Myths of Activated Carbon - Page 3
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:52 PM   #31
RipariumGuy
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Oh, TFH (The Skeptical Aquarist) had a really good article on AC a while back.. I'll have to go dig it up again.
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Old 01-27-2012, 08:43 PM   #32
Rich Conley
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jedimasterben View Post
What about people that have tap water that is unusable and RO isn't easily attained? I live 8+ miles away from the nearest RO dispenser, and lug two 5gal jugs and one 7gal jug to do a water change in JUST my 55gal tank, and now I have a 29gal tank to take care of, as well, up from a 10gal, which is now going to be my feeder/QT tank (only one at a time, obviously). It's not feasible to do more frequent water changes. If throwing in a $10 pack of carbon will clear up the color in the water AND get rid of a smell that, in my tanks, doesn't go away with water changes.
A decent RO unit is $129. There's nobody who can afford a fish tank who RO isn't easily attainable for.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:11 PM   #33
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I use carbon to remove chlorine and chloramine from my tap water. That is what it does best, but it also removes lead and copper, taste and odor. In the aquarium it removes yellow color and meds. It should be prewetted with RODI water before use. Otherwise much of the interior never gets wet and the carbon surface gets used up.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:19 PM   #34
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A decent RO unit is $129. There's nobody who can afford a fish tank who RO isn't easily attainable for.
I have both city tap water and a well. My well water would rapidly destroy any aquarium RO unit. It has CO2 and calcium, plus sediment, but not the bad smell which is very difficult to treat. There are huge units that treat this. One of my brothers has one on his well. It looks like a big tool shed but it does the job great. $129 might cover a maintenance call.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:33 PM   #35
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From OPs link:"Can I leave it in the tank

Activated carbon will not leak the chemicals back out regardless of how long you leave it in the water. "

I have a very hard time believing there is absolutely no osmotic effect associated with carbon after it has loaded up.

I use it for tannin removal from time to time and after medicating a Q-tank. I feel it's a great tool to have for specific issues.
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:48 PM   #36
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There is quite a bit of info at www.seachem.com
They have a library that includes quite a few useful articles. One is specifically about activated carbon.
Another that I like is about filtration in general, and includes a certain amount of info about removing all sorts of things from the water using AC and many other media.
I think both these articles would be good reading for more info about AC and removing things from the water. They are not college text book level, but are well above the beginner level.
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Old 11-28-2012, 07:24 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhodophyta View Post
I have both city tap water and a well. My well water would rapidly destroy any aquarium RO unit. It has CO2 and calcium, plus sediment, but not the bad smell which is very difficult to treat. There are huge units that treat this. One of my brothers has one on his well. It looks like a big tool shed but it does the job great. $129 might cover a maintenance call.
If the "bad smell" is the rotten egg smell it's actually a simple remedy. I had that in my well water at my last house. I put a chlorine injector on it with a carbon filter. The chlorine precipitates the sulphur and allows the carbon to remove it.

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Chlorine bleach can effectively remove medium to high levels (over 6 mg/l) of hydrogen sulfide. The chlorine in the bleach chemically reacts with (oxi- dizes) the hydrogen sulfide eliminating the "rotten egg" odor. Chlorine bleach also reacts with iron or manganese, and disinfects water supplies.
An automatic chlorinator (chemical feed pump) adds chlorine to the water sys- tem (Figure 2). A filtering system then removes the sulfur, iron and man- ganese sediment formed. A settling tank sometimes replaces the filter system. A 500 to 1,000 gallon settling tank is generally sufficient.

Figure 2. Example of an automatic chlorinator system.

Depending upon the amount of chlorine bleach added, a dechlorinating carbon filter may be used to obtain chlorine-free water for cooking and drinking. The same activated carbon filter can also remove the sulfur sediment. Mainte- nance and replacement of filter systems should be considered since sulfur, iron, manganese and other suspended materials in the water soon clog the filter.
Carbon is an ADSORPTIVE media not absorbent. Adsorption involves surface are. It's hard to reactivate carbon because you can't get temps high enough to refracture the carbon to yield more surface area. It's not like a sponge.

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Adsorption is the adhesion of atoms, ions, or molecules from a gas, liquid, or dissolved solid to a surface.[1] This process creates a film of the adsorbate on the surface of the adsorbent. This process differs from absorption, in which a fluid (the absorbate) permeates or is dissolved by a liquid or solid (the absorbent).[2] Note that adsorption is a surface-based process while absorption involves the whole volume of the material. The term sorption encompasses both processes, while desorption is the reverse of adsorption. It is a surface phenomenon.
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Old 11-28-2012, 10:06 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GraphicGr8s View Post
Carbon is an ADSORPTIVE media not absorbent. Adsorption involves surface are. It's hard to reactivate carbon because you can't get temps high enough to refracture the carbon to yield more surface area. It's not like a sponge.

Just to add to that - the activated carbon is very porous, so the surface area on the inside of the grains adsorbs as well.

There is a slight chance that baking carbon in the oven can help remove some of the more volatile compounds, but it's not at all reliable, and is most likely just going to waste a bunch of energy and effort.
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Old 10-29-2013, 03:34 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain View Post
ADA uses it and suggests, it, it must work right????????????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???

Penac etc questions.........gets much much more press, the basic stuff, water changes, how to scape and prune, carbon in the start etc..........??????

Nope.

Carbon is not a bad idea, removes organic fraction well, this includes many decaying plant products, and as it ages, with high porosity......ends up nice biomedia.

I use it mostly for color, but see no reason NOT to use it in the start up.....or to remove color if you do not want to do another water change etc.
Zeolite is good for initial set ups if you use ADA As and need to add fish that week etc.........

Myths: it's detrimental to planted tanks: removes all the Fe, other ferts..............etc.
This Krib article does show that activated carbon removes some chelated metals in CSM. I'm sure at some point it reaches saturation and can't absorb anymore but at least in the beginning it does absorb quite a bit.

http://www.thekrib.com/Plants/Fertil...ar-carbon.html
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