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Newbie Looking For Reassurance

This is a discussion on Newbie Looking For Reassurance within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> Just want to agree with the others to be careful about over-cleaning your filter. You can un-cycle your tank that way. You should only ...

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Newbie Looking For Reassurance
Old 07-17-2008, 01:37 PM   #11
 
Just want to agree with the others to be careful about over-cleaning your filter. You can un-cycle your tank that way. You should only clean it enough to keep it running smoothly. I've personally never used Bio-Wheels, but with my AquaClears I never ever replace the media. It's a moneymaking scheme for the filter makers. (When things get gunked up I do give the sponge a good rinsing, but why replace it? It isn't worn out just dirty!)

The only thing that really wears out are the carbon inserts...but you don't really need those anyway. All they do is improve water clarity which is really only useful if you put in driftwood with a lot of tannins and don't like brown water.
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Old 07-17-2008, 01:43 PM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thespiff
The only thing that really wears out are the carbon inserts...but you don't really need those anyway. All they do is improve water clarity which is really only useful if you put in driftwood with a lot of tannins and don't like brown water.
Just to add onto that, if you have media with carbon in it, just cut the flossy side open a bit and shake all the carbon out. Carbon is pretty much useless in my opinion, unless you want to remove like meds from the tank (Lol no one hound on me for calling it useless but in a planted tank its does more bad then good) Plus if left in for to long its been known to cause hole in the head disease, and removes nutrition from the water that feeds your plants.
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Old 07-18-2008, 08:26 AM   #13
 
So get rid of the carbon and keep the sponge. Rinse the sponge in tank water to get rid of the big chunks of gunk. 10-4

What exactly does the carbon do that's negative to plants?
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:41 AM   #14
 
It filters out valuable nutrients; and it's not necessary in a well-planted tanks because your plants take over the chemical filtration.
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:42 AM   #15
 
Groovy. I'll dump it today.

And you also recommend just reusing the same sponge correct?
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Old 07-18-2008, 11:04 AM   #16
 
That's what I'm doing currently, though I feel it's not ideal. It seems like too much water is just flowing over the filter substrate instead of through it. Check out this page: high quality reusable mechanical filtration almost for free: http://www.well.com/user/debunix/fish/filters.html
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Old 07-18-2008, 11:21 AM   #17
 
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I've had the same sponge in my filter for a few months now, as long as your giving it a good squeeze and getting most of the gunk off it then it'll be ok. But they do have to be replaced eventually. Be careful with sponges!! Make sure you read it over carefully to see if it says anything about not using for aquariums, some sponges have like soaps and stuff already in them, and your fish wouldn't appreciate that!!
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Old 07-19-2008, 10:51 PM   #18
 
Here's those pics I promised. Hey and only 5 days late! A new personal best! :P






Obviously the string is holding the java fern in place until it roots to the driftwood in the corner. Anyways, there it is.
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Old 07-19-2008, 11:35 PM   #19
 
Ok, as per y'alls advice I removed all the activated carbon from the filters. So basically now I just have the bio-wheels running and a couple of sponges picking up the gunk. Is that sufficient? The bio-wheels have pretty good (at least I think) build up on them.
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Old 07-20-2008, 01:22 AM   #20
 
You will see pretty soon whether or not it is sufficient. ;) The mechanical filter primarily filters visible gunk out of the water. If your water becomes ugly, consider finer sponges from your LFS. Chemically, all should be fine. As someone pointed out, activated coal only makes sense when it comes to cleansing the water after medication or in acute poisening situations. It's not a permanent solution.

Your m. umbrosum look really healthy. Could you comment on your water specs and lighting?
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