40 Gallon Tank Fluval 306 6+ Month Review

rmurray
  • #1
So it’s been running for at least 6 months now and it’s been really past due for some maintenance. It’s used on a 38 gallon bow front moderately stocked, it runs with a fluval c4 and had all factory in the box media plus some seachem Matrix.

This time I wanted to add in some filter floss, additional fine pads, more BioMax, purigen, and I bought some clearmax on a whim. I didn’t want to put standard carbon back in it because I know I tend to leave it in too long so maybe clearmax wasn’t a great choice.
I didn’t use any genuine filter pads this time, the course bio foam fit well. The rectangular foams where a little large and the fine polishing pads wear a terrible fit and started falling apart before I got everything sealed up.
Tray 1 bottom.
Course black bio foam and I think a polishing pad.
Tray 2 middle.
The existing BioMax and matrix(rinse in the water poured out)
Filter floss(just a little to ensure water passed through a polishing media. Since the polishing pads didn’t fit right)
Polishing pad
Tray 3 top
Purigen on one side
Clearmax on the other
BioMax on top(about 100-200grams)
Filter floss
Polishing pad

Flow is still great we will see how it is after the floss and pads clog some. Plan on only giving this one 4 weeks to blow through this generic media. Will probably order large media screens and cut to size next time. I debated increasing bio media but honestly the tank is no where near bioload and the c4 has a ton of biomedia.

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SaltyPhone
  • #2
Cmon man those sponges still had plenty of life left. For real though cool read; thanks for sharing!
 
rmurray
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Cmon man those sponges still had plenty of life left. For real though cool read; thanks for sharing!

Yeah I probably could have rinsed and reused but I had already purchased the replacement sponges . Good news is my kids tub is now the cleanest it’s been in months.
 
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Islandvic
  • #4
Thanks for the write-up and pics on the 306!

Next time you service the C4, will you do the same?

Did the canister already have Purigen and you added more, or did you add it for the first time?

I ask because I was curious to see how the Purigen looked after 6 months!!!

Next time you service the 306, may I make a suggestion.....

Try stacking the media trays in the following order, going from bottom to top (direction of water flow)

After the water goes through the coarse vertical foams on the side tray the water will hit the bottom tray then up through middle / top trays then back out to the tank.

I have been following the method of Richard on the Pondguru YouTube channel.

He advises many manufacturers put the order of media wrong in their canisters based on his experience of being a LFS owner.

According to his method (that I use also), water should flow through:

* 1st -coarse > medium > fine mechanical filtration ( foams/sponges then fine filter floss)

* 2nd - biological filtration

* 3rd - chemical filtration (optional last step)

This method allows for all of the particulates of muck to be captured first, leaving cleaner water to pass to the biological media next.

That way, whatever biological media is used will not have it's porous surface get clogged up with muck.

The chemical is last allowing it to readily adsorb whatever is left in the water.

Try out Polyfil, available from Walmart or craft stores, as your polishing layer. It comes in bags of loose fill and in rolls of batting that can be cut to your exact needs. It's inexpensive compared to manufacturer's pads.

Also, Amazon has bulk rolls of filter media pads that are 1 foot wide and range from 6ft - 12ft long. They range from $10-$20 for the rolls and are great to cut them to exactly fit your application. I use them and they work great.

The polyfill (or bulk roll filter pads) can be layered on top of the black foam sponge in the bottom tray.

Between the vertical foam blocks and the bottom tray, that will take care of your coarse/medium/fine mechanical filtration.

That will leave your middle and top tray 100% dedicated to your biomedia and chemical media that you run.

All of this of course is only a suggestion.

I use this method though in my Hydor canister and in my Aquaclear HOB's, and has worked well for me.
 
rmurray
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Thanks for the write-up and pics on the 306!

Next time you service the C4, will you do the same?

Did the canister already have Purigen and you added more, or did you add it for the first time?

I ask because I was curious to see how the Purigen looked after 6 months!!!

Next time you service the 306, may I make a suggestion.....

Try stacking the media trays in the following order, going from bottom to top (direction of water flow)

After the water goes through the coarse vertical foams on the side tray the water will hit the bottom tray then up through middle / top trays then back out to the tank.

I have been following the method of Richard on the Pondguru YouTube channel.

He advises many manufacturers put the order of media wrong in their canisters based on his experience of being a LFS owner.

According to his method (that I use also), water should flow through:

* 1st -coarse > medium > fine mechanical filtration ( foams/sponges then fine filter floss)

* 2nd - biological filtration

* 3rd - chemical filtration (optional last step)

This method allows for all of the particulates of muck to be captured first, leaving cleaner water to pass to the biological media next.

That way, whatever biological media is used will not have it's porous surface get clogged up with muck.

The chemical is last allowing it to readily adsorb whatever is left in the water.

Try out Polyfil, available from Walmart or craft stores, as your polishing layer. It comes in bags of loose fill and in rolls of batting that can be cut to your exact needs. It's inexpensive compared to manufacturer's pads.

Also, Amazon has bulk rolls of filter media pads that are 1 foot wide and range from 6ft - 12ft long. They range from $10-$20 for the rolls and are great to cut them to exactly fit your application. I use them and they work great.

The polyfill (or bulk roll filter pads) can be layered on top of the black foam sponge in the bottom tray.

Between the vertical foam blocks and the bottom tray, that will take care of your coarse/medium/fine mechanical filtration.

That will leave your middle and top tray 100% dedicated to your biomedia and chemical media that you run.

All of this of course is only a suggestion.

I use this method though in my Hydor canister and in my Aquaclear HOB's, and has worked well for me.

Yeah someone else asked for pictures of the c4 as well so will do. No the purigen was not in it before. But after about 3 months in my tidal 55 it was pretty dark. I used the loosefill polyfill this time I think I’ll try the padding version you suggested next time.
That set up is essentially how this one was I just added a layer of fine filtering between bio and chemical and again at the end. Trying to throw in polyfill where I can. The biomedia wasn’t very dirty even after 6 months so with the additional pads before it I’m not to worried about it clogging. The man thing I wanted to add was fine mechanical and chemical for clarity. Although I’m about to put 3-10 bristlenose fry 1.5” in so the bioload will definitely be increasing.

Oh I always do fine filter media last (as well as through out) as well just to keep items out of the impeller. Incase biomedia breaks or whatever else gets in. Keeps the impeller clean and crack free.
 
Islandvic
  • #6
Yes, I agree with a pad at the end to protect any potential debris or fine sand from either hitting/jamming the impeller or slowly scuffing the impeller shaft over time.
 
rmurray
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
Thanks for the write-up and pics on the 306!

Next time you service the C4, will you do the same?

Did the canister already have Purigen and you added more, or did you add it for the first time?

I ask because I was curious to see how the Purigen looked after 6 months!!!

Next time you service the 306, may I make a suggestion.....

Try stacking the media trays in the following order, going from bottom to top (direction of water flow)

After the water goes through the coarse vertical foams on the side tray the water will hit the bottom tray then up through middle / top trays then back out to the tank.

I have been following the method of Richard on the Pondguru YouTube channel.

He advises many manufacturers put the order of media wrong in their canisters based on his experience of being a LFS owner.

According to his method (that I use also), water should flow through:

* 1st -coarse > medium > fine mechanical filtration ( foams/sponges then fine filter floss)

* 2nd - biological filtration

* 3rd - chemical filtration (optional last step)

This method allows for all of the particulates of muck to be captured first, leaving cleaner water to pass to the biological media next.

That way, whatever biological media is used will not have it's porous surface get clogged up with muck.

The chemical is last allowing it to readily adsorb whatever is left in the water.

Try out Polyfil, available from Walmart or craft stores, as your polishing layer. It comes in bags of loose fill and in rolls of batting that can be cut to your exact needs. It's inexpensive compared to manufacturer's pads.

Also, Amazon has bulk rolls of filter media pads that are 1 foot wide and range from 6ft - 12ft long. They range from $10-$20 for the rolls and are great to cut them to exactly fit your application. I use them and they work great.

The polyfill (or bulk roll filter pads) can be layered on top of the black foam sponge in the bottom tray.

Between the vertical foam blocks and the bottom tray, that will take care of your coarse/medium/fine mechanical filtration.

That will leave your middle and top tray 100% dedicated to your biomedia and chemical media that you run.

All of this of course is only a suggestion.

I use this method though in my Hydor canister and in my Aquaclear HOB's, and has worked well for me.

I didn’t service the C4 but here’s me setting up the C3 I received today.

Only thing not pictured is the few BioMax I threw in over the carbon.


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Islandvic
  • #8
Awesome!

Thanks
 
rmurray
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Awesome!

Thanks

Anytime. If your tank is bigger than a 20gal I’d really recommend the c4. So much more room for media. At least double, next time I’ll try to pull volumes.
 

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