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Replacing filter cartridges??

lilsd

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I’ve read that you shouldn’t replace filter cartridges because you’ll lose all the beneficial bacteria that’s built up in them, and instead should just rinse the filter cartridge with aquarium water and put it back in. But the last few days I’ve noticed a lot of particles floating in my water, I took the cartridge out, rinsed it with aquarium water, put it back, and it seems to be worse, not better, after running for a couple hours….

Is it okay to replace the filter cartridge with a new one? Did I just not clean it correctly or thoroughly enough? What’s everyone’s opinion about this?

For context I have a 10 gallon planted tank with a small hang on back filter.

Thanks!
 
I’ve always just swapped the cartridges and have never had any problems. When I swap them (every month or a little longer) I just let it drain onto the new one. Always has worked for me.
 
You might not have cleaned it thoroughly enough. Those things can get pretty nasty and a simple rinse probably isn't gonna be enough. I was stuck using a cartridge filter for a while and had to massage the thing thoroughly in the tank wastewater to get it clean. If you really want to switch to a new cartridge, place the old cartridge somewhere in the tank (preferably near the filter intake) for a couple weeks. It's ugly, but it'll help seed the new cartridge.

If you've already switched them out, just monitor your ammonia and nitrites every couple days for 2-3 weeks. You probably won't crash a cycle by changing a cartridge because BB grow in the substrate and on hardscape too, but you still want to make sure you aren't going through a mini cycle.
 
You shouldn't have to change your cartridges, rinse should do it. If you have a lot of particulates in the water it can mean something else. Perhaps you are overfeeding. Try putting a sponge prefilter on the intake, it might help in your case.
 
what filter cartridge are you using?
 
You be best to switch the cartridge to a medium density sponge cut to proper size. A sponge is much easier to squeeze out to clean in some tank water and reuse many many times.
 
Thanks for the suggestions. I already ordered a replacement cartridge but I think I’ll try keeping the old cartridge in behind the new one for a few days? There’s plenty of space since they’re small/thin. These are the cartridges:

Will look into a sponge as well for the future 👍
 
Thanks for the suggestions. I already ordered a replacement cartridge but I think I’ll try keeping the old cartridge in behind the new one for a few days? There’s plenty of space since they’re small/thin. These are the cartridges:

Will look into a sponge as well for the future 👍
I recommend replacing that cartridge filter with a better tech one, like an AquaClear HOB. That way, you aren't relying on expensive filter cartridges. In the AquaClear, you can have a filter sponge, a bag of charcoal, filter floss on top, or whatever media you want.
 

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