Help for a 1st time canister filter owner - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-04-2010, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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Help for a 1st time canister filter owner

Hi folks,

Need some advice on getting some surface agitation in my 75 gallon tank. I bought a Rena Xp3 filter and did not set it up with the "spray bar" option - I set it up so that the output tube is along the back of the tank under the water.

It's been about a week and now the surface of my tank has a clear almost gel like scum on it. Initailly, I didn't have the time to fill the tank to the top (move to new house) so it wasn't a problem.

So, how do you deal with aeration? Should I put an airstone in there? Do you leave the tank partiall empty so the spray is above the water line??

Thanks

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post #2 of 6 Old 06-04-2010, 10:32 PM
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Just point the output nozzle up a little bit.

60 gallon FOWLR in progress
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post #3 of 6 Old 06-05-2010, 04:46 AM
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Is this a planted tank? If so, you might not want much surface agitation as that promotes oxygen exchange, which is no good for your plants. If your surface scum gets really bad, you could buy a surface skimmer attachment for your canister filter's intake, which skims off the scum buildup without creating too much surface agitation.

Something like this:
http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.co...m?pcatid=12703

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post #4 of 6 Old 06-05-2010, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iamntbatman View Post
Is this a planted tank? If so, you might not want much surface agitation as that promotes oxygen exchange, which is no good for your plants. If your surface scum gets really bad, you could buy a surface skimmer attachment for your canister filter's intake, which skims off the scum buildup without creating too much surface agitation.

Something like this:
http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.co...m?pcatid=12703
Hmmmmm..... I like that idea. I plan on planting this tank so didn't want to go with the spray method.

Thanks for the advice.

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post #5 of 6 Old 06-05-2010, 12:38 PM
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As I have this issue I'll add my comments. The "scum" is protein, absolutely natural in any aquarium, though with surface movement it is usually not present. Different biology in different tanks means that some tanks have it, others never seem to. It is not harmful unless it thickens to the point of preventing the gas exchange at the surface; in a planted tank this is less of a concern. A slight surface movement is fine, it is the "overkill" that has to be avoided which is why I frequently say "no surface disturbance." There is a vast difference between the "disturbance" from an Aqua-Clear waterfall type filter or a powerhead, and that created by your Rena if positioned correctly.

I use the spraybar on my 70g and 90g tanks, but on the 115g which happens to have a Rena XP3 [good filters I think] I also removed the spraybar but I did this because the 5-foot hose will not reach from the filter to the far end of the tank, and going to their site they do not have extended hoses. So I have the spigot as far along the back as it will go, and it is directed at the far end wall, about a foot beyond the spigot. The water flow is sufficient to create a very minimal surface movement at that end, but not too much.

Byron.

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 #6 of 6 Old 06-05-2010, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Byron,

My last filter was indeed an Aqua Clear so I'm used to the waterfall effect and not used to the stillness of the canister (which I'm loving so far...). The scum concerned me because the food was getting trapped in it. For a quick fix I positioned the output nozzle up a bit as suggested by Mr Fishy and that seems to be working pretty wel.

I can't wait to get some live plants but it's going to be a while since I have a whole house to unpack and set up (groan....).

On a good note, I didn't lose any fish in the moving process.

Thanks again guys.

Animal testing is a terrible idea; they get all nervous and give the wrong answers.
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