Can Matrix replace ceramic rings? Question 

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peddidle

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New to fish keeping.

I have tap water with nitrates running about 20 to 30. I have two tanks going through the nitrogen cycle right now--a 10-gallon and a 20-gallon. They are planted tanks. My 20-gallon is too early into the cycle to focus on its nitrates, but the 10-gallon is at the point of converting dosed ammonia 4 to 0 and nitrites 0 within 24 hours. The nitrates run high (of course), and I don't expect them to come down enough without providing assistance because of the tap water.

I have very limited media space in my filters (Aqueon QuietFlow LED Pro 10), so I'm trying to decide whether I should buy filters with larger media space to house both ceramic rings and Matrix, or if I can remove the ceramic rings and replace them with Matrix alone. (I have floss in addition to the ceramic rings, as well as a sponge on the intake tube.)

The only reason I'm hesitant to buy new filters is that despite the very limited media space, the QuietFlow filters are self-priming and we have several or more power outages per year where I live (it also seems the QuietFlow filters are pretty safe when it comes to the risk of backflow/overflow should it clog, though I may be wrong about that).

What seems to be my best option?
 

newbywho

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if you mean sachem matrix it can completely replace ceramic ring just like ceramic ring matrix is just a high-porosity bio media for bacteria to grow on i run both some bio max and matrix in my sachem tidal 75 i think you will be fine running just matrix with your floss and sponge now if your in the market for a new filter the sachem tidal series are very good and self priming with large media baskets and the best flow control i have seen have a surface skimmer built in and a slew of other things if you do decide to try them id go with the tidal 35 for your 10 gallon and 55 for your 20 gallon
 
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peddidle

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Yes, Seachem Matrix. Thank you for the info.

I have been looking at Tidal 35 (since I only have small tanks). The 35 doesn’t have an intake tube that goes down toward the bottom of the tank. Consequently, some of the reviews say it doesn’t do a very good job of cleaning. I’m really not sure why they designed it that way. I’m still considering trying one, though.
 

newbywho

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if i where you shoot for the tidal 55 for the 20 gallon see how you like it like you am plagued with power outages so self priming was a have to have i stuck the 75 on my 30 no such thing as to much filtration lol and when they say best flow rate they mean it i can make it trickle or flow like a river and the 35 is the only one that dont have a intake tube but seeing as it would be going in a 10 gallon i think it would work fine best of all there made to use the media you want not throw away carts
 

WrenFeenix

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Just mentioning my experience, but I use Matrix as part of the substrate in addition to the ceramic rings in the filter. I have about half of the 2L container on the bottom of my tank. I have noticed that Matrix does not last as long as ceramic rings, and in a filter, it may crumble quicker.

I'd keep ceramic rings in your filter, and sprinkle Matrix all over your tank. That way you can jam your filters AND substrate full of media for as much surface area as possible. Matrix makes a nice accent, too.
 
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