Cannister Filter Recommendations? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 09:10 PM Thread Starter
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Cannister Filter Recommendations?

I'm mulling over the idea of switching from an HoB to a cannister for my 46bf. Not sure yet, but just starting the planning just in case I go that direction. Are Eheim's still among the favorites here? I know a lot of people seem to use them. But when I browse reviews on Amazon there are a fair number of people complaining about leaks. That's likely true of any cannister filter given that people with problems are more likely to complain than those with good experiences, but what worries me is some were saying that the more recent years models are the problem.

So I just wanted to check in and see what the current favorite brands/lines are around here. Especially among those that have purchased a new one within the last couple of years.

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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 09:20 PM
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I use both eheim and fluval and have had no issues with both brands. I have:

fluval 305
Eheim pro 3
Eheim 2213

Although I have had no issues with the fluval 305 I must say that the the disconnect on it is more flimsy than the eheim which is solid.

To be honest there are a lot of canister filters you can chose from and I think they are all pretty good. One thing to consider is what would happen if you break a part, how quickly can you get it locally? That might be more of an issue on deciding what to buy.

Cheers

P.S. I also like to keep a HOB running just in case I need to make a quick quarantine tank.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 09:24 PM
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I have two canister filters in my home and soon to be a third one. I have one 125 gallon fish tank and a 30 gallon fish tank, both using some weird name canister filter deal I found on amazon for about 50 bucks for my large one and 20 bucks for the small one.

https://www.amazon.com/HW-302-3-Stag...ilter+aquarium

This one really is a wonderful filter, I have had it well over a year now actually almost two years, and only just now having issues with it, meaning I need to change out the media in the filter finally... It is SUPER quiet and we hardly ever notice it at all. I am actually going to use use ones similar to these for my pond in the spring when I set it up for one more level! It really is a fantastic filter. If your willing to give a no name brand and style a chance, I would really suggest this one and the Sun Sun versions. In my honest opinion, I am not sure what is really different between the two other than color differences.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 09:25 PM
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Best I can do is tell you about what I have - in order of preference;
Eheim Pro 4+ (model 350) = Great filter, well put together. The filter bypass that they boast about is a gimmic in my opinion. Typical lower flow rate compared to many others.
Eheim Pro II (old model canister filter) = Another great filter. The hose connection/valve block is the weak point but can be beefed up. The rest of the filter is top notch if you can find one.
Marineland C-360 = Overall, not bad. Had an issue with the original pump head to canister body seal - new seal fixed issue nicely. Moves a lot of water, has large baskets. Biggest current complaint is the valve block does not seal well.
AquaTOP 400 = Nice filter but is fairly thin plastic. Trays fit loosely so there is a fair amount of bypass. Original valve block failed.
AquaTOP 500 = Pretty much the same as the 400 except the trays did not seal up to the pump head so water was allowed to bypass the entire filter stack and go right back into the tank.


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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-06-2016, 09:56 PM Thread Starter
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Here's some side questions. What's the maintence like on a cannister filter? How long do you typically go between cleanings? Currently I do my HoB monthly. And do you typically replace the mechanical filtration or just give it a good rinsing? Typically with my HoB I just rinse out my sponges in tank water and only replace them every few months or so.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Immortal1 View Post
Best I can do is tell you about what I have - in order of preference;
Eheim Pro 4+ (model 350) = Great filter, well put together. The filter bypass that they boast about is a gimmic in my opinion. Typical lower flow rate compared to many others.
Eheim Pro II (old model canister filter) = Another great filter. The hose connection/valve block is the weak point but can be beefed up. The rest of the filter is top notch if you can find one.
Marineland C-360 = Overall, not bad. Had an issue with the original pump head to canister body seal - new seal fixed issue nicely. Moves a lot of water, has large baskets. Biggest current complaint is the valve block does not seal well.
AquaTOP 400 = Nice filter but is fairly thin plastic. Trays fit loosely so there is a fair amount of bypass. Original valve block failed.
AquaTOP 500 = Pretty much the same as the 400 except the trays did not seal up to the pump head so water was allowed to bypass the entire filter stack and go right back into the tank.
Immortal1 , don't mean to hijack OP's thread , but how do you beef up the hose connection/valve block on the ProII ?

My wife says if I get one more aquarium she is going to leave me . I sure am going to miss her fried chicken .
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 12:15 AM
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@Leeatl, Epoxy made for plastic (Menards).
@Vidikron, The course sponges in a canister filter could last years without replacement (I have not had a "single"canister filter longer than 1 year so I cannot personally verify).
The bio-media, depending on what you are using, could last longer than your interest in fish keeping.
Some people service their canister filter 4 times per year (yes, that is more typical than you might think). I go about 2 months.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 12:16 AM
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I use them all them all the time, never have leak problems.

SunSun is the best bang for your buck!

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 12:30 AM
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How long depends on what trashy fish and plants it has to filter! Some I get six months and some only a month. For media needs, having it figured in the price paid is a really big item as good media is expensive. Otherwise one can hammer out a DIY solution for media but than who pays for the time and lack of effective filtering?
The hard media rarely needs replaced for me. The soft stuff lasts until it falls apart and that depends on how gently/rough I treat it. I might guess at an average of a year on soft stuff. But then it pays to find an alternate rather than the stock stuff for the soft media. I use the fiber type media used in air handlers as I buy it in bulk rolls but there are lots of good options for the soft stuff.
what's best is a constant struggle to stay ahead as they constantly change and upgrade designs. I'm currently looking for a new Eheim but find my favorite (2075) is no longer stocked so I may go back to the Classis line for another 2217 as they seem to last forever and don't change.

I've used others and find the Ehiem line has a ceramic impeller shaft and I will pay extra to get it. Some lines have outragous prices for the shaft and impeller or only sell kits so that the cost is too high to make replacement practical.
fluval 306 head gasket kit is $40!!!
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 01:52 AM
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I'd go for the cheap Sunsun canisters. The ones I have run and start up perfectly every time and I've had them several years. The Marineland C Series that they seem to be knocks offs of have caused me so much trouble. Marineland has replaced both my 220 and 360 and sent new valve blocks for each another time. The new ones leak as bad as the old ones. The prime button is useless. I still have a 220 on one tank that hasn't leaked in two years (though I'm sure it will again) but each time I clean it I have to use a water pump to prime it. Replacing them is nice but I still got a flooded house so what's the point?

Sunsun!
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 01:56 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input, guys. I do have one more question. If I do go this route I'm going to want a CO2 reactor. Is the Cerges style what you would recommend? And whatever you guys recommend where can I find a good guide on how to build the reactor? I'd also be willing to buy one pre-assembled if anyone here is doing that. But from what I've read in the past the are pretty easy to assemble.
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 02:09 AM
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I have built several Cergres reactors. For me, I find running about 50% of the canister flow thru the reactor and 50% bypass works just fine and does not restrict the canister flow.

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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 03:42 AM
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One of my Eheim 2215's is ~15 years old and is still purring like a kitten...an extremely silent purring kitten. Only part I changed was the impeller and I didn't even really have to. The impeller started making a slight clinking noise but was still very tolerable.

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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 11:04 PM Thread Starter
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I like that. It looks like you can adjust the amount going through the the bypass? Do you have a parts list and maybe some quick instructions on how to assemble one like that?
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-07-2016, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vidikron View Post
I like that. It looks like you can adjust the amount going through the the bypass? Do you have a parts list and maybe some quick instructions on how to assemble one like that?
I do not really have a parts list for this. Yes, the ball valve makes it adjustable. Give me a little time and I likely can put together a parts list and some instructions on assembly.
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