Is A Hob And Sponge Filter Enough For A Medium Planted Tank?

Chenpoes

Member
I currently have a marineland penguin 200 hob filter on my 55 gallon aquarium, but I'm worried about dead spots. I hear 2 hobs are best but I'm not really looking to shell out for another filter, would having the hob on one side and a sponge filter on the other provide adequate circulation?
 

Mrfister1116

Member
Allot of people just run sponge filters... or no filter in planted tanks. I’ve got one filter on the right side of my 55 planted and it does great
 

HitzBlack

Member
You can pick up an additional hob for not too much money. A marineland penguin 150 hob goes for $16 on line at petsmart.
 

Islandvic

Member
Chenpoes , I have a 55 gallon as well. It has a canister and 1 double stacked sponge filter in one corner.

The sponge filter I use has coarse foam sponge and driven by a decent airpump. It gets good flow through it.

If you use a sponge filter with a fine foam and weak air pump, you will not get much flow.

What is your stocking for the 55g?

Most breeders and people with dedicated "fish rooms" with multiple tanks run mainly sponge filters. If you monitor your water parameters and keep up with removing waste with your siphon gravel vac during water changes, you should be ok. If you get spikes in ammonia or nitrates, make adjustments accordingly.

If you find you need more filtration, add a 2nd large sponge filter. If you want more circulation or gph flowing through filter media, chewy and PetSmart online has the Penguin 350 for $29. You can throw some Aquaclear sponges from their 3-pack refills where the cartridges go.
 

Craig.G

Member
I just use one hob and a small wave marker on the other side for my 55g. I used to just run sponge filters.
 

JayH

Member
Craig.G said:
I just use one hob and a small wave marker on the other side for my 55g. I used to just run sponge filters.
I was going to mention a wave maker but when I looked at what was available on Amazon I wondered about whether it would be too much. When you say "small wave maker", how small do you mean? How much water does it move? Most of the ones I saw started at about 500 GPH and went up from there. And only when you got to about the $50 price point did flow controls enter the picture. That made it look like the choices were raging torrent or spend more than what another HOB would cost, which made it a less than attractive option. If I'm overestimating the impact of 500 GPH of water movement or have missed some less expensive options for control, I'd really like to know.
 

Craig.G

Member
Mine is 530gph. It's about the same flow rate as a medium/ large hob depending on the brand.

And it was under $10.
 

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