10 Gallon Tank How do I clean a HOB filter without removing beneficial bacteria?

SomyaValecha

Member
I have a HOB filter that I haven't cleaned since like November. I don't think water is going through the filter (The sponge filtration thing in the box) and is instead going through the sides of the HOB filter. Is this because I need to clean it or is it another problem? Also, if I do need to clean it how do I?
 

Betta'sAnonymous

Member
Swish the media in some tank water. I like to use my fingers to scrub off some of it too. And yes, it is being bypassed because the media is clogged, most likely reason.
 
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SomyaValecha

Member
Betta'sAnonymous said:
Swish the media in some tank water. I like to use my fingers to scrub off some of it too. And yes, it is being bypassed because the media is clogged, most likely reason.
Ok, do I also need to change the cartridge (sorry I don't know much about filters)?
 

Betta'sAnonymous

Member
SomyaValecha said:
Ok, do I also need to change the cartridge (sorry I don't know much about filters)?
I would just rinse that too. Though if you have media in the filter thats not part of the cartridge, you can probably replace it.
 

Flyfisha

Member
A very new filter with a very new beginner filter pad.
The description is to swish it like a tea bag.

A very old filter that is stable from a stable tank you can rub it hard under water ( old water ) with your fingers.

At 3 months old you can be quite vigorous with your fingers as you rub and swish the solids off.

Edit .
NO . filter pads are not replaced for years .
As the tank is only 3 months old do not replace anything at this time in my opinion.
I have cartridges that are 3 years old.
 

StarGirl

Member
If the cartridge has carbon in it make a slit on one side towards the top and get it out if you can. Its not useful anymore. It will just make the clog even worse. Then get as much of the mulm out and it should work better for you. You have to watch it if it starts going off to the side it can overflow and make a mess.
 
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SomyaValecha

Member
StarGirl said:
If the cartridge has carbon in it make a slit on one side towards the top and get it out if you can. Its not useful anymore. It will just make the clog even worse. Then get as much of the mulm out and it should work better for you. You have to watch it if it starts going off to the side it can overflow and make a mess.
I cleaned the cartridge in some water but I still think something isn’t right with the flow. The black and white things are carbon balls and ceramic things. The part circled in blue is where a lot of the water is exiting from. If I try blocking that area the water starts exiting from the top of the cartridge not through it. Is this normal or could it be because of the extra media?

1616893720170.jpeg

SomyaValecha said:
I cleaned the cartridge in some water but I still think something isn’t right with the flow. The black and white things are carbon balls and ceramic things. The part circled in blue is where a lot of the water is exiting from. If I try blocking that area the water starts exiting from the top of the cartridge not through it. Is this normal or could it be because of the extra media?

1616893720170.jpeg

1616894216750.jpeg
 

StarGirl

Member
That cartridge still looks really clogged.
 

Flyfisha

Member
It’s very likely because of the extra media.
Remove some / most of the plastic balls first and see. The plastic balls are for a moving bed filter and will not do much in that style of filter compared to the space they take up
 
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SomyaValecha

Member
StarGirl said:
If the cartridge has carbon in it make a slit on one side towards the top and get it out if you can. Its not useful anymore. It will just make the clog even worse. Then get as much of the mulm out and it should work better for you. You have to watch it if it starts going off to the side it can overflow and make a mess.
I don’t think there’s carbon in there, there’s only a sponge and the outer pad in the pictures (?)
 

Flyfisha

Member
Skip to the 4 minute mark to see a moving bed filter and how those plastic balls are designed to be used.

 
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SomyaValecha

Member
Flyfisha said:
It’s very likely because of the extra media.
Remove some / most of the plastic balls first and see. The plastic balls are for a moving bed filter and will not do much in that style of filter compared to the space they take up
Ok, should I still keep the ceramic stuff in there? Also if it continues to overflow should I be concerned or is it just a natural thing?
 

Flyfisha

Member
Keep as much of the ceramic media in the back of the HOB as you can while still getting flow through the pad. Putting it in a mesh bag will make rinsing a lot easier every few months.
 

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