Planted tank with Undergravel Filter
Planted Tank Forums
Your Tanks Image Hosting *Tank Tracker * Plant Profiles Fish Profiles Planted Tank Guide Photo Gallery Articles

Go Back   The Planted Tank Forum > General Planted Tank Forums > General Planted Tank Discussion


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-28-2009, 06:32 AM   #1
Big D
Algae Grower
 
Big D's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Denham Springs, LA
Posts: 5
Default

Planted tank with Undergravel Filter


I would like some opinions on using an undergravel filter in a planted tank. I currently have a 72 gal. Bowfront with an undergravel filter reverse flow with natural gravel substrate supplied by two Fluval 350's and an additional Magnum 350 canister for extra filtration. I plan on changing the substrate to EcoComplete and installing a CO2 system as well. The lighting is a Current Nova Extreme T5HO 4x54w 6700K bulbs. Will this setup be sufficient for a planted tank? Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Big D is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 08-28-2009, 07:27 AM   #2
Darkblade48
Moderator
 
Darkblade48's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Japan
Posts: 9,261
Default

In terms of equipment, you definitely have what is required to grow any plant. 208 watts of T5HO is quite a bit of light, so be sure that you keep the CO2 steady and fertilize regularly to avoid problematic algae.

You will not need an undergravel filter (either normal or reverse flow).
__________________
Anthony

A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
Eheim Pimp #362 - Eheim 2213 x2, Eheim 2028, Eheim 2217, Eheim surface skimmer and Eheim autofeeder.
Victor Pimp #33 - HPT272-125-350-4M
Darkblade48 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2009, 07:48 AM   #3
Centromochlus
Honeycomb Master
 
Centromochlus's Avatar
 
PTrader: (116/100%)
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Phoenix/Flagstaff, AZ
Posts: 6,658
Default

Undergravel filters are generally not used in planted aquariums, mainly for one reason: The roots get tangled in it.

So i think if you ask most people here, they'll say forget about the undergravel filter.
__________________
Centromochlus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2009, 12:17 PM   #4
Regloh
Algae Farmer
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Medford, MA
Posts: 683
Default

Actually, I think Hoppy is using a reverse flow under gravel filter. At least he has tried it with good success if I recall correctly. You could do some digging around.
Oh, but I don't think it was a traditional under gravel mat type filter. He made it from pvc piping with the holes on the bottom to prevent roots from growing into them.
__________________
Eheim Pimp #363 - 2213, 2217

Tank journals: 55g, 10g
Regloh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2009, 01:18 PM   #5
Coltonorr
Many plants...little time
 
Coltonorr's Avatar
 
PTrader: (57/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 1,630
Default

I have used undergravel filters in the past, and I always had success with them...but every time, at about the 2 year mark the tank would always start going down hill.
They are too hard to clean and IMO aren't really necessary the planted tank.
Coltonorr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2009, 01:35 PM   #6
essabee
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
essabee's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Ranchi, Jharkhand, India
Posts: 429
Default

I regularly use a power UGF for my planted tanks and I have posted about it on this forum. I construct them from perforated PVC pipes and also use the output for my DIY CO2 reactor. The UGF is a little different from normal ones as they can do mechanical filtration too. They are also different as the UGF uses only a 4" strip of the front portion of the tank and the plant substrate being partitioned off from the UGF, the plant roots don't interfere with it.

If you need details of it you can E-mail me.
__________________
If you have a choice, you have a problem, till you elect your choice. No choice, no problem, only consequences, learn to live with them.

Last edited by essabee; 09-20-2009 at 01:50 AM..
essabee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2009, 02:03 PM   #7
kcharley
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Overland Park, KS
Posts: 5
Default

I use an undergravel filter with a powerhead in my 15 gal shrimp tank. No mechanical filtration. Just water sprite and jave moss with low light and water column dosing. Even being overgrown the watersprite does better in that tank than in my other tanks with external filtration and better water flow. It grows so thick it seems to hurt the shrimp. They are always happier after I do a major pruning or thinning.

My wife liked the look so much she had me redo the 29 in the family room to mimic it. I stayed with external filtration on that one and I have to thin the watersprite or the bottom leaves die and rot before it overgrows the tank.

My point is I'm guessing success will vary by plant and fish load. It works in my shrimp tank but I don't think it would work in my taller fish tanks.

HTH.
kcharley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2009, 01:13 AM   #8
Big D
Algae Grower
 
Big D's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Denham Springs, LA
Posts: 5
Default Thanks for everyones response

I know now that I will not use the undergravel filter. I will be starting on the task soon. When it is complete I will post some pics.

Again, Thanks all
Big D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2009, 06:07 AM   #9
Big D
Algae Grower
 
Big D's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Denham Springs, LA
Posts: 5
Default Tank Finally planted

ello All, As I stated in my last post I would post some pics of my tank when I finished planting it. Well the time is now. First pics are right after planting and the second few are a week later. Enjoy. Would appreciate any feedback good or bad. Better safe than sorry.

Thanks all

Day 1







Week 1





Big D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2009, 09:44 PM   #10
gheitman
Planted Member
 
gheitman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (6/100%)
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Champaign, Illinois
Posts: 203
Send a message via MSN to gheitman Send a message via Yahoo to gheitman
Default

Very nice looking so far. I would only add some tall plants in the back left corner.
__________________
Gene Heitman
12 tanks, 201 gallons, 20+ species of fish/shrimp/snails, 52+ species of plants ... 9 years ago I just wanted 1 tank with some fish - what was I thinking
gheitman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2009, 11:12 PM   #11
Big D
Algae Grower
 
Big D's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Denham Springs, LA
Posts: 5
Default

Thanks Gene
Big D is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2009, 03:44 PM   #12
Tsartetra
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma--USA
Posts: 143
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coltonorr View Post
I have used undergravel filters in the past, and I always had success with them...but every time, at about the 2 year mark the tank would always start going down hill.
They are too hard to clean and IMO aren't really necessary the planted tank.
7 years and going strong with a 44 gallon, true UGF w/ powerhead. 34 watts (T8s) and I have Java ferns, bit of Java moss, red melon sword, Anubia congensis, windelov ferns, C. wendtii, C. blassii, Brazilian pennywort, Rotala rotundifolia and a dwarf lily. No disasters--ever.
Tsartetra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2009, 04:58 PM   #13
bradac56
Wannabe Guru
 
bradac56's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Blue Springs, MO
Posts: 1,093
Send a message via AIM to bradac56 Send a message via MSN to bradac56 Send a message via Yahoo to bradac56 Send a message via Skype™ to bradac56
Default

UGF's are paned not because they cause problems I can't think of one person I've known or talked to that actually had a meltdown because of them.
They are paned because they haven't shown any direct benefit to using them over the current standards in substrate, lighting, C02, and fert systems.
The best support I can show for that is Tom Barr's opinion over at barrreport.com and my own unofficial personal findings. I used one along time ago
and came to the same conclusion before I found his website.

The only people that I know that swear by them are the people trying to sell them to me.

- Brad
__________________
Proud member of the Heart of America Aquarium Society and the International Betta Congress

VICTOR PIMP #58 -
VTS-253A-320 x2, VTS-253D-320, VTS-253A-1993-320.
bradac56 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2009, 10:51 AM   #14
CrimsonKeel
Algae Grower
 
CrimsonKeel's Avatar
 
PTrader: (4/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Royal oak, MI
Posts: 123
Default

Only issues I have ever had with an UGF were roots gettign tangled in them. if your converting a tank then its not the ned of the world to leave a ugf in there. however if starting a new one i would leave it out.
__________________
CrimsonKeel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2009, 04:31 PM   #15
foxfish
Planted Member
 
foxfish's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Channel Islands England
Posts: 187
Default

If you fed an UGF through a external canister for mechanical effect & then though a external C02 reactor would this effect plant growth or would it result in a very even distribution of the gas & better plant growth?
I can also see how this method would feed the substrate & plant roots via the water column thus enabling plain gravel to be adequate rather than expensive alternatives?
Years ago it was always stated that UGFs supplied oxygen to the plant roots as this in turn stunted growth but by reading this thread it would appear this is not so!
UGFs do offer a very effective method of biological filtration, are easy & relatively cheap to set up.
However they have a limited life because of the difficulties involved in cleaning them but i hardly ever keep a tank running for more than a year anyway!
Interesting.....
foxfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 02:14 AM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright Planted Tank LLC 2012