Mattenfilter and Canister, will that work?

Fisch

So in my present 55gl tank I run with a Fluval 407 canister filter.
For my new (not yet installed) 125gl tank I have an idea, and would like input if it makes sense or is just plain overkill/useless.
I love mattenfilters. I am contemplating to get two corner filters and run them with the fluval (407 and my older 306).
If there is enough space I could even hide the UV behind it.
Will that starve the bacteria in the canister?
Will this be too much flow for a mattenfilter?
Will the different gph rate between the two canisters cause trouble?
 

Frank the Fish guy

All good! The more filters the better. There is no problem I can see with this. You will have crystal clear water, lots of bio filtration an the ability to overstock the tank! Will be great.

Just choose fish that like lots of water flow!

No you will not starve the canister. The bacteria will grow to meet the needs of the tank.

Filters love flow. The more the better! Brings the water to the biofilm.

Two canisters with different rates is no issue. They will just work independently.
 

Fisch

All good! The more filters the better. There is no problem I can see with this. You will have crystal clear water, lots of bio filtration an the ability to overstock the tank! Will be great.

Just choose fish that like lots of water flow!

No you will not starve the canister. The bacteria will grow to meet the needs of the tank.

Filters love flow. The more the better! Brings the water to the biofilm.

Two canisters with different rates is no issue. They will just work independently.
Thanks for the re-assurance.
Presently I have Neons and Cories in the 55gl with the Fluval 407 and a spraybar.
In the 125gl, if I plan a cornerfilter on each side with a 307 and 407 pulling from behind and with a spraybar coming in from each side. The flow should not be so different, correct? Too much for Neons and potential Ember Tetras?
 

MacZ

It would likely reduce the efficiency of the mattenfilter. And the combination of UV and Mattenfilter is eventually counterproductive.

A mattenfilter is used to get a certain reduction potential and a certain composition of microorganisms. Using a second type of filter might impact the former and a UV the latter.

Not saying you can't do it, but it doesn't make sense to me unless you plan a massive overstocking.

Too much for Neons and potential Ember Tetras?
Indeed too much. Smaller tetras like their water basically standing.
 

Fisch

In regards to the UV light I can follow, I only have that one in the tank to protect my tiny Panda youngsters.
Regarding flow for tetras please help me understand....the Fluval 407 has a filter flowrate of 245gl/hr which is barely above the recommended 4x turnover rate for a 55gl tank.
Fluval 306 and 407 combined would have a filter flowrate of 451gl/hr, which is below the 4x turnover rate for a 125gl tank. The tank is not heavily planted, but Mattenfilter aside, how to find the happy medium?
 

MacZ

Regarding flow for tetras please help me understand....the Fluval 407 has a filter flowrate of 245gl/hr which is barely above the recommended 4x turnover rate for a 55gl tank.
Fluval 306 and 407 combined would have a filter flowrate of 451gl/hr, which is below the 4x turnover rate for a 125gl tank. The tank is not heavily planted, but Mattenfilter aside, how to find the happy medium?
The turnover rates are not even that relevant, it's the possibilities for direction. The fish are build for unidirectional current if any. If you have the outflows on both ends this is all but to their liking with the possibilities for turbulences. You would have to put the outflows of both on one side. As these then would add up, look into in-line valves for canister filter hoses. With these you could regulate the outflow so they aren't that strong when adding up. I use that too, otherwise my filter would be tumbling everything around in my tank.
Edit: That has little to no effect on turnover rates.
 

Fisch

The turnover rates are not even that relevant, it's the possibilities for direction. The fish are build for unidirectional current if any. If you have the outflows on both ends this is all but to their liking with the possibilities for turbulences. You would have to put the outflows of both on one side. As these then would add up, look into in-line valves for canister filter hoses. With these you could regulate the outflow so they aren't that strong when adding up. I use that too, otherwise my filter would be tumbling everything around in my tank.
Edit: That has little to no effect on turnover rates.
Thank you, I have to look into those. I was always under the impression that regulating the inflow of a canister filter beside the lever at the filter is not recommended.
The flow with two canisters still is unidirectional as the spraybars would both be along the whole length of the tank
 

MacZ

Thank you, I have to look into those. I was always under the impression that regulating the inflow of a canister filter beside the lever at the filter is not recommended.
The flow with two canisters still is unidirectional as the spraybars would both be along the whole length of the tank
As long as it's on the "out" and not the "in" of the filter it's fine. Just never close it completely while it's running.
Ok, then your description was a bit unclear. I understood you were putting them on opposite sides.
 

coralbandit

I see no issue with using both canister and matten .
I am no canister filter fan so given the choice I would go just matten !
The speed of the canister is moot unless it is too much IMO [which is rare in any tank ].
With the extra area the matten provides you could turn the canister flow down and use some type of circulator like a power head or gyre .
 

Nobody

I'm actually temped to ditch my canister and use a corner matten filter in my planted tank. Canisters are over-rated I think and are a pain at cleaning time. I seem to get way less algae in my sponge filtered tank as well so I suspect rotting things in the canister creates algae food. Also on matten/sponge filter the shrimp clean it quite a lot, which helps and sort of add filter value itself. Can't do that in a canister.
 

Fisch

That is a good point. I would like to keep that option open as well, and backup with battery driven airpumps is simple enough
 

TClare

I like canister filters, and you don’t have to clean them that often so it’s not a big deal. For me the hardest part of cleaning is taking the thing apart, I have to get my husband to help! I have never used a matten filter so can’t comment on this. Sponge filters are fine for small tanks. On my large (about 150 gallons) tank I am using one canister filter rated at 1,100 litres per hour, the outflow from this filter goes into an additional top filter that runs along one half of the back of the tank before returning to the tank, so this provides additional filtration and makes the outflow more gentle. In addition I have another top filter on the other side of the tank, powered by a sumergible pump (can’t remember the flow rate off hand). Both of the intakes are in the same back corner of the tank. We are currently planning a larger tank (in the region of 200 gallons), and on this I am planning to use two canister filters plus the top filters as per the other tank. A sump might be more appropriate for this tank size but would involve a lot more expense and I already have the two canisters. Our tanks have hoods so the top filters are not visible from the front.
 

OutsideFoodBlob

I'm actually temped to ditch my canister and use a corner matten filter in my planted tank. Canisters are over-rated I think and are a pain at cleaning time. I seem to get way less algae in my sponge filtered tank as well so I suspect rotting things in the canister creates algae food. Also on matten/sponge filter the shrimp clean it quite a lot, which helps and sort of add filter value itself. Can't do that in a canister.
You bring up a good point I hadn’t really thought about. I have in tank filtration and have had very little if any algae in my tanks. Hearing other people talk about their algae issues I just assumed I was lucky thus far.
 

TClare

I use canisters and don’t have any algae problems.
 

Fisch

I like canister filters, and you don’t have to clean them that often so it’s not a big deal. For me the hardest part of cleaning is taking the thing apart, I have to get my husband to help! I have never used a matten filter so can’t comment on this. Sponge filters are fine for small tanks. On my large (about 150 gallons) tank I am using one canister filter rated at 1,100 litres per hour, the outflow from this filter goes into an additional top filter that runs along one half of the back of the tank before returning to the tank, so this provides additional filtration and makes the outflow more gentle. In addition I have another top filter on the other side of the tank, powered by a sumergible pump (can’t remember the flow rate off hand). Both of the intakes are in the same back corner of the tank. We are currently planning a larger tank (in the region of 200 gallons), and on this I am planning to use two canister filters plus the top filters as per the other tank. A sump might be more appropriate for this tank size but would involve a lot more expense and I already have the two canisters. Our tanks have hoods so the top filters are not visible from the front.
That sound interesting, I am not totally sure I understand the top filter concept. Can you provide a picture, it may help me to understand.
1000gl flow....I see my little Neons just swirling :confused:
I use canisters and don’t have any algae problems.
I agree. I do not believe that the filter is the cause, more likely light and stagnant areas that may not have enough flow.
 

TClare

It’s 1100 litres per hour not gallons, about 290 gallons per hour. I have neons they are fine and swim easily in both directions!

The top filters are based on these: Filtro aéreo JAD UF-230, 700 l/h. | Virtual Aquarium Gt

JAD (or Boyu) UF 230. If you look it up I think there are some videos showing it working. They cost about $15. It is not difficult to make something similar, we used a bought one on one side and a homemade one on the other. I am also using a different pump that I already had, with a longer intake tube, we just used the container part of the filter. They are made in China, it says on the box “extandable” filter! It goes to a max length of 80 cm, half the length of our tank.

Tomorrow I can take a photo of our setup.
 

Fisch

It’s 1100 litres per hour not gallons, about 290 gallons per hour. I have neons they are fine and swim easily in both directions!

The top filters are based on these: Filtro aéreo JAD UF-230, 700 l/h. | Virtual Aquarium Gt

JAD (or Boyu) UF 230. If you look it up I think there are some videos showing it working. They cost about $15. It is not difficult to make something similar, we used a bought one on one side and a homemade one on the other. I am also using a different pump that I already had, with a longer intake tube, we just used the container part of the filter. They are made in China, it says on the box “extandable” filter! It goes to a max length of 80 cm, half the length of our tank.

Tomorrow I can take a photo of our setup.
Oops, I misunderstood. I will look up the filters, sounds interesting.
 

TClare


IMG_7057.JPG
IMG_7059.JPG

Here are some photos, the first is the top filter as purchased in a 175l (46 gallons) tank, it works fine on its own (just with a sponge pre filter) in that tank, which only has small fishes. It has layers of matrix, sponge and floss inside. The second shot ( a bit dark, sorry) is the back of the big tank with the bought filter in the foreground and the homemade one behind. The two curved tubes you can see are the intake and out flow respectively of the canister filter. The outflow flows into the homemade top filter. We made it of perspex as we already had some, not a very good idea as silicon does not work on it, you have to get special glue and as you can see the lid has become bent with time, the basic box is fine though. It could be made with glass, or a suitable plastic container could be modified The top filters have holes at the opposite end from where the outflow enters where the water returns to the tank having passed through the filter media. The filters are located behind the hoods which contain the light units and are not seen from the front. I hope this makes sense, let me know if anything needs more explanation.

IMG_7060.JPG
This is the homemade filter box with the bent lid!
 

John58ford

After much playing with external filters, internal all in ones, mattens and standard sponges; I would put a corner matten in any freshwater tank as a prefilter, and power the matten with a canister, sump, or built in all in one, hands down every time.

The matten shouldn't be exposed directly to UV, if you want a UV: put a square chunk of rain gutter or 3" i.d. pipe in the corner vertically with the bottom capped. Put the intake to the external filter in the bottom of the pipe, then use the pipe as a housing for your UV light. Pre filter this with a corner matten (which will house all your microfauna, bacteria and archaean colonies), then load the canister with as much fine and ultra fine polishing media as the pump can handle. Water will flow first through the matten, which does a great job at basic and bio filtration and break down, then past the UV which will kill any waterbourne sporozoan, most fungus, and several protozoan parasites with ease, then the fine filtration in the canister will polish the water up nicely.

As was stated above, a canister following a UV isn't always a great place to harbor bacteria, but a canister having a sealed/balanced intake/return line makes it the best candidate for some serious polishing. I run my 29 trash can (lately known as the lily tank) tank like this, and it works great. My all in one/nano sump network system has been slowly getting mattens installed before the weirs and I don't regret the decision.

Edited as I didn't even address my specialty subject: if you are doing dual corner mattens you could power each one with a separate canister with no worries. For that much flow I would recommend a pair of rear rain bars, angled to spray from the back of the tank to the front. The right matten/canister should discharge on the left rear, and the left matten on the right. This will cause a nice crossflow mechanically and if one filter were to fail the whole tank would still get a great turnover. In my case I run a single corner matten in each tank, and return the water by means of spray bar on the opposite side making a gentle river flow side to side, I then use air bars to get the current rolling up the rear wall and down the front, this pattern had given me good swimming patterns to display the fish (various tetra species, as well as endlers, GBR, and others) and decent mulm removal to/by the matten. You could always run both canisters behind one corner matten and discharge to the opposite side all the same. Mattens make a good place to hide heaters too :).
 

TClare

I'll have to read up about matter filters...
 

Nobody

You can run a canister behind one, you can hide the heater there too and also grow moss on the foam to hide the whole thing. I plan to run the canister behind the matten for a couple of months to cycle it, then turn off the canister as I dont think there will be much point in it then. Plus I want to get rid of the leak risk as its in the living room. The tank also has an Eheim pickup 160 at the other end as a backup and to add flow so I should be covered.
 

TClare

Welcome to SwissTropicals - SWISSTROPICALS
There is great info on Dr. Steven's site, and he may be the only importer in North America of Poret foam .
Thank you, actually I found that site and was reading it last night. Interesting, I doubt if we can get that kind of foam here though.
 

John58ford

Thank you, actually I found that site and was reading it last night. Interesting, I doubt if we can get that kind of foam here though.
You don't *have* to use the name brand. There are several suppliers of similair, not the same, but effective sponge. A 2'x2'x2" sponge by the other guys usually runs me about $10, the trick is finding the right density.
 

Fisch

After much playing with external filters, internal all in ones, mattens and standard sponges; I would put a corner matten in any freshwater tank as a prefilter, and power the matten with a canister, sump, or built in all in one, hands down every time.

The matten shouldn't be exposed directly to UV, if you want a UV: put a square chunk of rain gutter or 3" i.d. pipe in the corner vertically with the bottom capped. Put the intake to the external filter in the bottom of the pipe, then use the pipe as a housing for your UV light. Pre filter this with a corner matten (which will house all your microfauna, bacteria and archaean colonies), then load the canister with as much fine and ultra fine polishing media as the pump can handle. Water will flow first through the matten, which does a great job at basic and bio filtration and break down, then past the UV which will kill any waterbourne sporozoan, most fungus, and several protozoan parasites with ease, then the fine filtration in the canister will polish the water up nicely.

As was stated above, a canister following a UV isn't always a great place to harbor bacteria, but a canister having a sealed/balanced intake/return line makes it the best candidate for some serious polishing. I run my 29 trash can (lately known as the lily tank) tank like this, and it works great. My all in one/nano sump network system has been slowly getting mattens installed before the weirs and I don't regret the decision.

Edited as I didn't even address my specialty subject: if you are doing dual corner mattens you could power each one with a separate canister with no worries. For that much flow I would recommend a pair of rear rain bars, angled to spray from the back of the tank to the front. The right matten/canister should discharge on the left rear, and the left matten on the right. This will cause a nice crossflow mechanically and if one filter were to fail the whole tank would still get a great turnover. In my case I run a single corner matten in each tank, and return the water by means of spray bar on the opposite side making a gentle river flow side to side, I then use air bars to get the current rolling up the rear wall and down the front, this pattern had given me good swimming patterns to display the fish (various tetra species, as well as endlers, GBR, and others) and decent mulm removal to/by the matten. You could always run both canisters behind one corner matten and discharge to the opposite side all the same. Mattens make a good place to hide heaters too :).
That is exactly how I envisioned it. I have the inline heaters on the canisters, so no space waste there. Putting additional polishing material into the filter has a good point.
The crossover if the outputs is solely to create cross current? This would lengthen my output tube quite some distance, I have to ponder that when the tank sits on the base.
 

John58ford

That is exactly how I envisioned it. I have the inline heaters on the canisters, so no space waste there. Putting additional polishing material into the filter has a good point.
The crossover if the outputs is solely to create cross current? This would lengthen my output tube quite some distance, I have to ponder that when the tank sits on the base.
Mechanically there would be a cross current but the cross would be in the hoses not the tank under normal operation. It wouldn't change the tank flow or swimming patterns during normal operation. Mechanically what it would do (if crossed as recommended) is prevent a fluid shortcut where the right and left pumps would be in their own loops. Having the water passed from one filter unit to the other, side to side, encourages a more stable water parameter environment where if one in line or hidden heater malfunctions, or if one filter stops working as well as the other (or they're different from the start) the water will still be even in temperature and quality throughout the tank encourageing a wider swimming zone if you have the tank set up ideally for one species or another.

If you wanted a cooler fast side and a warmer slow side to encourage species separation of smaller species having the filter/heater systems loop to themselves would allow for that, but it would limit larger schools or larger fish to have dual comfort zones.
 

Fisch

Mechanically there would be a cross current but the cross would be in the hoses not the tank under normal operation. It wouldn't change the tank flow or swimming patterns during normal operation. Mechanically what it would do (if crossed as recommended) is prevent a fluid shortcut where the right and left pumps would be in their own loops. Having the water passed from one filter unit to the other, side to side, encourages a more stable water parameter environment where if one in line or hidden heater malfunctions, or if one filter stops working as well as the other (or they're different from the start) the water will still be even in temperature and quality throughout the tank encourageing a wider swimming zone if you have the tank set up ideally for one species or another.

If you wanted a cooler fast side and a warmer slow side to encourage species separation of smaller species having the filter/heater systems loop to themselves would allow for that, but it would limit larger schools or larger fish to have dual comfort zones.
Interesting aspect. Never thought about different comfort zones...that is an idea. Though I think I prefer to keep it simple.
 

Nobody

One thing to watch if you use a canister behind a matten is if you are using fine foam like 45ppi for small shrimp. As it clogs up it will start to collapse as the canister's suction pulls on it more and more, or the water level will drop and it will start sucking air. That wont happen with air pumps.
 

Fisch

One thing to watch if you use a canister behind a matten is if you are using fine foam like 45ppi for small shrimp. As it clogs up it will start to collapse as the canister's suction pulls on it more and more, or the water level will drop and it will start sucking air. That wont happen with air pumps.
Good point, I will keep that in mind should I go with shrimp one day. At this time I am scared of those :confused:
 

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