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Welcome to the forum

Canister filters are impervious to sand - your tank is certainly large enough for one.

Not true at all, they can still get sand in them.
 

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The correct metaphor would be getting a different kind of tire if one had a problem with flats, not an entirely new vehicle.


Yes, they can get sand in them, but the sand does not foul the motor. Yes, they are not impervious in that they let sand in. They are impervious in that they are not affected by it. The reason sand fouls HOBs is because the motor is at the bottom. Canisters have their motors on the top.
 

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I've found a nice PowerPoint presentation is all that's needed to convince the fish to keep the sand where it belongs ;-)
I'm pretty certain all 14 of my loaches would look at that and then go on a digging spree to spite me.

Make sure the bottom of your inlet strainer is about 4" from the top of the sand. The sponge prefilter will [also] help solve the problem, but you may find that it will quickly restrict flow and may need rinsing as much as twice a week. Make sure to get at least two so you can swap back and forth quickly and easily.
Also it goes without saying that the filter should be off during water changes and/or whenever you disturb the sand.

Try to ignore the sarcasm posted. Some folks just like to 'debate'. But when somebody reports a flat tire, the first solution isn't necessarily to buy a new Cadillac...not that a new Cadillac wouldn't be nice mind you. ;-)
How nice to know that people disagreeing with you or choosing to want to see things fully talked about/thought through equals "likes to debate". I"m done here. OP I hope that when you do settle down with your new replacement that you no longer have these problems with sand. I know your pain too well having been in the same situation. Not a single HOB on any of my tanks pre-filter sponge or not seemed to be able to handle fish using the bottom like a kid uses a sand box. It's well worth it to save up for a canister.
 

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I'm pretty certain all 14 of my loaches would look at that and then go on a digging spree to spite me..
I had to show it to mine twice - stubborn buggers they are.
 

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Thanks for the welcoming
Yes I got filters that hang off the back
Marineland filters (which broke easier)
And Fluval (which was much quieter but still broke)
I think the best for option for me I think would be to use a sponge around the intake for now and look into buying a canister later,
And yes there are a couple of my fish who kick up sand
Thanks for all the help this problem was really discouraging me for a while.
. . .Just to throw another option out there, just as Jaysee's (gorgeous) Moonlight sand was very light, there are other sands, like Tahitian Moon, that are of a thicker grain, and thus heavier. This depends on the creatures you keep, of course, so you may need to do some research first. I use this sand with Kuhli loaches and Bolivian Rams - soft bellies and diggers - it doesn't get kicked up like 'normal' sand does with these guys, but they seem to like it just fine.

Adding the sponge asap is a great idea to protect the current filter while you figure out where you're going - you've gotten plenty of great suggestions here - be sure to check back in and let us know how you solve your dilemma (hooray for new cars *ahem* filters)

:)

I always find the debating interesting, provided it stays kind. I really do like to hear different takes on the same situation - feel it allows me to gain a deeper understanding from the experience of others, and so I am able to make a better decision about what will work for me, personally.

Perhaps we should suggest putting a 'hot topic' board up somewhere? We can go back and forth about filtration, water changes, and sumps as much as we like - without making decisions difficult for newer members. . .

Kind of feeling bad for whoever gets stuck moderating over there, though ;-)
 

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Hi MitchellLion and welcome to the forum.

I've had similar problems with my AquaClears, as I have sand too.

First, can I ask how you clean your tank? Do you stir up a lot of sand as you clean? If you do, then I'd recommend this approach:

First turn off the filter. Stir up the sand as much as you wish cleaning. Let the sand settle before turning the filter back on.

Some marine keepers recommend this approach as it stirs up the detritus more than just hovering the siphon over the surface of the sand.

If you have very fine sand like Moonlight (I've had that before), you may want to try a prefilter sponge to help keep such fine sand out.

If you have fish that like to dig, I would actually recommend raising the intake a little higher than normal and relying on your weekly vacuuming to get the detritus off the sand surface. Better than sucking the sand in, eh?
 

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As much as I like the idea of the sponge filters, I didn't know about that option when I started my aquarium list. With my plants it would have been a definite option.

No matter the initial cost of a canister, going through two HOBs is already more expensive than one canister setup even if you spend a little more on it. The water flow is different but there are more options in setting up the out flow between being able to direct it and/or use spray bars and nozzles (depending on the make they come with one or the other) but changing it with an after market or DIY device is an option.

I was going to go with aquaclear and would plug that model as we have had one on the office tank for years.... well overs five anyway. The flow is adjustable, media is configurable, it's reasonably quite for an HOB (it's in a 24 hour operation, we would have heard about it if it were noisy) and it just works. I guess I can't speak for the new models, although I have my doubts that they will spontaneously break without a little help with leverage along the way.

Jeff.
 

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Once again this was not about Aquaclear as it's magnetic driven impeller is no different than most other HOB's. I merely described that I have a HOB and sand and never have sand in the filter. But I have pool filter sand that I leave undisturbed and my fish and flow rates can't kick the sand high enough to get to the inlet strainer that is about 3-4" from the surface of the sand.
 
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