How long can I use my filter cartridge?? Question

Discussion in 'Filters and Filtration' started by ~Fanci~, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. ~Fanci~Valued MemberMember

    Hello, I have a 10g tank with a TopFin filter. I recently replaced (for the first time) my filter cartridge after 3 weeks, but I have read somewhere in another thread about after 3 weeks being able to "cut out the carbon and continue using the filter", but does this mean using it AS the filter still, or as filter media?
    The same day I replaced the filter cartridge I also purchased a pkg of AquaClear Filter Insert BioMax ceramic rings, which is the only filter media I am using.
    Can someone please clear this up for me- how often do you replace your filter cartridge? Can I cut the carbon from my current cartridge after 3 weeks and still get more use from it, or only as filter media?

    :;santaclaus Happy Holidays! :;rudolph
  2. MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    You don't have to replace the cartidge until it is falling apart. Cut out the carbon and stick the cartridge back in the slot. If it gets really gunky, give it a quick rinse in discarded tank water (not tap, as the chlorine will kill the beneficial bacteria).

    I hope this helps.

    eta: By the way, you never want to replace all the stuff in your filter at the same time. That's where most of the beneficial bacteria for the nitrogen cycle lives, and by discarding it, you'll set your tank cycling again, which is stressful for you and your fish.
  3. LucyModeratorModerator Member

    The carbon should be changed after a few weeks. If you dump the carbon, you can still use the media that held in until it falls apart.
    I replaced my cartrides with filter sponges. Others use filter floss.
    Every now and then, I put a cartridge with carbon in but I keep the sponge somewhere in the tank so I don't lose the bacteria.
  4. ~Fanci~Valued MemberMember the biomax rings that I am using- is that an equivalent to a "filter sponge" or "floss" since they all do the same thing in creating a space for bacteria to grow?
    And if I remove the carbon from my filters, do I need to use something else as media to replace the benefits of the carbon?
    My filter is pretty small...even the bag of rings almost did not fit!

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