How to Choose the Best Location for Your Wave Pumps
Next to aquarium lighting water flow and water movement in your aquarium is probably one of the most important elements you can depend on for a successful reef. Here are some tips on choosing the best location in your aquarium for your wave pumps.
Your corals depend on it for gas exchange, for maintaining pH, and just the overall health of the coral. And be sure to stick around because at the end of the video we're going to give you some additional tips that help make sure you're focusing on your beautiful corals and your fish and not on your wave pumps.
Almost all corals love water flow and virtually every reef hobbyist will tell you one of the key elements in a successful reef aquarium is providing them with optimal water flow. But it's important to know what flow mode and where you position your wave pumps, how that will affect your corals, and ensure that you won't damage them.
If you're keeping LPS corals or any invertebrate with long tentacles, you want to make sure that you're not positioning your wave pumps where they're providing direct water flow that's too strong and may damage their soft tissue and at the same time, you want to ensure that they're not positioned in a location where those long tentacles make it sucked up and damaged.
A better way to ensure your corals get strong indirect water flow is to utilize the glass panels of your aquarium and your aquascape to deflect water around the entire aquarium. Many large soft corals also rely on water flow to stay upright so positioning pumps in a location that provides them indirect pulsing water currents will keep them standing up and in their natural state.
If you have any corals in your aquarium with stinging sweep or tentacles such as a torch coral, you'll want to ensure you position your wave pumps in a location that provides them indirect water current and doesn't encourage their tentacles to sting other corals at night. SPS corals love water flow and they can handle a lot more direct strong current. If you're keeping a lot of SPS corals, place them in the middle to upwards portion of your aquarium where they not only will get more light. They'll also be getting more direct water flow.
When you aquascape your aquarium, ideally you want to leave adequate room for your corals to grow while also providing circulation throughout the entire aquarium. If your reef aquarium has a rock wall, leave enough space behind it for a strong water current. This will allow you to place your wave pumps in the back areas of the aquarium and use both the glass aquarium wall and your rock work to direct water current throughout the entire aquascape.
Try to avoid placing your wave pumps in a location where strong direct water currents are pointed directly at your rock work. This is the common area where most of your corals are going to grow and placing your pumps here can often bring more attention to your equipment and not what's inside your aquarium.
Another consideration you'll want to keep in mind is most aquariums will end up having an area where there's very little water flow and this is the area where your cleanup crew likes to hang out. Position your pumps to direct the water flow and make this area easily accessible for you. This will make cleaning and siphoning leftover food and debris easy.
Ideally you'll want to mount your wave pumps in the middle to upper portions of your aquarium and not too low where it may blow the substrate around in your tank. You'll also want to make sure you don't mount them too close to the water surface otherwise you may start sucking in air or creating waves too big for your aquarium.
Here are some additional tips to ensure your focus is on your beautiful corals and fish and not on your wave pumps. If your lights are mounted in a way that provides shadowing in certain areas like the top back corners of your tank, place your wave pumps here, it's going to bring a lot less attention to them.
If you have a black background on your tank don't be afraid to mount them on the back wall and swivel the pumps to change the directional water flow. The black color of the pumps will blend right in with the background.
If you have taller gorgonians and soft corals, anchor them in a position that may help hide the wave pumps. And one last tip, keep your pump cables organized. Nothing can be more distracting than seeing a hanging cable on the side of your aquarium.
Tuck them up and behind the back of the aquarium and keep things looking sleek. If you're using a pump pre-filter on your way pump, keep it clean. Nothing can be more of an eyesore than a dirty filter over your way pump.