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Old 11-30-2004, 10:14 AM   #1
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filter back flow question

I have a fluval 304 in my 55 gal tank.
Last Friday I bought some cardinal tetras (on sale at $1.88 each).
The problem is that they are too small for the output that the 304 puts out. They ended up getting stuck in a current in one of the corners and having to fight it non stop.

The only thing that I have found to alleviate this is to aim the nozzle at the nearest side and close the exit valve about 50%. This still provides plenty of surface movement without and currents that overpower the fish.

My question is will this hurt my filter? I really don't have any alternatives other than buying a new one (which I don't want to do), but I don't want my existing one to get damaged either.
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Old 11-30-2004, 10:42 AM   #2
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You could try lowering the water level in the tank so that the outflow is more of a splash than a current. It may be noisy though.
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Old 11-30-2004, 11:00 AM   #3
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I don't think it will harm the filter at all to reduce the flow.
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Old 11-30-2004, 12:38 PM   #4
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That may be true TG but I think he's better off adjusting the outflow somehow to get the maximum gph moving through the cannister. JMO
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Old 11-30-2004, 01:17 PM   #5
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My signature tells what's in the tank. There's not a big bio load in there at the moment (especially since the cardinals are only about .5 inch each").

I had thought about the splash thing, but from previous experience with this filter, it still creates one heck of a current. I may be able to get a biowheel (175 gph?) in there to help with filtration though. Seems like the happiest medium I can find at this point.
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Old 11-30-2004, 01:40 PM   #6
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Can you find some sort of diffuser, rainbar, or thin sponge covering to put on the filter outflow? I don't have a canister filter, so I'm not sure what the standard outflow tube looks like.

I don't know if this is practical, but it would be a way to reduce water velocity.
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Old 11-30-2004, 05:19 PM   #7
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In terms of harming the filter, I don't think it is a problem, since my Filstar comes with an outflow valve on the spray bar to reduce flow if necessary.

I agree that the more filtration the better. I just thought of something someone did to help with this problem - they routed out the holes in the spray bar to enlarge them, which in turn reduced the current somewhat than the water being forced through smaller holes. That might solve the problem.

I am still very surprised that this filter is too much for this tank - what media do you have in it? If the canister is not filled properly with media the flow would likely be much increased.
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Old 12-01-2004, 08:47 AM   #8
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The filter isn't too much for the tank, just too much for baby cardinals. The minnows were fine with the flow. The tiny cardinals were getting pushed into a corner and forced to "swim upstream" non-stop.

This problem will eventually correct itself as they grow big enough to be able fight the current with no effort. Right now they are just getting pushed around...
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