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Old 11-21-2003, 11:34 AM   #1
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Canister filter for a 90 gallon fresh water tank

I want to replace my underground filter with a quiet canister filter, can you give me some advice on the best one to buy. User friendly and self primed. Thank you
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Old 11-21-2003, 01:17 PM   #2
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well, I can't really tell you whats the 'best', but I can share that I have a Fluval 404 and it's been working fine for nearly 2 years now.

I don't think there are any canisters that self prime, but most are easy to prime and stay primed, even after a power outage.

my fluval has a little piston pump that you move up and down to force water through the system, until it starts a siphon and fills with water, then you plug it in and shake it to clear the air bubbles inside

the 404 has a lot of media capacity and an easy to clean prefilter system - very low maintence.

I think bigalsonline.com has them onsale right now as well, for like $86
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Old 11-21-2003, 01:27 PM   #3
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An XP3 will do the job, I love it. Its self priming and reallyeasy to set up, plus the two tubes t(inflow and out) connectto the canister via a single connector.. whichh if you left the level and slowly puul out the connector it stops water from bothsides, and you can just carry off with the canister do what you want with it and then just put it back, ithout needing to have it self prime again. So far it working great givingme no probs and is very quiet.
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Old 11-21-2003, 01:40 PM   #4
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Welcome to Aquarium Advice!!

I will have to agree with Electrobes on the ease of maintaining the XP3. It also has a flow adjuster so you can slow it down while you feed, and then crank it back up. It does self-prime, but once you prime it the first time you won't need to do it again unless you take out the hoses for cleaning.

I also have to recommend an Eheim, if you can afford it. They are reliable and will last forever, and if you can get over the initial expense you will not be sorry. My Eheim is much quieter than the XP3, also, but inside the cabinet it is not too much of a concern for me. I don't have any experience with Fluval but that is a very popular filter as well.
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Old 11-21-2003, 04:29 PM   #5
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OK, time for a dumb question, but what is the advantage of a canister? I have never used one and I really don't understand why I might need one.
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Old 11-21-2003, 09:38 PM   #6
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not to steer the thread away from the original post, but filstar owners, please describe how it is that your filter self primes? I know even the uber-expensive eheim pro2 series of filters requires human involvement in order to start the water flowing that first time.

my deffinition of "self prime" would indicate taking a completely empty (of water) filter, with empty hoses, putting hoses in tank, turning on filter ... filter starts filtering

anything involving filling the filter or its hoses with water first is not "self priming" in my book, but rather "your-self" priming

*on the other hand*

self-restarting is something I can understand, where the filter was interrupted by power outage or routine maintenance, and placed back into the system full of water, this I can understand the filter being able to resume operation without any human involvement.
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Old 11-21-2003, 10:47 PM   #7
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I also have the fluval 404's(2 for my 125 gal ) and love them!!
I've had my tank up and running for almost a year and no problems here(knocking on wood)
After I clean the filters, I fill them back up with dechlorinated water and plug them in. They usually start up right away.
Bigals was the cheapest
Good luck
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Old 11-22-2003, 12:04 PM   #8
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Sati- A canister filter is useful purely because of the amount of water it can pass over media, and the large amounts of media it can hold. There are many who have large tanks and still swear by HOB, using multiple units, but I like canisters so that I can move the tank closer to the wall and see less equipment, as the canister is kept underneath inside the cabinet/stand.

Just DIY - You are right, you do have to assist in the prime on the Filstars. The intake oipe has a screw-in cap at the top of the bend that hooks over the tank rim, and you pour water in it, then screw the cap back on. Then once syphon is achieved you allow the filter to fill itself before you turn it on. My Eheim has no such mechanism, so I had to start the syphon myself running from the intake down to the filter. Yuk!
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Old 11-22-2003, 12:11 PM   #9
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I have a Fuval 404, very quiet, you have up to 8 different media types.
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Old 11-22-2003, 01:49 PM   #10
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I have an XP2 and an XP3 running on my 100 gal. cichlid tank (messy fish). I absolutely love the filters. Knowing nothing about canister filters, I did a lot of research on the net, and found no complaints about the filstars. Maybe the terminology is wrong, but when I take the top off and take the bottom outside to clean it, I fill it back up with dechlorinated water, put the top back on, and plug it back in. I also liked the idea that if the motor starts to overheat, instead of burning itself up, it has an automatic shut off. I also like the separate baskets that allow you to clean & change media much easier, and another plus for canister filters (at least for the filstars), is that if you have a power outage or surge, you don't lose your prime like a HOB filter does. Once the power comes back on the filter runs like it never went off! Once you decide which canister filter you want, you may want to check out ebay for prices. I got both of mine brand new on ebay. My XP3 cost me $90.00 including shipping!

P.S. Mine are so quiet, I have to touch them on the top to make sure they are running!
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