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Old 08-22-2012, 02:26 PM   #1
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Filter maintenance

Well howdy yall, I started my tank about 4 months ago. It took about a month for it to cycle and then I added fish in. I've been doing ~20% water changes every week and I try to do a 50 or more once a month to clean the diatoms(which are still a problem!!) and algae off of everything. I recently changed from gravel to sand and absolutely love the difference! All of my params have been constantly perfect *Knocks on wood*

One thing I've probably neglected is the filter. I've got an Aqueon Quietflow 30 for my 20 Long. I've changed out the filter cartridge every 4 weeks like it says on the package.

My question is this: Am I supposed to do anything else to the filter? The inside of it looks disgusting, along with the blue water fall breaks they put in there. Every time I start my filter back up after a water change, it dispenses white particles into the water, and if I move the cartridge while the filter is operating, there are tons of white/brown stringy items that come out of there. I doubt this is normal and don't think the filter should be doing this. It almost looks like old decomposing food.

One cause might be because my dad severely overfed everything 2 months ago while I was out of town. I came back to very cloudy water, completely clogged filter and a mess everywhere! I now leave pre packaged food when I go anywhere.

I don't know what action I should take to make sure I don't disturb the BB.

I've taken pictures and video to help yall out, I aint sure how to properly maintain a filter I guess! Help would be appreciated!!
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Old 08-22-2012, 04:59 PM   #2
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Yuck! You need to take the filter off and clean it with just water and muscle. I can't tell by the pic and have never owned one of these but is there a plastic piece, not part of what holds the cartridge that is in there just for bacterial colony growth? If there is even that can be rinsed in a bucket of tank water. I have a Wisper along with a canister filter on a 55 and I almost always just take if off and rinse the crud out when changing the filter pad, or it will get that crud just like you talked about. The only thing I don't rinse/clean is the plastic piece they use as a biological filter. Your tank will be happy if you do this, plus think about all the unneccessary nutrients (nitrates) that are being added to you tank by leaving it dirty. Hope this helps.
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Old 08-22-2012, 05:10 PM   #3
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Always use tank water to rinse filter media. And you really don't need to change out the cartridges every month like it says, unless you need the carbon inside (for odor, color, or when dosing medication). Every time you do that, you're throwing away a bunch of BB. Unless you seed the new piece before removing the old one. I personally don't use carbon in either of my tanks unless I've been dosing medicine.
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Old 08-22-2012, 05:20 PM   #4
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Yuck is right! The only pieces that come out is the cartridge, the bio grid that holds the cartridge and the other blue piece that makes the "waterfall" effect. From talking with others, I've decided to get another hob filter and also some media to put in the back of my current filter. I feel bad for having the fish go through this and it is disgusting but I wasn't sure what to do! I'd sure hate to remove all the BB and have a mini cycle

I don't believe I need the carbon inside so would it be okay if I cut a slit and removed just the carbon?


Ps, a mod can move this to the hardware/equipment section if needed. I'm sorry I didn't see it when I posted this!
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