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  1. #1

    Question Aerator vs. Reversible pumps?

    Hey everyone, I got a 2000 mobius V at a dealership and want to add ballast. We are adding a 3 bag system, but one thing we haven't decided on yet is aerator or reversible pumps. The 3 reversible pumps are $220 a pop, whereas an aerator pump (the 800 GPH not the 1200) is only $30. The dealership is more familiar with and recommends the reversible pump. I have a friend who has used both, and recommends the aerator pumps because they are easier to winterize, you can't break them running them dry, and replacing them is only $30. The downside is you have to run more plumbing because they require two pumps vs. only one.

    I'm a little hesitant to go with the aerator especially if the dealer isn't used to installing that kind of system, they also made the comment that the aerator style is an older style of ballast. On the other hand I don't want to get something that is going to cost me more money in the future - I'd like to be able to winterize the boat myself and I'm not that mechanically inclined (the whole reason why I'm not installing the ballast).

    I've been talking privately to a few people on the forums, but would appreciate if anyone else has an opinion.

    Thanks everyone!
    2000 Mobius V

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    The reversible pumps are more efficient and with consume impellars over time. Most mfgs have gone to them so i assume they are better long term, even at the extra cost.

    I did the whole aerators pumps when i installed a gi to giv system. Did not have the stones to cut three extra holes in the bottom of the boat. So i went the easier cheaper route.

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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    What are your goals for your system and do you have a fixed budget to stay under? I'm in the aerator camp but I had pretty specific goals in mind, didn't want to spend a fortune, wanted minimal maintenance, and was a DIY'er. Cutting holes in the boat really isn't that bad. Okay, the FIRST one is a bit of a nail biter. Pretty easy after that.

    You'll probably find 6 of one opinion, half a dozen of the other on here. Tough call. I believe it was 08 LSV who went the aerator pump route at first, then just recently switched over to reversibles. Or maybe you've hit him up already or checked out his wicked write up on that project?
    Old enough to know better, young enough to do it anyway.

    2001 MobiusV

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by bergermaister View Post
    What are your goals for your system and do you have a fixed budget to stay under? I'm in the aerator camp but I had pretty specific goals in mind, didn't want to spend a fortune, wanted minimal maintenance, and was a DIY'er. Cutting holes in the boat really isn't that bad. Okay, the FIRST one is a bit of a nail biter. Pretty easy after that.

    You'll probably find 6 of one opinion, half a dozen of the other on here. Tough call. I believe it was 08 LSV who went the aerator pump route at first, then just recently switched over to reversibles. Or maybe you've hit him up already or checked out his wicked write up on that project?
    We want a system that we can maintain ourselves and not worry about it (like if my forgetful dad forgets to turn off the pump it is a $200 mistake!)
    Primarily use will be wakeboarding, and possibly try some surfing... but we are OK with adding some ballast on the seats for surfing. Surfing is not big for us at this time. We would need a better prop and some other things anyway.... really we just want to get a decent starter ballast package. We do have a fixed budget specific for the ballast, and with the reversible pumps we were just a bit under it, still waiting for an estimate for the aerators. Next summer will be our first full season actually owning a boat like this, so we are trying to keep things small for now, but ballast and adding a tower are a must for this year.

    Edited:
    Also for skill level, my bro can now do wake to wake this year (he's got more practice on another boat with ballast), and I have yet to really get much air, so definitely novice but my bro will need the ballast next season for sure.
    Last edited by bret; 10-09-2011 at 11:45 PM.
    2000 Mobius V

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Carlton Oregon
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    Honestly i think the Areator will be a better wat to go with a growing family and several teens involved. I say this because time on a boat goes by fast as it is. The time difference it takes to fill ballast with a Areator pump vs a reversable isnt going to matter. My experience is when you get 4 or 5 people on a boat things get distracting and its easy to gotget you have pumps running while filling and draining. Leave the reversable on and you burn out the impellor, replacable on the spot if you carry extras. Also reversables take a lot of power to run so you need at least 2 batteries and the boat should be running at idle so you dont run the batteries down. They take aps 25amsp of power if i am not mistaken.

    Also when it comes to draining you do need more pumps but even then cost is minimal compared to a reversable, drain lines you technically only need 1 drain line for a 3 bag set up in the areator pumps, you can plumb them all to drain out 1 location even though most people make a drain location for each pump.

    I have delt with troubleshooting and repair of one of Wake Makers biggest and badest ballast instals the Wake 9 boat. It takes a bit of understanding how the system works and where to look for problems and in my mind if you cant fix most propblem on a boat in the water then you better have someone on board who can.

    Areator pumps are known as robust and dependable pumps, they only draw 2.5amps and pump nearly the same amount of water.

    My best for your situation is go Areator and then you wont have to worrry about it.

    For myself i actually am on the fence as im aboutt o redo my factory setup and i currently use Areator but have been leaning towards Reversable but i can fix and repair almost anything on my boat myself.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    if you go reversible and add the timers I would say thats a good choice if your budget is large. With the timers you really have nothing to worry about. Pumps are self priming.. The aerators are not self priming so you really need to pay attention to your install. if not properly done you can get air locks in the lines and they can cause headaches. If you have a tight budget go with aerators, big budget go with reversibles and the timers.......

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Frist off $220 is a lot of scratch for a reversable pump. Check here for a better pump at $165 http://www.wakemakers.com/johnson-ul...last-pump.html.
    Aerator are good pumps but there are also a lot of headaches that come with them. Priming them can be problematic, you need vented loops, you need 2 pumps for each bag, they don't empty the bags completely, space for all the pumps below the waterline can be hard to come by. That said, they are fast and cheap.
    If you add up 2 pumps, and a vented loop at each bag you're looking at $80 for the for an 800gpm system, and $127 for the 1200gpm system. When you start looking at the price... really for a litlle extra cash, you would be better off going with the reversable pumps. They are great pumps, they self prime and can be mounted any where. I was talking to a WakeMakers rep and he was saying they see a little over a 100lbs per minute on the reversable pumps. Thats pretty decent for that style pump. I'll be switching mine over this winter.

    Just my .02 but from what I've found the reversables are the way to go.


    PWI as usual...

  8. #8

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    Could someone explain the priming issue? How do you prime an aerator pump?
    2000 Mobius V

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    aerator pumps will not remove air from the lines or bags. so you need to remove any air in the lines. you can do this by mounting them as close to the hull as possible for fill and as close to the bag as possible for empty. Reversible pumps will move some air and if you put check valves on your overflow line they will completely empty your bags...

  10. #10

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    Thank you everyone for the information! I will let you all know what we end up going with, just waiting on the aerator estimate.
    2000 Mobius V

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