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Sookielee 01-08-2013 07:59 AM

Planning a 75 Gal Cichlid tank - filtration ?
After reading through numerous posts I am beginning to wonder if we have inadvertently purchased an undersized canister filter. We are getting a Filstar XP3 with a hydor inline 300 watt heater. Is this going to be sufficient for even a short time or do we need to start thinking about either a second canister or turning our 45 gal into a refugium of sorts for the 75? (the other half has been thinking a lot about doing this eventually)

My apology for not having a species list, but we have not gotten that far as of yet. We are planning on creating a 3d background and doing some live plants first and allowing time for the tank to cycle and settle out before making our final decisions on stocking.

djembekah 01-08-2013 02:27 PM

i don't know much about canisters, but reading about that one, it says its rated for aquariums up to 175 gallons.

mrbprint 01-08-2013 06:36 PM

I have a 70g African tank with 15 adults that have been running for over a year without a loss. Have a CFS-500 (500gph) canister and a submersible 150w heater. It is a cheap filter but has worked very well for me.

Tazman 01-08-2013 08:54 PM

If you do have the 45g available, create a massive wet dry filter from it, there are tons of designs online about them.

It will give you a massive surface area for good bacteria over any canister including the massive Fluval FX5 which is what I have on my 75g cichlid tank.

The Rena xp3 is a good filter and will be more than sufficient for your tank, keep an eye on the water parameters and check the filter at least a month, this will give you a good indication as to whether or not your filtration is adequate.

jpbotha 01-08-2013 10:14 PM

I will go with Tazman and use the 45g for a wet/dry filter. Bit of an overkill on a 75g but you will never look back and as said you will create a massive surface area for bacteria which no canister filter can compete with.

Tazman 01-08-2013 10:23 PM

Another point is they are lot easier to clean and you can always use the tank as a refugium if you need to it.

Bonus is it is always cycled and ready to be used in an instant.

There is no overkill in filtration when it comes to cichlids, they are really messy fish and with a pleco or catfish as a bottom feeder, you will need it.

I have an Rena xp4 and FX5 on my 75g plus a 15g wet dry sump.

Sookielee 01-09-2013 06:36 AM

We really can't turn the 45 into a wet/dry due to the stand the 75 is on and the fact I do not want a 36x12x24 eyesore in the floor of my dining room. This is an idea the other half has been kicking around and would love feedback on.

The 75 gallon being a community cichlid tank moderate to minimum plants, the 45 being a very heavily planted tank, maybe shrimp or snails in it. 2 canister filters plumbed as followed.

Canister 1:
  • Intake in the 75 gallon
  • Outtake in the 45 gallon
Canister 2:
  • Intake at the opposite end of the 45 gallon
  • Outtake at the opposite end of the 75 gallon
Then place a 1" U-tube between the 2 tanks to maintain a balanced water level between them.

Tazman 01-09-2013 08:14 AM

Bad idea.

Doing that you are going to be mixing water from 2 tanks which more than likely will require different water parameters. It also means if you ever have to use medication, you will have a serious issue with the plants and occupants of the other tank.

Cichlids need hard water with a pH above 7.4 and kept around 78F

I would keep one filter for each tank.

jpbotha 01-09-2013 08:22 AM

And if you loose power on one of the filters you are going to have a mess. One tank empty and a floor full of water. Agree with Tazman, rather one filter seperate per tank. Much safer in long run
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1077 01-09-2013 08:25 AM

For 75 gallon cichlid tank ,I would run two of the XP3's or,,Reverse flow undergravel, with the one XP3.
Would clean filter(s) as mentioned by Taz, once a month without fail.8-)

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