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Old 05-04-2011, 11:59 AM   #1
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Fluval 405 media?

I have a Fluval 405 and was wondering what media anyone else uses. I use carbon in the first two chambers and the little biomax cylinders in the last two. Should I be using something else as well or will this suffice?
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Old 05-04-2011, 12:17 PM   #2
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You could probably get away with carbon on the bottom chamber (some members do carbonless filtration), but I agree with Biomax on the top two... never have too much room for bacteria IMO.

The Question is what to do with an empty bottom chamber ... Fluvals do give many options. If your fish prefer a lower pH .. peat moss is an option.

I have a 404 and currently just have carbon on the bottom and one Biomax (set it up before I joined AA) on the top ... Since I just added some more fish that prefer slightly acidic soft water I'm looking to add more Biomax and maybe some peat moss.
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Old 05-04-2011, 01:24 PM   #3
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I would put the biomax on the last basket before it comes back to the aquarium. Pre-filter on the first. Why do you need to use carbon? People usually just use carbon to absorb excess meds and absorb tannins. Do you have plants? I'd rather have 2 baskets full of biomax for more surface for the BB to grow.

Edit: I have a fluval fx5 and that's what I have in it.

You need the pre-filter on the first part of the filter to catch debris and fish waste so that it won't reach the biomax.
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Old 05-04-2011, 03:26 PM   #4
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I cram the bottom tray full of polyester pillow stuffing from the crafts section in Wal-Mart. This serves as a great fine mechanical/polishing media.

The rest of the trays I fill with biomedia. I recommend Seachem Matrix, it has more bioavailable surface area than Biomax or Eheim's biomedia.
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Old 05-04-2011, 03:45 PM   #5
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I cram the bottom tray full of polyester pillow stuffing from the crafts section in Wal-Mart. This serves as a great fine mechanical/polishing media.

The rest of the trays I fill with biomedia. I recommend Seachem Matrix, it has more bioavailable surface area than Biomax or Eheim's biomedia.
+1 on the Poly-fil, it works great as a fine filter media and a huge bag costs the same a 3 polishing pads from Fluval lol.

I have my 305 setup with bottom trays stuffed with ploy-fil, middle trays filled with Eheim Substrate Pro and top tray split with ESPro and final chamber (below output) filled with poly-fil as a final polish.

FYI: IMO/E/research, more (excess) biomedia does not equate to more bacteria. A tank will only support as much bacteria as the system can feed, no more/no less.
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Old 05-04-2011, 03:52 PM   #6
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FYI: IMO/E/research, more (excess) biomedia does not equate to more bacteria. A tank will only support as much bacteria as the system can feed, no more/no less.
Agreed. You will only have as much bacteria depending on the fish waste. They will keep multiplying until they just have enough waste(food) to support the colony. So is it going to depend on your tanks bio-load how much biomax or whatever product for bacterial growth you'll put in the canister?
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Old 05-05-2011, 01:38 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by roydooms View Post
I would put the biomax on the last basket before it comes back to the aquarium. Pre-filter on the first. Why do you need to use carbon? People usually just use carbon to absorb excess meds and absorb tannins. Do you have plants? I'd rather have 2 baskets full of biomax for more surface for the BB to grow.

Edit: I have a fluval fx5 and that's what I have in it.

You need the pre-filter on the first part of the filter to catch debris and fish waste so that it won't reach the biomax.
I don't have any plants. I have two the last two before coming back to aquarium filled with biomax, the two before that have carbon in them. I only have the carbon because that's what came with it so I never looked into changing it. So I don't really need the carbon at all?

Is the pre-filter the poly fill that the other guy was talking about? To catch the finer materials that the big foam looking blocks don't catch?
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Old 05-05-2011, 01:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by denwhite16

I don't have any plants. I have two the last two before coming back to aquarium filled with biomax, the two before that have carbon in them. I only have the carbon because that's what came with it so I never looked into changing it. So I don't really need the carbon at all?

Is the pre-filter the poly fill that the other guy was talking about? To catch the finer materials that the big foam looking blocks don't catch?
You usually just use carbon when you want to rid of meds, absorb tannins from DW, sometimes to help with cloudy water. I'm not sure of any other purpose of carbon. Carbon usually just last for a month and will stop absorbing and leech out what they had absorb. I'm not sure about the last part. I'm not sure about the polyfil if it's the same as prefilter. I think it's a filter pad. It's probably like fluval's polish pad that strain smaller waste and makes the water clear. You can put polish pad after the biomax right before it comes back in the tank. If it was my filter, I'd put pre-filter in the first basket to strain the bigger debris. How many baskets in your filter?
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Old 05-05-2011, 01:51 AM   #9
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My 305 has:
bottom layer: 2cm of course sponge the rest with bio rings,
middle : bio rings
top: bio rings

No water problems here.
I use fluval's biomax. Took three boxes to fill it...

And at the above poster: Materials sequestered by carbon are practically there forever. It takes furnace temperatures of several hundred to several thousand degrees to cause carbon to release what it's holding on to. It will never leech things back into the water unless you had an aquarium of lava or something.
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Old 05-05-2011, 01:57 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Crepe

And at the above poster: Materials sequestered by carbon are practically there forever. It takes furnace temperatures of several hundred to several thousand degrees to cause carbon to release what it's holding on to. It will never leech things back into the water unless you had an aquarium of lava or something.
Basically, the carbon will just stop absorbing. Thanks for clearing that out. That's why I said I wasn't sure about that part. Ty.
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Old 05-05-2011, 02:00 AM   #11
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BB will grow on every surface, right? If so, will any media also act like a media specifically for BB?
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Old 05-05-2011, 05:57 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crepe View Post
My 305 has:
bottom layer: 2cm of course sponge the rest with bio rings,
middle : bio rings
top: bio rings

No water problems here.
I use fluval's biomax. Took three boxes to fill it...

And at the above poster: Materials sequestered by carbon are practically there forever. It takes furnace temperatures of several hundred to several thousand degrees to cause carbon to release what it's holding on to. It will never leech things back into the water unless you had an aquarium of lava or something.
Interesting information you presented and as such it set me on a search to find out why so much misinformation is passed around contradicting what you posted. You are, in general terms correct with a few discrepancies in how you presented it. Here's what I found out and confirmed in a couple well written articles.

First off, your claim that only extreme heat can release impurities is a bit misrepresented. Here's a more accurate statement:

"A final myth about carbon is that you can recharge it yourself in a domestic oven, allowing it to be reused. To purge carbon of impurities requires temperatures of more than 1000oC (over 1800oF) at a specific pressure - in other words, don't waste your time or your fuel bill trying to do it in a domestic oven!".

Using activated carbon (charcoal) in the aquarium

Now for a clarified statement of what can cause carbon to release impurities back into the water column. The possibility of it happening is quiet extreme and I agree with you that the myth of carbon expelling impurities back into the water column needs to be corrected. Here's a scenario that could (in the extreme) cause it:

"We are often told that exhausted activated carbon will leach adsorbed substance back into the aquarium and cause problems. To avoid this, we are told to replace old activated carbon monthly. This assumption is actually wrong. De-adsroption can only be done by switching from one pH extreme (very acidic or basic) to the other pH extreme. These extreme pH values are way outside the normal range of aquarium so don’t worry about de-adsorption."

Here are a couple notable issues where using carbon can cause extremely negative side affects:

"Phosphate In Activated Carbon...can leach phosphate into the aquarium water." When using carbon, be sure it's labeled “phosphate-free”.

"A big problem with Activated Carbon is that it also removes some of the good things such as trace elements."

The most important info I found is what carbon can and cannot remove from aquarium water. Here's a short list and the link below (covering the info above too) has a very detailed list worth reviewing.

Excellent removal includes Bleach, Chlorine and DOC, whereas one huge negative using carbon is that it can remove Oxygen. It can remove at a fair rate, Chloramine and Tannins, on the negative side it removes Potassium Permanganate. Poor or no absorption includes Ammonia, Nitrates, Nitrites and Phosphates.

Activated Carbon In Aquarium | Aquariums Life

In conclusion, using carbon will continue to be the personal choice for each aquarist as it always has been and hopefully a little clarity has been brought to the use of carbon.
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Old 05-05-2011, 09:37 AM   #13
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Great information Mr. Limpet. Thank you for letting us know how carbon really works in the aquarium. A+
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Old 05-05-2011, 10:27 AM   #14
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[QUOTE=Mr. Limpet;1339923]Interesting information you presented and as such it set me on a search to find out why so much misinformation is passed around contradicting what you posted. You are, in general terms correct with a few discrepancies in how you presented it. Here's what I found out and confirmed in a couple well written articles.


I found this so useful, I bookmarked the link. It really found it informative ... Many Thanks.
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Old 05-06-2011, 12:08 AM   #15
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Thank You Mr. Limpet, very nice info! A++
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Old 05-06-2011, 02:32 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=jcolon;1340090]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Limpet View Post
I found this so useful, I bookmarked the link. It really found it informative ... Many Thanks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by roydooms View Post
Great information Mr. Limpet. Thank you for letting us know how carbon really works in the aquarium. A+
Quote:
Originally Posted by denwhite16 View Post
Thank You Mr. Limpet, very nice info! A++
Thanks! and glad to help, it certainly opened my eyes to the myth surounding carbon (but I still choose not to use it).

I was thinking of reposting as a thread, but I'm not sure where to post it to. Do SW tanks use carbon (in general)? If not I might just post it in the FW general discussion forum.
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