Anyone have any tricks for reducing filter noise?

eaglescout316

Member
I have a penguin filter by MarineLand (came with the kit). The filter itself is nice and quiet, but the splashing noise from the outlet is deafening. It's in my living room and at times it's so loud that I have to crank up the volume on the tv. I've heard that there's supposed to be little noise the higher the water level, but I only get slight volume reduction by filling up so far that the water starts splashing out of the hole in the hood where the filter descends.

Does anyone have any tricks for making it quieter? I've heard that using a cut up pop bottle would do it, but when I tried the water backed up some and made the biowheel rattle around. I've heard something about using sponges, but can't find it again. It's this filter until christmas for me, then I might seek out a different kind that is more silent. I just can't afford the "buy a quieter one" solution until then.
 

Shawnie

Member
filling the tank to the top is the only thing that works for me...or maybe put some nylon over the release area...goodluck!
 
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Lucy

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I use an extra filter sponge shoved in the outtake to decrease the current for my betta.
It's long enough that is hangs in the water. I don't know if that'll help.
I would wonder if your water level is high enough if it's splashing down, shouldn't that part be underwater?
 
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eaglescout316

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Lucy said:
I use an extra filter sponge shoved in the outtake to decrease the current for my betta.
It's long enough that is hangs in the water. I don't know if that'll help.
I would wonder if your water level is high enough if it's splashing down, shouldn't that part be underwater?
The water level is so high that I have to be extremely careful to add anymore, my heater's cord comes out only about 1mm from the water's surface at this point and it's attached as high as I can put it. There's a significant amount of the water outlet ramp under the surface, certainly at least 90%.

In an effort to control the splashing, I folded up a small hand towel and jammed it between the light fixture and filter. It actually seems quieter now; I can't hear it from the other room anymore. Maybe it's muffling the sound?
 
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Lucy

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Is the heater submersible?

Yes, It sounds like the hand towel is muffling it, I'm glad it helped.

Maybe someone with the same set up will see this and be able to advise you further.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Lucy said:
Is the heater submersible?

Yes, It sounds like the hand towel is muffling it, I'm glad it helped.

Maybe someone with the same set up will see this and be able to advise you further.
It's submersible, but I don't think the power cord itself should be submerged.
 
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Lucy

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I've got the visi-therm in my tanks, they're submersible.
My cords are under water.

If you look at the back of the tank, you can see it in this pic.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Lucy said:
I've got the visi-therm in my tanks, they're submersible.
My cords are under water.

If you look at the back of the tank, you can see it in this pic.
I was just trying to find out about whether or not the visi-therm could be submerged past the cord, and couldn't. Lucked out that I got the same one, eh? Unfortunately, even when I filled the tank to the point that water was coming over the ledge where the hood sits, it didn't really help.

For the sponge idea, will any sponge do or is there a specific kind that's supposed to be used?
 
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Lucy

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I like the visi-therm stealths, they're shatter proof fully submersible and guaranteed for life.

I use an extra filter sponge. Then if I have to cycle a tank quickly, I have it handy.

I'm not sure about household sponges. I think there was a thread about it around here some where.
If I remember correctly, I think someone said it was ok as long as it didn't have dyes or soap, but I'm not positive about that.

Does your filter use catridges? If you have an extra one, you can cut the media off it and use that. I keep my in place with a peice of platic plant shoved up there. Not fancy, but it works.

Can you post a pic of the filter? It seems odd that it would be that far from the water to make that much noise.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Here are two pictures, one with an angle from above, one from below the surface. The waterline actually completely covers the outlet.

I'm starting to wonder if the loudness is due to my relative closeness to the tank. Most people probably don't watch tv 7' away from their tanks. Towel idea won't work until the water drops, when I took it off so I could remove the hood it was completely saturated. Much longer and it would start dripping, and that wouldn't be good.

Could you do me a favor and post a pic of your filter w/ the sponge?
 
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Lucy

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Did you take the hood off the tank for the pic or doesn't it have one?
If there isn't a hood, that could account for the noise.

I can see your heater, it's a visi-therm? It can be placed way down in the tank as long as it's not touching the gravel.

Your filter is different from mine, but I'll try and get a pic of it.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Lucy said:
Did you take the hood off the tank for the pic or doesn't it have one?
If there isn't a hood, that could account for the noise.

I can see your heater, it's a visi-therm? It can be placed way down in the tank as long as it's not touching the gravel.

Your filter is different from mine, but I'll try and get a pic of it.
The hood was removed for the photo, or I wouldn't be able to take a meaningful picture
 

Randall

Member
I have 10 penguin bio wheels running right now(I think,lol)and not one of them is at all noisy.If you just purchased it,I would return it.I fill my tanks up full as well and there is no splashing at all.And did you mean 7''(inches).7'(feet) is quite a ways away from the filter to be hearing noise.
 

Barbrella

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I have the penguin Bio-wheel on two tanks, and even when I"m standing right next to them they're virtually silent.

Agree there may be a problem with your filter.
 
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Lucy

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Lol, yeah, I had to take my hood off too. Besides, that solution would have been way too simple.

Remember, I did this to lessen the current not noise.

The first pic is taken from above, the blue is the filter media, you can see a bit of the green plastic plant that's holding it there.

The second is taken from below.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Randall said:
I have 10 penguin bio wheels running right now(I think,lol)and not one of them is at all noisy.If you just purchased it,I would return it.I fill my tanks up full as well and there is no splashing at all.And did you mean 7''(inches).7'(feet) is quite a ways away from the filter to be hearing noise.
I meant what I typed. The filter itself doesn't make much noise, it's the splashing of the water coming back out that's the problem. I purchased it as part of a hood-aquarium-filter-heater set from a website, and I don't see how it could be a specific item defect causing the loud splashing.
 

Randall

Member
Then the only thing you can do is to make sure there is so much water in it that the water reaches the bottom lip of the filter and the water does not fall into the tank.If that is what you have done and the noise still bothers you,you have some very sensitive ears and you might not want to sit so close to it.
Or try Lucys idea with the filter pad,that looks like a good idea.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Randall said:
Then the only thing you can do is to make sure there is so much water in it that the water reaches the bottom lip of the filter and the water does not fall into the tank.If that is what you have done and the noise still bothers you,you have some very sensitive ears and you might not want to sit so close to it.
Or try Lucys idea with the filter pad,that looks like a good idea.
Well, there's no waterfall (as per the pictures I posted), I can't turn down the sensitivity of my ears, nor can I turn it down on my phone since when I talk on the phone too close to the aquarium people ask if there's water running.

Filter pad may be the best idea i've heard yet, I might be fiddling around with one soon to see what I can do with it.
 
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Lucy

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I keep looking at your pics and I'm sorry, I don't get it, I thought you were talking about the waterfall noise also.

Uhhhh, wait, my daughter has that filter on her 10g. and something about the way your intake thing (sorry, don't know the proper word) is attached doesn't look quite right.

Try this, get the instructions out and go over the way you've put it together.
 

Randall

Member
After taking a closer look at your pics,it looks like there is water flowing over the top of the bio wheel.Does it?
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Lucy said:
I keep looking at your pics and I'm sorry, I don't get it, I thought you were talking about the waterfall noise also.

Uhhhh, wait, my daughter has that filter on her 10g. and something about the way your intake thing (sorry, don't know the proper word) is attached doesn't look quite right.

Try this, get the instructions out and go over the way you've put it together.
I tried the filter pad, no-go. Checked over the intake, it's all to spec. Then I did something I didn't anticipate. I knocked the bio-wheel off while the filter was running.

Absolutely no sound whatsoever. It was like someone hit mute.

I feel I must deeply apologize to all of you for wasting your time by assuming the noise was contributed by the water entering the tank, and not the biowheel. The ridges of the wheel that form the paddle-wheel design are splashing each time they slap the water. I have no idea if the wheel is too thick, if the wheel is too thin, if the water's going too fast, or if this is actually just normal.

As I see it, this news comes with a silver lining to a very stormy cloud. With the wheel making noise, I could drop the water level to where water isn't splashed out and onto the hood (which is where I had it in the first place). This means I should be able to wrap the towel around the filter and muffle the sound until I can figure out what's wrong, someone else figures out what's wrong, or until I can afford a better filter.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Randall said:
After taking a closer look at your pics,it looks like there is water flowing over the top of the bio wheel.Does it?
No, that visual effect is from me taking the cover on and off so many times trying to think of what to do. It got wet many times over. Also, as per my above post, I think some water is being slung onto the inside of the cover by the wheel.
 
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Lucy

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There's no reason at all to apologize and you sure didn't waste any of my time.
I'm glad you figured out what was causing the noise. Perhaps you can call the manufacturer and see what they suggest.

Edit: Come to think of it, if I hadn't sugessted the filter media or checking to see if it was put together correctly, you wouldn't have knocked the wheel off, so I guess I helped in a round about way.
 

Randall

Member
eaglescout316 said:
I think some water is being slung onto the inside of the cover by the wheel.
That is kind of what I was trying to get at,you just explained it better.That should not be happening.It is almost like maybe the motor is to big for the filter and the water flow gets the wheel spining to fast and that is where the splashing sound is coming from.Maybe someone screwed up assembling it and added the wrong motor for that size of filter?I don't know,but if it is a new set up,I would return the filter and ask for a new one.If isn't new enough to return,try getting a new wheel.If you get a new one(wheel),keep the old one floating in the tank,and maybe the new wheel will cycle faster that way.Returning the filter or buying a new wheel will cost little to nothing and would be worth a shot,IMO.Like I said earlier,I have several of these filters,and have never had any problems with noise or any other issues for that matter.Good luck with whatever you try.
 

Randall

Member
eaglescout316 said:
The ridges of the wheel that form the paddle-wheel design are splashing each time they slap the water. I have no idea if the wheel is too thick, if the wheel is too thin, if the water's going too fast, or if this is actually just normal.
I should have added this to my last post,but this is not normal.
 
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eaglescout316

Member
Randall said:
That is kind of what I was trying to get at,you just explained it better.That should not be happening.It is almost like maybe the motor is to big for the filter and the water flow gets the wheel spining to fast and that is where the splashing sound is coming from.Maybe someone screwed up assembling it and added the wrong motor for that size of filter?I don't know,but if it is a new set up,I would return the filter and ask for a new one.If isn't new enough to return,try getting a new wheel.If you get a new one(wheel),keep the old one floating in the tank,and maybe the new wheel will cycle faster that way.Returning the filter or buying a new wheel will cost little to nothing and would be worth a shot,IMO.Like I said earlier,I have several of these filters,and have never had any problems with noise or any other issues for that matter.Good luck with whatever you try.
The wheel's supposed to slow down with time, from what the instructions said. I'll wait it out and see if it slows. If it does, I think the noise will go away because it's probably the speed of the wheel causing all this. If it doesn't, I was wondering about the emperor filter anyhow, but can't afford to go get one yet.
 

mitch

Member
I have penguin 350and I know what your talking about. mine also puts tine bubbles looks like dust and the fish think its food.my water level is high can't put any more in. yes it is noisy. its comeing from the flow of water back into tank. I've tried acouple of things, noting work
 

Fishies-for-me

Member
I have a Aqueon filter I got as part of a 36 gal bowfront kit...as the water runs thru it has a plastic thingy with holes in it right before the water runs back into the tank...it is supossed to airate the water more by breaking it up....it makes the water trikle like a babbling brook...if I remove this thing it is silent..any chance there is something like that in your filter??

Edit: dang I gotta start looking for that 2nd page...lol
 

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