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Old 06-04-2004, 11:50 AM   #1
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fluval 404 question

hi all!

my tank is finally set up and beginning its cycle (fishless). yesterday, my friend brought over some gravel from his tank to give my cycle a kick in the pants. my first plan was to bag it up in a nylon stocking and put it in one of the trays of my filter (fluval 404), but then realized i wasn't sure what to expect upon opening it up after it had been running for a few days. can anyone help me out with some tips on how to open it up? right now, its sitting in the cabinet all on its own, would it be good to set it in a bucket or somethin'?

the nylon stocking ended up just sitting in the tank under the driftwood as i was not feeling too adventurous

thanks, guys
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Old 06-04-2004, 11:53 AM   #2
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I like to keep my canisters in a shallow pan, like a tupperware type plastic container, because even though there are shutoff valves to disconnect the filter for cleaning some water does tend to leak out.

I don't have a Fluval so I can't give specific info, but you should be able to open the top and remove a tray, put the gravel sac in there and close it up again, without removing the water, then reattaching the hoses and opening the valves, giving time for the air to escape up the outflow tube before restarting.

Way to go - fishless!
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Old 06-04-2004, 12:39 PM   #3
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so in addition to removing the lid/top, i should disconnect the hoses (intake/outflow)? or should i leave it as one piece? i'm just currious if there are any syphon issues?
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Old 06-04-2004, 12:45 PM   #4
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I think with the 404 you can disconnect the whole hose assembly, maintaining the syphon, then reconnect it when you are done so that the hoses remain full of water and no syphon issues come up. Is this one of the newer 404's with the "Aquastop" hose configuration?
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Old 06-04-2004, 12:47 PM   #5
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I have a 304. I keep mine sitting on top of a chamois under my tank to catch any spills. I usually do monthly maintenance like so...

1. unplug power cord while closing valve on filter
2. unhook hoses
3. while keeping the filter upright (it has an overflow that will allow excess water to just spill out), move it to a sink. I prefer the kitchen
4. open both latches at the same time and lift.

The next part is just how I clean it...

5. pull all trays out and set aside
6. pull filter pad and swish it around in the water that is in the filter to clean it
7. pour out old water - I only do this because of the frozen foods I feed my fish don't always get eaten. Over time there is a lot of dead shrimp in my filter. Put filter pad back in.
8. add new water while adding dechlorinator
9. drop trays back in
10. put top back on. any excess water will flow out of the overflow
11. dry up any water and replace under fish stand

reconnect your hoses, open valve and plug power back in

very simple, very easy...
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Old 06-04-2004, 12:49 PM   #6
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yes, i believe so. sorry i can't say for sure, as i'm at work right now.
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Old 06-04-2004, 01:00 PM   #7
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thanks for your input, TG and Deli i kinda had an idea of what to do, but it sure is nice to hear from people who've actually done this before just jumpin' in myself.

-i like that chamois idea! i might have to try that, it sounds a little more space-saving rather than setting an extra bucket in there.
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Old 06-04-2004, 01:23 PM   #8
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The other good thing about the chamois is that I have to actually lift the canister out of the dish, shallow though it is, and if it is just on an absorbent pad then you don't have to do that. You just don't want something damp remaining in contact with the cabinet base.
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Old 06-04-2004, 03:13 PM   #9
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When I bought my chamoises (plural?) I got a bunch all at once. I keep one under the filter and another next to it as they always come in handy near large quantities of water...

Another thing about Fluvals that seems to work during water changes. I turn mine off to avoid excess splashing and crazy currents in the tank. Whenever I turn it off (for whatever reason), I always close the valve at the filter. It doesn't sound like a big deal but it makes a huge difference when starting the thing back up again.
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Old 06-04-2004, 03:30 PM   #10
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nice! thanks for the heads up
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