HOB to Canister switch
So i realized the other day my HOB fluval c3 was cracked where the water flows out.. causing some water to drip down the back of my aquarium... plus i wanted to give canister a go around.
So i went to my LFS and purchased a fluval 206 canister.
I have purigen in the top tray with a polishing pad, seachem matrix in the second tray, and the fluval bio foam in the bottom tray, and ofcourse the sponges on the other side which the water flows through prior to the bio foam.
I have a 20 gallon high, with live plants, driftwood, and 8 jelly shrimp. Just finished cycling about 4 days ago, and popped the shrimp in today.
So in all my excitement of water changes.. adding shrimp.. and the mad cleanup i've been doing from an algae bloom, i was so ready to get my filter put together and have my fish work done for today that i installed it all without putting my HOB's filter media in it..
I reckon i should have put atleast some of the matrix rocks in there... and a piece of sponge maybe... but i didnt think of it until now.
Do i need to take the canister apart and add some media?
How long do i need to continue to run the HOB until i can remove it and just use the canister?
Before tearing the filter apart, I think I'd put the media in a mesh bag or nylon stocking and drape in the tank for a couple of weeks. On the other hand, with the shut offs on the Fluval, you could pop some of your used media in there pretty easy.
I guess i'm just confused on the fact that if i took all the media... purigen, sponge, and matrix from my HOB and put it in the canister, why it wouldnt be the same as my HOB, aside from any BB thats in the housing itself...
But why would there be an advantage to hanging media in my tank vs just leaving my HOB running for 2 weeks?
if i place media in the canister itself, will i still need to leave the HOB running?
I don't mind taking the canister apart, or hanging media, or just leaving my HOB running for now.. i just want the BEST solution..
However if there is no advantage to one over the other, i don't want to put effort in one way, for the exact same result. if that makes sense
Some more info though, if you hang the HOBs media in your tank, you will need to leave it there for a month to ensure the canister has enough time to form its own bacteria.
If you move the HOBs media into the canister, you can safely remove the HOB completely and can remove the HOBs media from your canister sometime in the future (again, I'd wait a month).
Okay. Yeah I have a lot of water movement right now.. I'm going to move te filter media to the canister. Can I place the HOB sponge in one of the trays or do I somehow need to attach it to the other sponge? Or is the only concern that its in the filter? Also I use purigen in both.. The HOB purigen seems to hve algae in it.. Can I just toss that or does that contain a lot of BB? Ill dump some of the new matrix out and put all the old HOB matrix in.
So canister filters oxygenate the water? I have it disturbing the surface.. But it doesn't have the waterfall effect... I have plants so I'm sure I'm fine. I also get some
Bubbles out of the exit tube of the canister if its on high flow, is that normal? Or should I have 0 air bubbles since the water is moving through the canister and back user water?
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When filled for the first time, or emptied for cleaning, it can take a couple days for all the air to leave the consister which can make bubbles. Otherwise, it could mean there is a leak on the input side. The suction of the filter would make air come in, rather than water come out while the opposite is true on the output side.
If the output of a canister does not disturb the surface, it will not oxygenate the water. It would need to break the surface tension to increase gas exchange. Live plants in enough numbers can easily produce enough oxygen for the fish, but if you only have a few slow growers they may not be enough. You can tell if oxygen is too low because the fish will be at the surface 'gasping' for air. If you have a spray bar, pointing that slightly 'up' will cause surface movement if you need it (often a good idea anyways as biofilm/protein film can build up on calm water).
The sponge of the HOB can be put anywhere, doesn't mater as far as the bacteria is concerned. You only need a 'tight' fit with sponges/pads/floss to prevent water bypassing them and thus not letting them catch the floating particles in the water.
As for the purigen having bacteria on it, the answer is yes ... because the bacteria is literally on every single surface of the entire tank. That's why one of the common medias for filters are the ceramic rings or bio balls, they have a lot of surface area and thus more room for bacteria.
However, in regards to Purigen, it gets dark as it is used and must be 'recharged' with bleach. Seachem claims it will last forever. If you do not have the bottle with instructions you can go to their website for them.
I don't disagree with all that's been posted, but as you did mention live plants initially, i would not go through all this fussing for nothing. The plants will grab most of the ammonia anyway. Plus as mentioned there is more bacteria in the substate than in any filter media. I have never used "old" media in any way. I clean my filters under the tap, and I use new media when setting up a new tank.
I myself would not use purigen, or any other type of chemical filtration, in a planted tank. Seachem say it's impact on trace minerals (micro-nutrients) is minimal, but for me that is still too much; I see no logic in spending money to add more nutrients when there is media in the filter removing them. But even more, the claim that this product affects organic waste and removes it bothers me; in a planted tank we generally want this, as organics are the prime source of CO2. Purigen also "controls ammonia" and that too is detrimental with plants.
that make sense byron... i have plenty of matrix left over, so i will just remove the purigen.. and add more bio media and i can put my old HOB sponge in there also
thanks for the help.
i do not have a spray bar, the fluval 206 just has a nozzle, however it is disturbing the surface, but the HOB has a waterfall effect, which has the water contact air on its way down, where the canister doesnt, so that's why i was questioning it.
This issue of surface disturbance and lost CO2 is one I have been unable to pin down unequivocally. Every planted tank author has always written that surface disturbance will drive CO2 out faster. No one seems to question that in a high-tech setup with CO2 diffusion; but there are some who question just how much this happens in a natural (=low-tech) planted tank. I have certainly not seen any conclusive evidence to suggest the opposite, so i tend to remain in the camp that views excessive surface movement as detrimental. But the "excessive" is significant.
I have sponge filters in 4 tanks, and while some would argue that this also will dissipate CO2 faster, the plants are not showing any effects of this. I use the spigot rather than a spray bar on my 115g, specifically to provide a stronger current at that end of the tank for the fish (Spotted Woodcats) that need it. It (the spigot) is about 1.5 to 2 inches below the surface so the surface disturbance is not much. A moderate surface movement is probably fine. Just don't have Niagara Falls happening in the tank.:lol:
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