Types of filtration and Modifying your HOB filter

Types of filtration and Modifying your HOB filter

  • Author SouthAmericanCichlids
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There are 3 main types of filtration: Biological, Mechanical, and Chemical. The most important of which is Biological, then mechanical, then chemical. And remember, these are just my opinions, if you feel otherwise to any of these, please comment below. I don't care if you say I'm wrong on things, I just want what's best for the people reading this.
Biological filtration mainly deals with, 1 ammonia, 2 nitrites, and 3 Nitrates. Ammonia and Nitrite are very toxic to aquarium inhabitants, I will not go into the aquarium Nitrogen cycle now but here is a video describing it:

But briefly, bacteria turns mainly these 3 substances into less lethal substances. There are 2 ways you can go, the expensive super efficient route, or the less expensive, but still good route. The efficiency of the media is based on surface area to volume ratio. The higher the surface area compared to volume the better it is, and the more bacteria can grow on it. If you go the cheaper route you will want to get either Sponges (Not sink sponges, though some do work, do your research) or lava rock. he more expensive ones are ceramic bio rings, bio-balls, K2, and matrix, in no particular order.
Mechanical filtration is simple, it makes the water clearer. It blocks larger bits and pieces from going back into the tank. there are 2 main mechanical filters. 1 sponges, and 2 filter floss. Sponges is the cheapest because you can knock 2 out with one stone, but is less efficient on the biological side. There is special aquarium filter floss, but the cheaper option is all natural polyfill, which you can find at many craft stores and Walmart. And you can get a huge bag of it, but you need to replace very often.
Chemical filtration is chemicals such as carbon which suck up contaminants that pollute the water, though some can suck up nitrates, ammonia, and nitrites. And others can add things to the water. The most popular of which are activated carbon, purigen, there is also ferric oxide or aluminum oxide (Most commonly has "Phos" in it's name or "phosphate remover"). Purigen, is my personal favorite of the 3. Carbon needs replacing every 3-4 weeks depending on who you ask, and doesn't do much for ammonia, and nitrites, and nitrates. But purigen can be "revived" with a 1 to 1 bleach to water solution. And does help slightly with ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. Carbon, purigen, and oxides are all good for water clarity and odor. Then there are different ph changers, such as peat moss, and various other things that change the water chemistry.
Modding Your Hob
To mod your HOB (Hang On the Back) filter what you need to do is first take out the cartridges. Next pick a mechanical filter, you should put this at the very front, right before the water re-enters the aquarium, so the larger bits will get caught before going into the aquarium. Next behind that you want as much as you can fit back their, but don't overcrowd too much, for things like lava rock (And especially with large pieces) it is easy to overcrowd the filter. If it is too overcrowded back there, the water will struggle to flow back into the aquarium, which can lead to your HOB overflowing. Next there is chemical filtration, which is debatably useful. Not all believe in it. If you do want to put it in, you can put it practically anywhere except the front.

Note: This is just my personal experience/opinions about modding a HOB filter and filtration in general, thank you.

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Very informative!
Thanks! If you have any other tips, feel free to share them.
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