Upgrading Canister Filter? Newbie Question - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 7 Old 11-06-2009, 09:59 PM Thread Starter
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Question Upgrading Canister Filter? Newbie Question

Hi all, this is my first post here. :) I am setting up my first tropical freshwater tank, I've owned goldfish in the past.

My problem is I have a 44 gal tank and a canister filter which is barely big enough to support the tank's size (due to silly decision and pet shop advice a long time ago). It's the filter I used for my two goldfish, however it's been lying dormant but still full of water for several months, I don't know if that means all the beneficial bacteria is gone. I would like to upgrade it to something more suitable, my aim is to maintain high water quality in the tank.

Would having multiple canister filters increase water quality? For example a 50 gallon tank with one 40 gal canister and one 30 gal canister. Would that be the equivelant of a 70 gal canister? Or does it not work like that?

Or would having one canister filter which is much larger than needed be beneficial or do more harm than good?

Should I get a second canister and have two running or replace the one I have with one much larger model? If so what is the best way to transfer the sponges, etc to the new one?

Thanks! :)
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post #2 of 7 Old 11-07-2009, 10:56 AM
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Hello and welcome to the forum!

Hmm, I think I have read a 1% die off in bacteria for each day their is no source of ammonia. Its hard to say, if there is still any beneficial bacteria left in the filter. My guess, after several months, that there is not.

What type of fish do you plan on keeping? Running to smaller filters or one larger, can both work. You could even just add on a hang on the back filter, to use along with the canister you already have.
The problem comes into place, when considering water current. you want to make sure that current is not too much for the fish you are keeping.
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post #3 of 7 Old 11-07-2009, 11:08 AM
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+1 to the info above.

Welcome to the forum. Glad you decided to join us!!

If you don't stand up for something you'll fall for anything...
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post #4 of 7 Old 11-07-2009, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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I appreciate the answer! :)

You're right, the water current will need to be considered too. I was thinking of putting in some rummy nose tetras, gouramis, maybe dwarf cichlids (cockatoo) and a bristlenose.
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post #5 of 7 Old 11-08-2009, 03:43 PM
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Basically, you need added biological capacity, and that means adding something with more media which creates more room for the beneficial bacteria to grow.
There are several ways to achieve this...many people run multiple filters, sometimes two identical filters (I ran a matched pair of Emperor 400's for many years), other times two or more which are not identical. You often hear people run two different kinds of Eheim, or an Eheim and a Fluval, etc.
Since you already have a canister, you could add another and the combined media capacity would allow you to support a larger number of fish.
You could add a different kind of filter, like a HOB or my own favorite, a HydroSponge bubbling away somewhere in the tank (I actually use HydroSponges as my sole filters, with good results).

8) 30 gallon w/ Diamond Tetras and White Clouds, EcoComplete w/ Anubias and Cabomba, Eheim 2213 and 18 watts of lighting.

8) 55 gallon w/ Senegal Bichir and large Pleco, EcoComplete w/ Anubias, Eheim 2213, and 30 watts of lighting.

8) 75 gallon w/ Cardinal, Serpae and Black Skirt tetras, cories, danios, Pearl gouramis and yoyo loaches, EcoComplete heavily planted with Anubias, Eheim 2215, and 30 watts of lighting.
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post #6 of 7 Old 11-09-2009, 09:36 PM
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Yea its safe to say your bacteria in there is dead.

Here's my favorite Canister of all times, had several tanks equipped with it, never an issue, no noise, works GREAT, trouble free (I use the 2213 for the 55 gallon tanks)
EHEIM Classic External Canister - Filtration & Circulation - Fish - PetSmart
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post #7 of 7 Old 11-09-2009, 09:37 PM
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Ups...as for your question adding a 2nd filter...the $ you'll spet on a secondary smaller one...I'd just really go ahead and buy one good one that'll last you forever and is trouble free and safe's you some room (plus IMO hooking up to filters in 1 tank kinda is too much tubes etc for my eyes )
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