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Old 11-27-2011, 11:52 PM   #1
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New Filter Cartridge

I have a 10 gallon freshwater tank, tank already well established and cycling great o ammonia, o nitrite, about 20 nitrates. Problem is i have a aqueon quiet flow 10 filter and need to change it. It requires changing the whole cartridge , is this going to start my cycle all over again and will i lose any fish in the process, please help.
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:03 AM   #2
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You are correct to be concerned. Most of the folks on these forums advocate getting the material from the old filter into the new filter somehow.
I am not familiar with your unit. Is there any way you can just remove the old filter, dunk it in tank water a few times, and reinstall it?
Some people don't mess with their filters until they become clogged and then do the above vs removing their BB colony en mass.
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:50 AM   #3
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you should have enough established bacteria in your tank susbstrate/water etc that this shouldn't be an issue. Those colonies should reestablish quickly in the new filter.

This is strictly my opinion, I'm sure there's going to be lots of folks saying no no no, however filters were meant to be replaced, your ecosystem will not collapse..
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Old 11-28-2011, 10:53 AM   #4
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Why do you need to change it? Unless it's literally falling apart there's no need to. If it's gotten dirty, simply get a bucket of tank water, swish it around to get all the gunk out, and put the filter back in. No bacteria wasted at all.

If you find it ABSOLUTELY necessary to change the filter cartrdige, then get a new one and run it in your filter with the old one. After about a month, you can get rid of the old one, because by then your new filter will be seeded.
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:45 PM   #5
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Even though you've got a 10 gallon tank, theres a lot to be said for keeping a small sponge filter in the corner for this very reason.

I keep 2 HOB power filters on my 46g tank. When I change a cartridge on 1 filter, Ive still got the other power filter with an established cartridge. I wait 2 weeks, then change the other one, if I have to.

However in your case, it would be best to leave part of the OLD cartridge (cut a square of the fiber media and place it with the new cartridge). That will definitely help. You're subsequently trying to avoid a mini-cycle.
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