How much media is enough to grow the bacteria?

diamonfingers

So I did research and most people seem to agree that just 1 sponge filter is enough to create enough bacteria to take care of near any size aquarium. Meanwhile I got a canister filter from eheim and it came with 2 trays of different rocks to use as biological filtration. What is the science behind this, are more rocks better? can I just add dish washing sponge in there and that would be enough?
 

Rye3434

There is a philosophy that more surface area = better, but this is not always true, as oftentimes it is just excess surface area unused by bacteria because stocking levels are not high enough to warrant the extra area. Consider a 10 gallon tank with 6 chili rasboras; a big canister with a ton of media is most definitely not necessary, it might lead to less turbidity, but it is not necessary for the biology and the nitrogen cycle. Essentially it depends on how much surface area you need.
To answer your question tho, sponges would be enough for nearly all practical purposes
 

StarGirl

It would depend on what kind of dishwashing sponge.

1 sponge filter is enough to create enough bacteria to take care of near any size aquarium.
This depends on the size of the sponge filter and the size of the aquarium. You cant take a 10g sponge and seed a 75g tank with it. It doesnt work that way. It may kick start it some but wont seed that big of a tank.

But yes I would use everything they gave you and fill the rest with sponges. Coarse to fine with a layer of polyfil in between the sponges and bio media. Are the compartments half full? How many are there?
 

RayClem

A good filtration system provides several types of filtration: mechanical, biological, and chemical.

A sponge filter is very effective at biological filtration, It provides surface area for the growth of nitrifying bacteria, the bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate. Sponge filters come in a variety of sizes, suitable for a wide variety of tank sizes. For larger tanks, especially ones that are heavily stocked, you might need more than one sponge.

The problem with sponge filters is that if they are powered by air, the flow rate through the filter is not high enough to provide good mechanical filtration. Also, there is no good option for chemical filtration.

I do use sponge filters in some of my tanks, but it is seldom the only filter used. I have used undergravel filters, internal cartridge filters, internal box filters, air driven sponge filters, HOB filters and canister filters,. I like using sponge filters in combination with either a HOB filter or a canister filter.

One very effective setup is to use a sponge prefilter on the intake of a HOB filter. Since the HOB filter has a motor driven pump, the flow is much higher than an air driven sponge. The prefilter sponge is able to trap larger particles and also provide surface area for bacteria. When the prefilter starts to plug with debris, you can rinse it out. That reduces the frequency of cleaning the HOB.

The best HOB filters use sponge filters rather than replaceable cartridges. That would include filters such as the Aquaclear, the Seachem/Sicce Tidal, and the Fluval Series C filters. These filters reside outside the aquarium; the sponges provide good biological filtration; they provide a flow rate suitable for good mechanical filtration; and the large chambers allow the addition of other types of biological media such as ceramic rings or pumice, and chemical media such as activated carbon, zeolites, phosphate removers, etc. Thus, they represent a good all-in-one solution.

Canister filters are great as they provide high flow rates, and a large volume for various types of filter media as required. However, the problem with canisters is that they are not easy to clean and can develop leaks in the tubing and seals. I use one with my tank in the basement. The canister sits in a kitty litter pan to catch any spills. I would never consider using one in my family room with hardwood floors.

For a tank less than 20 gallons, a single sponge filter could work. However, I always recommend two filters, even in a nano tank as using two filters allows you to clean one filter at a time without disturbing the other. That keeps you biological filter stable.
 

Azedenkae

So I did research and most people seem to agree that just 1 sponge filter is enough to create enough bacteria to take care of near any size aquarium. Meanwhile I got a canister filter from eheim and it came with 2 trays of different rocks to use as biological filtration. What is the science behind this, are more rocks better? can I just add dish washing sponge in there and that would be enough?
So firstly, yes, more biomedia is better in that it provides more space for nitrifiers to colonize them, and could potentially allow a buffer in case ammonia/nitrite suddenly becomes higher than normal for whatever reason, as there is more space for additional nitrifiers (i.e. 'beneficial bacteria') to colonize if necessary. Theoretically the rate at which they can adapt to higher ammonia/nitrite conditions can also be much faster, if you have multiple colonies across the media handling the nitrification, rather than packed in one space. While growth at first is pretty consistent, direct competition is an issue that can decrease growth rate over time. That is why despite the hypothetical doubling rate of 24 hours for example of ammonia-oxidizers, after a while that can be significantly slower.

The type of biomedia is important too. For example, MarinePure allegedly can contain a lot more nitrifiers than something like bioballs, resulting in 4x the nitrification rate.

Whether the biomedia is enough or not also is somewhat pH-dependent and what species of nitrifiers were grown. For example, if your tank is set to a lower pH (due to keeping fish adapted to lower pH for example) but grew nitrifiers adapted to higher pH (often the ones sold in bottled bac products), then you may need a lot more biomedia to harbor a lot more nitrifiers to compensate for lower nitrification rates. Of course over time, the best nitrifier for a said pH will most likely naturally take over, so... whether this may or may not be particularly important is of debate.

Tldr; it depends on multiple factors, but generally the more of the better type of biomedia you have, the safer you are. You will end up with diminishing returns, but eh, still returns nonetheless.
 

Nopsu

Here is an interesting article about different kinds of aquarium filter media with tests and results and cost-effectiveness of the different types regarding surface area and so on:
 

FishDin

Here is an interesting article about different kinds of aquarium filter media with tests and results and cost-effectiveness of the different types regarding surface area and so on:
This link will not work for me.
 

Nopsu

This link will not work for me.
Nvm that, restricted here, prob contains too controversial info or something in that nature
 

Azedenkae

Nvm that, restricted here, prob contains too controversial info or something in that nature
All links pointing to other sites are disallowed here as per the rules (no matter how helpful they may be).

With that said, the site you tried to link really should not be trusted. A lot of us actual biologists have looked at it and... it is pretty bad. So best to take what that site says with quite a few grains of salt.

For example, the site tries really hard to promote something called 'assimilatory denitrification', which actually by definition cannot exist, and rather it was just a page of a bunch of different unrelated metabolic pathways put together.
 

Coradee

All links pointing to other sites are disallowed here as per the rules (no matter how helpful they may be).

With that said, the site you tried to link really should not be trusted. A lot of us actual biologists have looked at it and... it is pretty bad. So best to take what that site says with quite a few grains of salt.
That is not quite correct, the majority of links that have something useful to add to a discussion are fine, there are only a very small handful of sites that we do not allow links to.
 

Azedenkae

That is not quite correct, the majority of links that have something useful to add to a discussion are fine, there are only a very small handful of sites that we do not allow links to.
Fair enough. Though on that note, can you guys loosen the rules on peer-reviewed literature that exists behind a paywall? Since usually the abstract can also be very informative on its own, with the conclusion needed stated there so it can still be very helpful.
 

diamonfingers

It would depend on what kind of dishwashing sponge.


This depends on the size of the sponge filter and the size of the aquarium. You cant take a 10g sponge and seed a 75g tank with it. It doesnt work that way. It may kick start it some but wont seed that big of a tank.

But yes I would use everything they gave you and fill the rest with sponges. Coarse to fine with a layer of polyfil in between the sponges and bio media. Are the compartments half full? How many are there?

  • I have 1 course and 1 white sponge like piece, that came with the filter. I added something that is named poly. Its like cotton sponges comes in long rectangles, I think its polyster? But I am not sure about the "fine" part. I know these poly-sponges I used in the past can get so filled they obstruct water flow.

  • The way the EHEIM filter works is that it has 4 trays:
    • 1st top tray is coarse sponge
    • then it goes to the bottom of the filter (4th tray)
    • up to 3rd tray
    • then last is 2nd tray which has the mechanical filters. They even have something for it called Xtender button that you can switch off. Basically if your mechanical filter gets to clogged you can switch it off to bypass that tray temporarily to keep water flow going.
I am not sure why the want the dirt water to pass the bio-filters first. I thought the best way to do it is:-
Mechanical -> Bio -> Chemical
Their filter is designed to have water pass through all filters and mechanical is last. Isn't this worse for the bio and chemical media?

not sure what you mean if the compartments are half full. They gave me 2 trays worth of rocks and a final empty one where I can add the mechanical media.
 

StarGirl

Ok yes you are right on your order of media. I think the Eheim works a bit different than other filters. I believe it comes in through the blue coarse pre filter then down the side to be sucked up through the media from the bottom.

That poly is what needs to be changed every filter clean. Yes it does get very clogged. That is what its function is to trap debris.

When I bought my Fluval 407 The media they gave me only filled the compartment half full. I used the Substrat media from my broken Eheim to fill the 4th compartment.
 

Cherryshrimp420

Yes, kitchen sponge is more than enough, its what I use

But it wont work in an Eheim canister as it is too fine which will slow water flow
 

Nopsu

I don't like to use poly in canisters as it clogs so much faster than anything else inside :p
 

diamonfingers

A good filtration system provides several types of filtration: mechanical, biological, and chemical.

A sponge filter is very effective at biological filtration, It provides surface area for the growth of nitrifying bacteria, the bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate. Sponge filters come in a variety of sizes, suitable for a wide variety of tank sizes. For larger tanks, especially ones that are heavily stocked, you might need more than one sponge.

The problem with sponge filters is that if they are powered by air, the flow rate through the filter is not high enough to provide good mechanical filtration. Also, there is no good option for chemical filtration.

I do use sponge filters in some of my tanks, but it is seldom the only filter used. I have used undergravel filters, internal cartridge filters, internal box filters, air driven sponge filters, HOB filters and canister filters,. I like using sponge filters in combination with either a HOB filter or a canister filter.

One very effective setup is to use a sponge prefilter on the intake of a HOB filter. Since the HOB filter has a motor driven pump, the flow is much higher than an air driven sponge. The prefilter sponge is able to trap larger particles and also provide surface area for bacteria. When the prefilter starts to plug with debris, you can rinse it out. That reduces the frequency of cleaning the HOB.

The best HOB filters use sponge filters rather than replaceable cartridges. That would include filters such as the Aquaclear, the Seachem/Sicce Tidal, and the Fluval Series C filters. These filters reside outside the aquarium; the sponges provide good biological filtration; they provide a flow rate suitable for good mechanical filtration; and the large chambers allow the addition of other types of biological media such as ceramic rings or pumice, and chemical media such as activated carbon, zeolites, phosphate removers, etc. Thus, they represent a good all-in-one solution.

Canister filters are great as they provide high flow rates, and a large volume for various types of filter media as required. However, the problem with canisters is that they are not easy to clean and can develop leaks in the tubing and seals. I use one with my tank in the basement. The canister sits in a kitty litter pan to catch any spills. I would never consider using one in my family room with hardwood floors.

For a tank less than 20 gallons, a single sponge filter could work. However, I always recommend two filters, even in a nano tank as using two filters allows you to clean one filter at a time without disturbing the other. That keeps you biological filter stable.

they develop leaks in the tubes and seals? I just got EHEIM , how can I avoid this? or fix it? I really was after canister for a set it and forget it setup. at least for a couple of months
 

StarGirl

On the other side I use poly in my canisters. It gets dirty but you just have to watch your outflow. If it starts to get like its not moving water it is starting to get clogged.
 

Nopsu

they develop leaks in the tubes and seals? I just got EHEIM , how can I avoid this? or fix it? I really was after canister for a set it and forget it setup. at least for a couple of months
Use vaseline on all the seals and moving parts whenever you open it; there is spray available or just buy tube from drug store of food grade white vaseline
 

Azedenkae

they develop leaks in the tubes and seals? I just got EHEIM , how can I avoid this? or fix it? I really was after canister for a set it and forget it setup. at least for a couple of months
If you are after a set and forget it setup, then you should not get a canister filter. It's kinda the opposite of a set and forget it setup... any chance you can return it and get a different type of filter?
 

Nopsu

My eheim 250 eXperience (where water comes from bottom to top) was set so the coarse sponge is first in, then bio and then polysheet on the top
 

diamonfingers

Yes, kitchen sponge is more than enough, its what I use

But it wont work in an Eheim canister as it is too fine which will slow water flow
I do not have to stuff the full tray , I can keep a couple of large sponges in the tray with water flowing around them and above them so it won't get stuffed.

I don't like to use poly in canisters as it clogs so much faster than anything else inside :p

What would you use then?
If you are after a set and forget it setup, then you should not get a canister filter. It's kinda the opposite of a set and forget it setup... any chance you can return it and get a different type of filter?

Why not? The extra space in the canister can carry more water to be treated, more media to handle the bioload , has high flow... as long as its at least 1 month clean process I am ok. The over top poly filter always had gunk on top like every 3 days and hard to add bio media to it and not sure if the space was enough to build enough bacteria as above the poly was the spray bar. HOB might work better but I thought better get a high performance filter than a smaller one and regret it.

My eheim 250 eXperience (where water comes from bottom to top) was set so the coarse sponge is first in, then bio and then polysheet on the top

You have to know that the way EHEIM canister works is the coarse sponge first then it drops down to the bottom tray and works it way up. So the last tray down is actually the 2nd tray.
 

kansas

If you are after a set and forget it setup, then you should not get a canister filter. It's kinda the opposite of a set and forget it setup... any chance you can return it and get a different type of filter?
I disagree with this, canisters don't take a lot of upkeep.
 

StarGirl

You have to know that the way EHEIM canister works is the coarse sponge first then it drops down to the bottom tray and works it way up. So the last tray down is actually the 2nd tray.
You must have a Pro+ canister then. That is what I had and how it works.

I disagree with this, canisters don't take a lot of upkeep.
I agree...... it totally depends on stock and bioload of the fish you have. Size of the tank matters too. I have a lightly stocked 55g tank and one month would be the least I would clean it. You have to know how your tank works and how fast it gets dirty. A lightly stocked tank could go a few months before it needs to be cleaned. Just like everything else your WC schedule and numbers will tell you. Plus if it starts spitting out mulm or slows down you know it needs a cleaning. ;)

If you have a tank of poopers it would be different than tetras. etc. too.
 

ikcdab

If you are after a set and forget it setup, then you should not get a canister filter. It's kinda the opposite of a set and forget it setup... any chance you can return it and get a different type of filter?
I'm not sure what you mean.
I have had an aquis advance 1050 canister for about 10 years. Never had any leaks at all. I've replaced the impeller a couple of times and every month or so I flush it through with tank water to remove the crud. Apart from that it runs 24/7 and is pretty much fit and forget.
 

Nopsu

You have to know that the way EHEIM canister works is the coarse sponge first then it drops down to the bottom tray and works it way up. So the last tray down is actually the 2nd tray.
that's exactly what I was implying.. the water comes up from the bottom so coarse sponge is first in and on the bottom. And instead of poly I just use one extra fine sponge before bio-media and leave the poly out fully
 

RayClem

Yes, kitchen sponge is more than enough, its what I use

But it wont work in an Eheim canister as it is too fine which will slow water flow

Be careful. Many kitchen sponges are made of cellulose fiber. While they do provide surface area for bacteria, they will break down over time adding unwanted nutrients to your aquarium. If your sponges have holes of varying size, including some large holes, they are made of cellulose. Avoid this type of sponge.

It is OK to use kitchen sponges made of polyurethane as long as they are not treated with soap or antibacterial/antifungal chemicals. Such sponges have tiny pores of fairly uniform size.
 

Cherryshrimp420

Be careful. Many kitchen sponges are made of cellulose fiber. While they do provide surface area for bacteria, they will break down over time adding unwanted nutrients to your aquarium. If your sponges have holes of varying size, including some large holes, they are made of cellulose. Avoid this type of sponge.

It is OK to use kitchen sponges made of polyurethane as long as they are not treated with soap or antibacterial/antifungal chemicals. Such sponges have tiny pores of fairly uniform size.

Oh yes I forgot to mention, I always go for the cheapest sponges as they are always polyurethane and free of chemical additives.
 

FishDin

Agree with kansas. I have found that canisters are the lowest maintenance when compared to hang on back or sponge filters.

I just cleaned one of my canister filters this past weekend. It had been 4 months and it was no where near time to clean it. Next cleaning will be in 6 months.
I disagree with this, canisters don't take a lot of upkeep.
 

RayClem

Canister filters do not need to be cleaned very often, but when they do need cleaning, it will be a time consuming and potentially messy process. I would rather clean a HOB filter monthly than a canister filter every six months.

My canister is in need of cleaning. I have been putting it off as long as possible. I have a new UV bulb arriving later today to replace the one in the canister. I plan to tackle the task this weekend. UGH!
 

StarGirl

Canister filters do not need to be cleaned very often, but when they do need cleaning, it will be a time consuming and potentially messy process. I would rather clean a HOB filter monthly than a canister filter every six months.

My canister is in need of cleaning. I have been putting it off as long as possible. I have a new UV bulb arriving later today to replace the one in the canister. I plan to tackle the task this weekend. UGH!
I use 4 dollar store dish wash bins. Fill them and a bucket up with tank water. So it takes almost 50 % of water from my 55g. I pull the filter apart with each tray and the prefilter sponges in each of the 4 bins. shake out media and squeeze the sponges and back in it goes. Sorta clean the impeller housing, check the gasket, and use the bucket to fill the filter back up. It takes less than 15 minutes. I get a water change and filter clean all in one. The most time spent for me is filling the water back in the tank.

20210415_183842.jpg
 

FishDin

I guess we all have our way of doing it. I hated cleaning my HOBs monthly. I replaced them all with canisters and never regreted it. 5-10 minutes every six months is pretty low maintenance IMO. I Don't find it to be messy at all, but if you don't have a good place to do it (sink) and have to do it in buckets, then yeah, it could get messy.
 

diamonfingers

You must have a Pro+ canister then. That is what I had and how it works.
indeed I do , I got the 350L one which should be equivilant for 90G+ for a 100Liter tank (26G) it is an over kill but I thought the tray of biomedia should help with bio load. Is it possible its going to hurt my tank more than improve it?
Be careful. Many kitchen sponges are made of cellulose fiber. While they do provide surface area for bacteria, they will break down over time adding unwanted nutrients to your aquarium. If your sponges have holes of varying size, including some large holes, they are made of cellulose. Avoid this type of sponge.

It is OK to use kitchen sponges made of polyurethane as long as they are not treated with soap or antibacterial/antifungal chemicals. Such sponges have tiny pores of fairly uniform size.

Amazing tip! thanks!
 

StarGirl

No the only way it may hurt anything is if the outflow is too strong for the fish. You dont want to run it half on to control the flow, It may burn up your filter really fast.
 

diamonfingers

I use 4 dollar store dish wash bins. Fill them and a bucket up with tank water. So it takes almost 50 % of water from my 55g. I pull the filter apart with each tray and the prefilter sponges in each of the 4 bins. shake out media and squeeze the sponges and back in it goes. Sorta clean the impeller housing, check the gasket, and use the bucket to fill the filter back up. It takes less than 15 minutes. I get a water change and filter clean all in one. The most time spent for me is filling the water back in the tank.

20210415_183842.jpg

does it hurt the media to clean it with RO water?

How long is the poly media is useful before it needs replacement? I keep hearing people saying they just wash it in aquarium water and put it back in but I am sure they get saturated with dirt after sometime.
No the only way it may hurt anything is if the outflow is too strong for the fish. You dont want to run it half on to control the flow, It may burn up your filter really fast.

I do not get you, running the flow lower will burn my filter or running it full power will burn my filter? I am running it on extremely low (I am thinking the more time water interacts with media the better it filters). Also my tank is too small for that strong flow at max.
 

StarGirl

does it hurt the media to clean it with RO water?

How long is the poly media is useful before it needs replacement? I keep hearing people saying they just wash it in aquarium water and put it back in but I am sure they get saturated with dirt after sometime.
RO water should be fine. Others say tap water is fine, I myself dont trust that enough to try it...lol I use tank water. New cycles should never use tap water.

I clean my filter every 3-4 months usually. I have light stock. Yes my floss is very brown and very slimy. I change it every time.
 

86 ssinit

Getting here late to the question :). Ok for the first question if you have a 10g tank with a sponge filter and 5 guppies and you move them over to a 125 with the same sponge yes your new tank will filter the same. Still 5 guppies :). Now if that 125 grow to 100guppies you will be needing much more filtration.

Sponge filtration has its limits when air driven. But when added to hob or canister filters they are all you need. Adding a sponge filter to an intake of any filter and cleaning the sponge weekly or better will greatly improve the length of time needed between cleaning the whole filter. Sponge is cheap and aquarium sponge can be bought on so many different sites online that I would’nt recommend buying kitchen sponge. For the Penny’s your saving it’s not worth it.

I also wouldn’t add poly floss to a canister and believe canisters can go a long time without cleaning. But that’s also up to your fish load and having a prefilter sponge on input side. Floss in a canister will need regular cleaning. 2 filters are better than one :). Running your filter slower by closing a nozzle I think will burn outs motor quicker. Cause the motor is still running at full power it just going through a smaller space causing more back up. Unless it’s a dc motor which can be slowed down to move less water. Thing is you need the right filter for the tank. What size tank are you filtering?

Funny thing is all your ceramic and lava rock type of filter media are just doing the same thing as sponge. They are adding surface for bacteria to grow on. So why waste the money. Next the more media you add to your filter the less the flow will be. Almost counter productive. No?
 

diamonfingers

Getting here late to the question :). Ok for the first question if you have a 10g tank with a sponge filter and 5 guppies and you move them over to a 125 with the same sponge yes your new tank will filter the same. Still 5 guppies :). Now if that 125 grow to 100guppies you will be needing much more filtration.

Sponge filtration has its limits when air driven. But when added to hob or canister filters they are all you need. Adding a sponge filter to an intake of any filter and cleaning the sponge weekly or better will greatly improve the length of time needed between cleaning the whole filter. Sponge is cheap and aquarium sponge can be bought on so many different sites online that I would’nt recommend buying kitchen sponge. For the Penny’s your saving it’s not worth it.

I also wouldn’t add poly floss to a canister and believe canisters can go a long time without cleaning. But that’s also up to your fish load and having a prefilter sponge on input side. Floss in a canister will need regular cleaning. 2 filters are better than one :). Running your filter slower by closing a nozzle I think will burn outs motor quicker. Cause the motor is still running at full power it just going through a smaller space causing more back up. Unless it’s a dc motor which can be slowed down to move less water. Thing is you need the right filter for the tank. What size tank are you filtering?

Funny thing is all your ceramic and lava rock type of filter media are just doing the same thing as sponge. They are adding surface for bacteria to grow on. So why waste the money. Next the more media you add to your filter the less the flow will be. Almost counter productive. No?

  1. Would you recommend I add a sponge around my inflow pipe of my canister filter? I would be interested in cleaning my canister less but I think maybe the sponge might restrict the inflow of water damaging the motor somehow?!
  2. If you do not add poly filter to a canister what would clean out the water from all kinds of particles flying around? Coarse sponge won't do it and bio/chemical media won't do it
  3. My canister does close the nozzle but I assume the motor is also lowering it power, because if it doesn't it just stupid design for a $200+ canister. There is no reason not to make the motor go slower except bad design.
  4. my current tank is 40liter/11G and updating soon to 93Liters/25G . My canister is rated for 350L/ 92G I believe.
  5. If I shouldn't add floss or a lot of media, why does it come with 3 trays? They gave me free bags of 1- little circular rocks 2-white small rectangular rocks(lava?) and 3-a big of black tiny plastic cylinders . If they all do the same thing why not add just one type? I heard Lava lowers PH levels not sure if true or not.
My problem with floss is that it seems that only the surface area is important, once that is blocked it doesn't matter if you have 2 miles of brand new poly floss behind it, water just won't get through. am I correct?
RO water should be fine. Others say tap water is fine, I myself dont trust that enough to try it...lol I use tank water. New cycles should never use tap water.

I clean my filter every 3-4 months usually. I have light stock. Yes my floss is very brown and very slimy. I change it every time.

tap water that is treated for chlorine with something like Seachem Prime should be ok no?

Is the brown color in the poly floss dirt or is it the bacteria?
 

RayClem

I use a prefilter sponge on the intake of both my HOB and canister filters. Unlike a filter sponge, a prefilter sponge has larger pores that enable it to trap larger debris without clogging as rapidly as a filter sponge might do.

When using prefilter sponges, observe to things.
1. If you start to see the diameter of the prefilter sponge cave in where the inlet strainer is located, you know the sponge needs to be removed for cleaning. Simply rinse it is used tank water.
2. If you start to see the outlet flow from the HOB or canister filter start to drop off, clean the prefilter sponge. If that does not restore the outlet flow from the filter, you need to clean the filter media in the filter itself. When cleaning the filter, also check to make sure that the impeller is free from debris. Make sure all impeller bearings/bushings are in place when reassembling the pump.
 

86 ssinit

Ok there’s absolutely no need for a canister filter on that tank. It’s just too small. A tidal 35 hob would be overkill. I just don’t like canisters anyway. But I use hob up to 90g tanks. 2 of them.

Instead of poly fill use a denser sponge. As stated the pre filter sponge is coarse so it catches Big stuff and breaks it down as it goes into filter. Yes the motor only has one speed. So your just reducing the flow not the speed of the motor. For the pre filter sponge you remove it and just rinse it in tap water or if changing the water use that water.
 

FishDin

No the only way it may hurt anything is if the outflow is too strong for the fish. You dont want to run it half on to control the flow, It may burn up your filter really fast.
Fluval recommends turning the flow down on their filters if it's to high. Are they using different technology than Eheim?
 

RayClem

There are two ways of controlling the flow through a filter. One is to restrict the flow. Filter media restricts flow as does a prefilter sponge on the intake. Some filters have a simple ball valve in the intake tube to reduce flow (especially during feeding time). A few canister filters have a variable speed pump.

I have a SunSun HW-3000 filter rated at 793 gal per hour flow. I am using it on a 40 gallon breeder tank. If it were operating at 793 gph, that would be way too much for the tank. The filter is equipped with a variable speed motor which I am operating at half speed (about 400 gph). By the time the filter is loaded up with media and I placed a prefilter sponge on the intake, the flow rate drops to around 200 gph which is ideal for a 40 gallon tank.
 

86 ssinit

I didn’t know sunsun had a variable speed motor. Is it dc??
 

StarGirl

Fluval recommends turning the flow down on their filters if it's to high. Are they using different technology than Eheim?
I have no clue.......I just have heard not to do it. Thats why you need the correct filter for your tank size.

Can you do it?
 

diamonfingers

I use a prefilter sponge on the intake of both my HOB and canister filters. Unlike a filter sponge, a prefilter sponge has larger pores that enable it to trap larger debris without clogging as rapidly as a filter sponge might do.

When using prefilter sponges, observe to things.
1. If you start to see the diameter of the prefilter sponge cave in where the inlet strainer is located, you know the sponge needs to be removed for cleaning. Simply rinse it is used tank water.
2. If you start to see the outlet flow from the HOB or canister filter start to drop off, clean the prefilter sponge. If that does not restore the outlet flow from the filter, you need to clean the filter media in the filter itself. When cleaning the filter, also check to make sure that the impeller is free from debris. Make sure all impeller bearings/bushings are in place when reassembling the pump.

Good advice I will get a prefilter sponge.
Ok there’s absolutely no need for a canister filter on that tank. It’s just too small. A tidal 35 hob would be overkill. I just don’t like canisters anyway. But I use hob up to 90g tanks. 2 of them.

Instead of poly fill use a denser sponge. As stated the pre filter sponge is coarse so it catches Big stuff and breaks it down as it goes into filter. Yes the motor only has one speed. So your just reducing the flow not the speed of the motor. For the pre filter sponge you remove it and just rinse it in tap water or if changing the water use that water.

I do not think any HOB can handle the bio load I have. I have 10 fish in that tank, 6 of the larger kind not mini tetras. I was fed up with the bioload. I had over the top filter that had only poly but it couldn't get the job done.

Why would i want to use a dense sponge over poly?

I am really upset the motor does not adjust its speed for such an expensive brand. I wonder if I should have gone with just a cheaper brand. Tidal is like $40-50 meanwhile a SunSun canister is near $100. I guess the extra $50 is worth it for the bigger filtration capability.
 

Nopsu

Why would i want to use a dense sponge over poly?
It doesnt break, doesnt need to be replaced or cleaned as often as polyfill as it doesnt clog up so fast and is easy to just rinse off, and finer sponge does great mechanical and biological filtration. Also cost effective as polyfill is usually replaced after some use
 

FishDin

I have no clue.......I just have heard not to do it. Thats why you need the correct filter for your tank size.

Can you do it?
Yes, on my Fluval canister I can. Fluval just says not to reduce it more than 50%

From the manual:

"Adjusting Water Flow
Once the filter is operating continuously, you can use the top lever on the AquaStop to regulate the water flow. To reduce the water flow, lift the lever up to halfway, but no higher. This can be done once the unit is fully operational, and will not harm the motor. However, never run the filter with the lever up (closed) more than half way."
 

diamonfingers

It doesnt break, doesnt need to be replaced or cleaned as often as polyfill as it doesnt clog up so fast and is easy to just rinse off, and finer sponge does great mechanical and biological filtration. Also cost effective as polyfill is usually replaced after some use

what do you think of the finer media that is called "water polish" ?

Yes, on my Fluval canister I can. Fluval just says not to reduce it more than 50%

From the manual:

"Adjusting Water Flow
Once the filter is operating continuously, you can use the top lever on the AquaStop to regulate the water flow. To reduce the water flow, lift the lever up to halfway, but no higher. This can be done once the unit is fully operational, and will not harm the motor. However, never run the filter with the lever up (closed) more than half way."

Why do they built it in the system if they do not not want you to ever run it slower than halfway?
 

FishDin

Why do they built it in the system if they do not not want you to ever run it slower than halfway?
Every canister I know of has a valve to control the water flow. Closing the valve allows you to remove the lid for maintenance without emptying the tank onto the floor. It's just a valve. In the case of the Fluval, they tell you it's ok to turn it as much as half way without damaging the motor.
 

diamonfingers

Every canister I know of has a valve to control the water flow. Closing the valve allows you to remove the lid for maintenance without emptying the tank onto the floor. It's just a valve. In the case of the Fluval, they tell you it's ok to turn it as much as half way without damaging the motor.

I just wish they could put a motor controller to match the valve outflow , i see no reason they couldn't do that.
 

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