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I'm currently running a 30g tank with a Hang Off Back Marineland Penguin 200 which has been fine for the past couple years.

I'm upgrading to a 55g & was wondering what I should run for a filter?

I don't know the first thing about under substrate so I WON'T be getting into these......

I've noticed that allot of used tanks on Craigslist come with 2 filters...... Do I need to buy two filters if I upgrade to a 55g tank?

I'm wondering about a Canister Filter, how they work, are they really such a great filter compared to an Off The Back type?

Thanks for any help.
 

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Your 55 G Upgrade

Hello Lesley from Mass..

Your choice of tanks is choice! The 55 G is my fav. I have several. 30 Gs are nice too, I have a couple, but I like the 55.

Anyway, I use Aqua Clear HOBs in all my tanks. Very reliable and easy to maintain too. The UGF (under gravel filter) type isn't a good option if you want a planted tank. The plant roots and planting in general create problems for this type of filter.

If you're not very good at tank management, like doing weekly 50 percent water changes, then two Aqua Clear 50s placed at opposite ends of your tank will do. However, if you change half or more of the tank water weekly, you can get by with a single 50 HOB. But, that's the way I do it. Never understood the reason for overfiltering water that was already clean, but apparently it works for some.

Don't know squat about canister filters, I've never used them. The Aqua Clear are very easy to service, so I use them.

If you have any questions, just PM me anytime. I'm never too busy to chat about the "water keeping" hobby.

B
 

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55's are good sized tanks, hard to scape though because they're so narrow. I prefer the 40 breeders because you get that front to back depth.

Anyways, as for filters, canister filters can hold a lot more media than hang on backs. If you get a large enough canister, say a rena xp3 or so, you can go 2 or so months between cleanings.

With canisters, if you'll be injecting co2 (not sure if you will), you can keep the outflow under the water surface and it'll prevent a lot of co2 from off gassing, since the water flow isn't breaking the surface. Hang on back filters degas a lot of co2.

The reason for having 2 filters is that you can clean one while the other one is still running, thereby preserving a lot of bacteria and preventing a possible mini-cycle.
 

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I run an Ehiem 2215 on my 55 and it works great. I've also had an AC50 on a 55 that housed some big fish with no problems.

The benefits of a canister are the accessories that you use with them. Inline heaters, co2 diffusers and UV sterilizers are great to run and keeps the ugly equipment out of the the tank. Also the size. They are much bigger than HOBs so you can pack quite a bit of filter media into one.
 
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