The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

Im setting up my second saltwater reef tank, but I am going to attempt to use a canister filter and lily pipes. I'm curious if there's anyone else on this forum running a saltwater system using freshwater equipment?

I have questions about flow and lily pipes as well as the size canister that would be appropriate for a 20 gal nano.

I've done a lot of research on the subject, but I have some questions, so if you have or are doing it, I'd love to chat.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,076 Posts
My question is... why? If your tank's properly set up, you have enough rock work, good flow, don't overdo it with coral or other livestock and monitor parameters - a canister shouldn't be necessary. Especially if you're staying on top of regular water changes.

Are you planning to use it with ceramic media? Or just mechanical filtration with media you discard frequently? A media reactor for chemical filtration?

I've used canisters on my reef tanks in the past but never permanently, as I've never found it necessary. A large HOB filter or breeder box being used as a makeshift refugium & chaeto have always been better for me.

Most people here aren't reefkeepers. Have you joined any reef forums to see how other people keep their tanks?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes I am on lots of reef forums. Since I'm looking into using lily pipes for my next set up, I thought it would be helpful to also cross post here.

The reason for the lily pipes etc are so I can't see any equipment in the tank. I don't want to use HOB anything. Im planning to use a dosing pump for auto top offs and potentially plumb an algae reactor in line with with canister. Canister will be mechanical and biological.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,076 Posts
Yes I am on lots of reef forums. Since I'm looking into using lily pipes for my next set up, I thought it would be helpful to also cross post here.

The reason for the lily pipes etc are so I can't see any equipment in the tank. I don't want to use HOB anything. Im planning to use a dosing pump for auto top offs and potentially plumb an algae reactor in line with with canister. Canister will be mechanical and biological.
Lily pipes aren't really freshwater specific. Plenty of reefkeepers use them when running canisters. They're not really any different than any other type of inflow and outflow you can use in a tank in terms of purpose or function.

Just have to have a plan for keeping them clean because they become unsightly quickly. It's nearly impossible to keep coralline from colonizing inside clear pipes and ultimately causing clogs - so be prepared for that. Can be really tough to remove if you don't clean them on a daily or similarly frequent basis.

Personally, I'd reconsider because I loathe cleaning fragile pipes frequently. Even though they're easier to keep clean on the freshwater side (usually just a magnet-type swipe can deal with freshwater crud - way less elbow grease than coralline can sometimes require), most longterm hobbyists move away from them because of the maintenance required.

I've used clear (both glass and acrylic) intake grates and other tools in my reef tanks in the past and have always regretted it. At least when it came to anything that needed to be in the tank long-term.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for this! I think I'm the only reefer who hates coralline algae. I'll take your perspective into account as I finish this build.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
802 Posts
Seems unnecessary to use a canister filter as long as you have enough flow and live rock. It's just going to trap debris and waste.

I kept a 33 long reef going for years with just live rock, a wavemaker and water changes.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,076 Posts
Thanks for this! I think I'm the only reefer who hates coralline algae. I'll take your perspective into account as I finish this build.
I love coralline growth on rock work. Maybe my favorite part of reefing other than invertebrates. Especially when branching coralline is involved. But coralline inside fragile glass tubes I can't easily get a brush or large scrubber into with ease? Holy wow the anxiety that gives me. Just the thought makes me audibly sigh. ha

If you truly must use a canister for some reason, I'd try to go with tubing - along with inflows and outflows - that you can paint black (if it's not already black) and easily disguise in your tank.

Should you ultimately go with lily pipes, make sure they're on quick disconnects of some sort so they're easy to remove whenever you need to clean them. Work out a plan for soaking them, flushing them and getting all the junk out without damaging them. A bucket with some padding may be necessary - maybe even two buckets with some padding. Some people use rubber mats in their sink or tub with towels around the sides to prevent breaks. Sure, you can buy more - maybe even for cheap - but the hassle of it all makes them worth protecting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
104 Posts
I probably let what ever pipe get covered with coralline algae and blend it in with the back wall. It's difficult enough getting it off glass, I can't imagine something fragile as a lily pipe. Maybe leaving it overnight in vinegar? If you do go with the pipes, get two sets. One that is always clean and swap it out. In my new aquarium, I'm just going to go with the stainless steel. Can't be bothered to always clean them because of crud.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top