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What is the best method for filtering an aquarium?

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Discussion Starter #1
What is THE best means of filtration for the aquarium? Now you can vote and let's see what everyone thinks. I wish I could edit the answers as I would add "A combination of two or more" as another option.
 

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I like to overfiltrate, but I'm only doing about 5x in my 125, 7.5x in my 20 gallon long, and about 5x in my 29 gallon shrimp tank. If the fish do not mind the additional current, then go for it. Though, it the output flow can easily be redirected (in the case of a canister spray bar) towards the tank wall to reduce the current.

I also prefer canister filters, because I can connect everything inline (heater, UV, etc.), leaving less equipment in the tank.

What is the best, well, everyone will have their own opinion. I've owned Sponge filters, UGFs with powerheads, HOBs, and Canister filters. Although I don't own one (yet), I would actually prefer to pick wet/dry trickle filters with a sump for large tanks, along with a canister filter. What I am experiencing in my 125 gallon tank is the little bits of detritus that float on the surface of the water, which my canister filters cannot pick up. It does really well with detritus floating under water though.
 

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crazy_eddie -- I hope your still in here. You and I are of the same mold, I think. Toolman Tim has NOTHING on me. If one is good, two is better. I have thought about another poll asking how much filtration is enough and how much is too much. How often should we turn the water over? What rule of thumb should we use -- 2X per hour, 6x, 10,12,20...........?
I also believe that there is no single filtering system that will do the job. A combination of ug filtration w/ power heads added to power filters and canisters are the absolute best way to go. Not only do the particulates get filtered, you increase you bacteria bed a bunch. And that always helps. Going reverse flow on the ugf is a pretty good idea, too, as it increases the O2 to them good bugs.
 

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This is one I will have to agree with! As long as your filters don't turn your fish into 24/7 Olymic swimmers then the more the better. When I get my 20 long I will have both of the AC 20 HOB filters on the tank with one at each end. If I ever get a large tank it will be filtered by an HOB, Canister and whatever I think it needs. If it will fit I will add a filtered powerhead in the same 20 gallon long.

I have AC 20's on my 10 gallons now and it is simply not enough for anything, with or without plants, light medium or heavy bioload. And they are supposed to be for up to a 20 gallon, Maybe with 2 neons and nothing else.

If I had to recommend any one filter, canisters.
 

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f4a - the only problem I have with max filtration is my anabatoids work themselves to the bone maintaining that bubble nest. lol. The glass cats and some of the others seem to revel in the current, especially those of the riverine persuasion. Most of my catfish face "into the wind", so to speak.
 

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I can only imagine seeing them chasing around bubbles that are being strewn all over the tank. Might have to designate a section as a flow free zone so they don't go on strike and start to bubble the intakes of the filters so they will air lock. lol

Might be a good topic to start about which fish like a current and which ones don't as well as which ones actually prefer a strong current and which ones thrive in a slower moving almost "dead" flow tank. Just not from me, I wouldn' know where to start.
 

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I would have to think, if you see your fish flat against the glass and can hardly swim, then you MIGHT have too much current and should tone it down a touch. :D
 

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A sump is good but i think a bio-wheel is good too because it is affordable and has good mini bio-filtration, besides the fact that its loud and ugly
 

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I've got HOBs on all of my tanks. I like the Marineland Emperor biowheel filters a lot. However, I am starting to think about getting a cannister filter, like an Eheim 2250 or 2128 for my 75 so that I can do the 3.5 WPG and pressurized CO2 thing and grow me a nice glosso lawn.
 

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I would say the best available means of filtration would be the sump. There are no close second options. This is the best means of filtration with no close competitor.
 

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I have never used a sump, and your statement might be accurate but I doubt they are cost effective let alone useful for anything under a 55 gallon. Maybe in a salt tank under that size but not fresh water. Again, this is only an opinion but I can't imagine a sump is a good choice for a 35 gallon let alone a 10.

And yes, if I could afford to set them up on all of my 10 gallon tanks, I would be running small canisters before anything else. Until then, my AC HOB work just fine and possibly provide more than I would expect from a canister designed for a 10 gallon.
 
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