Putting a new HOB filter on an established tank. - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 12:43 AM Thread Starter
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Putting a new HOB filter on an established tank.

My ten gallon is in the process of cycling for the very first time and so far I've learned I hate the crappy TopFin10 filter I had laying around and want to replace it with an AquaClear 30. My question is when I want to make the swap, how do I make the change over without crashing the tank?

Run the two filters side by side for a while until I feel confident to remove the top fin?

Run the new filter with the media from the top fin sandwiched in there as well?
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 01:04 AM
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Run the two filters side by side for a while until I feel confident to remove the top fin?
This is my preferred method you could always put some natural sea sponge or zip-tie some pantyhose to the intake of the 30 at first if the added flow tosses your plants around.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 01:45 AM
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You can cut off the floss part of the filter cartridge and stick that into the AC30.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:01 AM
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I would run both together to let bacteria colonize the aqua-clear.

Why do you hate the top fin filter? As long as your reasoning for not liking it isn't noise related it wouldn't hurt to run both if you will be heavily planted.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:04 AM
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filter.

I would also run both together for a while. And I would go with a 50 instead of a 30.


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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:07 AM
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I would transfer media to the new filter. I have done that before without any major problems.

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:09 AM Thread Starter
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I would run both together to let bacteria colonize the aqua-clear.

Why do you hate the top fin filter? As long as your reasoning for not liking it isn't noise related it wouldn't hurt to run both if you will be heavily planted.
I don't think it's working correctly. Water flows through the cartridge and back into the tank, but it also runs back into the tank unfiltered overspilling over the 'uptake' area as well.

As far as a 50 on a 10 gallon? Wouldn't that be way overkill as well as creating a ton of water flow in the tank?
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:13 AM
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As far as a 50 on a 10 gallon? Wouldn't that be way overkill as well as creating a ton of water flow in the tank?
Well as long as it's not uprooting everything water flow is good for a planted aquarium. Moves heat and liquid ferts around, keeps detritus from piling up in certain spots, Allows ambient C02 from the air in the room to become diffused in the water.

In short over-filtration is the best filtration...to a point.

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:19 AM
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The cartridges in the top fin must be clogged if its bypassing. Straighten that issue out and run it and the AC30 long term. Or if you want to spend more money get an AC50 like others suggested and if you think there is to much flow, AC filters have adjustable flow so you'll be good to go!

Btw, If I set the flow rate on my aqua-clear 30 to high it too leaks a bit of water back into the tank around the intake tube. It usually does it when it needs cleaning.

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:20 AM
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Take it from someone who crashed his 10g tank and killed a centerpiece fish destin for the main tank. DON'T BE HASTY, RUN BOTH FILTERS FOR A BIT!!!
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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The cartridges in the top fin must be clogged if its bypassing. Straighten that issue out and run it and the AC30 long term. Or if you want to spend more money get an AC50 like others suggested and if you think there is to much flow, AC filters have adjustable flow so you'll be good to go!
The cartridge is five days old... The only thing that could be clogging it up is a fungal bloom from my new driftwood.
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:27 AM Thread Starter
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Take it from someone who crashed his 10g tank and killed a centerpiece fish destin for the main tank. DON'T BE HASTY, RUN BOTH FILTERS FOR A BIT!!!
How did you crash it exactly?

Also, here's a picture of the overflow on the old top fin 10.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:35 AM
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Keep running the top fin. Add the AC30 and after a week or so remove the carbon pouch (green top) from the top fin. Replace it with some sort of bio media whether it's cheap dollar store scouring pads or filter floss or pet store bought bio media. For now, try slightly pulling up on the carbon pouch (green tab) while keeping the front bio sponge all the way down. That should allow for more flow through the media

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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:41 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Gplus View Post
Keep running the top fin. Add the AC30 and after a week or so remove the carbon pouch (green top) from the top fin. Replace it with some sort of bio media whether it bee cheap dollar store scouring pads or filter floss or pet store bought bio media. For now, try slightly pulling up on the carbon pouch (green tab) while keeping the front bio sponge all the way down. That should allow for more flow through the media
Uh oh. Uh, that green top filter is the only thing in there. I was under the impression it was a filter and that was the only thing I needed.

Is this not a filter cartridge? Have I messed up already? Haha
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-24-2015, 02:47 AM
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No you haven't messed up. The picture made it look like there's a bio media sponge in front of the carbon filled cartridge you have pictured. Most tetra filters have a second sponge I assumed the top fin would be the same... Honestly what I would do is either buy an AC50 like others suggested and run it side by side for a while then remove the top fin or buy an AC30. If you buy the AC30 run them both but after a week or so remove the cartridge from the top fin and fill it with some sort of bio media. Planted tanks really only need mechanical and bio filtration. Running just bio media in the top fin would turn it into a workhorse keeping your ammonia/nitrite levels down..

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