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Aqueon Filter. Clean The Pieces Or Not?

Discussion in 'New to the Hobby Questions and Answers' started by Drum4JC, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. Drum4JC

    Drum4JC Member

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    Hey folks,

    I'm getting mixed signals on how to maintain my Aqueon filter. I replace the carbon thing, but I haven't cleaned out the interior or blue pieces where the bacteria live. Some sources say to rinse the pieces in aquarium water and others say don't. The problem is that I have some kind of gook in it and I don't want it to get clogged. Any advice for Aqueon filter users?
     
  2. OldMan47

    OldMan47 Livebearer fanatic
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    If it is starting to become plugged with material that it has filtered out, definitely rinse it in old tank water. I use the water in my water change bucket to rinse out filter media. If it is not beginning to plug and you are still cycling the tank, it would be better to wait as long as you can but still not let it plug on you.
     
  3. Drum4JC

    Drum4JC Member

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    Thanks oldman47. That makes sense. I'll do that unless others chime in with more convincing ifno.
     
  4. Yanks15

    Yanks15 Member

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    I use Aqueon filters too. It's probably algea in the bio-grid. Aqueon says you can rinse out in old tank water. Which filter do you have? What size tank? Just wondering.
     
  5. Drum4JC

    Drum4JC Member

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    Hi, it's a 30 model in a 26 gallon tank. I do have some algae that I've been dealing with.

    I'm just very concerned about harming the bio-filter. It sounds logical that I can shake loose the gunk in removed tank water without harm.
     
  6. Yanks15

    Yanks15 Member

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    That's all I do. The stage 4 water polisher gets a little algae on mine- too much sun light I think- I just shake it off in discarded water. No problems. I don't mess with the bio holster though. It hasn't had any build-up. I don't see why it would be a problem to shake that off too.
     
  7. vinylman

    vinylman Essentially Humanoid

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    Drum, don't give in to the temptation to replace any sponges because they look bad. Cleaning in old tank water is all you'll ever need to do. The only time you'll need to replace sponges is when they're literally falling apart; even then you shouldn't replace it all in one go. Manufacturers would love us to replace filter media every two minutes, but that only achieves two things: 1) your filter will be constantly cycling and 2) you'll have empty pockets.
     
  8. Yanks15

    Yanks15 Member

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    vinylman, these Aqueon filters don't use sponges. They have a bio grid for bacteria to settle on. I was a little unsure when I started using them but so far so good. Cycled one tank and close to finishing the second. I do plan on using Aqua Clear on the 55gal I'm planning. I want the ability to use seperate media.
     
  9. vinylman

    vinylman Essentially Humanoid

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    Ah, right. Good luck.
     
  10. Drum4JC

    Drum4JC Member

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    Thanks folks. The shake in discarded tank water seems to be working.

    Vinyl brings up an interesting question about the charcoal filter rather than the sponge. Can we clean that in tank water too? And would we still need to replace on schedule? My guess is that we would still need fresh charcoal on schedule.

    This is a great board. Thanks for the input.
     
  11. Yanks15

    Yanks15 Member

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    Personally I just wait til it starts overflowing than change out. I've been told the charcoal doesn't last more than a couple days anyway so just stays in for mechanical use.
     
  12. waterdrop

    waterdrop Enthusiastic "Re-Beginner"

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    A charcoal layer in a filter will serve both as mechanical and biological filtration in addition to its primary function of chemical filtration. Smoke is correct, the chemical filtration (the whole point of using charcoal) is only functional for about 3 days and then is ready to be replaced. The main uses for charcoal are to remove medications, to remove yellow tannins from wood and to remove occasional organic odors of unknown source, otherwise charcoal is not normally recommended for regular use in a filter. Nonetheless, if the filter has already cycled with it in there, it will contain biofilms that will be contributing to the biological filtration the filter does. Charcoal (carbon) is not nearly as ideal for this function, as ceramics and sponges are, because it gradually crumbles into smaller and smaller pieces, with the smallest of these carrying away some of the biofilms with water changes or cleanings.

    ~~waterdrop~~
     
  13. Yanks15

    Yanks15 Member

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    Hey waterdrop, I the case of these Aqueon filters, is it better to cut out the carbon from the replacement and just put in the mesh cartridge or is there another idea instead of using the cartridge at all?

    Thanks.
     
  14. waterdrop

    waterdrop Enthusiastic "Re-Beginner"

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    I am not familiar with the Aqueon filters. In some cases where the manufacturer has designed a "screen" or a "cartridge" in an attempt to keep the customer buying replacements of the same brand, it can be tricky figuring out how to refill with something different. You just have to be resourceful. Some people do indeed slit open the foam sack type things and take out carbon and put in different media, like ceramic pellets or ceramic gravel type stuff.

    :lol: have found myself studying all the different filters at the PetSmart the other day, not because I would buy any but because of all the questions on here. Must say it was kind of fun holding the U2, U3 boxes right in my hand, sometimes its a shock to see how small some of these internals are!

    ~~waterdrop~~
     

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