I am looking to start a reef tank sometime in the future. I know most of the larger reef tanks run a sump filter but can other filter be used such as canisters or hang on type filters.
Has anyone here used the hang on types for a reef tank and what were the pro cons of that
I have used Hang on back filters (HOB) and canisters. They have to be cleaned out often to keep the poop from turning into nitrates and phosphates and seeping back into the tank. It's like everyother day or so. It's really a pain. There are some HOB skimmers you can get and HOB refugiums too. I use a HOB skimmer and have good water flow and a lot of Live rock (LR). I keep a 55g tank. Check my thread out in my signature and see how easy it is. Just don't forget to do the water changes. (although, a refugium or sump would make that a lot easier).
I agree with Kells. Using most any hang on filter, such as power filters or canisters, almost always leads to nitrate and phosphate buildup. The maintanance requirements of these units on a marine tank is almost daily cleanings. You can, however, use a hang on Protein Skimmer, which is actually what you should be looking into for a successful marine tank.
The protein skimmer removes organic waste prior to the waste being broken down into nitrate. Doing so dramatically reduces the time and need for water changes, making the routine care of a marine aquarium much less time consuming and less costly. (salt is expensive!)
What size tank are you looking at? We can recommend some specific skimmer choices and direct you to online retailers that offer the skimmer at a nice discount.
I'm pretty sure I'll be going with a 125g. I was considering a 210 since it had similar dim. to a 125 but I can get a 125 for around 300 and a 210 will cost 900.
Nice. A 125 gallon tank will be an excellent marine system. As you realize in your initial post, you will need to use a sump system on a tank of this size. I would suggest you look to purchase a tank with pre drilled overflows.
This is a big project, so rather than just talk in the general sense, how about you tell us what you are already considering so that we can provide some feedback.
By the way, on my 180 FOWLR I am using an ASM G3 skimmer. I have been very happy with the performance. I believe I ordered the skimmer from ASM G-3 Protein Skimmer* - AquaCave.
Live rock will be another big expense for you. Keep in mind that you can use a large amount of dry rock, and then "seed" the tank with live rock. I used about 80% dry rock and 20% live rock on my 180. I order my dry rock from Marco Rocks The finest aquarium rock available, base rock, live rock, reef rock, marco rock, reef tank saltwater fish, live corals, Marco rocks, Fiji live rock, Tonga Live rock. I used Key Largo rock in my 180.
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