Filter cleaning and green water - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 09:26 PM Thread Starter
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Filter cleaning and green water

It seems that about every other time I clean my filter I get green water. I understand that this is because of the bacteria being killed in the filter causing a mini cycle.

This is my question. The tank is a fully matured 37g (so not the smallest tank) with a deeper substrate (ada as) and medium to heavily planted. My filter is a XP1 (not a very big filter) In it I have bio slab filter media, Rena pads and Seachem Purigen.

I know if I wash it in filter water it will help but again I just find it strange.


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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-02-2009, 11:57 PM
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In a highlight tank, changes can happen fast, especially for worse.

Personally I would toss the Purigen and fill the filter with good media.
Good media such as Ehfi substrate pro and good maintenance will
yield excellent results with crystal clear water. If you take care of
the micro-organisms.

If you are washing the xp1 in tap water you are killing the bugs that
keep the tank/system together. In a small-ish filter it is even more
crucial to keep the bacteria strong.

Use good media and rinse with tank or RO water only, unless you like
green water and bacteria blooms.

Sounds as though you may need a larger capacity chamber for media.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
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I guess your not a fan of Purigen? It doesnt take up any more room because it is wedged inbetween the 2 rena sponges. I find it keeps the water exceptionally clear with no ill side effects like carbon..


I know about the clorine/cloramine killing the bacteria but it just seems strange that killing the small amount of bacteria in the filter compared with all the bacteria on the plants substrate and water.


Quote:
Originally Posted by WfxXx View Post
In a highlight tank, changes can happen fast, especially for worse.

Personally I would toss the Purigen and fill the filter with good media.
Good media such as Ehfi substrate pro and good maintenance will
yield excellent results with crystal clear water. If you take care of
the micro-organisms.

If you are washing the xp1 in tap water you are killing the bugs that
keep the tank/system together. In a small-ish filter it is even more
crucial to keep the bacteria strong.

Use good media and rinse with tank or RO water only, unless you like
green water and bacteria blooms.

Sounds as though you may need a larger capacity chamber for media.


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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 12:44 AM
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hehe, its not about being a fan of anything other than the system
we are trying to maintain, Purigen is a bandage, its cosmetic, you
need good media in the filter with good regular maintenance will do
what the Purigen is, with, better results.

The Bacteria is what holds the system together man, this is a living
enclosed eco-system, under highlight things can go south fast.

The media/bacteria/micro-organisms are a main ingredient to a healthy
tank, not the plants, they need a strong environment or you are cheating
them out of potential.

This is Plantedtank.net, not generalfishkeeping.com

Craig

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
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Show me a tank with ADA AS and driftwood that has crystal clear water with with no tanin staining without purigen or some other "band aid". Thats the reason I use it, not to keep out nitrates.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WfxXx View Post
hehe, its not about being a fan of anything other than the system
we are trying to maintain, Purigen is a bandage, its cosmetic, you
need good media in the filter with good regular maintenance will do
what the Purigen is, with, better results.

The Bacteria is what holds the system together man, this is a living
enclosed eco-system, under highlight things can go south fast.

The media/bacteria/micro-organisms are a main ingredient to a healthy
tank, not the plants, they need a strong environment or you are cheating
them out of potential.

This is Plantedtank.net, not generalfishkeeping.com


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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 01:10 AM
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Show me one that doesn't have clear water.

Its not about ADA but the ecosystem we maintain.

The bacteria is important, as you are finding out with
the green water.
Do you have tannin problems? get a UV and a diatom filter
talk about clear water.

Craig

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 01:24 AM Thread Starter
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Band aid's

I have a UV in tha tank right now clearing up the GW.

The tannins from the AS are the reason I first bought the purigen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WfxXx View Post
Show me one that doesn't have clear water.

Its not about ADA but the ecosystem we maintain.

The bacteria is important, as you are finding out with
the green water.
Do you have tannin problems? get a UV and a diatom filter
talk about clear water.


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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 01:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WfxXx View Post
Show me one that doesn't have clear water.

Its not about ADA but the ecosystem we maintain.

The bacteria is important, as you are finding out with
the green water.
Do you have tannin problems? get a UV and a diatom filter
talk about clear water.
Most 100% ADA tanks use bamboo carbon. I am a huge fan of purigen. It works well for removing tanins. Not so sure I would classify it as a bandaid. If one simply ages wood there will be no need for tannin removal. It is IMO a quick fix.

A UV will not remove tannins from water. Neither will a Diatom filter.

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 02:44 AM
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You may consider installing a pleated filter inline before your canister. So that would be like two canisters. The advantage of pleated filters is that they catch the fish poo, but they are so thin that they don't hold a lot of bacteria so it's not so problematic when you sterilize them. Then the filter with your bacteria is left pretty unscathed because it won't be loaded with the poo the pleated filter caught.


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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 03:00 AM
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Do either of you have Old Blackwood and tannin issues that
require the use of Purigen?

If it works for you that is fine. I think you both are missing the
point though.

Difficult plants need a optimum environment to maximize their
potential for health/ier growth, there is a certain level that
must/should be attained, high tech tanks are tricky.

ff show me some of your tanks, let me see from what experience
you speak are you a plant man or other?

A diatom filter will polish the water like nothing else. I only use it
when I do a heavy hack, moving things around and pulling large/r
plants that make a mess.

I will step out even further to say that if you need Purigen to keep
clean water in your tank, you still have some experience to gain

Craig

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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 04:26 AM
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The bacterial colonies don't particularly like unemployment, so they'll only grow the workforce to meet the needs of the nitrogen cycle factory. If you wipe out whole neighborhoods in bacteria town you won't have enough workers to keep the factory running properly. Pseudo-guru rambling aside, washing biological media with untreated water is a bad thing to do.

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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 05:14 AM
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I use neither Purigen nor carbon,never have,yet my water is crystal clear.

Using multiple filters,I also have little regard for preserving the bacteria when I do staggered filter cleanings.

Let's not overlook the value of heavy filtration...


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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 05:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WfxXx View Post
Do either of you have Old Blackwood and tannin issues that
require the use of Purigen?

If it works for you that is fine. I think you both are missing the
point though.

Difficult plants need a optimum environment to maximize their
potential for health/ier growth, there is a certain level that
must/should be attained, high tech tanks are tricky.

ff show me some of your tanks, let me see from what experience
you speak are you a plant man or other?

A diatom filter will polish the water like nothing else. I only use it
when I do a heavy hack, moving things around and pulling large/r
plants that make a mess.

I will step out even further to say that if you need Purigen to keep
clean water in your tank, you still have some experience to gain
I have a diatom filter and have been using it for many yrs. It has its place, just like purigen has its place.

For you to tell others "Purigen is a bandaid" and then to recommend a diatom filter speaks volumes. I never said "I need purigen" to keep my tanks clear. I simply stated that I used it and it works well. I initially started using purigen when I placed my bog wood in my tanks. Yes prematurly and I had tanin issues. Since purigen is rechargable, I continued to use it. It works well. I do not rely on it to keep my water clear.

IMO there is no difference in using a diatom filter to achieve crystal clear water and using purigen. They are both a "quick fix".

Yes, my only planted tank is a 29 RCS colony. I do have a 180 and a 125 tank currnetly setup with tangs and a jardini arowana. Regarless of these facts I have been in the hobby for close to 30 yrs and have tried just about evey combo of things that one could try. The best all round way to keep your water clear is efficient biological filtration.

Ehfipimp #273 ( Eheim Classic: 2260, 2217, Eheim Ecco: 2236, 2232 ) Fluval FX5

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fshfanatic View Post
The best all round way to keep your water clear is efficient biological filtration.
Thank you.

Craig

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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-03-2009, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Well the whole point of my post was missed.

I understand baisic and not so baisic fundamentals of fish/plant keeping.

I was just trying to figure out why the seemingly small amount of bacteria I killed during routine filter cleaning caused an ammonia spike which leads to GW.

I can do the same with my 2213 that is on a 5.5g tank (much larger filter capacity in comparison to tank size) with not so much as a jump in KNO3.

Just seems wierd.


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