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Old 05-27-2012, 06:05 PM   #1
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Please help me choose filter media

I'm running a 75 gallon FOWLR tank with about 70 pounds of live rock. I have a sump setup with a DIY wet/dry filter.

I followed the recommendations for filter media listed on the site where I got the the DIY filter plans. So currently I have

Marineland filter pad
Phosphate reducing pad
Activated Carbon pad

Followed by bioballs.

The more I research filter media the more confused I get about what I actually need.

Obviously cheap and easy to maintain is a plus I'd love media I could rinse and reuse or not have to replace very often. So for my setup what would you recommend?

Thanks
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:25 PM   #2
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If you're looking for an easy set-up, have you though of ditching the wet/dry filter and just going with a sump and skimmer? Skimmers do wonders for a tank by removing organic compounds from the water before they break down in nitrates.Bio-balls if not cleaned regularly can harbor more nitrates in your system than if they weren't there in the first place.

As for media, I'm a fan of Purigen. You can "recharge" it by using bleach. I think there's an article on the front page with directions on how to reuse it. Just a thought.
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Old 05-27-2012, 09:09 PM   #3
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+1 for a skimmer. If you don't have space inside your DIY wet/dry for a skimmer, then get a HOB skimmer. Purigen does a similar job to a skimmer, but on a lesser scale.

IMHO you do not need the wet/dry filter since you have the rocks in your tank. They both do the same thing, but the live rocks are more efficient. Having both is fine though. I would replace the wet/dry with a sump.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:23 PM   #4
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I may be using the wrong terminology but I already have a sump. I have a trickle filter which I thought was the same as a wet/dry filter. And it sits in the sump which is just a 30 gallon plastic bin. I'll attach a picture.

I've already been planning on a protein skimmer in the next couple weeks.

So what your saying is I could get away with just having the overflow drain into the sump with nothing more than a protein skimmer in there? What I was going to do was run the water through the trickle filter and then a protein skimmer before being sent back to the tank.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:10 AM   #5
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Yeah you could just take out the trickle system and put a big skimmer there. If possible, its a good idea to grow to marco algae to help keep the water cleaner. With a skimmer, live rocks, and marcoalgae, you will keep your water cleaner and can buy less media.
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:26 AM   #6
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Wouldn't I want some kind of media to catch the larger food particles and what not?
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Old 05-28-2012, 02:39 AM   #7
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There are several ways to make a smaller mechanical filter. You have a good one, but it takes up a lot of space. Explore your options and find out what works best for your setup. Some people go without a mechanical filter, but IMO its just as important as your biological filter (live rocks).
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Old 05-28-2012, 09:57 AM   #8
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For me mechanical filtration you run your line from your tank going into the sump with a filter sock on it. They are machine washable and catch larger particulate before it enters the sump. Then if you load the sump with rock, dry base rock works well, it will be your biological filtration as is your live rock in the tank. The more live rock you have the more biological filtration. Adding macro algae will help to strip phosphates and nitrates from the water and all you need is a clip on desk lamp with a grow bulb. This system is all natural which I'm a fan of, low maintenance and virtually replacement free. All maintenance boils down to is cleaning your filter sock and trimming the algae. If you don't trim the algae it will eventually die and release all the nitrates and phosphates back into the water. Oh and one last thing, with the rock and algae you have what is called a refugium. This is a place for pods to grow safely and reproduce which is essential if you want a mandarin dragonet.
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