keep canister or go hob, stuck in quagmire - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-05-2019, 11:09 PM Thread Starter
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keep canister or go hob, stuck in quagmire

I'm gathering parts for a new build and am quite unsure what route I should take. I currently have a 5 gallon bowfront and will upgrade to a 13 gallon widescreen, narrow tank, 8" depth, 16 high and 24 long.

I was planning to move over my canister filter and water cooler but why not go the hob route as I think it's easier to maintain a hob. The thing is my water kooler is inline with my canister hose so there's still having some hoses to deal with and needing to add in a small water pump for the kooler.

I have the tank, lights, bdbs substrate and still in this quagmire and having to go way or another. I could try to sell my canister and glass lily pipes, my nano Plant light to cover the partial cost for a hob and clear top lid.

looking from the outside, it's about spending more for a hob, maybe a power head unless I can buy a water diverter to use with my weak water pump to play the power head part. It's a small Eheim 2232 canister although I'm not liking tearing the hoses down to clean and watnots every month.

Last edited by Pocho; 07-05-2019 at 11:15 PM. Reason: wording
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 01:38 PM
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I'd keep the canister filter. You already have it. Why spend more money? There is no perfect filter. Sure you have to clean a canister but not as often. And for the record I am not a fan of canisters but I use what I have. I have two I got for $5 so I use them.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 05:07 PM
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On a small tank like that 13 gallon, it would be worth it for me to get a HOB. Mostly depends on how bad you mind cleaning the canister.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 05:26 PM
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I'm torn on how to respond on this one.

That particular canister may be overkill for your situation, but with the right media you should have a very nice looking tank. And the over-abundance of media will also reduce the maintenance needed as well for a tank that size. If anything, your bigger concern will be over-servicing the canister and causing a major disruption to the nitrate cycle, so be careful.

Since you already have it, I'd say go and use it. But be honest with yourself as the tank progresses, and if you find the maintenance being too time consuming, or neglected, be prepared to change to an easy to service HOB such as an Aquaclear 30 or 50.

I'm a bit curious why you have a cooler, and what the intent of the tank will be. I typically don't see those used too often outside of reef tanks with powerful lighting systems. Depending on what your plans for the tank are, my answers could change.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 08:37 PM
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Iím curious why you have to clean your hoses every month, 1 or twice a year should be plenty.

Iíd keep canister and get a prefilter foam to go in tank over input, that will now be your main weekly cleaning spot, youíll barely have to touch canister, maybe once every 2-3months. Just load it with bio media mainly. With a long tank like that youíll need flexibility of being able to split off to 2 outputs, say a spraybar down back wall and nozzle to move water across surface.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your views/suggestions. lol, I'm a newbie(1 year), my granddaughter started this, she wanted "pink" substrate, the swordtail and then a neon tetra was added. I feel a bit sorry for the swordtail and figure I'd upgrade to a slightly bigger tank with length for it to swim. From day one in store that swordtail swam near the glass up/down/sideways in a large tank and it still does it today at times. I knew the cannister was overkill but felt I'd get a bigger tank and the oem Aqueon didn't look adequate at time, now I look back it may have been ok. As to the canister hoses, it starts to build up this clearish film and I clean it out when I can't see my fingers on the other side of the hoses. Am I cleaning the tubes to often/soon(monthly)? Also I run a nano cooler because it can get up to 90+ in our house during the summer.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 06:05 PM
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I'm not sure if you've had a hob before, but up until recently that's all I've ever had (well other than internal filters). Just bought a tank that came with a canister filter and I'm loving it and will never go back to a hob. My biggest concerns with the hob were:

1. Noisy! unless you keep the tank well topped up with water constantly.
2. Need a huge hole for it in the back of the hood. I've had fish jump out of this hole. Also, the hole seems to speed up evaporation.
3. All of the dirt that builds up behind the filter media goes flying into the tank as soon as you pull the filter media out. Not a huge deal, but annoying.
4. If power goes out and the water level is a bit low it can lose it's siphon, when power comes back on it won't restart without priming.

I may end up hating the canister for different reasons...haven't had it long enough yet to say. But so far it's way better imho!

Also about the swordtail swimming up and down on one side of the tank...if lights are on then it may appear as a mirror and they are trying to get to the other side, I've seen lots of fish do this until they get used to the tank.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 06:23 PM
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I might also say that you are way overworking on cleaning the tubes as a good part of the "slick" stuff is the good bacteria as it will live most any place that they can hang on and get oxygen, making the filter tubes a prime spot! I only clean mine if/when I have to and that's not often!
I will only use HOB when forced as any canister that I have had may be more time consuming to clean but only needs it once compared to any HOB needing it 3-4 times.
Perhaps a close look at how often cleaning is needed will change the question. I only clean my canisters when I'm shut down for major work/ tank changes or when I see flow begin to drop. Depending on tank, load, etc. that may not be any more often than four months!
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 11:57 PM Thread Starter
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again, thank you for your views/suggestions/hands on experience comments.
I don't mind more to tell you the truth, I'll soak it all in
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 04:06 PM
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From the sounds of it, this is primarily a fish-only tank, without a significant amount of live plants?

Over the long haul, the canister will probably serve you quite well. I'd agree you are probably servicing it too often, and I wouldn't worry about the hoses to be honest.
Heck, most of the canisters I've used in the past had black colored hose, and I rarely if ever cleaned them. A good water change routine will go a long way toward extending the time between services too.

The cooler makes total sense if the home temps get up to 90+ at times. Particularly on a smaller tank like that which is more suseptible to rapid temp swings.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 07:35 PM
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I always say canister. Ability to add more media of your choice and I think they're easier to maintain than an HOB. I have Eheim 2213's on both my 10 gallons, and while this would certainly be considered overkill by most, I thoroughly enjoy the organics removal it can provide. I use a lily pipe outlet to soften the flow, and I use a combo intake/skimmer to help remove floating plant matter and surface film, while also taking in lower water column water. If the flow is too powerful, you can simply use the outlet double taps to restrict flow a bit.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 03:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the responses.
there's a consensus of cleaning the canister and hoses before it's actually needed. I'll use the canister to seed the new tank cycling and I'll use a hang on back on my current tank and go from there.
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