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Old 02-21-2010, 04:34 PM   #1
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Wet / Dry filtering question...

I have a Marineland Tidepool under my 125 gallon tank. It has a large bio-wheel. Tank has been running for about 4-5 months. I have been battling hair algea for awhile and am starting to get the upper hand. My nitrates read 0 ( I recently installed a nirate remover) but I am afraid it may be a false reading because the algea is consuming it. would it be benificial for me to remove the bio-wheel? I have about 100 pounds of live rock in tank.
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Old 02-21-2010, 04:53 PM   #2
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If you have hair algea then it is a false reading as the hair algea is consumming your nitrates. My only problem with taking out the bio wheel is that you might not have enough LR. It is recommended 1.5-2 lbs per gallon of LR for proper biological filtration. It also depends on weight and how pourus your LR is.
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Old 02-21-2010, 04:59 PM   #3
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How often are you doing PWC's?
How much and what are you feeding?
Do you have a skimmer?
Tank substrate?
Lights and schedule?
Tap or RODI water for evaporation and PWC?
Test results (actual numbers) for temp; pH; Am [NH4], NO3; NO4; PO4 (Phosphate)?
What test kit are you using.

But, yes. I would remove the biowheel. It is loaded with the bacteria that converts ammonia to nitrite and nitrite to nitrate, so for a FOWLR it's probably a great system.
Can you add some macro algae in that system?
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Old 02-21-2010, 06:34 PM   #4
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How do I add macro algea? Temp is 79f, ammonia 0, nitrites 0, nitrates test for 0-5 in tank, MH lights are on for 8 hours 3x150W, asm g1x skimmer, 100% live sand about 2-3 inches, feeding brime shrimp frozen and algea sheets to tangs once a day. My bio wheel turns at a good pace, would it do anything if I just stopped it from turning?
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Old 02-21-2010, 06:36 PM   #5
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Also, doing PWC about 10 gallons every 2 weeks and topping off with RO water. RO water tested at 0 nitrates. Salinity is 8.2
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Old 02-22-2010, 11:14 AM   #6
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Frozen brine unless it is gut loaded is like feeding your fish potato chips, tastes good, but not nutritious. Frozen brine is generally a source of phosphates too (from the water). It shoude be placed in a net and rinsed with RODI water before feeding.

Double your PWC's. 10 gallons a week, or 20 gallons 2x/month.

I think you may able to add some macro to the return chamber of the wet/dry. I used 3 pieces of eggcrate covered with screen material to make box around the pump return so I could have macro in my sump return area without it clogging the pump.
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Old 02-22-2010, 07:32 PM   #7
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I do not have a lot of salt experience so I do not know what you mean by adding macro in my sump return. What is macro? Am I to remove the biowheel to do this?
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Old 02-22-2010, 09:35 PM   #8
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Also, what are you guys using for filtration? Like I said I have the bio-wheel. Would it be benificial for me to switch to a wet/dry with bio-balls? What kind of set-up should I use. I have always heard that th bio-wheel is a nitrate factory but I don't understand why. If there is ammonia that needs turned into nitrites which needs turned into nitrates, are there excess nitrates being produced with a biowheel or only what is in the normal process? If I have X amount of ammonia will I only get Y amount of nitrates at the end of the cycle no matter what method I use or do some systems produce more nitrates in the end?
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Old 02-22-2010, 09:53 PM   #9
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macro means macroalgae. chaetomorpha, caulerpa, or ulva lettuce. These compete with other algae for nitrate and phosphate. Don't have it myself, but people say it works fine. From what I've read, it needs to be put in the return chamber and have lighting to work properly. Also, I've read that people use live rock rubble instead of bio-balls. I have two bio-wheels on my tank and haven't had any problems. Every case is different. The amount of waste available(fish waste, food, etc.)will be the driving force in ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate production.
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Old 02-23-2010, 05:20 PM   #10
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This is my filtration. I have a Marineland Tidepool with the single biowheel. Water comes from the tank into the prefilters of the tidepool and first goes thru 2 phospate pad filters along with 2 cloth bags of carbon and one with ammonia removing pellets, then to the biowheel. It then spills over to protein skimmer area (ASM gx1). I also added a Aquaripure nitrate remover about 2 weeks ago. It is oversized for tank (rated up to 300 gallons, my tank is 125G). I have live rock stacked up the back side of the tank to about 4-6 inches from top. I had heard that the sand and live rock should take care of the "cycle and you could just use a good skimmer. I have just stopped the wheel from spinning hoping to put more of the cycling on the rocks and not the wheel until I can remove it completely. The hair algea is not going completely away at all and my main reason for doing all this is I'm thinking even though my nitrate readings are 0-5, the algea could be consumiing it and the wheel creating excess nitrates. Any thoughts?
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