Filter Replacement?

Lunaakita
  • #1
Hi,

I am new here and have joined with the hope of some advice, if I leave any information out please tell me and il do my best to add it in.

I have a 92 Gallon fluval tank with a fitted external filter. The tank was running for 7 years with 3 shabunkin Goldfish. Unfortunately they caught some kind of disease, it was horrible their flesh started to rot and they had big open sores. It looked like fin rot but it was all over their body and their eyes turned milky. They all died despite trying different meds and trying to find a vet that would help with fish.

I knew I was going to be moving house in a few month so I emptied all water out of the tank and removed and binned all the gravel, ornaments and plants.
The tank has been empty for a little over 2 months and I would like to start again but tropical this time.

I wanted to get all the advice I could to make sure the fish I buy will be arriving to a healthy fully cycled tank. I would hate for another fish to die.

Do I need a new filter or can I clean the one I have?
Any other advice to help me have a successful set up would be great.

Thanks, Laura.
 
stella1979
  • #2
Has everything been dry for the time the tank has been empty? I wouldn't think you need to replace the filter itself, but if media inside has been wet all this time, it could be harboring disease or perhaps mold or mildew. If the media is pretty clean as well as dry, you probably don't need to worry, and will only have to cycle it.

Welcome to Fishlore! I'm editing the title and moving your thread to the Filtration forum. You'll learn your way around soon enough, but just a little tip, a quick and to the point title, as well as putting your questions in the correct forum, often yields the best answers.
 
THRESHER
  • #3
I agree. if your media has been bone dry, then all you really need is a good washing out before putting it back in use. If it's been damp, then you'll need to replace the media. The tank can be washed with white vinegar and water and rinsed really good. Same goes with the gravel and ornaments. Main concern is the filter media.
 
Lunaakita
  • Thread Starter
  • #4
Thank you for the help. I just clicked new thread but couldn’t find a section to choose a section, like you say i, sure il get the hang of it soon.

The foam board is still damp so I will replace all of the media.
Does anyone know where I can get well priced replacements for a Fluval 305 filter?
 
stella1979
  • #5
Nice job on remembering the vinegar wash THRESHER I always forget something.

I'd check eBay for filter replacements, or Dr.'s Foster & Smith. I have no experience with canister filters, but these are both good options for most fishy 'things' at a good price.
 
THRESHER
  • #6
Ebay : Ebay has more of a selection over Amazon.

This vid will help too:

@stella1979 you are most welcome. Sometimes it's easy to forget the simplest of things. Happens to all of us
 
Lunaakita
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
I will take the advice from the video and upgrade my filter. Thank you for your help
 
THRESHER
  • #8
I will take the advice from the video and upgrade my filter. Thank you for your help

Great choice! I've watched several of Pondguru's videos and they are quite informative. I've set up all my filters (canister and HOB's) using his method. Haven't had any issues yet.

Keep us posted please!
 
Lunaakita
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Thank you, The only thing I do not think il take from the video is the biohome ultimate media. It is quite expensive compared to others I have looked up.

Can anyone recommend a good media that is a bit cheaper?

If it is really worth paying for though I would rather know.
 
Charlie’s Dad
  • #10
Welcome to the forum....your in the best of company!

Upgrading your filter media is one of the best and easiest things to do for your aquarium.

As others have said.....vinegar and water wash and rinse very well......you should only have to cycle it and you will be good to go......

Post pics and share your experiences........good luck.!
 
Islandvic
  • #11
Lunaakita, did you get new media yet for the Fluval 305, or are you waiting until you move?

The coarse and fine sponges should be still usable.

If not, here are some options.

As for other media that can be used in the trays, here are some different options that I have used and can recommend from experience.

Most of the links will be from Amazon, but items may be found cheaper online at Petsmart or Dr. Foster and Smith for example...


Coarse Foam ()
PolyFill (Link)
Bonded Poly Filter Pads (, and )
Fluval Bio-Max () you may have to buy more than one 500gram packs of this
Seachem Matrix () 2 liters should fill the trays
Seachem Purigen () for your 90 gallon, I would use 2 of the 100gram bags,
 
Kryptos
  • #12
Have a question for you experienced folks.

I have a Superfish Aquaflow 300 pump/filter like the one on this picture:



Filter.jpg
Since I bought it I replaced the sponge stage already. I no longer have the activated carbon sponge but a dual stage with sponge and zeolites, which is apparently better.

The stage with the ceramics have stayed unchanged.

The documentation with the pump and the filters suggest replacing the sponge stage every month. In store the "expert" said to replace it once every 6 to eight weeks.

Because the first stage with the ceramic biomedia never get replaced does this house enough bacteria to make it safe to replace that second stage often?

The sponge can probably last a long time and I wash it in old aquarium water every week to keep it unclogged. But the zeolites will probably lose their activity over time as the pores get blocked up.

I am very curious about your opinion. I am almost at the 8 week point with this current one and before I replace it I'd like some good advice.
 
richiep
  • #13
Ive got a similar pump and what I've done is cut the sponge in half and when I'm ready to change I just do half so I've always got a seeded part, and I go a lot longer than 8 weeks, although the picture shows the ceramics in the first stage that's wrong the sponge should be there where most of the muck is collected and rings in the last stage after the water as been cleaned keeping the ceramics porous so the BB can multiply
 
Zka17
  • #14
I would change the zeolite to Seachem matrix, and rinse the sponge in used aquarium water when changing it. That setup should last for couple years without needing to change everything.
 
GlennO
  • #15
The quality of sponges varies a lot. Some last a couple of months and others over a year. If you squeeze it out and it doesn't return to its original shape you know that it's lost its consistency and is due for replacement. The ceramics will harbour enough bacteria to allow you to swap the old sponge for a new one but if you're concerned you can always soak the new sponge in the muck that you squeeze out of the old one.
 
richiep
  • #16
Take a look at this there's nothing this guy doesn't know about filters, and he's done a review on the aquaflow 300
 
JayH
  • #17
Take a look at this there's nothing this guy doesn't know about filters, and he's done a review on the aquaflow 300
You beat me to it.

If you want to go crazy you with the sponge you could get some Poret foam and cut to size like in the video. It should almost never need to be replaced. Just squeeze it out occasionally and you should be good to go. Incidentally, you don't need to keep squeezing until the water runs clean. Just a couple squeezes to get out the heaviest stuff should do it. What we think of as disgusting crud is actually an all-you-can eat buffet for the bacteria. Just keep it open enough for water to get through and your bacteria will be happy.
 
Charlie’s Dad
  • #18
I would squeeze a couple times when the flow rate is noticibly low. Put it back and go from there. If it does not hold shape replace it. The ideal bacteria colony is not what we consider tidy.
 
Kryptos
  • #19
Well thanks everyone! This is some really useful practical info!

I would change the zeolite to Seachem matrix, and rinse the sponge in used aquarium water when changing it. That setup should last for couple years without needing to change everything.

Take a look at this there's nothing this guy doesn't know about filters, and he's done a review on the aquaflow 300

You beat me to it.

If you want to go crazy you with the sponge you could get some Poret foam and cut to size like in the video. It should almost never need to be replaced. Just squeeze it out occasionally and you should be good to go. Incidentally, you don't need to keep squeezing until the water runs clean. Just a couple squeezes to get out the heaviest stuff should do it. What we think of as disgusting crud is actually an all-you-can eat buffet for the bacteria. Just keep it open enough for water to get through and your bacteria will be happy.

I think I want to go all out with this as suggested in the video. So would a good idea be to go with Seachem Matrix for the bio gravel? Unfortunately the guy in the video did not mention which biogravel to use.

The Poret foam is obvious, so will see if I can get my hands on some, should be ok as it seems to made in Germany.

Then the big question how do I go about changing out what I have now with the new "pimped" version without killing everything in the tank?

Logic dictates that I will cut the current foam down and use that first and that I will fill half with new biogravel and keep the scintered glass media in the top half for a while before changing it up with all biogravel?

If that is correct how long would be a good time to wait for the bacteria to establish on the new media?
 
richiep
  • #20
What you are suggesting is the right way richard advised me to change things a month apart this he said gave the new stuff time to seed,
You could get Biohome from Richard but postage wood kill it so seechem matrex is a good choice
 
JayH
  • #21
I think I want to go all out with this as suggested in the video. So would a good idea be to go with Seachem Matrix for the bio gravel? Unfortunately the guy in the video did not mention which biogravel to use.
Richard, the guy in the video, used Biohome Biogravel. It's a scintered glass media.
 
Kryptos
  • #22
Awesome thanks everyone!

Edited the post as I did not see the edit to the post above in time

What you are suggesting is the right way richard advised me to change things a month apart this he said gave the new stuff time to seed,
You could get Biohome from Richard but postage wood kill it so seechem matrex is a good choice

Is this the stuff? https://biohomenederland.nl/product/biohome-biogravel/

Then I can get it locally.
 
richiep
  • #23
That's the stuff

We get one type for marine and one for freshwater two different colours
 
Kryptos
  • #24
Ok I've ordered the biogravel and I saw they have filter sponge sets so I am just getting those too:

https://biohomenederland.nl/product/filterschuim-set-grof-medium-en-fijn/

It may not be the Poret foam but seems to be the exact stuff that Richard used in the vid.

Thanks agin for the advice!

Once I have put that filter together how often would the biomedia need replacing? Sounds like that setup goes a long long time?
 
richiep
  • #25
Bio media probably never need changing just give it a light swill in Aquarium water when you service, those sponges are the same I use in all my canisters, you only have to change the white and that depend how dirty it is with some of mine I can go two weeks the other two 6months to a year before changing, if you have nice clean water you could omit one of the heavy sponges and put more biomedia in
 
Kryptos
  • #26
Bio media probably never need changing just give it a light swill in Aquarium water when you service, those sponges are the same I use in all my canisters, you only have to change the white and that depend how dirty it is with some of mine I can go two weeks the other two 6months to a year before changing, if you have nice clean water you could omit one of the heavy sponges and put more biomedia in

Awesome thanks!

I was not planning to use the white as in the video Richard suggested not using fine foam with this pump as the pump's power will clog it up fast. Think I am just going to follow exactly what he does, with the course foam and then using the medium as a stopper for the biomedia in the top section of the filter housing.

Or do you think one should still use the white?
 
richiep
  • #27
I didn't watch the whole video and personal experience with Richard tells me to stick with his advise it's funny as I was going to say with that pump you may have to change it more often, I think it's the richard part rubbing off on me, one thing I would do if for any reason your tank got messed up by putting soil or something similar in I put the white in for a few days just to protect the other stages
 
Kryptos
  • #28
Brilliant. I will report back once the stuff has arrived and I have built the mod!
 
Kryptos
  • #29
So this weekend I built the intermediary stage of the filter.

Moved the old biomedia up in the top section of filter with some new biogravel.

And in the bottom section I added one layer of new foam and half of the old foam.

In a month I will replace the old stuff with new.


IMG_3379s.jpg
 
richiep
  • #30
That looks good to me, that is a course first stage machinal which is correct but tbh I don't think it'll need changing for quite some time nor the blue just a swill out in Aquarium water, I use exactly the same sponge in mine and they're still going well some have been in a year and some longer,
At the end of the day the choice is yours if the filter is working hard then you do what you feel is right, I don't think there's a right or wrong here
 
Kryptos
  • #31
That looks good to me, that is a course first stage machinal which is correct but tbh I don't think it'll need changing for quite some time nor the blue just a swill out in Aquarium water, I use exactly the same sponge in mine and they're still going well some have been in a year and some longer,
At the end of the day the choice is yours if the filter is working hard then you do what you feel is right, I don't think there's a right or wrong here

Oh agreed. What I meant here with "new" was as in not the stuff that came in the box with the filter. In a month I wil replace the white scintered glass with biogravel and the old part of the foam with new, leaving the rest in there.
 
johnbirg
  • #32
Ive got a similar pump and what I've done is cut the sponge in half and when I'm ready to change I just do half so I've always got a seeded part, and I go a lot longer than 8 weeks, although the picture shows the ceramics in the first stage that's wrong the sponge should be there where most of the muck is collected and rings in the last stage after the water as been cleaned keeping the ceramics porous so the BB can multiply
Nearly all the filters on the market have the filter media totally backwards. The water needs to travel through in this order. 1 coarse filter sponge 2 fine filter wool/ sponge 3 bio media. I think they do this to make it SEEM easier to service the filter but it is WRONG!!!!!
 
Kryptos
  • #33
So a month later and I replaced the rest of the old filter stock with new stuff.

It's all biogravel now and the sponge are all layered pieces.

Tested two days after and NH3 and NO2 still at 0. So looking good.

Thanks again for the tips on this thread to build this beauty.


IMG_3594s.jpg
 

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