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Old 02-15-2005, 04:27 PM   #1
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Filter recommendations for a 20 gallon high?

Hi everyone,
Last month I posted about getting a 15 gallon high tank, and asked about filter options. Thanks to Toirtis, grimlock3000 and everyone who responded.

I'm now getting a 20 gallon high. I didn't get the 15, but I did get a 10 gallon QT-hospital tank, and I got the AquaClear filter to go with that tank.

So, what filter recommendations do you have for the 20 high? I'm going to add low-light plants -- dwarf sag, crypts, java moss, and anubias (although the hatchery rarely has anubias, so I may have to wait to put that plant in.) I don't want CO2. I already have driftwood soaking in a bucket and ready to go.

I'm thinking of 2 schools of tetras, or one school and some long-fin rosy barbs. The hatchery has lots of fish that are not too common also, so I don't know what I'll come home with yet! But I probably won't get the fish until next month.

I'm thinking of a canister filter this time. I've always like the idea of one, but I wonder if they would be too strong for a 20 gallon tank. From browsing the web, I like the Eheim Ecco series. Would the smallest one (the 2231, I think) be ok for the tank or should I just stick with an HOB?


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Old 02-15-2005, 04:30 PM   #2
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I've got a Whisper 20 on my 20 tall, and the only complaints are: 1. When I went to swish the cartridge in the old water after a WC, a bunch of black crud came out of the filter box, although I think that may be my fault. and 2. I usualy see a little bit of water coming out of where the intake tube enters the filter box.


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Old 02-15-2005, 05:05 PM   #3
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On my 20g I use a FilStar XP1. ITs a bit of a overkill but thats the way I do it

I also have a BioWheel 170 on a 20g. It works great. The only thing I hate is the noise and somethimes the wheel gets stuck.
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Old 02-15-2005, 09:41 PM   #4
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I agree about the Filstar, or you could get an Eheim Ecco 2232, or whaterver the smallest one is. If the tank is on a stand or has an area behind it to put the filter (in a plastic tub ) I really like not having the equipment visible on even a small tank.

I am using a canister on my 37gal room divider tank, so there is almost no obstruction of view.
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Old 02-15-2005, 10:17 PM   #5
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I would purchase and use a Emporer 280 Filter it has 280gph which woukld overcompensate by about 80 gph but would ensure everything was ok. They are extremely high quality filters u can buy them for 35.99 they have biowheels and a media storage container where you can keep your favorite media if u prefer to use it. It would provide a noticeable current but since the tank is a high most of the ucrrent would be a t the top if you cut the intake tube off a little high. I think if you want to overcompensate a little it is a great choice!

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Old 02-15-2005, 10:19 PM   #6
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I have had good luck with the eheim 2213 .They are quiet and dependable. Big als has them for around $80 with the media included.
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Old 02-15-2005, 10:31 PM   #7
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You can't go wrong with a classic Eheim. They are a minor pain to maintain but it'll be with you for many years.
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Old 02-16-2005, 07:22 PM   #8
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I agree with TankGirl - the down side to cannister filters is that they are more difficult to maintain, and you need room under the tank to place them. The upside is that they require far less maintenance thant HOBs and are alot quieter. Plus, most of them have filter baskets that provide you with alot of filtration/water conditioning flexibility. I'm pretty sure you can adjust the flow on most cannister filters, so too much current shouldn't be a concern.

I've been very happy with my Eheim 2026 ProII - whisper quiet and dependable. It's designed so that water cannot bypass the filter media. The Eheim Ecco 2232 is rated for 35 gal - it has two media baskets and auto priming (a Godsend feature). I would stay away from the Eheim classic line because there are no filter baskets and no self priming.
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Old 02-16-2005, 09:26 PM   #9
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If your looking for a cannister for your 20 gallon that won't blow your fish out of the water,one that's reliable,quiet,very inexpensive and with all the best features of the Eheim pros you should consider the eheim clone.The Jebo 812 or 825 would be an excellent choice.I'm using the 828 for a larger tank with no complaints.You can purchase the 812 for $38.95 or the 825 for $46.95 at superfishstore.com or at aquatraders.com.The specs though usually overated for all cannisters are: the 812 for tanks 20-60 gallon.The specs for the 825 are 800 L/P/H (211G/P/H),3 stage(media baskets), for tanks up to 100 gallons, uses 22 watts,no bypass feature,and priming button.All those who owned before I purchased gave me excellent reviews and I'm also happy with the purchase.
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Old 02-16-2005, 10:47 PM   #10
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You know you can now get the media baskets that they use for the Ecco line, and put them in your classic Eheim canisters! Too cool.

I do love the self-priming feature of my Ecco's though. The 2234 was nowhere near strong enough for my 37 gal, so I got the 2236. I think these filters are rated WAY more than their capabilities - noticeably so compared to other canister filters. I would not use the 2236 on anything bigger than a 40gal, though it is rated much higher.

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20 gallon, filter

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