Fluval Spec V Filter?

  • Thread starter

madelyn anne

Valued Member
Messages
266
Reaction score
102
Points
73
Experience
Just started
Hello Fishlore.

I have my male betta, Ferguson, in the Fluval Spec V. I love the aesthetic of the tank and the lighting is awesome, but I'm disappointed with the filtration system.

First, in order to access the button to adjust the output flow, you have to disassemble the pump and lift it out of the tank to get to it. That's frustrating.

But more importantly, the output was WAY too strong for a Betta. I had to poke holes in the pump tube, and stuff the output nozzle with sponge to diffuse it a bit. That, I can handle. But if you look at the INTAKE which consists of several slits in the side of the tank, leading to the filter media, it doesn't do anything (visibly)!

I can see larger pieces of debris go riiiiiiight on by the intake, and be swept away by the strong flow of the output.

But logically, the output is expelling water that came in through the intake, so I know that it has to be circulating SOME water. But I don't like how I can see a filmy substance on the top of the water, and I don't like how stagnant the water has become, or seeing the lack of debris being taken in the intake slits.

Does anybody else own the Fluval Spec V, know what I'm talking about, and have any suggestions for me? I'd super appreciate it! I've owned this tank for a few weeks now and was hoping that as it got used to running, the filtration would improve but no such luck.

xx
 

junebug

Fishlore Legend
Messages
13,464
Reaction score
2,251
Points
358
Experience
5 to 10 years
If I recall correctly, the Fluval Spec line has built-in sumps with overflow, right?

So, what you're calling the intake is just the overflow slats. The point of them is that they don't allow debris through, but do allow water through, so ideally they aren't going to let your large debris through, as that would clog the pump. I have the same type of in-tank sump built into a few of my 3 gallon cubes and find it works better in some than in others, but overall I'm satisfied with the filtration capacity.

All tanks with built-in sumps will have the water pump that needs to come out of the sump to be adjusted. It's actually that way on purpose, so you can change the pump if you want to. The design also allows superior filtration capacity while acting as a protein skimmer. On that note, if you have a film at the top of your water, it's likely something in the tank is causing heavy buildup, because the overflow would take care of a minor one.
 
  • Thread starter

madelyn anne

Valued Member
Messages
266
Reaction score
102
Points
73
Experience
Just started
junebug said:
If I recall correctly, the Fluval Spec line has built-in sumps with overflow, right?

So, what you're calling the intake is just the overflow slats. The point of them is that they don't allow debris through, but do allow water through, so ideally they aren't going to let your large debris through, as that would clog the pump. I have the same type of in-tank sump built into a few of my 3 gallon cubes and find it works better in some than in others, but overall I'm satisfied with the filtration capacity.

All tanks with built-in sumps will have the water pump that needs to come out of the sump to be adjusted. It's actually that way on purpose, so you can change the pump if you want to. The design also allows superior filtration capacity while acting as a protein skimmer. On that note, if you have a film at the top of your water, it's likely something in the tank is causing heavy buildup, because the overflow would take care of a minor one.

LOL, to be honest, I still haven't quite figured out what a sump filter is. So, I'm not really sure if it is one or not but I can describe it to you;

On the side of the tank, there's approximately a 3 inch wide area that contains filter sponge with cutouts for carbon and biological filtration (in my case, the Fluval "bio max" rings) that takes up most of the space. Then there's a separate section that has the pump, switch, and the tube that comes up and out into the tank.

I'm not sure if that's what a sump is or not, lol, but that's the set up.

My understanding of it is that the cutouts on the side sucked the water in, dropped it down through the filtration, and then the pump sucked it back up and out into the tank. It DOES suck water through to an extent, as whenever Ferguson is next to it, his fins get (very lightly) sucked up against it. But it's very light - which is great for Fergy, but wasn't so sure about the actual filtration of the water.

Cause yeah, I am seeing some filmy stuff on the top, and there are particles in the water that any other filter I've used would have easily sucked up by now
 

junebug

Fishlore Legend
Messages
13,464
Reaction score
2,251
Points
358
Experience
5 to 10 years
  • Thread starter

madelyn anne

Valued Member
Messages
266
Reaction score
102
Points
73
Experience
Just started
junebug said:
It's a sump

What substrate did you use in the tank?
LOL, thank you. I was researching types of filters and they all made perfect sense to me except the sump filter. Those diagrams are confusing and I don't quite understand how they work...but I guess I have one, and so THAT'S how they work! Haha!

I have a very fine gravel, the kind that's almost similar to sand. No plants in his tank (yet), though lots of faux plants for him to explore and a piece of fake coral with some cool little caves. I don't have anything that would explain the film, I don't think.

I have also noticed small pieces of this weird stuff floating in the tank. Some of them were big chunks. Almost looked like if we took a layer of skin off and put it in the water. Translucent/white, very thin, very slimy. Somebody said it was probably bio-film and nothing to worry about, but not sure how that's created/where it's coming from/if it has anything to do with the film I'm seeing at the top of the tank.

The only additives I've put in the tank are API Quick Start, Prime, and I use Seachem Neutral Regulator during my water changes to keep the pH stable at 7.0. But I also use those things in my other tank and don't see any of that happening over there....but then again, I have 2 filters running on that tank. So I don't know. :/
 

junebug

Fishlore Legend
Messages
13,464
Reaction score
2,251
Points
358
Experience
5 to 10 years
For starters, stop using Neutral Regulator. If you're using tap water, you don't need to adjust the pH (there are too many factors affecting it to keep it stable with modifiers like that).

The fluffy skin stuff you're seeing is just biofilm. If you have a lot of it right now, that's probably why you have it on the surface too. It's normal in betta tanks so I wouldn't worry too much. I have one cube that gets it because of where the return is located, and the other one hasn't got it yet.

Also, sometimes gravel has a bit of oily stuff on it. Harmless to fish, apparently, but leaves a film at the top of the water.

Can you reposition the return for the pump so it's facing sort of up? Adding surface disruption helps keep the biofilm at the surface broken up.
 
  • Thread starter

madelyn anne

Valued Member
Messages
266
Reaction score
102
Points
73
Experience
Just started
junebug said:
For starters, stop using Neutral Regulator. If you're using tap water, you don't need to adjust the pH (there are too many factors affecting it to keep it stable with modifiers like that).

The fluffy skin stuff you're seeing is just biofilm. If you have a lot of it right now, that's probably why you have it on the surface too. It's normal in betta tanks so I wouldn't worry too much. I have one cube that gets it because of where the return is located, and the other one hasn't got it yet.

Also, sometimes gravel has a bit of oily stuff on it. Harmless to fish, apparently, but leaves a film at the top of the water.

Can you reposition the return for the pump so it's facing sort of up? Adding surface disruption helps keep the biofilm at the surface broken up.

Yeah, I can adjust the nozzle so it's facing upwards! I'll do that now and see if I notice any sort of difference.
Good to know it's just the bio film. Where does that stuff come from? My betta? The water? Very weird stuff, haha.
 

junebug

Fishlore Legend
Messages
13,464
Reaction score
2,251
Points
358
Experience
5 to 10 years
madelyn anne said:
Yeah, I can adjust the nozzle so it's facing upwards! I'll do that now and see if I notice any sort of difference.
Good to know it's just the bio film. Where does that stuff come from? My betta? The water? Very weird stuff, haha.
Essentially it's dissolved waste products starting to build up. Not uncommon with bettas, because they make all that extra goo when they build nests, and because betta tanks tend to be low-flow.
 
Toggle Sidebar

Aquarium Calculator

Aquarium Photo Contests

Follow FishLore!





Top Bottom