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Old 03-09-2004, 05:00 PM   #1
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55 gal Filter options

I currently have an old whisper 5 HOB and also a whisper 3 (i think thats what they are) and a power head hooked up to an undergravel screen. The whispers are getting pretty crappy and aren't flowing too hot.

both whispers are dual filter (dual bay... dual whatever) one is the small sized cartridge, and one is the large. at any rate they aint working too good at this point

whats the best filtration option i can get without spending a boatload of money?

I don't want to be buying new cartridges and carbon every two weeks, and i'd like it to be pretty reliable (these whispers are getting to be quite a pain...) I'd also like to have plenty of filtration. It's a 55 gallon tank, i'd like to buy a filter thats good for up to 80 gallons or so... i'm sure you guys get what i mean.

Any suggestions are much appreciated!

Thanks in advance!

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Old 03-09-2004, 05:14 PM   #2
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I strongly recommend a cannister filter for powerful, quiet, and dependable filtration that won't make you a slave to a maintenance schedule. For the level of filtration you want, expect to pay 75 - 100 dollars. Definitely order online - you'll save big bucks.
I have an Eheim Pro II 2026 on my 58 gal. I've never seen anything bad written about Eheim Ecco, and Rena Filstar Xp2 filters. Magnum 350 and Fluval 304 are options too.

You should google these models and compare prices on the web.

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Old 03-09-2004, 05:31 PM   #3
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I would go with an Emperor 400. Very fine filter and would provide over 7 times water turnover. Very easy to work with and you don't have to use the carbon pads if you don't want to.

Personally I have an Emperor 280 and a Magnum 350. I use the Magnum purely for mechanical filtration by keeping the water polishing cartridge in at all times. Crystal clear water is the result. But a Magnum 350 can be a bit of a pain to work with at times (like most all canister filters) so to minimize the hassle factor you'll be fine with an Emperor 400.

Good luck!
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:44 PM   #4
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thanks for the tips!

I've never used a canister filter before... so i have a few questions about em!

How big are these suckers?

What is the filter media and how much does it cost? Do i need to change it often? Can i just clean it?

How are the hoses and such set up? I like the whispers because they pickup the water about 6" above the gravel.

The powerhead is nice because it keeps all the debris in the gravel, that way when i change the water (i use a gravel cleaner everytime) its easy to pick up all the debris.
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:55 PM   #5
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also (sorry for all these questions) I currently have a 100w heater in the tank, it's working full duty and keeps the water at 76 degrees, no higher.

will a 200w heater be sufficient to keep the water at about 80 degrees? Or am i going to have to step it up even higher?

About the emporer 400, that is a HOB, correct? How loud will this thing be? I also built the cabinet to hold the whispers, so there isn't even an 1/8" of clearance behind them, so size will be an issue with a HOB. I have about 6" width to put a canister on the side of the tank...

Thanks again
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Old 03-09-2004, 05:58 PM   #6
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I have the fluval 304 on my 55 gal. I change the carbon once a month. I buy 2 boxes at the Giant for $2.22 each. I rinse the foam blocks inside at the same time and they rarely need replaced. The ceramic donuts inside supposedly need replaced every six months and I think they were under ten for a container.
The canister itself is about 15" high and 8" wide. I set mine under my stand and its out of sight. The nice thing about the canister compared to the hob is that you don't have to leave 6" of space between the wall and the tank.
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Old 03-09-2004, 06:01 PM   #7
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I have a 300 w on my 55 gal. I have it turned nearly all the way down to maintain about 76 degrees so I suppose 200 might be sufficient.
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Old 03-09-2004, 06:51 PM   #8
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I like the fluval as well. They are a snap to set up and maintain and are very unobtrusive. But, I like to over filter and would suggest you use an HOB as well at some point. As far as heaters, 5 watts per gallon is suggested. I use 250 watts on my 55s. I don't think a 100W heater is effecient at all on a tank that size.
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Old 03-09-2004, 07:00 PM   #9
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I found this chart on drsfostersmith.com, and consequently bought a 200 W for my 55gal thinking it'd be way efficient!!!

Ebo Jäger TS Automatic Heaters

Watts Tank Size
50 10 -15 Gallons
75 15 - 20 Gallons
100 20 - 30 Gallons
125 30 - 45 Gallons
150 40 - 60 Gallons
200 60 - 90 Gallons
250 90+ Gallons
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Old 03-09-2004, 09:07 PM   #10
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That scale looks like its only accurate up until the third or fourth tank size.

I wasn't aware that they made a 250 watt heater since my petsmart doesn't sell any. I agree that would probably be the best choice since my 300 is slightly an overkill.
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