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Cascade 700 filter media help
I have a cascade 700 in my 30 gallon and I'm curius of what you guys think my best option for stacking the trays with media would be. right now its housing small (inch or 2) oscar and green terror. has driftwood and fake plants
I run this same filter on my 20Long / high tech and when I first bought it I just ran it as it was pre set up (how it told me) at least. Never any real problem with water clarity unless I neglected it for some time. Now I have it like so -
Course media (that it came with)
Same bag of charcoal
(Most of it has been taken out to seed smaller filters so it's mostly ceramic media)
More polyester batting
Works great. No issue.
There are many ways to set it up and probably not a right or wrong answer, but I prefer to set up my trays opposite than Silister Trench. Since the filter works by pushing the incoming water to the bottom of the filter and the water makes its way through the trays to the top where it is sent back to the tank, I prefer to have my course media at the bottom of the lowest tray. I then have polyester batting above the course media. The bottom of the second tray I have my bio-media (Seachem Matrix) with a layer of polyester batting above that and a bag of Seachem Purigen (does what charcoal does except lasts longer) at the top. The thinking is that you have the course media and finer media trap the junk before it gets to your bio-media so that the bio-media doesn't get clogged up with gunk.
I would also recommend getting Poly-Fill polyester batting for your filter floss. You can get it cheap at Walmart and in my opinion doesn't fall apart as quickly as the filter floss that came with the filter.
Another thing some Cascade owners have noted is that there seems to be a gap between the trays and the sidewall of the canister, which might allow some water to bypass the trays. The fix to that is to take a strip of polyester batting and wrap it around the outside of the tray before you put it back in the canister.
The great thing about canister filters is the flexibility you have. You can rearrange the media and see what works best for you.
Like Mplsdjw said mines set up backwards, but it's for the reason he listed.
I kept noticing tons of debris on the top tray and after much pondering I was pretty sure I knew how the water flowed in, and was then pumped up and out but I just couldn't figure out why it seemed debris flows opposite of the way I thought it should so I set it up in reverse and have just never switch it back around.
I'll have to try stuffing batting around the sides.
I also use Seachem Matrix and Purigen in all 3 of my canisters! I will never use bioballs/ceramic or Carbon (not charcoal) again.
I personally use the cut to fit type pads below and have no complaints. They last a long time even after being cleaned with high pressure water.