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Old 05-24-2007, 03:38 PM   #1
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bio balls

I have a 58 gallon with a 20 gallon fuge. I have my bio ball box in the fuge. I was debating doing away with the bio balls. I have a skimmer and a UV sterlizer. This would free up more room in my fuge. I think this is a good idea, just wanted some other opinions. Thank you
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Old 05-24-2007, 03:44 PM   #2
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I`m getting ready to get rid of mine in my refuge and add LR rubble in there instead. The bio balls are nitrate makers and it would be better to replace with LR rubble. I know many on this site have done so with good results.
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Old 05-24-2007, 03:50 PM   #3
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I was going to do away with the whole box that they are in and maybe just add some live rock to the fuge. Or should I put the rubble in the box?
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Old 05-24-2007, 11:07 PM   #4
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I dont think it matters as long as bioballs are gone and LR is in. You might have more surface area with the rubble.
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:28 AM   #5
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I hear that Bio balls are Nitrate generators all the time and to be honest I get a little confused.

Surley to creat the nitrate they have to feed on Nitrite?? Am I missing something here? I have a weir filled with bio balls and use that as a wet/dry trickle tower. I also have a Nitrate reactor (not running at the moment) for when the nitrates start to build up.

Could someone explain in plain english why these balls generate the Nitrate so well and a pile of rubble will not.

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Old 05-25-2007, 01:26 PM   #6
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Bioballs provide surface area where nitrifying bacteria can colonize in a rich, oxygenated environment. Nitrification is mainly a bacterial process where Ammonia is converted to Nitrite and Nitrite to Nitrate; however, nitrates will continue to build and recycle without some type of intervention whether it be absorbed, removed via water changes, cleaning of media, macro-algae use, etc. Porous live rock allows for more surface area for bacteria colonization and consumes nitrates as they appear. Basically, it is natural biological filtration.

Found some info for ya: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issu...t2003/chem.htm
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Old 05-25-2007, 01:35 PM   #7
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http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2002-06/dw/index.php

In this article you`ll read under denitrification that this type of bacteria(anerobic) that helps to get rid of nitrates is found in pourous LR and sandbeds. The other bacterias that break down ammonia and nitrites are different and will break it down to nitrates Which is also on LR and sand but also wet dry`s and Bio wheels. Read the whole article but to answer your question read under denitrification.
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Old 05-26-2007, 07:54 PM   #8
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Do you have any LR in the tank? if so how much. This is the big factor on weather or not you can toss the BB.
Even LR rubble will trap waste in a sump. I only have a few pieces in my one sump and all kinds of crap collects under it. I like to run my reef sump clean with no LR rubble.
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Old 05-29-2007, 03:47 AM   #9
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Cheers for the links guys. I can always count on this forum for some quality docs!

I have about 70kg of LR in my tank and still adding as I go. There is some small frags or LR in my sump but nothing significant.

If I toss the bio balls, wouldnt my weir become way too noisy?
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Old 05-29-2007, 09:34 AM   #10
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If you toss the bioballs, I would not toss all the bioballs out in a single batch, but rather in small batches over the course of a couple weeks. You can use a filter sock (wash often) to prefilter the water before entering the weir to keep particulates at a lower concentration and noise reduction will depend on how your wetdry is configured. Any model number or pics of the wetdry?
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