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Laphroaig

Pump Problems - help required

I’ve used the IWS flood & drain system for several years and it’s all worked perfectly but sadly over the past few months I’ve encountered a serious problem with the pump that is supposed to move water from the reservoir to the pots.  It rattles but doesn’t actually move any water, I’ve tried everything I can think of, greasing it with Vaseline, tilting the inlet upwards (although as it’s under almost a meter of water an airlock is unlikely to be the cause), hitting it with a hammer and lots of swearing.  I’m on my third replacement pump in as many months and needless to say at £50 a pop for what’s effectively a £20 pump with a fancy connector I’m getting mightily pissed off with the whole debacle.  Does anyone have any suggestions/advice before I go postal?

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Yes absolutely.  The main service item in a pump is the impeller.  These will become ineffective over time and every pump I've owned can be disassembled to replace the impeller.  It's also important that the impeller chamber is kept clean so the impeller can rotate freely.

Look at the pump.  It should have two distinct halves or perhaps a removable plate to access the impeller and impeller chamber.

What you are looking for is a magnetic cylinder with a central stem to which the impeller blades are fixed.

I'd almost guarantee it's a worn or faulty impeller.

I'll do my best to get a pic for you bud.

 

Impellers should be cheap and available for replacement.  Otherwise I'd be looking at replacing it with a quality aquarium powerhead.   It's the same thing essentially just cheaper as the cannabis industry is an arseburger.

;)

 

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large.rps20190428_141804_714.jpglarge.rps20190428_141706_960.jpglarge.rps20190428_141608_150.jpg

Top pic - impeller removed from chamber.

middle pic - impeller in chamber.

Bottom pic - impeller cover plate 

 

Good luck bud.

Just stripped this pump to show you.

;)

 

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Posted (edited)

If you're going through a pump a month, you're either using a pump to small for the job or you're using shit pumps. What make and model is the pump, do you know  the max head height? 

Edited by Saddam
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Thank you for the speedy response.  The pump in question is a Maxijet 1000 and I’ve now got three of the damn things all of which I’ve cleaned and tried repeatedly, I’ve even swapped out the impellers but nothing seems to work.  All I can think of now is replacing it with something like the Hailea HX4500 which I’ve used on a couple of DIY projects and found to be flawless.  I’m concerned that this bigger pump will most probably fry the electrics in the “brain bucket” or controller so I’ll need to use a separate relay triggered by the brain bucket output to operate it.

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Posted (edited)

10 minutes ago, Saddam said:

If you're going through a pump a month, you're either using a pump to small for the job or you're using shit pumps. What make and model is the pump, do you know  the max head height? 

I have a strong feeling that both your scenarios are true in this instance.  They are Maxijet MJ1000 / 1200 with a max head of 1.2m.

Edited by Laphroaig

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, Laphroaig said:

They are Maxijet MJ1000 / 1200 with a max head of 1.2m.

 

Your pump's underrated, if you put a pump with a max head height of 1m (for example) at the bottom of a 1m res, the flow will be zero. Your pump is basically working at max capacity 24/7  just to push the water to the top of the tank, resulting in premature  pump  failure. 

You can either mount that pump higher up in the res, or go for a more powerful pump. I'd opt for the latter, maybe a pump with 4m head height and use a valve to adjust the flow.  If you want decent, cheap pumps then search all pond solutions, the Red line, Devil? Red something? Anyway, they're cracking pumps for the money.  

 

Edited to add - Just looked on APS and it looks like they've discontinued the smaller Red Devils and now only stock the larger, vari-speed models,  at £80+ they're a bit pricey but fucking bombproof in my experience. 

 

 

 

Edited by Saddam
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The pumps are undoubtedly the weak link in my system and the Hailea HX4500 despite being more bulky are less than £20 each and pretty bullet proof in my experience.  I’m overdue sorting something better out.   I need to design something to manage the mixing and aeration of the res as well as managing the float switch for the top up tank and I was toying with the idea of a dosing system to regulate pH too.  Looks like a new DIY project is on the cards! 

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Posted (edited)

hailea hx series pumps are pretty bulletproof, I reckon your maxijet is too small, unless its pushing less than half a meter head.

id use a hx 8830 or 8840 myself, they would easily cope.

 

Edited by badbillybob
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Just out of interest, have you changed anything recently in your system?

 

How Long did your pumps last previously?

 

Or am I barking up the wrong plant?

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