Need Advice on Emperor Power Filter + Red Sea Prizm Protein Skimmer Combo

Discussion in 'Saltwater Aquarium Filter' started by han012, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. han012

    han012New MemberMember

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    I am currently starting a new 55 gallon FOWLR tank & i need advice on the chemical/mechanical filtration from a powerfilter+protein skimmer combo.

    I hear from people that if i use a powerfilter, its going to throw the biological balance off since the powerfilter will cultivate bacteria. Will it work if i take the biowheel in the powerfilter out & only include a carbon filter (sponge-less) so it picks up all the gunk? I'm thinking this won't mess up the bacteria balance.

    I plan on using using 60 gallons of live sand w/ only 30 lbs MAX of live rock. I don't want to overcrowd my tank w/ rocks & take the attention off the fish.

    To make a long question short, will the biological balance be in balance if i take the biowheel & sponge out of the powerfilter?
     
  2. agsansoo

    agsansooWell Known MemberMember

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    Let see ... Did you mean 60 lbs. of live sand ? You can use dead sand with live rock. The live rock will spread good bacteria into the sand bed. Also running the power filter without the biowheel & sponge is recommended (unless you change or clean them every couple of days). Over time these will cause a build up of nitrates. Just run carbon, and replace it once a week. I would use at least 60 lbs of live rock, minimum for biological filtration. Remember to keep the live rock in the center of your tank, not against the back glass. This is better for water circulation.
     
  3. OP
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    han012

    han012New MemberMember

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    thanks for the reply...you saved me a trip to the fish store

    i did mean 60 lbs of live sand & 30 lbs of live rocks.

    i have 2 powerheads that i plan to use so i don't think i'll have a problem w/ the circulation.

    i'm hoping that 20-30 lbs of live rocks will be good enough to get rid of 2 clownfish that i plan to put into the tank once it's cycled. once i get more fish, i'll consider adding more rocks.
     
  4. agsansoo

    agsansooWell Known MemberMember

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    You can alway add live rock to your sump ... If you have one. That keeps most of it out of your display tank ! ;) My LFS told me to put 120 lbs of live rock in my 60 gallon. I told him "it's a fish tank, not a rock tank" LOL.
     
  5. OP
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    han012

    han012New MemberMember

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    i just have the budget to invest more $$$ on more rocks & sump. =/

    i just finished putting my water in & getting the salinity right. i didn't buy the sand or rocks in yet. is it normal for the ph to be 8.6? kinda getting nervous already. i don't want to buy all this equipment & for it to never cycle!!!
     
  6. agsansoo

    agsansooWell Known MemberMember

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    So far you just have saltwater in the tank ? You should place sand an live rock in the tank and then let it cycle, with all the circulation going. The live rock and live sand will have die-off, which results in an ammonia spike --> nitrite spike --> nitrates (cycling). Let tank settle for 2-3 days, start testing the water for ammonia daily. You should notice an increase in the reading, and after a few days, the reading should stabilise, and then slowly start to drop (this could take 1-2 weeks). At that stage, start testing for nitrite as well, and keep on testing for ammonia. You should now notice an increase in nitrites, and a decrease of ammonia. After another week or so, the ammonia level should be fairly low, and the nitrite level should have reached it's peak. Once both the ammonia and nitrite levels have become unreadable and the nitrate level starts to increase. Your tank is cycled ! ... Then the fun begins WATER CHANGES. :eek: ;D

    As for the PH, upward spikes are less harmfull than downward spikes in pH. Go slow ... ONLY BAD THINGS HAPPEN QUICKLY ! ;)
     
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