Filter Questions - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 10-05-2011, 06:28 PM Thread Starter
Filter Questions

I just upgraded the from a couple of HOB's to a Fluval 405 Canister filter on my 55 gallon tank. I am already noticing a difference in the sound and the surface agitation. This should help my plants more I assume. There are four media baskets, what should I put in them and in what order? Also, how often do I change the media? I am used to once a month but from what I have read it seems I won't have nearly the maintenance with this filter.
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post #2 of 3 Old 10-05-2011, 07:07 PM
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There is a demo video here:

There is a lot of different media shown. I would only use the foam blocks, pre-filter (these are ceramic disks that should be in the first basket the water runs through) and Biomax. The various chemical media like carbon, zeocarb, ammonia remover, etc. are not advisable in a planted tank. Using the carbon for the first week to "polish' the water is fine, but after that I wouldn't.

I use Fluval media in my Rena and Eheim canisters because Fluval is considerably cheaper but just as good. In planted tanks, the plants do the main filtration work so the filter is secondary. The Pre-filter (ceramic disks) never wear out and only need rinsing. The BioMax can be replaced periodically, perhaps every 6 months, but I don't do this either. I stopped replacing this media years ago. I don't know how the foam blocks hold up, but they only need rinsing to keep them clean so long as they are filling the space and the water is forced to go through them.

How often the filter needs rinsing depends upon the bioload. You want the water to flow through the media uninterrupted; if you never rinse it, the flow will slow to the point of almost stopping. And as the media becomes clogged, water may find an alternate route around it. I find that my Eheim canisters need rising about every 4-6 months, my Rena every 2 months.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #3 of 3 Old 10-05-2011, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
Thanks for your help, I will keep an eye on the filter over the next few months to see how it does.
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