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shaft drive vs mag

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Apr 5, 2001
I'm looking for input from anyone with experience with, or at least exposure to, both shaft and mag drive pumps. I know that the mag drives are supposed to be more noisy but in reading through the posts, it doesn't seem to be that much of a factor. For instance, Ed posted that in using the Eheim 1046 "In use it was the quietest pump I have used yet - almost silent. (4/22/00)"

I suffer w/migraines so the db level is an important issue for me to consider . . . Any experience and/or input for consideration will be appreciated.
I used to work at a pet store (in the aquarium dep) and I know of basically every pump that is made for aquariums. Eheim pumps are very very quiet, bascially you cant tell if it is on without touching it where you feel a slight vibration, and it has very low power consumption. The mag pump is a little more rugged and built more solidly, and it does take up more power. Concerning the noise, if you put something like a mousepad under it, it will not bother you at all. The only way I could see a mag pump making an annoying amount of noise is if the impellor was screwed up (but that would only be if you broke it) or if it was vibrating against something, and if you put it on a mousepad or even just put it down and make sure it isn't vibrating, it wont make a lot of noise. It will make a slight amount of noise so that you could tell it was on from a foot away, but if you have any fans they probably make more noise than the mag will.

If your pump is submerged it doesn't matter that much which type of pump you use. In this case I would go for the one that produces the least amount of heat, the idea is to cool the water not introduce another heat source.

I use only inline pumps and for this a mag drive is best. I don't want to have to worry about a shaft seal developing a leak and trashing my system.