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Old 04-10-2005, 03:24 PM   #1
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Canister Filter Questions

I have a few questions about canister filters that I thought you guys might be able to help me with:

1) Why are they better than hob filters?
2) How often do you have to replace the media in them? How about maintenence?
3) What kind of filter media choices are there?

Thanks a lot for the help!
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Old 04-10-2005, 03:37 PM   #2
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You save space in your footprint. Most HOB's need at least 4-5 inches. With the canister, you just need room for the hoses (@ 1"). You don't replace media, just rinse it in tank water. Foam/sponge, charcoal (which isn't necessary), bio-balls, peat, floss.

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Old 04-10-2005, 06:16 PM   #3
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JC hit it right on the head. Canisters have more flexibility. You can have peat, crushed coral, AC, ceramic rings, floss, sponges...well, I think he already listed most of them. We run maintenance on our canisters once a month. Mainly emptying out the sand that has sucked into it.
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Old 04-10-2005, 07:14 PM   #4
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Tony, in my mind, there is no comparison between the two as far as which one I would choose if you had a larger tank. I absolutely hate HOB filters and I will tell you why. I have come home many times to whining filters that have not been filtering the tank for who knows how long because there was a power surge sometime during the day and they lost their prime. I have never had this problem with my cannister filters which are trucking right along as if nothing ever happened. The HOB filters seem to require more maintenance and more often than cannister filters. I only clean my cannisters about once a month. I usually have to clean my HOB filters every 2 weeks. The HOB filters show a lot more than just the hoses and pipes of a cannister filter on the back of your tank. You have a lot more options with canisters as far as media you want to use. Most HOB's have cartridges with the carbon already in the cartridge, and no place to add any other media. With a cannister, you add anything you want into the filter and how much you want of each thing. My cannisters are also much quieter than any HOB I have ever used. I have an XP2 and XP3 running on my 100 gal. tank, and sometimes I have to touch the tops of them to make sure they are running. If I could, I would run a cannister on every tank I own!
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Old 04-10-2005, 07:16 PM   #5
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I like canisters because I can keep my tank closer to the wall (like JChillin brought up) and you don't see this big box hanging there. Canisters are often more powerful than HOBs so you can really move some water.

The cons are that they are not convenient to service like HOB's, and you tend not to clean them out as often as they ought to be. You do need to replace the filter floss, because it tends to be beyond hope, but there are coarse sponges and rigid media of all shapes and sizes that you can use, and they just get rinsed out. In a perfect world I'd replace the floss and rinse out my canisters on a weekly basis, but that never happens! It is more like once a month.
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