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Advice!?!

This is a discussion on Advice!?! within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Hey everyone, While doing tank maintenance today I got to thinking about my Undergravel filter...I have heard they are bad for tanks. Mine circulates ...

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Old 10-22-2006, 05:11 PM   #1
 
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Advice!?!

Hey everyone,
While doing tank maintenance today I got to thinking about my Undergravel filter...I have heard they are bad for tanks. Mine circulates the tank pretty well but I got to thinking about the fish. When I did my gravel vac all the poop and everything is on the left side because thats where the fish always hang out is on the left where there isnt the current of my powerhead...I thought it looked more natural having the sway of the plants and etc...The Undergravel plates helped me raise up the gravel a little bit ( I had a limited amount ). So I was thinking that I could just Take out the power head and the Undergravel Tube that leads to the powerhead. I could remove those and it would be like there is no undergravel anything.
This could allow my fish to glaze the whole tank and would look better with out a tube on the left side of the tank.

Please give me some advice before I choose what to do :D :D
Thanks

Nick :P
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Old 10-22-2006, 05:55 PM   #2
 
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you have an undergravel filter in addition to another filter? or is that your only filtration device? i personally would rather use a HOB filter myself, as i believe it provides more adequate filtration and prevents hot spots under your gravel where ammonia and nitrates build up. i think most people on this forum would say to stay away from undergravel as your primary filtration. there are many good brands of HOB filters, and you can refer to this thread to see what some other members of the forum have recommended. good luck!

http://www.fishforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=1272

bri
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Old 10-22-2006, 06:04 PM   #3
 
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You are correct that UG filters are a thing of the past. They have a nasty tendency to collect more crap than you can get out. Once it has enough it becomes a time bomb. Oh I've read all kinds of stuff in books and magazines about using airline to suck the muck out from under them, but why? Get a nice external filter, be it a HOB or cansiter (I prefer canister due to the larger sizes), it can actually be cleaned from time to time unlike a UG plate.

Removing the lift tubes and thinking it's a done deal is incorrect. You've just created a plenum. A place where all the old muck is still sitting. It's in there rotting away. Also fine matter will flow through the slits and sit there and break down as well. Makes a fine place for bacteria and viruses to breed. Tends to slowly vent out noxious gases.

You'd be better off draining out the water and removing the plates.
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Old 10-22-2006, 06:14 PM   #4
 
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Hold on everyone! Where did i ever say anything about that being my only filtration. Of course I have a HOB filter! AND im definetly not emptying out my whole tank jus tot take out the plates...I might as well just keep it going then because of the gases and other muck forming under the plates. I was just going to take the powerhead and the tube out. The plates are mainly there for more of a " lift " for the gravel. If i didnt have the plates there my gravel would be way down...lets see what other's think :P
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Old 10-22-2006, 06:36 PM   #5
 
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i would have to agree with caferacermike and girlofgod. UG filters are dangerous toys. whether they are running or not that junk just keeps building up and eventually the tank spikes. it may not seem worth it now but you would probably be better off taking them out. you could get more gravel and just build up the areas the plants are. gravel isn't usually very expensive.
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Old 10-22-2006, 07:03 PM   #6
 
lets stay on topic guys
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Old 10-22-2006, 07:13 PM   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joeshmoe
lets stay on topic guys
Joe, I don't see anything that diverted from the original topic. They are just discussing what else is wrong with the UG filters.
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Old 10-22-2006, 07:18 PM   #8
 
i no but i think nick knows. and he was asking to take the tubes or not (typo)
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Old 10-22-2006, 09:47 PM   #9
 
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okay...well then that was totally what i wasnt expecting! Well I've gotten way to far on my tank to just take it ALL down just to take the plates out. if it gets to the point to where the tank is a disaster and all my fish die then i need something to worry about. thanks for all the advice and please dont feel like I just made this topic for the hell of it I just didnt know what to do....

so what way would be the more IDEAL way to do with out taking the plates out.
1) Take the powerhead and tube out just leave the plates
2) Just keep it running like it is

Thanks!

nick
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Old 10-22-2006, 10:10 PM   #10
 
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How long has it been running?

If it has not been running too long, maybe it does not have alot of build up, and you could make it into a reverse undergravel filter?

It's a pretty cool thing, blows water up instead of sucking it down.

Don't know how your plants would like it though
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