Running 2 power filters on my 55g... - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 13 Old 11-14-2012, 08:16 AM
I have two Aquaclear 70 filters on my 60g FW tank. One is filled with two AC70 sponges and fine filter pads. Right now, it also has a pack of Seachem Purigen.
It is set for medium flow/re-filtration (although I often set it to low flow at feeding or at night.). It has a DIY water bottle baffle to reduce flow. The intake tube is 4" from the bottm,

The other AC70 uses an AC20 impeller (much smaller). It is set to minimum flow/maximum re-filtration. The filter has a coarse pad in the bottom and is completely filled with a Seachem Matrix/De*Nitrate mix. It is rarely serviced, while the other (mechanical) filter is serviced more often. The intake tube is high in the tank.

This setup allows me to have somewhat dedicated, undisturbed, low flow, greater volume bio-filtration. While the other filter focuses primarily on mechanical filtration only.

Although two filters are in play for media volume, the water flow is less than typical for a single filter. I firmly believe that good filtration is not about high water flow, but filtering/purifying the water, often much more slowly, through very fine media and/or adsorbing dissolved organics or other impurities from the water column.

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Last edited by AbbeysDad; 11-14-2012 at 08:18 AM.
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post #12 of 13 Old 11-14-2012, 08:37 AM
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I run one Aquaclear 110 on 55 gal with only mechanical media(foam).
Also run aquaclear 70 powerhead, with quick filter in this tank for more circulation that pleco's I keep, enjoy.
As mentioned,,Bacteria which processes waste, is foumd on all hard surfaces in the tank as it matures.
Is no benefit from providing excess biological media, surface area, for the bacteria only develop's in proportion to the food(fish load) available.
Though I run only foam in this filter as well as canister's,, anything in the flow of water will harbor the beneficial bacteria needed.(lava rock,pot scrubbies,tinker toy's,foam)
I run two Eheim 2217's on planted 80 gal and the circulation in my tank(s) is used to distribute heat,nutrient's,and allow particulate matter to be kept in water column longer for mechanical media(foam) to catch = cleaner ,crisper ,water.
The finer the filter material ,the cleaner the tank will look and faster the fine material will become dirty.(gotta clean it )
Keep the filter maintained,water changes regularly,,and fishes will be happy,healthy.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.

Last edited by 1077; 11-14-2012 at 08:43 AM.
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post #13 of 13 Old 11-15-2012, 07:32 AM
When I spoke of increased media volume, the two HOB's gives me the approximate media capacity of what I might see with a canister filter, maybe [only] slightly more.
It also gives me two other distinct advantages. First, the beneficial bacteria colonies perform best when undisturbed so having the mechanical separate from the biological allows me to more routinely service the mechanical while the bio-filter just runs and runs. Second, the AC70 bio-filter, using the AC20 impeller allows for a very slow trickle return to the tank which is another benefit for bio-filtration, especially using media (Seachem Matrix/De*Nitrate) designed to emulate live rock and culture anaerobic bacteria to also process nitrates.
In all fairness, I'm not yet convinced that there is a disproportionate amount of biological activity in the bio-filter vs. the sponges in the mechanical filter. Although I can likely force that some by swapping out the sponges in the mechanical filter. However, in my established tank, there's most likely more bio activity in the sand than either of the filters!

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