6. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    It's an old pump that someone gave to me, I'm not quite sure what the venturi is though
     
  7. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    It's the bit where you put the air pipe on, get a cocktail stick and poke around in the inlet, or run some R/O down the air pipe and it should shift.
     
  8. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    Ok, well I cleaned all the pipes out this afternoon already to make sure that nothing would go wrong, and everything is clear, if I blow on the pipe slightly it produces bubbles, but then when I stop, it suck air for a second or two then stops and the water inside the air tube rises to the water level of the sump.
     
  9. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    Is your airline split anywhere? seems there is an air loss somewhere, if not then the impellor isn't drawing the air in.
     
  10. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    airline is clear of slits, so do you think that the pump is insufficient or just needs a new impellor?
     
  11. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    You would need to look at the impellor, does it look worn? damaged etc if not then is it the correct pump on the skimmer?
     
  12. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    Is the pump pumping water?
     
  13. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    The pump is pumping water perfectly, I can set it to make the skimmer overflow if I want to, it's quite strong considering the skimmer is external with the pump in the sump. And the pump is a skimmer pump, but not from a weipro, it's a macro aqua skimmer pump.
     
  14. Mike

    Mike Retired Moderator

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    Beats the hell out of me then, is the airline connected properly?
     
  15. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    I was given an article on what a venturi is, and it seems that I need to make a small opening for the inlet of the pump with the air inlet on it coz the water rushes through at a higher speed resulting in air being sucked in more easily.
     
  16. JD167

    JD167

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    I had a similar problem with my skimmer. No air being sucked in, but when I blew down the air pipe it went through. Turned out to be the air pipe having salt residue where it connects to the pump. Just take a toothpick or something, disconnect the airpipe and poke inside. Do the same on the pump side where the pipe connects.
     
  17. Shaun

    Shaun Retired Moderator

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    This is something one should do on a regularly basis.
     
  18. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    Ok guys, I found that I had to lift the pump up almost out of the water to get it sucking air, and it doesn't suck much, gonna maybe try a wooden airstone with airpump to see if that will make a difference. Might use a different pump at that as well, coz this one is noisy:

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Oupa Piet

    Oupa Piet

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    Sal n gewone airstone in die tank nie ook soos n skimmer werk nie?
     
  20. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    Oupa Piet, an airstone in the tank will not work as effectively, the reason I say this is, firstly, because the bubbles from an airstone are not small enough for them to be effective and secondly, the closed cylinder that the skimmer has provides an ideal environment for the bubbles to have more contact time with the water so that it can extract the nutrients that it is designed to remove. A protein skimmer works like the waves in the see, bubbles extract the nutrients, this is the dirty foam that you would occasionally see on the beach. Hope this helps.
     
  21. Lowflyer

    Lowflyer Thread Starter

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    Guys, I have done a few mods to my weipro SA-2014 skimmer and turned it into a SA-2011. Here are some pics:

    Before
    [​IMG]

    After
    [​IMG]

    Still think I need a new pump, but this is much better than before.
     
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