Carbon Filter necessary?
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:06 AM   #1
flipside25
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Carbon Filter necessary?


Hey guys just a quick question.

Im about to buy some filter products for my AC 30 and my AC 70, and I was wondering if I really need to buy the cabon packs. My tanks have been up and running for over a year, and im pretty sure there is enough bacteria to help with the filtering.

Can I just use a sponge, more Bio media, and then filterfloss maybe?

O and what to know your guys opinions on what kind of combo works for you too.
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:17 AM   #2
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No. Carbon removes organic compounds from the water such as medication and tannins, but if left in too long can become saturated and begin leeching those substances out again. If you have a well-established bio filter, you don't need carbon unless you want to remove medications. I use it for that purpose and run it for a week or two, then remove it and throw it out.
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:48 AM   #3
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Activated carbon does not leach stuff back to the water.

I keep some on hand in case of emergency, but do not use it fill time.

I use media in this order, following the path of the water:
In the tank, coarse sponge over the intake.
In the HOB filters:
Aquaclear sponge
Blue and white bonded media (Rite Size is one brand name)
Chemical media. (Varies: soft water tanks get peat moss, hard water tanks get coral sand)
Quilt batting = polyester floss.
Bio media, in a mesh bag.
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:14 AM   #4
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Default Carbon Medium

Quote:
Originally Posted by flipside25 View Post
Hey guys just a quick question.

Im about to buy some filter products for my AC 30 and my AC 70, and I was wondering if I really need to buy the cabon packs. My tanks have been up and running for over a year, and im pretty sure there is enough bacteria to help with the filtering.

Can I just use a sponge, more Bio media, and then filterfloss maybe?

O and what to know your guys opinions on what kind of combo works for you too.
Hello flip...

Save your money. If you follow a good water change routine, you don't need to use carbon (chemical) medium. The frequent water changes will do a lot more to keep the tank water clean and the chemistry stable than carbon.

I change out half the tank water every week and just use a poly fiber and the biomax bag in my Hagen filters.

Just a thought.

B
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:32 AM   #5
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I do about 15 - 25% water changes every week, im pretty good with that. Could I just use the sponge, and double up on the bio media?
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:41 AM   #6
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The ceramic "macaronis" have enough open space in them to not interfere with the water flow through the filter, so I think they would be fine. You should have them in a bag so lifting them out to clean the sponge wouldn't be that problematic. A slowish flow rate through the filter helps the bacteria do their job - more water flow, less contact time, less flow, more contact time with the filter media.

I don't use my filter for anything except water flow around the tank and mechanical filtration - I have one sponge which I clean in tap water every week, and that's it! I prefer to keep my bacteria in the tank. Most people don't do this, though.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:01 AM   #7
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in my aquaclears 2 50s I use sponges and fluval bio rings
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:29 PM   #8
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Default No Carbon

I have a fairly new tank with two HOB's on it both came with carbon packs. I have switch out the carbon for more bio media and things seem to be fine. The cool thing is I have the Fluval C4 power filters and the come with a nifty little media basket so I didn't need to put the bio media in a bag....
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:58 PM   #9
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I never use carbon in any of my tanks unless I am trying to remove meds. The carbon takes nutrients out of the water that your plants use. So if you have live plants carbon is not suggested. I have 3 aquaclears and what I do is I put the AC spong in then I just double up on biomedia. The more biomedia the better, you can also sandwich other things between the biomedia and the sponge. For instance I keep coprisurb I think its spelled in my shrimp tank to keep the copper out since it poisons shrimp.

Then I use purigen to replace carbon in all of my tanks. You don't need it, I just use it to polish the water and make it clearer. Purigen works like carbon in the way it cleans the water but it does not remove the nutrients, its like the planted tank version of carbon. It is a little pricey though, what I did is purchase a liter of it online then order seachems' the bag. Its a very expensive bag but the only one with a fine enough mesh to keep the purigen from coming out, its like sand. I then used my vacuum sealer to make individually sized bags so I can use it in multiple tanks instead of just one big batch.

I keep the carbon that came with the aquaclear on hand just in case I need to use medications in my QT tank, I would use the carbon to remove then after treatment is done.
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Old 11-24-2012, 03:21 PM   #10
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Thanks guys

Im probably just going to add more biomedia to the ACs and look into the purigen. I was looking at it before but its seems too pricy for bactieria to grow on.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:27 PM   #11
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carbon does not remove fertilizers FWIW
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