Marine aquariums are one of the harshest environments for submersible pumps. Not only are they submerged in salt water 24/7, their constantly exposed to fish food, algae, and other debris in the tank. In coral reef aquariums with live corals, aquarists often dose with calcium and other chemicals to increase alkalinity levels, which can precipitate and cover the pump and/or its components.
As calcium precipitates build up and cover the components, especially the magnetic impeller, the restriction causes the pump to work harder, decrease in overall flow rate, and can eventually lock up. Algae, especially calcareous/coralline algae, can also cover the outside of the pump and tremendously lower the flow rate.
The following video shows you how to disassemble the eFlux wave pump for cleaning and reassembly for installation. One important tip: Precipitates and coralline algae can often be difficult to remove, even with freshwater. Using a more acidic cleaning solution, such as a mixture of vinegar and freshwater, will break down mineral deposits and make it easier for cleaning. Soaking your pumps in a bowl of freshwater and distilled vinegar for an hour will make them much easier to clean.
Keeping your wave pump clean of algae and precipitates should be a task on every aquarists maintenance list. We recommend cleaning them once every 4-6 months. A well maintained wave pump should provide strong water flow and keep your fish and corals healthy and happy for many years.
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