Filter media is clogged up. Time to change it? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
Filter media is clogged up. Time to change it?

My aquarium has been running for 3 1/2 months. I have an Aquen Quietflow filter. The filter media is the one that came with it. I try my best to clean it out in old tank water every week when i do my water change but the last few weeks, even after swishing it around in the old water, within 2 days it seems to be pretty clogged and water overflows and bypasses the filter.

A) is there a way to clean it better?
B) do i keep some of this filter and replace the rest with new media?

The one in there now has old carbon in it. I know since i have a bunch of live plants i dont want carbon so please recommend a different filter media that would work for my tank. Thanks.
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post #2 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:07 PM
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It's probably time to add a new one and take a knife or scissors to cut the fabric part off of your existing one and try to put it against the back of the new media. Or you can skip their cartridge thingy and buy some of the generic filter media that you can cut to size yourself and then put that in the slot along with the fabric from the old cartridge. I don't use carbon on all my tanks but ones that come like that I don't want to go through the hassle of taking the carbon out. However even with a lot of live plants I see no issue using it ( at least it doesn't seem to hurt the growth of my plants). It doesn't work after a month anyway then it'll just be the bb doing it's job by itself along with the plants without carbon.
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post #3 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
Thanks. I was thinking about buying a bag of filter media and cutting the old media fabric and placing it on the back just like you said. How much do i put on? Obviously if i put it all it would still clog up. I dont want to get rid off too much because i am overstocked and cant afford any cycling issues, especially since i have sensitive glass catfish and no extra tank in case of emergency.
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post #4 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:35 PM
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It has that blue slot to put the cartridge in it, right? Just cut it to fit in there and don't worry too much(for the old media.. put half of it the fabric from one side) ... I've done exactly the same thing on one of my tanks. However if you are overstocked you will keep having this issue. Perhaps when you get a chance buy either a bigger tank for them and a filter for the larger tank..or just buy a better filter rated for a larger tank then what you have. If you prefer HOBs then get an aquaclear one rated for the one size up from your actual tank size.
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post #5 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:41 PM Thread Starter
Thanks. Ill cut half off and add it on. It is the one with the blue cartridge. I have only had a HOB filter. Im not too familiar with other filters as I have only read about them but not used them. I may just end up getting a bigger filter for this one if it becomes a problem. Then ill have an excuse to get a 20 gallon since ill have an extra filter :)
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post #6 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
Although the next size filter up has the same cartridge for media so will it still get clogged? Especially with more water flow running through it? I need an explanation as to how a bigger filter will work when the media clogging is the problem. Im new so excuse the lack of knowledge lol
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post #7 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 12:54 PM
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Well I wouldn't stick with the aqueon. They do the job but not like aquaclear/fluval. For one it will pump more water through it per hr so that will increase effectiveness but it shouldn't have the same size cartridge. If you buy bigger then just go with bigger and better. Fluval/aquaclear filters have larger everything for each size up and I like to add on the fluval/aquaclear HOB's between the sponge and the carbon a layer of that same media I am fairly certain you are already talking about getting. Plus those ones allow you to adjust the flow to however your fish prefer. But maybe this fix you're doing now will last a bit longer so you can think on it.
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post #8 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
I am going to buy some filter media and see how it works. If it clogs quickly i will upgrade. I have some money on a gift card already so it shouldnt be too much of a hit on the wallet if i need to get a better filter.
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post #9 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 03:30 PM
Just piping in to say that if your cartridge is clogging too quickly than that's a sign you need a better filter (or bigger) and...with that I agree with what Agent said.

It saves you money on the long run if you don't have to keep sinking money into a cartridge replacements. Even if they are cheap that adds up. I have long become the strong opinion that cartridge based filters need to just die.

While AQ may be one of the best HOB's, Fluval puts out some well put together Internals if you look around. It's hard to make too much of a recommendation not knowing the size tank, set up, and inhabitants.
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post #10 of 16 Old 08-01-2013, 03:35 PM Thread Starter
It is a 29 gallon tank. its the tank in my aquarium log. 8 glass cats, 10 neon tetras and 7 cherry barbs. The filter has been fine until the last couple weeks so i think i just need new media. If it starts to happen often i will upgrade
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