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  1. #1
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Air lift returns

    Who is the best person to be talking to about air lift returns . Am starting to collect bits for next year bottom drain, valves etc . And thinking about an air lift as a return as a good way to get added oxygen in the water and to bring the running costs down . My pump at the moment is 180 watts ! . So thinking airlift main bd and get a vario 10000 to use on a skimmer/shower . But other than knowing what they are that's about it for me any help ??


    Johnathan

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    Senior Member Rank = Hassai samp09's Avatar
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    I would be interested to know as well if it brings my running costs down! have a 20k vario running about 120 watts permanently! 10k on my skimmer like which is usually around 70

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    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Twhitenosugar's Avatar
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    I use an air lift as the main circulating pump on my pond. They are awesome.

    Easy to make, cheap to run (40watt air pump should shift over 20k litres on an ideal set up), shift loads of water, act as a foam fractionator, aerate the water.

    Only real downside is it can't really lift water, so only works on a gravity set up. Plus it needs to be fairly deep (1.5-1.7m deep) to ensure it works effectively.

    Happy to help out. What info do you want?

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    Last edited by Twhitenosugar; 05-12-2020 at 01:00 AM.
    12,500L fibreglassed raised pond with window

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  6. #4
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twhitenosugar View Post
    I use an air lift as the main circulating pump on my pond. They are awesome.

    Easy to make, cheap to run (40watt air pump should shift over 20k litres on an ideal set up), shift loads of water, act as a foam fractionator, aerate the water.

    Only real downside is it can't really lift water, so only works on a gravity set up. Plus it needs to be fairly deep (1.5-1.7m deep) to ensure it works effectively.

    Happy to help out. What info do you want?

    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    Have you any pictures of your set up . . Am literally walking in to this one blind mate . I have a multibay am going to convert to gravity remove first 2 bays media and replace with to different grades of seive then static k1 then fluid k1 . If I leave a baffle in I have a last bay to use for air lift or extra k1 and drop a 45 gal drum in ground . Dont think ill get the full 1.5 but some where near . As for piping what do I need 110mm soil or is that to big a bore and just run 2inch returns? . Dose airlift still push though a tmc uv or would i have to go submersible
    Johnathan

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  8. #5
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Twhitenosugar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajm View Post
    Have you any pictures of your set up . . Am literally walking in to this one blind mate . I have a multibay am going to convert to gravity remove first 2 bays media and replace with to different grades of seive then static k1 then fluid k1 . If I leave a baffle in I have a last bay to use for air lift or extra k1 and drop a 45 gal drum in ground . Dont think ill get the full 1.5 but some where near . As for piping what do I need 110mm soil or is that to big a bore and just run 2inch returns? . Dose airlift still push though a tmc uv or would i have to go submersible
    Yep ill try and dig photos out. I think i put a very detailed thread up about how i built mine, so might be worth searching for that.

    You can build it out of 110mm pipe or 2" pipe. 110mm will shift loads more water but 2" will still work effectively.

    Ideally you need your return just under the water in the pond. If that's not feasible and the return has to be above the waterline, then the return needs to be as low down to the waterline as is possible.

    It won't work before a uv. The uv would get too much air in it. So an amalgam is probably the way forward, installed somewhere before the airlift. I have an amalgam that I dropped into the dirty side of my drum.

    An airlift might work if submerged in a vessel like a multibay. But the lack of depth will reduce the flow. Best way forward is to build an airlift that would fit in the multibay then test it out in the pond to see how much flow you get. After all, if you don't get quite enough flow, you could just have 2 or more to get the desired flow.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    12,500L fibreglassed raised pond with window

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  10. #6
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twhitenosugar View Post
    Yep ill try and dig photos out. I think i put a very detailed thread up about how i built mine, so might be worth searching for that.

    You can build it out of 110mm pipe or 2" pipe. 110mm will shift loads more water but 2" will still work effectively.

    Ideally you need your return just under the water in the pond. If that's not feasible and the return has to be above the waterline, then the return needs to be as low down to the waterline as is possible.

    It won't work before a uv. The uv would get too much air in it. So an amalgam is probably the way forward, installed somewhere before the airlift. I have an amalgam that I dropped into the dirty side of my drum.

    An airlift might work if submerged in a vessel like a multibay. But the lack of depth will reduce the flow. Best way forward is to build an airlift that would fit in the multibay then test it out in the pond to see how much flow you get. After all, if you don't get quite enough flow, you could just have 2 or more to get the desired flow.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    That's great thanks mate . I was hoping you'd say below water line tbf so thats ideal ill have a root around for that thread aswell . Birthday wish list is going to be size then with a new uv lol
    Johnathan

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  12. #7
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Twhitenosugar's Avatar
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    Well here is an air lift. All push fit waste bits from toolstation.

    There is only one T fitting at the top, all this does is allow air to escape. You really need 2 t fittings to ensure all air escapes. This ensures no air belches out of your return.

    The only real challenge is how to pump air to the bottom of it. I drilled loads of holes in the pipe and created an air chamber around the pipe and attached the air chamber to an air line.

    An easier way to do it is simply run an airline with a big air stone on down to the bottom of the air lift. The airline can run up the inside of the pipe and come out the first vent at the top. Simples.



    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    12,500L fibreglassed raised pond with window

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  14. #8
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Twhitenosugar's Avatar
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    Here's a view of the back of the pond.

    So I put a 4" tpr just below the waterline. Then have a ball valve in case I need to isolate filters etc.

    Then there is a tall narrow plastic water tank, most of which is below ground, out of sight. Think I got it from tanksdirect.

    That's 2m deep. That houses my air lift. So the tank has 2 x 110mm pipes going into it from my bio tank and one 110mm outlet. I've attached the airlift to this outlet inside the tank.

    I just drilled out holes and attached 110mm radial tank connectors, for the inlets and outlets on the tank.



    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    12,500L fibreglassed raised pond with window

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  16. #9
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Twhitenosugar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajm View Post
    That's great thanks mate . I was hoping you'd say below water line tbf so thats ideal ill have a root around for that thread aswell . Birthday wish list is going to be size then with a new uv lol
    Yeah. Wont be much of a birthday if you only ask for drainage pipes for your birthday lol.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    12,500L fibreglassed raised pond with window

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