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Old 06-06-2010, 06:12 PM   #1
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New Filter: Cascade 500

Just got a cascade canister filter for my 20gal. Was 20 dollars off, works completely silently and hasn't leaked yet *fingers crossed. Funny thing is that when I brought it home the old man started throwing me funny looks for buying a filter the same size as the tank haha.
Specs:
115gph
Adjustable ball valves
2 media baskets (contains bonded filter pad, filter floss and some bio media) I know this seems like overkill but there are some serious space constrains on my tank so this was the smallest fitting thing I've got.

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Old 06-06-2010, 11:18 PM   #2
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Nice pick up, we've two Cascade 1200s, one each on our 75 & 55 and they've been flawless.
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:07 PM   #3
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How often and what part do you change?

I also use Cascade 500, set it up since February 2010, on a 25 gallon tank and it has been running beautifully. But for a couple of days now, the water has become unclear, and I think it's time to do some cleaning and change some filter parts. I refereed to the user manual and it doesn't tell me much about what needs to replace.

I check the stores and see that they are selling bio-floss (6 pack), and that's pretty much it. Should I change the carbons as well?

Unlike other filters that they advertise the replaceable parts vigorously because they want to make money on parts, I found this filter to have no interest in telling us about replacement parts. Does it mean all I have to change is the bio-floss?

Thanks for you advice!

Sam
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamStone View Post
I also use Cascade 500, set it up since February 2010, on a 25 gallon tank and it has been running beautifully. But for a couple of days now, the water has become unclear, and I think it's time to do some cleaning and change some filter parts. I refereed to the user manual and it doesn't tell me much about what needs to replace.

I check the stores and see that they are selling bio-floss (6 pack), and that's pretty much it. Should I change the carbons as well?

Unlike other filters that they advertise the replaceable parts vigorously because they want to make money on parts, I found this filter to have no interest in telling us about replacement parts. Does it mean all I have to change is the bio-floss?

Thanks for you advice!

Sam
You've not cleaned it and the media since February? Correct?


Normally one needn't replace any mechanical/bio media, just rinse and reuse.
You shouldn't need to be using carbon in a healthy aquarium, substitute carbon with more of either mech/bio media.
Use either tank water or dechlorinated water in a bucket and rinse the current media clean.

I don't change media until it is falling apart, and when I have, I've simply cut, 'Blue Bonded' filter padding, to shape and double layered each tray.
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:59 PM   #5
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Correct, I've never cleaned it since I set it up because I didn't find any suggestion from the manual, so I waited until it shows some signs of need.

Thanks for your reply. It's very helpful since I am new to aquarium keeping. A friend gave it to us when he had to move abroad.

BTW, I am inspired by your signature quote. I fully agree that our threat is within. Isn't it also true individually?
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Old 06-12-2010, 10:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamStone View Post
Correct, I've never cleaned it since I set it up because I didn't find any suggestion from the manual, so I waited until it shows some signs of need.

Thanks for your reply. It's very helpful since I am new to aquarium keeping. A friend gave it to us when he had to move abroad.

BTW, I am inspired by your signature quote. I fully agree that our threat is within. Isn't it also true individually?
WOW!
The cloudiness is due to lack of flow/filtration thru your filter, by now it is minimal.
Accumulated debris and bacteria are fouling the tank.
And the old carbon is leaching organic contaminants back into the water.

Filters need to cleaned/maintained pretty much at least monthly, if not more often depending on stocking/feeding.
This will avoid your current problem(s) and others.

You also need to doing (if you aren't already) weekly water testing for pH, Ammonia (NH3), Nitrite (NO2) and Nitrate (NO3) and PWC's and gravel vacuuming. If you haven't been, I bet your NO3 is off the charts.
Do you have water test kits? Need good liquid test kits, API's are some of the best.


OK, time to clean and perhaps replace heavily fouled medias.
And the carbon is trash, trash it, no need to use it in a healthy aquarium.

Close inlet, close outlet, unplug, remove hoses, carry whole canister to tub, sink.
First try cleaning the pads, bucket of tap/dechlor'd water, go to town on the pads, don't be gentle, scrunch'em up, massage, knead, dunk and repeat with vigor.

If they are too fouled to come clean, going to have to replace.
Don't toss'em though, get'em as clean as you can, and put them on top of new padding. Trash'em in two weeks to a month, and add new padding or bio media.
Like I said, I double layer padding.
Cut new padding to fit tray, cut a X to poke the pipe thru, place old atop new, this keeps your beneficial bacteria healthy and maintains the nitrogen cycle.

Do you know about the Nitrogen Cycle?
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Old 06-12-2010, 10:27 PM   #7
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As to my Sig.

We are men, and if you believe in a higher power, most find us to be weak and subject to influences and desires oft detrimental to ourselves and others.
This holds true for both the societal group and the individual, but the paths we choose as a group always affects the individual.
Before we can lead others righteously down the correct paths, we must first be on that path ourselves.


But this digresses from the thread at hand.
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Old 06-13-2010, 12:28 AM   #8
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I tested ammonia in the past, but stopped doing it since it didn't give me any bad result. The testing tools seem expensive too. I thought as long as I keep the water clean with a good filter, I wouldn't have to worry about testing water.

It seems that keeping an aquarium requires more effort than I thought. Another problem is the algae built up. It seems to be a constant fight against having to clean the algae and vacuum the gravel.

The two gold fish are growing bigger and bigger too. The 25 gallon tank has began to look small for them. I don't know how big they will grow. I think the smaller fish are cuter.

I don't know about Nitrogen Cycle.

Sam
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Old 06-13-2010, 12:35 AM   #9
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You are going to need to get new homes for those gold fish. I have 8" common goldfish in my pond and 12" comets as well.
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Old 06-13-2010, 12:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamStone View Post
I tested ammonia in the past, but stopped doing it since it didn't give me any bad result. The testing tools seem expensive too. I thought as long as I keep the water clean with a good filter, I wouldn't have to worry about testing water.

It seems that keeping an aquarium requires more effort than I thought. Another problem is the algae built up. It seems to be a constant fight against having to clean the algae and vacuum the gravel.

The two gold fish are growing bigger and bigger too. The 25 gallon tank has began to look small for them. I don't know how big they will grow. I think the smaller fish are cuter.

I don't know about Nitrogen Cycle.

Sam
Aquariums require maintenance.

25gal is too small for two Goldies, just barely enough bio-load/room for one large Goldie, two, gonna need a bigger tank.

The algae is due to all the excess nutrients inherent in poor water quality and the lack of filtration. Goldies are dirty fish, messy eaters with big appetites, fece factories and their body mass means more waste from urea and respiration.
All that food mess and feces requires thorough vacuuming to control the wastes not picked up by a clogged filter.
Goldies get relatively big, Comets can attain 12"+, others can easily exceed 8-10", and are heavy bodied fish.

Test kits are a bit of a small outlay, but last for many months.
Testing alerts to potential problems and the NO3 test lets us know how often and how much water we need to be changing at PWC's.

Nitrogen Cycle - Nitrogen Cycle


You need to thoroughly clean the tank (vacuum) & filter (rinse media), you need a bigger tank or to get rid of a Goldie (any other fish in this tank?), you need to change 50-75% of the water weekly (PWC) and you need to continue to learn more from this and other forums.
Knowledge is Power! And your already getting more powerful

Once a fish keeper has the basics down, and knows whether they are willing to do the work of maintaining a aquarium/filter, it just gets easier.
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