Filtration for 20 Gallon Hexagon Tank - Suggestions Wanted

Leeman75

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I'm just a little over a week since getting my 20 Gallon Hex tank and am formulating thoughts and ideas on all sorts of things from eventual stocking to type of substrate and everywhere in between.

One of the first things that I'm turning over in my head is filtration. All of my tanks have HOBs and most also have sponge filters as well.

I have had 1 experience with a canister filter, but it had some sort of leak that I could not figure out and thus it sits unused in my basement. So, I'm reluctant to go that route again, especially because those types of filters are so much more expensive than the other options. However, I'm thinking that that may have been what was used by the tank's previous owners because the hole in the lid is only 8" x 2"...far too small for an adequate HOB.

Any thoughts, ideas, and suggestions would be extremely helpful here.
 
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Dunk2

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Leeman75 said:
I'm just a little over a week since getting my 20 Gallon Hex tank and am formulating thoughts and ideas on all sorts of things from eventual stocking to type of substrate and everywhere in between.

One of the first things that I'm turning over in my head is filtration. All of my tanks have HOBs and most also have sponge filters as well.

I have had 1 experience with a canister filter, but it had some sort of leak that I could not figure out and thus it sits unused in my basement. So, I'm reluctant to go that route again, especially because those types of filters are so much more expensive than the other options. However, I'm thinking that that may have been what was used by the tank's previous owners because the hole in the lid is only 8" x 2"...far too small for an adequate HOB.

Any thoughts, ideas, and suggestions would be extremely helpful here.
Give a sponge filter a try.
 
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Leeman75

Leeman75

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Islandvic said:
What type of filter is supposed to fit in there?

What brand of 20g hex is it?
It's a TopFin tank and it seems that the Silenstream 20 filter is what comes with it. They have horrible reviews, so I really would rather not go that route. If I go the HOB route, I'm really looking to decide between the largest sized Aqua Clear or Marineland (30/50, Penguin 150/200) that I can fit in the opening. Those two seem to be the top class of HOBs...at least that I'm aware of.
 

Cody

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Leeman75 said:
It's a TopFin tank and it seems that the Silenstream 20 filter is what comes with it. They have horrible reviews, so I really would rather not go that route. If I go the HOB route, I'm really looking to decide between the largest sized Aqua Clear or Marineland (30/50, Penguin 150/200) that I can fit in the opening. Those two seem to be the top class of HOBs...at least that I'm aware of.
I’m all about max filtration myself. But I think you won’t run into the same issues you would in a standard tank since your not worried about drawing water across the length of the tank or needing two filters to overcome that.

So I would not be as worried about not having a monster filter on there.
 

Islandvic

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Here is a link about Silentstream filters and how to mod them for better filtration.

https://www.fishlore.com/aquariumfi...tream-aquaclear-and-other-hob-filters.385506/

Most negative reviews on them seem to be from new people to the hobby that have unrealistic expectations, dont know how to properly operate them, and/or do not trouble shoot the problem.

If you go with an Aquaclear, if the AC50 fits then choose that over the AC30. I would also consider getting an extra extension intake tube, so the intake extends further down since the 20g hex is taller.

Also consider running a sponge filter in conjunction with whichever HOB you go with.
 

Cody

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I agree with Islandvic. A lot of your more more affordable prices equipment gets bad reviews often and I think it’s more reflective of the user than the product. I personally think a lot of Marineland products get unfair reviews for this also.

With the right media any filter can be a very good one in my opinion.
 
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Leeman75

Leeman75

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I've really done a lot of review of information that is out there and I have come to the conclusion that I'm going to go with the Penguin 200. There are a few things that contributed to that being my final decision. First, I have used 4 Penguin 350s over my fish-keeping career with a lot of success. Secondly, extensions to create a deeper intake come standard with the filter. Finally, on Amazon, the cost of the Aquaclear ($37.99) is almost 2.5 times that of the Penguin ($15.70). I cannot deny those things.

I will be customizing the filter with a sponge on the intake and sponges in the resevoir (vs. the cartridges). I will also be getting a sponge filter as well for extra filtration at the bottom.
 

e_watson09

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You could always run a sponge filter inside and then put a smaller HOB on it. This way you will also get good flow. One issue with hex tanks is they're usually pretty tall which means the water flow isn't all that great so between the sponge and the smaller HOB that should filter enough for the tank but also produce a good flow.
 

Jallen42

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Leeman75 said:
I'm just a little over a week since getting my 20 Gallon Hex tank and am formulating thoughts and ideas on all sorts of things from eventual stocking to type of substrate and everywhere in between.

One of the first things that I'm turning over in my head is filtration. All of my tanks have HOBs and most also have sponge filters as well.

I have had 1 experience with a canister filter, but it had some sort of leak that I could not figure out and thus it sits unused in my basement. So, I'm reluctant to go that route again, especially because those types of filters are so much more expensive than the other options. However, I'm thinking that that may have been what was used by the tank's previous owners because the hole in the lid is only 8" x 2"...far too small for an adequate HOB.

Any thoughts, ideas, and suggestions would be extremely helpful here.
I use sponge filters with a cheap hob with my hex tank! I stocked off fish that would not like a lot of flow and looked at it by stocking levels of the tank top/mid/bottom but as this hobby goes my fish swim all over the place I’m glad I have a shrimp colony or I’d have basically no bottom feeders my pygmy Corys would rather sit on the high up plants in between schooling with tetras than eat the food on the bottom! If you have any questions on how I did mine I would be happy to try and help!
 

faydout

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I'm using a single 200 on my 54, modded mostly how you mention. I use the Aquaclear 50 sponges, and a layer of Eheim mech in the bottom high enough that the sponges are blocking the entire intake from the impeller chamber. Thats it... just mech and like... 3/4 aquaclear 50 sponges. Monthly maintenance prevents it from blocking up (I usually rotate the back sponge up the the front when I do this). I'm also using large dual stacked corner sponge filters (needed a couple of zip ties to make it work) tucked back into the back corner. I'll also be adding in 2 more smaller sponge filters, as filters for qt tanks.
 

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