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Just wondering if you're running sponge prefilters that collect all the big debris and pieces, how often is needed to really clean out your actual filter. Normally on other tanks, I clean out the filters often because the sponges catch all the big debris pieces like in my turtle tanks. With shrimp tanks though running a sponge on the prefilter, how often do you really need to clean the inside of your hob or canister filters?
 

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I think Tom is referring to the prefilter cleaning, in which case he is correct. Filter cleaning itself I do monthly...but I notice no considerable buildup - I just do it for regular maintenance purposes.
 

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I think Tom is referring to the prefilter cleaning, in which case he is correct. Filter cleaning itself I do monthly...but I notice no considerable buildup - I just do it for regular maintenance purposes.
Agree. The pre-filter sponges can get pretty grungy after just a few days. I rinse mine throughly 2 X week.
As for the filters themselves, monthly is suitable as freph pointed out, but it does depend somewhat on the media being used - e.g. I replace my filter floss no less frequently than twice a month.
 

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I am using a more porous prefilter sponge so some of the shrimp's poop is able to get into my HOB filter even through pantyhose + prefilter. However, even with the debris bypassing the prefilter I only need to clean out my actual filter maybe once a month. I notice the output flow lessen and then I check. However, I need to clean my prefilter maybe every week.
 

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I clean the pre filters once a week, My small HOB's get cleaned maybe once a month.
My canister gets cleaned maybe every 3 or 4 months.
 

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I clean the prefilter with the weekly water change and the sponge I'm using in the main filter about once a month, though I have yet to see any decrease in flow due to the filter in the main compartment of the HOB. In my canister filter it goes much much longer, and in the sponge filter I've got going it's been at least 4 months, but that has a low bioload.
 

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Fluval edge prefilter I clean maybe once a month, usually I clean it every 2-3 months when I see it's impeding the flow to my canister. They stay pretty clean.

As far as my actual filter filter, it's just eheims or canisters full of bio media with a coarse and fine pad. I switch out the pads when they start to clog and that's every few months (due to the fine fluval sponge prefilter).
 
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