Canister Filter Layers

Discussion in 'Filters and Filtration' started by hobbby3, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. hobbby3New MemberMember

    Hi all,

    I'm new to fishlore and just started my first fish tank thanks to somone giving me their setup leaving the hobby.

    It's a 40 gallon with a canister filter.

    My question is the canister came completely empty (I threw a bunch of ceramic rings in it to get started) what all should i put in the three levels? Also there was only half a sealing ring where the input feed pipe feeds the lower canister when I opened it up it was split and half gone. Do I need to find a replacement seal ring or are they not that critical? Thanks for helping out the noob. Here's a picture of what I've done so far any feedback you can provide would be much appreciated.


  2. bassbonedivaFishlore VIPMember

  3. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

  4. hobbby3New MemberMember

    Great thank you guys. Ill check out that thread now.
  5. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    Oooh, and definitely replace the o-ring seal. [nearly mised that bit]

    These seal the canister and perform 2 functions - 1, They stop air entering the system and 2, and most important, they stop water leaking from the system ;)
  6. SJ408New MemberMember

    People typically try to put the fine filter paddings first so that less detritus gets on the actual bio-media (bio balls, ceramic rings, etc) to keep those from getting clogged up.
  7. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    You've got that backwards - the coarsest media comes first. The finest media, such as a water polishing pad, comes last. If the finest media is put first, it will clog up and compromise the filtration.

    I have ceramic prefilter media in the first tray. This is a coarse media designed to catch large particles. Then as they break down to smaller particles they are trapped by the sponge media. In many of my canisters, I have a coarse sponge topped with a normal sponge. After that, the rest is all biomax.

    The media ought to be arranged coarsest to finest, so that the particles are trapped by the right medias.
  8. SJ408New MemberMember

    Oops, yeah that's the correct order I meant!:(
  9. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    Have a read of my guide posted in message #3

    It pretty much explains exactly what has been said ;)
  10. can haz catfishies?Valued MemberMember

    Mine are all set up the same way, coarse filter sponge then bio max rings, then bio balls and I leave a chamber empty for if I need to add carbon at any point, and yes if you have a broken seal replace it unless you want a wet floor!
  11. hobbby3New MemberMember

    The split seal is actually the pipe that feeds water from the tank into the bottom of my canister. Its not going to leak it just feeds the entire canister full of water instead of from the bottom up. Does that makes sense? Struggling with the explanation. I still havent been able to find a replacment for the seal. I'll post the model # of the canister when I get home see if you guys know of someplace I can get one.

    I settled on this format for my canister filter.

    coarse filter pad bottom
    ceramic rings middle
    Carbon on top

    The canister fills from the bottom up...well its supposed to atleast, after i get a new seal.

  12. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    I'd actually also add a fine filter floss/water polishing pad before the Carbon. It'll help remove those last little particles in the water and make the water clearer (just my thoughts) You can generally find the filter floss in bulk, and just cut to size.

    What size is the seal? You may be able to find a suitable o-ring from a Lowes or similar type hardware/plumbing. Or even possibly an auto-spares place :;dk
  13. JayseeFishlore LegendMember

    I agree - if I used carbon, it would be the very last media used.
  14. AmazonPassionModeratorModerator Member

    What do you consider the first tray? The first tray that gets put in the canister filter?
  15. can haz catfishies?Valued MemberMember

    The first tray that water passes through when it enters the filter
  16. LupinusValued MemberMember

    The first one that water passes through, which can be the top or bottom tray, depending on the filter model. On Aquatop CF's, water comes in the top, goes down the tray cutouts and past the UV bulb without moving through any media to the bottom, and is then pushed back up through the baskets and media to the top where it exits the output line. So it passes through the bottom of the bottom tray and then on up through the middle and top tray.

    So correct configuration will be your coarsest media on the very bottom of the bottom basket, then onto normal sponges, then bio media, and lastly (if you want to use them) carbon and/or fine water polishing pads.

    My CF400 is set up with bottom tray having pre filter media in the very bottom topped by a normal sponge, then tray two is just bio media, then the top tray is more bio media and topped with a fine sponge.

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