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Old 01-26-2016, 11:39 PM   #1
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Filter maintenance question

So I've heard that I should remove all of the foam pads from my filters because they hold nitrates or make nitrates impossible to manage. If this is true then what would filter out the waste or is this completely bad advice? I have two filters on my 75 gallon fowler. One canister and one HOB. Also a uv sterilizer which also has a foam pad.

If they shouldn't be removed then how often should they be cleaned? I have a nitrate problem and am grasping for straws to solve. I do weekly water changes and don't feed everyday.

Any help is appreciated!


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Old 01-27-2016, 02:05 PM   #2
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You should be cleaning your foam pads out weekly. They are meant to catch things for a reason, but all of that gunk will decay if not removed. This should be done with any sponge pads as well as filter socks.
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Old 01-27-2016, 04:04 PM   #3
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If you mix your own saltwater, have you tested your source water for nitrates?


there is the possibility that your system is under filtered.
How much livestock is in there and what are the specific filters you are using?


you should consider adding a protein skimmer to the set-up. That would also help.
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Old 01-27-2016, 10:47 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PB_Smith View Post
If you mix your own saltwater, have you tested your source water for nitrates?


there is the possibility that your system is under filtered.
How much livestock is in there and what are the specific filters you are using?


you should consider adding a protein skimmer to the set-up. That would also help.
I buy premixed saltwater from a local fish store and I test each time.
I have royal gramma, two anthias, blue tang, maroon clown, kole tang, yellow wrasse, long nose hawkfish, dwarf lion fish and a few snails and crabs.
One fluval 306 canister, one fluval aquaclear 110, uv sterilizer, reef octopus skimmer, one circulation pump.
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Old 01-27-2016, 10:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
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You should be cleaning your foam pads out weekly. They are meant to catch things for a reason, but all of that gunk will decay if not removed. This should be done with any sponge pads as well as filter socks.
Thanks, I've only been cleaning them every couple weeks or maybe once a month...oops.
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Old 01-28-2016, 10:35 AM   #6
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Thanks, I've only been cleaning them every couple weeks or maybe once a month...oops.
You have a pretty heavy bio-load in there.
That coupled with the canisters could be the cause right there.

I'm assuming you don't have the room for a sump.


If you are not concerned about corals and have a fish only set-up, you shouldn't be overly concerned about nitrate levels unless they get over 40-50ppm, and even then it is highly doubtful that such levels are detrimental to fish.
so if you are not keeping corals and you are not overrun with algae, you're set-up may be fine as is, but still clean the filters more frequently....LOL
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