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How effective are sponge filters?

7266 Views 16 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  guppygolucky
I was thinking these types of sponge filters would be a good idea for a 35 litre shrimp tank, but are they actually good enough?
Has anybody tried one, are they just for raising fry, or can they be used as a everyday filter?

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I run one on a 10g lightly planted tank and it works fairly well. It's like the one you have on the left. Zid Zulander has some great prices if you really want one..
Thanks for the info tuffgong, but it seems that everyone on this forum lives in the usa and i'm the only english guy on here :hihi:
Anywhere in the uk you know of that sells these? Theres quite a choice on ebay but are they cheap fake versions?
Is there a specific/good make I should be looking for?
I have the one on the left in my 20 gallon RCS tank. I love it...and the shrimp do too. They climb all over it cleaning picking all the pieces off of it and the otos too. Also you if you need to clean them, you can pull one out rinse it, wait a week and then pull the other one.
I have a few extra that i bought...if you're interested.
Just grab the ones from ebay. I bought from there and a few from stores...same deal. Just more expensive in stores.
They're used in fish and fry tanks all the time.
I've been using a powerhead with a fine sponge on the intake as my only filter for a couple months now in my 29g. It works well and provides more circulation than my old HOB.

Some don't like the looks, but I found mine fairly easy to hide.
i have the generic looking one on the right... i took the sponges off and put them on 2 of my filters.. they work fine and keep the baby shrimp out.

the hole does go striaght through the sponge however, i plugged up the bottom, problem solved
There are some DIY instructions on the web, give it a try first before you buy one, especially if it's not readily available where you're at.
They are highly effective biofilters, but do little for particulate waste. The ebay ones are typically smaller than the comparable ones from stores, etc.
As Over stocked said, they are bio filters and don't do much for particulates. They do grow microorganisms on the sponge that shrimp love to eat.

You can make one out of pretty much any sponge that isn't treated with chemicals, detergents, or antibacterial materials.
I understand the powerhead driven ones, but are they saying you can just hook them up to an air pump?
Sponge filters are just a box filter without the box. A tube usually up to an inch in diameter for aquariums goes most of the way through the sponge. A smaller diameter air line goes most of the way to the bottom of the larger tube. The air bubbles lift water as they rise. The perfect air bubble size just fills the larger tube so a plug of air forces up a slug of water. Sponge filters are often used in fry tanks as the babies can't get sucked into the sponge.
I've used sponge filters for my cichlid breeding projects in the past and have had amazing results. I have also used them as the main filtration in fish only show tanks, and I am always happy, I think the downside is that they are a bit bulky (though they are easily hidden behind a rock) I would say go for it, hydrosponge would be my choice.
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