Find The Enheim Prefilter - My Experience How Do I

Discussion in 'Filters and Filtration' started by RSababady, Sep 9, 2018.

  1. RSababady

    RSababadyWell Known MemberMember

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    I use two Tetra EX1200 canister filters in my 450l tank. One of the filter's intakes is connected to an Enheim water skimmer that I wrote about here and the other one was connect to a sponge. The sponge was used as a prefilter, however it used to give me a lot of grief as whenever I tried to take it out for cleaning, a lot of the muck would end up falling off and getting into the water. I even got to the point of putting a plastic bag over the sponge before switching the filter off to catch the dirt - but somehow lots of dirt always managed to escape back into the tank.

    So I shopped around and bought an Enheim prefilter. Here is what I found:

    The unboxed Enheim refilter is a lot bigger than I thought initially. I guess I wasn't expecting it to be this big!
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    In multiple opinions, I saw comments about the prefilter cracking and breaking up when being opened. My advice is to READ THE INSTRUCTIONS!
    The prefilter has agrey rings with a tab in the front. Once you press the tab in the front, the ring expands and you need to hold the piece to be removed 90 degrees to the tab on opposite ends and gently work the piece off.
    Once off, you will see three sections - top cover, middle section and bottom section.
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    There are two white sponges inside that are fairly course, but springy - seem to be good quality.

    The bottom section is important, as it stops water flowing directly up into the filter avoiding the sponge prefilter. The bottom piece also allows for seating on the substrate without sucking substrate into the prefilter which is of course very useful!
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    Connecting the prefilter to my installation was tricky even though I use standard 22mm piping. I had to use a short piece of plastic pipe to connect the prefilter to my adjustable plastic piping.
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    Once installed, the prefilter looks good and I managed to hide it behind one of my plants.
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    Will come back and post again in two weeks time when it is time for a WC and a prefilter clean. Hopefully this time I will actually clean the tank and not dirty it when taking the prefilter out for cleaning!
     
  2. THRESHER

    THRESHERWell Known MemberMember

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    Excellent! I've been thinking of getting one of these for my Eheim Pro4+ 250 canister. Maybe two, second to add to my SunSun 304B. Thanks and will be looking forward to your 2 week update!
     
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    RSababady

    RSababadyWell Known MemberMember

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    Someone seems to enjoying having a new ledge to hangout on
     
  4. OP
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    RSababady

    RSababadyWell Known MemberMember

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    Two weeks later, I took the pre-filter out to clean.
    I don't utilise this pre-filter as a biological filter so everything was washed in luke warm running tap water.

    After two weeks of use here are some pictures of the prefilter when I took it out too clean.


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    The pre-filter taken out of the tank after two weeks. There was little debris nor muck stuck onto the outside wall of the pre-filter. It was all stuck to the sponges.
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    The top sponge of the prefilter doesn't collect as much muck as the bottom sponge in the prefilter.
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    The bottom sponge of the prefilter seen from the top. The dirt gets trapped in the sponge all the way to the center of the filter.


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    The sponge at the bottom of the picture comes from the top half of the prefilter. The sponge at the top of the picture comes from the bottom half of the prefilter.
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    This is the space below the pre-filter. I found a lot of dead plants and debris under the location of the pre-filter. This was not stuff that fell off the pre-filter when I disconnected it - was there all the time.
     
  5. DoubleDutch

    DoubleDutchFishlore LegendMember

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    I have the same sponges running in my internal eheims. Noticed though rinsing them often they eventually will clog down and have to be rinsed more often.

    But seems to work great your way !.
    Is the cory a C.schwartzi ?
     
  6. OP
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    RSababady

    RSababadyWell Known MemberMember

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    Interesting that the sponges eventually get clogged up....... I intend to rinse them out every two weeks when I do a water change...... thx for the feedback Dutchy!

    As for the cory - you have a GREAT eye for cories .... yes I have five of them in my big tank. They are small in size 2.5cms at the most but are adorably playful and busy little fellas.
     
  7. THRESHER

    THRESHERWell Known MemberMember

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    Wow, just 2 weeks and the pre-filters got like that? They do look "well used", but did it hinder flow? I only ask because when I do water changes I rarely need to touch my canister filters, but my HOB's I'll do a quick wash in the tank water with them if they need it.

    So do you still recommend the pre-filers?
     
  8. OP
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    RSababady

    RSababadyWell Known MemberMember

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    That's a good question.
    I have two canisters in this tanks (125g), so I started using pre-filters about a year ago as I was having to clean the canisters every 30 days. I started with ordinary sponge filters on the inlets, which I washed every two weeks when doing a water change. The main problem with these sponge filters (and Iam not referring to the Enheim pre-filter) is as soon as I switched the filters off (ie. the pumps), muck would drop from the sponges back into the tank. This also happened when taking the sponges out of the tank to wash during a WC.

    The Enheim pre-filters are in a plastic casing, so next to nothing falls back into the tank - this is their greatest attributes.

    Do they reduce water flow? Not at this stage, however Double Dutch mentioned above, that he uses them and after a while the sponge deteriorates and then they start to retain muck in them during a rinse and this I am sure will reduce the water flow.

    So after weeks of use - yes I still recommend them as mechanical pre-filters.
     
  9. THRESHER

    THRESHERWell Known MemberMember

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    Ahh, gotcha. Well I'm not using any sponge filters on any of my filter intakes (canister or HOB), but I'd like to try them. I'll need to order 2 of them, one for each of my canisters, but I figured regular sponges for my HOB's is enough for them. Thanks for the update!
     
  10. DoubleDutch

    DoubleDutchFishlore LegendMember

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    One advantage is they're pretty easy to remove and rinse !
     
  11. Islandvic

    IslandvicWell Known MemberMember

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    Thanks for that write up on the Ehiem pre-filter. Those look great!

    I use Lustar ATI Filter-Max pre-filters and Top Fin sponges zip tied to my HOB intake tubes.

    I have always used a ziploc quart or gallon bag and slipped it over the sponge and closed it as much as I can before removing the sponge. Of course this is while the filter is off. I have very minimal leakage from the sponges using this method.
     
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