Cheap but good filters for a 55 gallon goldfish tank Help

Discussion in 'Filters and Filtration' started by Akari_32, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. Akari_32

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    Hey guys! I'll start thos by saying that I'm typing on my iphone, and my spell check likes to tirn on and off, so forgove me for anythong crazy lol

    So, I'm doing some preplanning for my 55 gallon fancy goldfish tank. I'm looking for two HOB filters that will add up to 600 or so GPH, that are sturdy but cheap! I looked at the Walmart aquatechs, which I like and have a few of the small ones, but the 20-40s only put out 160 GPH! For the $60 that would cost, I could buy 6 of the 5-15 100 GPH ones and get what I want lol (but that would be horribly tacky XD)

    Anyway, I'm looking for cheap but functional. Don't want to pay much more than $30 per filter. I can get my hands on $4 off $20 coupons, so price itsnt too strict. Anything that can be purchased at PetSmart, petco or pet supermarket.

    The tank will be seeded and started off with a couple small fancy goldfish, and eventually worked up to a 75 gallon. A DIY sump is also being worked out, to work in conjunction with the two (and possibly a 3rd) HOB. Stock will end up being something like 6 fancy goldfish, and a BN pleco or two. It will also be used to grow out two plecos for a 650 gallon pond at some point.

    So, let me hear your ideas! Please list price, where they are sold at, and their GPH rating :)
  2. snapperWell Known MemberMember

    6 fancies and a BN pleco will overstock you in a 55g. I would do no more then 4 with a BN pleco, or 5 without one. I also wouldn't add the BN pleco until you have lots of algae because if they don't get enough to eat (and believe me, it is hard to feed them with a tank full of greedy goldfish) they will resort to eating the goldies slime coat.

    The aquatech filters are not bad, I have two of the 30-60s (330gph) and two AC 50s (200 gph) running on my 100 gallon. The aquatechs have a lot of room for media for such a cheap filter. I ran the two Aquatechs when I had goldies in a 55g. Not sure what they cost because I got them free with used tanks.

    My first choice, though, would be a pair of AquaClear 70s. Those are about $35 on Amazon, each would do 300gph and lots of room for bio media. Not sure what they are at Petsmart/Petco/etc.
  3. iZaO JnrWell Known MemberMember

    For all those fish, wouldnt a canister be better than 2 HOBs? I'm sure for the combined price of the two you can find a decent canister? Maybe craigslist even?

    Even if it is more expensive, i would take the extra time to save a little more in order to have that added benefit?

  4. Dlondon95

    Dlondon95Well Known MemberMember

    I know you said you wanted HOB, but I'm very pleased with my SunSun canister. There is a 535 (somewhere around there) GPH model for just under $100

  5. Jaysee

    JayseeFishlore LegendMember

  6. OP

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    Somebody didn't read my post all the way :p I'm starting with the 55 and a couple HOB's and will be upgrading to a 75 (at the LEAST), the HOB's (maybe an extra one), and quite possibly a DIY sump (of 20-30 gallons). Besides that, theres no way in *heck* I can afford to fully stock the tank in any decent amount of time. Fancy goldfish are like $15 a piece here, even just for a teeny tiny one. I'm poor! LOL

    I know how to care for a Pleco with no algae in the tank. Its not rocket science. I have her already, anyway. She lives at a friends house, in an Angelfish tank. I want my baby back! She's well mannered. So far, you are the only one who says not to do it.

    I tried to look up the AquaTech 30-60's last night on my phone last night (I typed this up at 2:30 in the morning, in bed XD), but I could only find the 20-40's, which were $30 each. I imagine the 30-60's are $40-50, and if thats the case, I could just get a couple AC's LOL

    The AquaClear 70's are kind of expensive, but worth it if I can get up the money. $70 at PetCo, and $52 at PetSmart. Amazon is a good idea, though! I'll have to look into that when the time comes.... >=3

    A canister would be better yes, but not for my wallet! LOL A canister is a thought, but not a priority on my list. I want to get the tank going, and then see how it goes from there. If I determine I need a canister, I'll will address it at that point. I need to build up a fish-fund XD

    You only need like 4-8 GPH hour for a canister, right? Or something like that... So, that'd be around 440 GPH for the 55, and that still leaves a bit of extra for when I upgrade to the 75...

    I'll think about it. I have to look around. As of right now, the tank has no hood (its just a 55 gallon tank with a cracked side wall. No stand, no filters, no nothin'). So you can see why I'm trying to do everything as cheaply as possible. I hope to have a few Amazon Swords, and some other plants that Goldfish find yucky or too hard to eat, in there to help with water quality, as well as make the tank look extra awesome. But a hood and plants are something to be worked up to. Fancy Goldfish aren't too prone to jumping.

    I think we alllllll know that Jaysee likes canisters LOL

    Hopefully I can still find good prices like that come late summer! D=

    I know :) AquaTechs actually hold a decent amount of media, if you don't use the silly carbon carts they try to sell with them. Thats why I was looking at them. I want the best of all three worlds (Price, GPH, and media) LOL Good luck with that, right? :rolleyes:

    And just so you guys know, a lot of this thread is for just getting a general idea of prices. I won't really know what filters are what prices (as well as how high quality I think they are) until its the time to go out and look for them, and see what each individual store has. Everything is sort of... situational at this point, even when it comes to buying the fish.

    Also, this tank will be used to grow out a SailFin, and possibly a Common Pleco (just from the purchase size of 3-4 inches up to the pond-safe size of 6-7 inches) at some point, so I'll be constantly cleaning this tank lol Not something I mind too much. This also won't be my only tank, so extreme tank swap will be a game I play a lot, until I have everything worked out in both the 650 gallon pond and the goldfish tank.
  7. iZaO JnrWell Known MemberMember

    well i know you're on a budget, but IMO i wouldnt rush it and but something you will regret later. Its hard i know but you will prefer it that way.

    Sunsun seems to be the best bang for bucks from what ive been told. And undoubtedly a HOB would be terrible on a tank liker that. I know they're cheap, but they are soo flawed when you get the big boys (goldies and plecos) in town.
  8. OP

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    I'm not rushing anything, thats why I'm looking into this *now* rather than in June or July-ish when I plan on getting the tank going lol However, if I were to order something online, a SunSun for example, I'd have to wait until a better, more appropriate, time to do that.

    I've an offer given to me on a (basically free) AquaClear 70, so that saves me lots of money :) That, plus I plan on using Pea Gravel (like you use for rock beds) or Pool Filter Sand. Cheap, but nice :D

    I'm just exploring all my options, while keeping me, my wallet, and my fish (and fish-to-be) in mind.
  9. snapperWell Known MemberMember

    I'm the only one HERE saying not to do it.

    You say "it's not rocket science." I'm curious about your plan because dropping in a few algae wafers at night isn't going to work. Nor is putting in veggies. The goldies will get it all before the pleco has a chance. I think you underestimate the foraging ability and appetite of goldfish. But it seems you want the advice you want, not what you need, so you will do what you want and I wish you luck. Sometimes it does work out. Sometimes it ends like this.

    I'll withdraw from offering any further advice on the fish subject I know best since it isn't what you want to hear.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  10. kimoore

    kimooreValued MemberMember

    I got an AC 50 for $25 yesterday on which i thought was a pretty price. Someday this little 20high will be my quantine tank, so an extra $25 investment didnt seem like too bad of an idea. I do have a common pleco in there, (which was a BAD idea, but at the time i was a level 0 beginner and didnt know better.) Im hoping in the next year, when our house it built, i would like to build a 200 gal right into the living room. And thats where the pleco will go, i will never get another one. Too much mess, however really neat to watch! I think I will stick to cory's, RCS and MTS for clean up. BTW, i want to see a pic of BN Pleco! Those guys are waaaaay cool!
  11. Wendy Lubianetsky

    Wendy LubianetskyWell Known MemberMember

    I got a Fluval 206 on sale at Petco for $80.00. It moves 206 gph. It was super essy to prime and a really good filter with tons of room for filter surfaces. The other one I Really like is the Aqueon 70/90. it moves 450 gallons per hour and it relatively inexpensive for how much water it moves. I use one of each in my 60 gallon aquarium. When I did have a problem with my Aqueon with company sent me a knew one with no hastle at all. I like customer service like that!! Makes me think there is hope for all the other companies out there.
  12. OP

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    A variety of veggies, wafers, hopefully farmed algae (if I can ever get that right), etc are what I'm going feed the whole tank. My girl is smart. I don't cater to my fish (not to sound harsh, or anything). If you don't figure out when its time to eat and where to find the food, you'd better learn fast. If you didn't get any food today, you'll be there, first in line tomorrow. Its a system that I find works well for me.

    This particular pleco has fended off two hungry schools of fish (Black Neons and Cherry Barbs) simultaneously on numerous occasions from 'her' food, so I don't doubt her ability to hold her own against goldfish. If, in the event, she gets too aggressive or doesn't get enough to eat, I have plenty of other options for her.

    Its not that I'm looking for what *I* want to hear, its that I'm looking for something practical. Dishing out $80+ per filter just isn't practical for me right now. Down the road maybe, sure, but not right now. Since I'm starting "small," with only one or two 2-3 inch fancies, and my 5 inch BN, starting with something lower grade isn't too much of an issue right at this moment. As I build up money, and I have a need for something better, I can sell what I no longer need, and buy what I do need.

    I wasn't trying to drive you away (though whether you respond or not is your choice), I was just simply making a statement, that you are the only one that has ever said that. I've brought up the plans to make this tank a reality several times, and I've only gotten positive feed back, so the sudden negative feed back was a bit of a surprise. Thats all.

    Amazon is certainly a very strong possibility! Who know what goodies you'll find there lol Its a matter of what I can find in the store, if I can use my coupons, and if after that, Amazon is still cheaper. Too bad you can't use pet store coupons on Amazon LOL

    I'll PM you a pic of my Ninja ;)

    Is this a canister? I've heard loads of good things about everything Fluval. As for the Aqueons, their products are hit and miss lol I don't trust their water conditioner, but on the other hand, one of my Common Goldfish prefers Aqueon over Omega One, and I love my Aqueon Water Changer lol
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  13. Wendy Lubianetsky

    Wendy LubianetskyWell Known MemberMember

    Yes, the Fluval 206 is a canister and I LOVE IT. Plenty of room for extra bio rings or carbon. Very easy to start, I have had not problems at all with it. (Except I kicked it by accident and one of the valves popped off. I nearly flooded my livingroom). But, It is a great product. And I have to say, I own 9 Aqueon's 70/90, 50's and I have never had a problem. I got them because they are cheap, easy and move a lot of water.
  14. OP

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    Ok then. Perhaps I can find a cheapish canister filter and supplement it with a couple smaller HOBs.

    I'll look in to both of these :)

    Also, I guess it'd be a good idea to see whats actually available to me in-store lol I'll be home in a few weeks, so I can check then. In the mean time, I'm still open to what ever you guys have to throw out there!
  15. mtsguy21Well Known MemberMember

    Lexi03 and I recently purchased a couple marineland 350's. We put one one our 55g and one on our 75g. Putting two on your tank would give you 700gph. We got them for about $50 each. I love the bio-wheels that marineland comes equipped with as well.
  16. iZaO JnrWell Known MemberMember

    Fully agree with the fend for yourself attitude. Fish are more adaptable than most people know. I have a pleco that takes on 25 mbuna, and wins. It wasnt like that when i got it, but in 3 months has become that.

    Akari has knowledge i dont question with goldies. Some things work for some people, some things work for others. Akari has found a way for hers to work before, just like you have others have found ways to make their setups work.
  17. OP

    Akari_32Fishlore LegendMember

    Hmm, pretty expensive... I'm not too sure I like the whole BioWheel concept, either. Its kinda weird lol But, I'll look into them and see what I think when I have my hands on one.

    Its funny you would say this, because this will be my first shot at keeping goldfish. However, I've done extensive research and have written up care sheets for the most common types of goldfish for a few sites (I have a Goldfish and Koi page on FaceBook, and a fish keeping forum-type thing on another site). My three current Goldfish, Commons rescued from the Fair, don't even live with me. But soon they will :)

    I agree, when working with animals, most things are very situational. You never know if things will work out or not. You can only hope for the best, and plan for the worst.
  18. James95

    James95Well Known MemberMember

    I'd go with dual aquaclear 110's or a canister filter. With 6 goldies you'll need all the mechanical and biological filtration you can get.
  19. kimoore

    kimooreValued MemberMember

    I have a bio-wheel on my tank, and Im not all that impressed. If it doesnt sit level, the biowheel wont turn and I find it more of a hassle than anything. I OBSESS over it turning or not. Mine is also a marineland penguin 150, doesnt move a lot water, gets plugged easily... noisey. Just my own input, I do not care for the biowheel.
  20. James95

    James95Well Known MemberMember

    The penguins are entry level bio wheel filters. The emperors are much better since they have a spray bar that turns the bio wheel.

    Marineland filters tend to be finicky when it comes to noisiness. Just something to keep in mind :)

    I'd either go with dual aquaclear 110's or dual emperor 400's.

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