Canister filter with built in heater, co2 reactor - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 04:07 AM Thread Starter
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Canister filter with built in heater, co2 reactor

A couple months ago my mom entered me into a science fair. I immediately thought of aquariums for my project. I had been toying with the idea of making an all in one filter that would include a filter, a heater, and a co2 reactor.

This was my first version.

After not being able to find large and cheap enough pvc I scraped the idea and came up with this.

We built it… and it failed miserably.

I couldn’t prime it because I didn’t have proper double taps. And then the heater leaked. No not from around the heater but from the heater itself. The knob wasn’t water tight. We tried everything and it wouldn’t work. I didn’t exactly win the science fair with that

Now that it is summer I still want to make this idea work. After seeing iamjohnny75’s all in one filter I got a new idea. I realized that I could buy a used/broken Fluval and drill a hole in the side for the heater and co2. This time I would buy Jager heater so it wouldn’t leak. The media could act as a co2 reactor. If the pump doesn’t work I can use the Hydor inline pump I have laying around.

Sorry for the poor quality, I put it together quickly

So do you think this could work?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 05:13 AM
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I would make sure the heater has an automatic shut off for when it gets too hot. And, can you find a short enough heater to fit in the filter case horizontally?

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 04:32 PM
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There are some things that you may want to think about that will improve the odds.

The less difference between the canister and the tank water level, the lower the water pressure will be on any seals like around the heater. Sealing the unit may be one of the bigger problems as it is difficult to get a good seal on plastic when using silicone. It can be done but it sometimes requires some type of mechanical like a bulkhead to help the silicone. For sealing, flat surfaces are easier than curved such as round canisters. If a large amount of heat is not needed, I might consider one of the small heaters without adjustments which are made to be fully submerged. That would only reguire sealing around the cord rather than the heater body.

Congrats on the project and I hope it is a success but either way you will know more when you are done and that is good. Most of us fell down a few times before we learned to walk.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-18-2012, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
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Hoppy- yes I have found plenty of 50w heaters that are 9 inches or less, which would fit on the shortest side of a Fluval 105.

PlantedRich- I was thinking about heaters like that, but specifically the Finnex 50w Heater with Electronic Controller so that I could still control the temp. We would have to cut the cord to fit it through and then re-wire it, but that wouldn't be difficult.

Oh and I wanted to buy a Fluval or something similar so the sides are flat unlike Eheims.

(This isn't the exact model I want, but similar)

Do you guys see any problems with using the whole filter as a co2 reactor? I know it may cause some little hiccups by having the gas form bubbles inside.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-19-2012, 04:12 AM
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A problem that springs to mind is CO2 possibly being an inhibitor of the bacterial cultures in the filter. I don't think it would be a deal breaker, but it might reduce the effectiveness of the biofiltration...?
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