03-04-2012, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by AlainaToadpipe
I have one of these Tetra Whisper PF10 Filtration System at PETCO
I did not purchase it at petco, but at the local pet store, the link though is to their ad for it, so it has the picture and specs. :) I thought I understood the idea to be to continue to change out the inserts in the filter on a regular basis (so, new charcoal in that regard). I don't add any charcoal other than that to my system.
You often have to wonder about the companies that design some of these filters, telling people to throw away the cartridge and replace (more money for them) Each time you do that you are throwing away your good bacteria, and can possibly be putting your tank at risk to go through a mini-cycle. If I were you, I'd forget about buying the cartridges. I'd make my own filter media for the filter. Get a sponge filter to fit, or cut one and/or some cheap fiber floss. Any pet store should be able to show you what I'm talking about for "mechanical filtration". That goes at the bottom of your filter. You can buy, for a small filter (10 gal) Aqua-Clear filter insert biomax, at a petstore (few bucks) and lay that in over the sponge (this is the ceramic chips I was talking about). I like Aqua-clear filter media, but there are other brands, ways to do this. These should fit in the filter you have if you buy the 10 gal size. Check them out. That's all you need. You "never" throw the stuff away, just rinse it in old tap water maybe every other tank change or less. At some point when the filter sponge is falling apart, you can replace, but keep the old one in until the new one has time to establish. The ceramic chips will last a very long time. You'll want to stack this to reach up, let's say an inch from the top of the output. I hope that makes sense. You're just fashioning your own filter media that will be a bit more effective than those flimsy filter inserts. Carbon serves no purpose except to clear cloudy water or remove chemicals/meds from water - just remember it is only effective for about 1-2 weeks max.