Eheim 2217 filtration media layout - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-14-2020, 02:18 PM Thread Starter
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Eheim 2217 filtration media layout

I am changing my media up for my new tank:

From bottom up (all Eheim brand)

Course Sponge
Fine Filter
Bio media balls (Eheim substrat pro)
Fine filter
Carbon (to be replaced with Purigen once cycled)

Is this ideal? Is the mech even worth having in there? Basically Iím taking out the Eheim mech (which I imagine doesnít do anything) and replacing with an extra fine pad and more subtract pro capacity.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-15-2020, 01:55 AM
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By "mech" I am going to assume you mean mechanical filtration (course sponge and fine filter). Yes, mechanical filtration will:

A. Keep your water column free of any free-floating particles and/or debris.
B. Keep debris from clogging up your biological filtration (bio media balls).

Honestly, I have never found "coarse" sponges to work really at all, but it depends on what you mean by "coarse". Your best bet would just be a medium sponge and a pad of fine filter floss.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-15-2020, 02:46 AM Thread Starter
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I do mean mechanical filtration. But it is specifically called Eheim mech and it comes with a new classic filter - it’s just the cylinders with the hole in them.

By course I mean the blue Eheim pad and by fine the white pad.

Seems to me adding more Eheim substrate pro would be more beneficial than the Eheim mech.

Eheim claims their mech ‘evenly distributed water flow’ with no real other purpose....wouldn’t the substrat break up flow anyhow?
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-15-2020, 02:31 PM
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There are a number of ways you can use media in the Eheim Classic filters so it's really up to the user.

I've always used the Eheim Mech at the bottom as it traps larger debris that may get through the intake strainer, followed by coarse blue pads, fine pad and then bio media.

You could also do coarse blue pads stacked with a fine pad and then bio media.

Just remember the more fine pads or fine media you use, the quicker it will get plugged up, depending on the stocking level in the tank and amount of debris the tank produces.

There is really no wrong way as long as you have mechanical first, fine second and bio last AND you don't have the filter stuffed so full it either affects the filter flow or causes issues with closing the filter top.

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Eheim Pro II 2028; Classics Series -2215, 2217, 2260, 2262; Pro 2229 Wet/Dry
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-15-2020, 03:33 PM
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While sponges are most commonly thought of as mechanical filtration, they also provide significant surface area for growth of beneficial bacteria. There's a good discussion about media in the equipment section right now. One source linked there claims that 20-30ppi sponge is superior to most dedicated bio-media in terms of biological filtration capacity. They have a bunch of data on surface area, etc but don't really say how they came up with all of it. So I guess take it with a grain of salt.

If you have a low to moderate fish stocking, and an appropriately sized filter the optimizing of media may not give much if any improvement over what comes with the filter. The tank is only producing enough waste to feed a certain amount of BB. If you have enough surface area for BB to colonize and process 100% of the waste, doubling that surface area won't really do anything. Now if the BB are maxed out and can't keep up with the waste, that's where optimizing could help. Overstocked tank, undersized filter, etc.

There are other things you may want to consider like cost, maintenance interval, effect on flow. For example changing media might reduce flow through the filter. Going to multiple fine floss pads might plug up quickly and need to be cleaned and/or changed frequently to prevent loss of flow. You could spend more money for a "high end" bio media (Biohome, Seachem Matrix) that may or may not give any benefit.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 07:48 PM
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I'll go a half a step further than @simplechamp and agree, but say that sponge material is an EXCELLENT platform for beneficial biology ... as evidenced by the countless large fishrooms that run totally on air driven sponge filters. All of my filters are filled with sponge material.
Oh I used to buy into the marketing hype that we need to have commercial bio-media be it ceramic, plastic, or rock, but came to realize that bio-sponge material is every bit as good, cost effective, cleans easily, and lasts forever and a day.

My website and Blog:

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-17-2020, 09:00 PM
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Agree with the foam as the best. 10/20 ppi foam won't clog as fast. If not available, best to use simple plastic pots scrubbies. Full test of just about all media is here.
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