Newbie questions for 7 gallon - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-24-2019, 11:36 PM Thread Starter
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Newbie questions for 7 gallon

Hey everybody! I'm new to planted tanks (have been keeping a 20gal with plastic stuff for 3 years). I bought a Lifegard full view 7 gallon tank, but can't find explanations for the things I'm new to. I've always used a HOB filter and placed a heater on the back wall. However, this tank has 4 chamber back compartment that's totally confusing me.

From left to right it has an overflow chamber, a chamber with carbon balls, a chamber with sorta sponges and a bag of odd little filter media, then a chamber for the filter (Lifegard quietone 400 - cant find much info on it).

My biggest questions are:
  1. Do I need the carbon balls? I want to put a 75W heater in that chamber, but I'll be keeping a betta, java moss, amazon sword, microsword, and baby dwarf tears -- do I need the carbon for those things?
  2. Can I put the heater in the overflow chamber and effectively heat the whole 7 gallons?

Thanks in advance for your replies! I also have a 13W LED for the tank -- do I need ferts and/or c02 for the plants I have? If so, what do I use?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 03:53 AM
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I started out with the same tank, but in the 5 gallon version. The viewing angles are pretty great.

You don't need the carbon, at all. You could throw in filter floss or Purigen, if you wanted. The filter lives up to its name and is silent.

Right. Amazon swords are going to outgrow your tank pretty much the weekend after they're planted. Java moss will be great. Anubias nana or nana petite will also be nice if you attach them to a rock or wood.

Aquarium Co-Op has great beginner videos on planted tanks, ferts, CO2, and plants and the people in this forum have crazy-advanced knowledge.



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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 07:44 AM
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+1 to the above: remove carbon and leave out any sword that does have 'mini' in its name.

For 7g, a 50w heater is plenty and is safer. The first chamber is the perfect place for it. A heater controller (not cheap at $35++) gets you a peace of mind and is highly recommended.

The second chamber is mechanical filtration (traps crap floating around).
The third chamber is your biological filtration (extra home for bacteria that converts ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate).

Welcome to TPT!
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-01-2019, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the replies! I still have the carbon balls in, but I think I'm going to switch them out for purigen. Just have to figure out where to get the bags for it.

I decided to see what my tank could handle after a couple days up and running, so I dosed 8 drops of Dr. Tim's ammonia solution. The first 5 or so days the ammonia was around 2ppm (I have trouble comparing to the API color chart, though). I still cant tell exactly where its at, but it seems to be between 0.5 and 1ppm now. The nitrite is around 0.5ppm and the nitrate about 5ppm.

I'm wondering what my next step should be. I accidentally had the heat cranked to 84 degrees because, as you correctly guessed, the heater was too much. I'm re-calibrating it now to see if I can get this heater (Elheim jaeger) to stay at 78 degrees.

I'm wondering what I should do when the ammonia gets closer to 0ppm. I have aquarium co-op easy green liquid fertilizer, and I'd like to start dosing that because my plants are browning a little. I'd probably have to do a water change before that, correct?

All I want to put in there is a betta, and given that a surprise snail is thriving in the tank, and some green algae is forming on the stone (along with some white fungus on the spiderwood), I feel like I'm not far off. Am I correct?

Thanks again! P.S. I got rid of the sword - it was dying rapidly anyway.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 02-05-2019, 03:47 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ankhari View Post
I started out with the same tank, but in the 5 gallon version. The viewing angles are pretty great.

You don't need the carbon, at all. You could throw in filter floss or Purigen, if you wanted. The filter lives up to its name and is silent.

What was your experience with the filter? I feel like the outflow will be too strong for a betta -- there aren't any still spots even on the opposite side of the tank. I'd also like to grow some red root floaters and don't want them flying around everywhere.

There doesn't seem to be any settings to turn down the flow, unless I'm missing something. Could I baffle it with a filter sponge?
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