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question about ceramic bio media

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I have two 2215 filter and I remember reading somewhere that it's recommended that you replace 50% or so of the bio media (ehfisubstrat/pro) every year or every so often.

I was wondering what's the reason behind this. Is it only because the pores of the media get clogged up or is there another reason?

Personally, I think this is quite excessive/expensive. All I've done with the bio media is give it a good swish in old tank water. It knocks loose a lot of the gunk that builds on it and it comes out cleaner than when I put it in. I might just buy a gallon or two of plastic bio balls to replace them.
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I'm still using ceramic media that's... 10 years old, I think? Only reason I would see to replace ceramic media is if it starts to actually disentigrate.
How would it disintegrate? As hard as the stuff is, and as low (relatively) a flow rate is through it, it will last us, our kids and grandkids lifetimes.

We have a dam (420' tall) with 3 18' diameter discharge tubs putting out 10,000 cf/s of water, ceramic lined. The COE said it will last 100+ years.
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