sand cleaning - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #11 of 59 Old 02-09-2009, 09:57 PM
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well the liverock and skimmer (and deep sand bed, if you go that route) IS the filter... good flow is important for (a) passing water around and through your liverock, which contains the various bacteria needed to convert ammonia->nitrite->nitrate->(possibly) nitrogen gas, and (b) preventing waste from settling on the bottom and keeping it in the water column to be removed by the skimmer and liverock. The skimmer of course removes dissolved organics before they completely break down into ammonia. Working together, that is the best filter a saltwater tank can have.

The canister, hang-on back, and even wet-dry sumps w/ filter pads and bioballs end up generating way too much nitrate, which is why they aren't recommended for saltwater tanks.

Sumps are nice, because they (a) provide a way to increase the overall water volume of your system, and (b) provide a convenient, out-of-sight location to house things like your skimmer, carbon/phosban reactor, refugium, UV, etc. The sump isn't NEEDED, but it's certainly nice to have. Its advisable to avoid any kind of mechanical filtration in the sump however, for the same reasons you shouldn't have canisters or hang-on-backs. By mechanical, I mean sponges and filter pads that trap particles... a skimmer is technically "mechanical" filtration too. If you DO decide to include a sponge or filter pad somewhere in your filtration, its highly recommended that you rinse it out daily, to avoid it becoming biologically active and generating nitrates. Since that can become a pain, its easier to just omit any mechanical filtration and rely on good liverock/skimmer/flow filtration + water changes.

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post #12 of 59 Old 02-09-2009, 09:58 PM
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yes but a sump is very benificial as it will add more water volume. the solution to pollution is dilution. the more volume the more stable parameters are.
its not required but def. is beneficial.

enough live rock, water flow, weekly water changes, a QUALITY protein skimmer and you shouldnt have an issue. read the reviews and feedback on skimmers as alot are not worth your time or money.
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post #13 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clint3240 View Post
so you are saying i do not need a filter in my tank? not even a sump? all i need is the water changes, skimmer, liverock and water flow?
"The solution to pollution is dilution" That's basically what a sump is. Adding more water volume to the tank. If you have a 100g tank and have a 50g sump/refugium then it is 150g of water rather then 100g. It takes more pollution to cause any issues. This works well with small tanks and picotopes. It takes almost nothing to pollute a 2.5g, but if it has a 20g sump then it takes far more.

Hope that helps

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post #14 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
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so is this what could be causing the top of the sand to go brown?
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post #15 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 08:20 AM
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im guessing high nitrates from the biological filter you have hanging on the back of your tank.
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post #16 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 09:58 AM
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onefish2fish asked this early on, but I don't think you ever indicated: how old is your tank?

if it's fairly new, meaning within 6 months or less, then you're just experiencing the normal diatom bloom that every new saltwater aquarium goes through. Once that finally dies away, you'll likely get an algae bloom of some kind too. The tank won't really be "mature" for several months to a year or more.

So if the answer to "how old is your tank" is that it is pretty new, then there's your answer right there for why your sand is being covered in diatoms... its supposed to (as ugly as it may be, you've just got to wait it out)! However if your tank has been around for a while, and you're getting a diatom bloom out of nowhere, then that's a little more concerning.

"To an optimist, the glass is half-full;
to a pessimist, the glass is half-empty;
to an engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
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post #17 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kellsindell View Post
It takes almost nothing to pollute a 2.5g, but if it has a 20g sump then it takes far more.
It's also called cheating.

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post #18 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
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my tank is about 1 and half years old, i will be removing my filter today.
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post #19 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 03:00 PM
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good move, what kind of powerheads do you have (brand/model) and how many pounds of liverock?
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post #20 of 59 Old 02-10-2009, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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i have 2 penguine 550 power heads, i will be getting another
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