What do you put in your filters? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 07:27 AM Thread Starter
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What do you put in your filters?

so I only have a little sponge and some polyfill in my hob filter right now, there isn't much space for anything else. I want to make this filter more efficient with the admittedly limited space I have at hand -- any ideas? Can I maybe put anything in the impeller area?

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 12:24 PM
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Think of filtration in three parts: mechanical, biological, and chemical

I just use mechanical (sponge/floss) and biological (surface area for BB) on all my tanks almost exclusively. The only exception is Purigen or maybe some other product if I'm having a particular issue w something. But its very rare that I use any chemical filtration.

Looks like you have your bases covered with that filter. What else would you like to be in there (and why)? As far as efficiency, your filter looks good to go. I wouldn't add more to the inside. Adding a small prefilter sponge over the intake strainer would give more surface area for BB and prolong the life of the polyfill. That's the only real area of opportunity I see, but not absolutely necessary.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 01:35 PM
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It is really hard working with these tiny filters. I've done it and hated the restriction, so I use a AquaClear 20 when needed. It is still small, but allows for more room for media that I want.

I'm not telling you to do this, but what I did when I had a filter like this was: I cut the sponge in half and added a tiny bag of biomedia that I put on top of the cut sponge. Filter padding takes up less space than poly filter and does a better job at 'scrubbing' particles from the water.

Be really careful not to over clean the media that you have. It will result in cycle problems if you do. A quick, gentle squeeze a couple times a month is all you should need.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-05-2017, 02:04 PM
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How to handle the media will depend, in part, on how long the tank has been running. The bacteria we want does begin to form in the filter but also on every other solid surface. So at first, changing out the filter media, can wipe out a large portion of the bacteria but later that is not a problem as there is bacteria all around in the tank. That slick feel of the glass? Some of that is bacteria! So it is important to handle a new tank more "gently" than an old tank.
For filter media, I do not like the loose floss as I find it can separate and the strands get wound around impeller shafts. I prefer to use a bonded pad that has two separate layers and can be cut to fit almost any filters. Cheap and flexible as I don't need carbon.
This is one I use for small space media that is stiff enough not to pack down and cutf low too soon.
https://www.petsolutions.com/C/Floss...ilter-Pad.aspx
A number of these also work very well for a full range of needs in differing situations. Just be careful on changing so that too much bacteria is not lost at one time. Rock the bacteria boat gently!
https://www.petsolutions.com/C/Floss...ter-Media.aspx
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-07-2017, 04:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by byviolet View Post
so I only have a little sponge and some polyfill in my hob filter right now, there isn't much space for anything else. I want to make this filter more efficient with the admittedly limited space I have at hand -- any ideas? Can I maybe put anything in the impeller area?

I run an aquaclear 50 with bonded filter pad, aquaclear 70 bio media and chemipure green, keeps my tank very clean. I also added an ista surface skimmer to my ac50s intake, works like a charm.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 11:52 PM
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I have the same filter and honestly believe that with the small room for media, you want to stick with just bio/mechanical filtration. I run a similar combo in my filter with a few coarse sponges and polyfil. I do have a large sponge covering the intake inside the tank for the shrimp to graze on
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 12:12 AM
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What do you mean by "efficient"? If you mean by removing visible particles from the water then the mechanical filtration of the sponge and poly filter will do so. If you mean the beneficial bacteria then unless you are seeing constant ammonia and nitrite and nitrate you can't make it any more "efficient". If you are only seeing nitrates then the filter is 100% adequate for bio filtration. Flow is another issue all together that is usually lumped into filters. Can you please clarify what needs to be improved? because there are several different answers depending on what you are seeing that is not adequate.

Dan
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 12:13 AM
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I've changed most of my filter sponges over to Poret foam. It lasts almost forever. You could use a piece of the 30ppi instead of the filter floss and it will increase the surface area for BB by a lot.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 12:56 AM
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I've changed most of my filter sponges over to Poret foam. It lasts almost forever. You could use a piece of the 30ppi instead of the filter floss and it will increase the surface area for BB by a lot.
@FishEggs has about the best advice possible here.
Poret foam is an excellent choice for filter media.
I am slowly switching over to it completely.


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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:11 AM
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@FishEggs has about the best advice possible here.

Poret foam is an excellent choice for filter media.

I am slowly switching over to it completely.


Where do you get poret foam? Sounds very interesting.


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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:33 AM
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Only one distributor in US "Swiss Tropicals".
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:44 AM
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Only one distributor in US "Swiss Tropicals".


Sweet thank you. Will check it out.


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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 08:38 PM
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I have some scrap pieces from cutting circles out of it for a diy canister filter on my 220gal tank. I could send you a sample piece. Even the scrap pieces can be used too as something like bio balls.
I am in no way affiliated with Swiss Tropicals or Poret and i receive no compensation for recommending the product.
I just think it's a really good product after having older sponge filters disintegrate in storage. Never happens with the Poret foam. I also like to see and touch some things before i buy it so it took me a while to pull the trigger on the purchase. It's not cheap.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 10:26 PM
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I've changed most of my filter sponges over to Poret foam. It lasts almost forever. You could use a piece of the 30ppi instead of the filter floss and it will increase the surface area for BB by a lot.
You got my attention with this, so I contacted them about making a tank divider for my 40 gallon with this stuff. I bought one from Pet Smart and it is horrible. It is deep enough, but is too short by 2 or so inches from the top and the clips are horrible.

The divider would be for emergencies only, and it would certainly be better than the useless POS I bought and can't use.

Thanks for mentioning it. I would have never thought to use foam for a temporary problem.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 11:21 PM
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It's not cheap.
Price is justified though.
Think of all the HOB cartridges someone may purchase in a year.
The Poret is good for an easy 10+ years.

As a divider nothing will get through and a little oversized keeps it right in place.
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