Is This Dangerous? Urgent Advice Please! Help

  1. T

    TinySwimmer Valued Member Member

    Hi. I just completed a WC & rinsed out some of the media (which I haven’t rinsed for months). When I was rinsing out the carbon cartridge or whatever it’s called, it was dripping what looked like black ink. I rinsed it as much as I could and put it back in the tank. Is this dangerous to my goldfish? What does it mean when it leaks black ink?
    Help please!
     
  2. 8

    83jase Valued Member Member

    It's just carbon dust wash out what you can gently you'll be fine carbon has a short life span how old is it
     
  3. OP
    OP
    T

    TinySwimmer Valued Member Member

    Does it? What do you mean by short life span? Meaning it doesn’t work any more?
    Had it for over a year...
     


  4. 8

    83jase Valued Member Member

    Time for more active carbon if you choose to reuse ac again only last few weeks to months pending the load on it right now it wouldn't be doing nothing at all maybe housing some bb that's it

    I dont run carbon unless I'm cleaning up after dosing the tank remove Left over chemicals other then that other chemical media can be used that's more beneficial
     
  5. OP
    OP
    T

    TinySwimmer Valued Member Member

    But is it dangerous? The fact that it was leaking? Or is it safe?
     
  6. 8

    83jase Valued Member Member

    I wouldn't put it back in its done for but no it shouldn't be dangerous but then again I don't know what it's absorbed so I'm not 100% sure it's broken down carbon leaking out
     


  7. jdhef

    jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Carbon absorbs impurities from the water. But after about 4 weeks the carbon becomes saturated with impurities and no longer removes them from the water. But if you just leave it, it will start to clump together and make it difficult for the water to pass thru, so it is best to replace the carbon monthly, or just not use it.

    The inky stuff was probably just a carbon slurry. It shouldn't cause any problems.
     
  8. Buganjimo

    Buganjimo Well Known Member Member

    It just means the carbon has broken down, which should be harmless.

    I’d take it out regardless and if you want more carbon for the filter replace it, but it’s only useful to remove meds and tannins.
     
  9. finnipper59

    finnipper59 Well Known Member Member

    The carbon has most likely absorbed aall of the imperities it can and is leaking them back into the water. Take it out and throw it away. You can replace it if you want, but carbon is not necessary unless your removing excess medications affter treatment or if the tank is in a room where someone smokes.
     
  10. jdhef

    jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    It is a misconception that carbon starts leaching impurities back into the water once saturated. It just stops absorbing more impurities.

    Could you imagine if it really started releasing impurities back into the water. People with those Britta water filters, who have procrastinated replacing the cartridge would be drinking some pretty foul water.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    T

    TinySwimmer Valued Member Member

    Thank you everyone. Only reason I haven’t replaced it is because I’m scared about messing up my cycle. All the filter media came with the tank which is the only reason I have it in the first place. The water is always crystal clear BUT it is about time I upgraded my tank. Thanks guys
     
  12. mattgirl

    mattgirl Well Known Member Member

    When it becomes necessary to replace that cartridge containing the carbon you can cut the fiber off of that cartridge and put that fiber in the filter housing along with the new cartridge. Most of the bacteria that is your cycle lives on that fiber so by keeping it in with the new cartridge you will not harm your cycle.

    Personally I no longer use those types of cartridges but when I did this is how I always did it.
     
  13. NavyChief20

    NavyChief20 Well Known Member Member

    Carbon when it does work only lasts a short period of time based on the chemistry of your tank it could be a week or 2 or a month. Carbon only helps with a few things though and on the grand chemistry plan scheme it is not really worth it 90% of the time.
     
  14. OP
    OP
    T

    TinySwimmer Valued Member Member

    Brilliant, thank you. Can I ask why you don’t use these cartridges? Like I say, they came with my tank. I’ve never bought anything additional to my tank (except for decor).
     
  15. NavyChief20

    NavyChief20 Well Known Member Member

    The cartridges are a gimmick to cost you money. The carbon does only a few things and you dont need it most of the time. I only use a hob on a small 29 gallon QT tank but I've switched all my friends HOBs to better long life media. You go with some ceramic or lava rock and be amazed how much money you dont spend anymore and how much more efficient the filter is.
     
  16. mattgirl

    mattgirl Well Known Member Member

    I have found it less expensive to use cut to size filter media and also find it is much easier to clean when necessary. Just squeeze it out in some tank water and put it back in. It last almost indefinitely and there is no chance of losing any of the bacteria.

    I put ceramic media in the bottom of my HOB's and floss type media in the top. The ceramic seldom ever gets disturbed so it just lays there doing its job while the floss type media polishes the water by catching all of the detritus that would dirty up the water.
     
  17. jdhef

    jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    This is why I am such a big fan of AquaClear filters. They have a sponge, a bag of carbon and a bag of ceramic media.

    The sponge is for filtering out debris in the water and just needs to be squeezed out in some dirty tank water when you do a water change.

    The carbon is easy to replace, just take the old bag out and put in a new bag.

    The ceramic media (where the bacteria lives) lasts forever.