Terrible Advice Tuesdays: (T. A. Tues): Durso overflows are loud and can never be quiet.
The rest of the story: Every time I hear this piece of terrible advice, I want to dial one of my tank build clients and have them hold their phone up to their overflow because I know that their durso overflows are quiet.
The truth is that a durso overflow can be just as quiet as any of the more complicated “noise busting” overflow designs if you design and setup your durso correctly. (For those of you that have my No-Nonsense Guide To Setting Up A Saltwater Tank, Vol 1, see the Durso Overflow video for a full explanation)
One of the several important steps of a quiet durso design is the rate of water flowing through the overflow. Simply put, more flow through the overflow equals more noise. And the biggest factor for determining flow rate through the overflow is the flow rate of your return pump. A high-flow return pump invites more noise into your system and the overflow is one of the first places you’ll hear that noise. Keep in mind this fact is true for any overflow type. I’ve been around nearly all the overflow types and high water flow through a pipe means more noise every time.
When you are setting up your saltwater tank, or if you already have your tank setup and you have a noisy durso overflow, check your return pump rate first. The noise problem might not have anything to do with your overflow.
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