I've got a 30 gallon aquarium that I'm running a Marineland Penguin 200B Power Filter on which is suited for 50 gallons. I've had it for roughly 2 years now and it takes the C size cartridges. My father has an older version of this pump (roughly 10 years old), which takes the same size cartridges.
For both of us, these cartridges could last up to a month before you noticed any significant dirt on them, or any disruption to the water flow. Around the same time 6 months ago, we both noticed that our filter cartridges were not lasting as long, and they are now only lasting 4 to 5 days before the cartridges are so clogged that they need to be changed. I stir up my substrate weekly, my tank isn't over populated, and all my readings are coming back fine.
I use Tahitian Moon black sand as a substrate and he uses gravel. I've discussed this with several people who work at the pet stores near by and they have noticed the same thing. I also have a Marineland Eclipse 6 system, and 3 Marineland Eclipse 3 systems (which take K
and Z sized filters) and there has not been a change in the effectiveness of these filters.
So my question is, does anyone know if there has been a change to where these filters are being manufactured? Or something else that could be causing this? I would assume it was something wrong in my tank if it wasn't that several other people are having the same problem, all starting around the same time. I love the way my pump works, but i'm spending around $20 a month on filter cartridges, and at the price, I might as well buy a different kind of pump.
thanks in advance.