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Old 08-10-2009, 12:02 PM   #11
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sounds like carbon is a yes then. no matter what kind of system you have. I was gonna make a thread about the same thing.
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Old 08-10-2009, 12:09 PM   #12
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I would wait for the experts to chim in as I am by no means a expert
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Old 08-10-2009, 12:23 PM   #13
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Its not only you that have said yes to carbon. And i know thincat has some exp. under his belt.
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Old 08-10-2009, 02:33 PM   #14
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Im no expert and TC said it was ok and I do have it myself so I think you are ok with it, IMO
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Old 08-10-2009, 03:22 PM   #15
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You can't run carbon continuously. It is only good for a week at most.
running carbon continuously is not going to do what you probably think it is going to. Carbons, even the best of them, only have a week efficacy at most. The purification cabability does not last longer then a week and that is why a lot of reefers run their carbon one week of the month, usually a few days before a water change. While there may be a danger of "over cleaning' the water, that wont happen unless you change the carbon out weekly.
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Old 08-10-2009, 03:24 PM   #16
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Although I won't say that carbon/activated carbon is a must in all systems, the benefits of using it is evident. Carbon removes the tannins, acids, and organic compounds that can eventually "stain" the water and ultimately cause other problems down the road. Rox 0.8 is choice, but TLF Hydrocarbon is highly rated with Seachem Matrix still highly regarded. There are two modes of operation in passive and aggressive usage. Passive is "old school" where you would add a bag of carbon to your sump in a high flow compartment and let it sit. The main problem was that most of the water would flow around the bag and not through the media as hoped and especially when algae growth or detritus accumulated on the mesh. Nowadays aquarists are more aggressive by adding carbon to a reactor that forces water through the media. You can purchase a dedicated reactor or even use a small canister filter for this. The expiration of carbon is always debatable, but for the most part you should be able to run a quality carbon for at least two to four weeks. Carbon does not leach impurities back into the water column so if you forget to replace it, if anything, it's just being passed over or collecting gunk between the granules. Over time, if you forget to replace it, the eventual trapping of gunk between the granules could cause added NO3 or PO4 (don't be neglectful).
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Old 08-10-2009, 07:23 PM   #17
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Great Info Innovator & TC. I was wondering about the use of carbon in SW. I use chemi pure in my cichlid tank and it's crystal clear, I believe it is part resin part carbon.
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Old 08-10-2009, 07:27 PM   #18
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About Activated Carbon
"Another common concern when using carbon efficiently is that it will quickly strip the water of desirable trace elements. Although this warning is repeated with regularity in aquarium literature, this consequence of carbon use has never been scientifically demonstrated to occur. Efficient carbon use has also been implicated in causing head and lateral line erosion (HLLE) syndrome in certain fish (marine angels and tangs, and freshwater discus). This "cause and effect" relationship has also not been demonstrated scientifically."

"The next logical question is how often to replace the carbon. There is a test kit now available from Salifert that measures the adsorptive capacity of the remaining carbon. This simple test is a good method for determining a replacement regimen. Another frequently suggested method is to place a white plastic card in the aquarium and observe it through the long end of the aquarium. If it has a yellow tint, that's an indication that the carbon has lost its effectiveness. You can also draw a faint yellow line on that card. If you can't discern the yellow from the white when viewed through the long end of the aquarium, that's also an indication that the water has yellowed and the carbon has lost its effectiveness.
Carbon can lose a large percentage of its effectiveness in two to four weeks because organic material and bacterial slime coat the surface of the grains. This effectively blocks access to the inner pores. The coating can be rinsed clean between carbon changes as a means of extending the useful life of the carbon."
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Old 08-10-2009, 07:30 PM   #19
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WOW... Great post ccCapt !!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 08-10-2009, 07:32 PM   #20
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Thanks Larry. I have that link also. Thanks for sharing.
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