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loose the carbon but keep anything that will colonize the bacteria. What Filter are you running? You want to maximize the places where beneficial bacteria can live and then keep it there. don't change it like the instruction say just rinse it out with water from the aquarium so you don't kill the bacteria. Do this sort of quickly since the bacteria can die if left in stagnant water for too long. this also goes for things like power failures.

I have a hang on back filter (HOB) with the carbon replaced with BIO balls on my 10g grow out tank. I rinse the sponge pads like every month in water that I have taken from the tank. when i rinse the pads is more a function of when they get clogged. been working for me...

p.s. the carbon will take out all of the good stuff in the water column as well as the bad stuff. Just keep to a weekly water change schedule and you will need to be careful with the fertilizers due to the small water volume.
 

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Personally I would keep the carbon for about 3 weeks. When you first start a tank there is very little in terms of a biofilter to deal with any organic breakdown so the carbon fills the void. The plants usually adjust for a few weeks so they won't be doing much during that time. In other words you need all the help you can get to keep algae at bay during the critical startup period.
 

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carbon is absolutely useless for daily filter operation. just get rid of it.
carbon is only "active" for 5-7 days, so leaving it in for "3 weeks" does absolutely nothing for your tank.

remove the carbon and replace it with a proper bio media (i suggest going with bio-max or substrat pro if you have them available to you)
 

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Too many people don't use carbon at startup to fill the void of an immature biofilter. Most algae problems start within a few weeks of setup since their is nothing to deal with organics and ammonia. Eheim (filters used by most planted tank hobbyists) and ADA (Foremost authority on nature aquariums) both recommend the use of carbon for several weeks at startup. I have always followed this method with great results.
 

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again, carbon is noly active for 7 days MAX.at which point, it serves absolutely no purpose. its just taking up space that could be used for a proper bio media.

in a new tank, WC takes care of the ammonia and organics.
 

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Aspects,

Every tank is different based on it's bioload, flow rate, etc. So to say carbon last 7 days MAX is really not accurate since you don't know the OPs setup. I'm stating a few weeks since it could be that long. If shorter so what, the carbon can only help for the few weeks it's in the filter. Nothing is that absolute in aquaria since the variables in one's setup are always different.
 

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youre right, i mist not. thats why majority of people do not use carbon, not just me.
bahahahah. like i said, so your homework. people around the world remove the carbon from their canisters because they too realize what a useless additive it is. not only is it not helpful, but its potentially harmful to your system, leeching phosphates and chemicals back into your tank, and taking up spoace that could be otherwise used for something functional (either bio-media or water polishing media).

and as the OP has already thrown it out, your point is not only invalid, but irrelevant to the scenario at hand.

enjoy your useless carbon.
bahahahahhahah

aspects FTW!
 

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Enough with the pissing match, boys.

I have not used AC on 15 different tanks over 10 years and never had a single problem. Using water changes to manage paramatars during start up is much safer and more precise.


You are doing very little with carbon.
 

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I totally agree with house on this, Carbon is GOOD for NEW tank setups. I hear all the time that it leeches this and that after a while, I don't buy it. I read somewhere that plain old cheap charcoal may leech but AC does not. After it stops absorbing a biofilm covers it and now your old carbon is just a biofilter.
 

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Thanks for the additional comments. The only point I was trying to make is that there is a big difference between startup and long-term use of carbon as mott has mentioned. Carbon in the intial setup can only help especially in high light, low mass setups. Why just use water changes when you can have an additional organic remover helping as well. That is why some use Purigen, etc. Over_stocked I appreciate you sharing your experience with your 15 tanks, but it doesn't mean carbon doesn't help and act as a wedge against algae especially if someone doesn't keep up with WC or has a high risk setup. My point was to give the OP some additional information and let him/her decide. The article that Jake J linked to backs up most of what I stated as well.

Aspects,
When you say things like "enjoy your useless carbon,
bahahahahhahah" it just shows that you can't engage in healthy debate nor respect others opinions which is a big part of what the forums are about.
 

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I use carbon. Even after it's exhausted as it serves as a source of biological filtration. I've suffered no ill effects from so doing.
That said, I think as long as you're consistent with WC in the beginning, carbon is not necessary. It doesn't hurt, either, though. In Nature Aquarium World, Amano advocates AC's use during the first three weeks of a tank's life. He then proscribes leaving the exhausted carbon in the filter for up to three weeks so as to allow it to serve as a source of biological filtration.
And I'm not taking sides here -- both sides have made good points -- but I do believe that house knows what he's talking about. I've seen his tanks and they're beautiful and healthy.
 

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carbon is absolutely useless for daily filter operation. just get rid of it.
carbon is only "active" for 5-7 days, so leaving it in for "3 weeks" does absolutely nothing for your tank.

remove the carbon and replace it with a proper bio media (i suggest going with bio-max or substrat pro if you have them available to you)
again, carbon is noly active for 7 days MAX.at which point, it serves absolutely no purpose. its just taking up space that could be used for a proper bio media.

in a new tank, WC takes care of the ammonia and organics.
perhaps you should do a little reading on activated carbon. might enlighten you a bit.
Carbon holds bacteria colonies very well. It makes an excellent bio-media.
 

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excellent bio media? bahahahahhaha. it holds no more surface area than plain old aquarium gravel. and gravel wont leech stuff back into your tank.
plastic pot scrubbers (6 for $0.99) hold a thousand times more surface area.

lets be serious here. that is a weak argument, and you know it. if youre buying it for the purpose of bio-media, then you have more tho learn about AC than i initially gave credit for.

it has already been established, even by the people who claim to use it, that is is NOT necessary. and furthermore, the OP has already removed it.

nice try though.
 

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excellent bio media? bahahahahhaha. it holds no more surface area than plain old aquarium gravel. and gravel wont leech stuff back into your tank.
plastic pot scrubbers (6 for $0.99) hold a thousand times more surface area.

lets be serious here. that is a weak argument, and you know it. if youre buying it for the purpose of bio-media, then you have more tho learn about AC than i initially gave credit for.

it has already been established, even by the people who claim to use it, that is is NOT necessary. and furthermore, the OP has already removed it.

nice try though.
I think the point everyone is trying to make is that it IS beneficial to new tanks and once it has basically become inert it doesn't hurt to leave it in.

No one is saying they go out and by it for bio-media...

Also, calm down.
 

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Aspects,
When you say things like "enjoy your useless carbon,
bahahahahhahah" it just shows that you can't engage in healthy debate nor respect others opinions which is a big part of what the forums are about.
im all for educated debate, but i have absolutely no respect for people willing to give poor information at the risk of someone elses set up.

facts:

carbon is NOT necessary. regular waterchange and maintenance (not extra, just what is usually done) does a much better job than carbon. this was even expressed clearly in the article you claim to agree with your logic

So do I really need to use carbon?

In most aquariums, if you carry out regular water changes every week and maintain the aquarium properly, there shouldn't be a definite need for carbon
carbon is only "active" for a short amount of time at which point it is no longer "active" (thus no longer serving the purpose it was intended for)

carbon is a POOR bio-media in comparison to the other proper bio-medias mentioned earlier (and others not mentioned)

once the carbon has absorbed all it can, it can leech these things back into your tank if not removed

if you follow the logic that carbon serves as a bio media, leaving it in for 3 weeks, and then removing it, would remove whatever bacteria it holds. again, not a great suggestion for someone to remove their bacteria colonies.

many hobbyists have linked carbon use to HLLE/ hexamita


like i said. your argument is completely pointless. you are providing no new information or facts, and furthermore, the OP has already made their decision. at this point your just gassing off Co2. (see what i did there?). even when someone chimes in with 10 years of experience, you continue on with your delusion about the "benefits" of carbon.
if you use it, thats fine, thats your business. but arguing the point isnt going to change any of the facts, and isnt going to change my mind, or the OP for that matter.

so as i said. enjoy your useless carbon. if you like to use it, more power to you. nobodys knocking you for it. i for one will not advocate the use of such unnecessary and *potentially harmful additives. and as millions of hobbyists worldwide have removed carbon from their filter regimen, its obvious i am not alone in this understanding.

there is no reason to discuss this further. arguing is going to serve no purpose. you are obviously set in your ways and not going to accept anything otherwise, so going around in circles is pointless.
if you have something more to add, feel free to PM me, but im done here. childish bickering is not going to help the OP at all.


-done
 
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