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Old 05-29-2013, 06:01 PM   #1
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Question about polyfil

Hi there, my friendly fish people! I have a question about the poly fill I see on here occasionally.
First: the important stuff.
10 gal tank, it HAS cycled. (Yay) I have not done a water test for this question, cause I'm thinking it won't be relevant.
Hob filter Auqua-tech (it came in the kit that my daughter bought, I'm sorta babysitting her fish)
I also put an under-gravel filter in before I found AA, because its what I had 8 yrs. ago in my 50, along with a dbl. hob AND a Fluval 3-stage canister for a 100 gal tank. (I got SO LUCKY with that tank! And it cost me zero dollars! Too bad I got rid of it all when I moved up here)
Livestock: 1 swordtail, 1 .28 feeder goldfish, an African Dwarf Frog, and a Shubunkin goldfish.
Way more info than you needed, I think!
I just wondered if the polyfill that has been mentioned is just reg stuff for stuffing pillows? Or is it special for aquariums? Can I use the reg stuff (that I already have) instead of buying some (that I just cannot afford)? How would you suggest I prepare it for use? And then how do I use it?
Also, when my daughter got this tank I think she cut the intake tube for the filter. It now ends about halfway between the surface of the gravel and the top. Is this a problem? Will it clean as well as it should? Is there a way to attach some other tube to make it longer? Pic below. When I put it back together I'll post a better pic, but mine looks like crapiola compared to you all! 😕
I'm waiting for advice...(no pressure tho. Sorry, I started this project before I asked! &#128562

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Intake tube
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Old 05-29-2013, 08:09 PM   #2
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Hi and welcome to AA!!!. The polyfil is indeed the stuff that comes in bed pillows and cushions. You would be better buying some new polyfil, as the stuff you have might not be suitable. You have to make sure the polyfil you use has no additives, fire retardants etc. There's no point in taking a risk. You can pick up a massive bag, which will last a LONG, LONG time, for a few dollars, in a craft/hobby store. Alternatively, you could buy a cheap bed pillow in Walmart etc for a dollar or two. Just make sure it is 100% polyfil. I love this media and use it in every filter I own. When it gets dirty, just dump and replace it.....
On the filter tube, you could have a look on ebay/amazon for a replacement tube but it might work out cheaper to replace it altogether. Personally I see no issue with it, as is. If it's doing the job of keeping the tank clean, I see no need to replace the tube. Many people have their intakes, halfway up/down the tank. As I said, as long as it's doing the job, you'll be fine.....
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Old 05-30-2013, 04:48 AM   #3
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Ok, great! Thank you for your response.

The polyfill I have is all brand new. I got a big bag of oddly cut pieces that are the cuttings from making quilts. All new. I got this at a yard sale. I also got a sheet of it at another yard sale, also new.
But exactly how should I use it? I wrapped the filter insert with a piece, front and back, then stuffed the bits that were sticking out some just down inside the filter. I was truly amazed with how quickly the water cleared after I did my pwc, while taking out half the decor and adding a new bubble wand. I also vacuumed. But within, I don't know, 15 mins or so the water was sparkling! I'm hoping that's because of the polyfill.
So, how do you recommend I put it to use? Should it replace the filter cartridge?
As for the intake tube, I think it'll be fine.
I'm gonna post another photo. See what you think.


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I turned the led's off on the bubble wall as they drown out the tank in photos. What does everyone think? Any suggestions for rearrangement or anything?
Also, now that the cycle is done, can I put more fish in it? Maybe some Neons? I want some color, and I really like neons. But I killed 5 of them before I learned about the cycle.
Oh! Almost forgot!
I got some Prime, as folks recommended. Is it REALLY 1 ml in a 10 gal tank?how do you measure out 1 ml, accurately? How do I measure out less than 1 ml when I do a PWC?
Good Lord! I have a lot of question! Sorry bout that!
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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Hi there! I just wanted to say that I think you have a very pretty tank! For measuring the prime, pick up a 1ml syringe from the pharmacy. Then for a 5 gal pwc add 0.5 ml, for a 2.5 gal pwc add 0.25 etc
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:53 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Cactuspixie View Post
Hi there! I just wanted to say that I think you have a very pretty tank! For measuring the prime, pick up a 1ml syringe from the pharmacy. Then for a 5 gal pwc add 0.5 ml, for a 2.5 gal pwc add 0.25 etc
Wow! Coming from you? That is a complement! Thank you very much.
I read your profile, and you've got some amazing tanks. Thanks!
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:03 AM   #6
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Wow! Coming from you? That is a complement! Thank you very much.
I read your profile, and you've got some amazing tanks. Thanks!
Lol. Thanks, but I don't feel worthy of such praise I just had some of my favourite fish die because I did a dumb dumb dumb thing. With aquariums the smallest changes can have devastating impacts
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:08 AM   #7
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As far as using the polyfill, you typically want that to be the last thing your water touches before it leaves the filter. Doing what you said and wrapping your filter insert with it is not the best method. You want the sponge and/or filter cartridge to catch all the large gunk first. If you had your poly in front it would clog in a matter of days.

In my canister filter it is on top with a lid on the basket (thank you fluval!) In my AquaClear filters I would put a few pieces of biomedia on top of the floss to keep it from flowing out of the filter. You can also use some wrapped around your intake to protect fry from getting sucked up.

I just rinse new pieces in some tank water before adding them to the filter. I will reuse the same piece (washing in tank water) for years, or until it quite literally falls apart.
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Old 05-30-2013, 12:38 PM   #8
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As far as using the polyfill, you typically want that to be the last thing your water touches before it leaves the filter. Doing what you said and wrapping your filter insert with it is not the best method. You want the sponge and/or filter cartridge to catch all the large gunk first. If you had your poly in front it would clog in a matter of days.

In my canister filter it is on top with a lid on the basket (thank you fluval!) In my AquaClear filters I would put a few pieces of biomedia on top of the floss to keep it from flowing out of the filter. You can also use some wrapped around your intake to protect fry from getting sucked up.

I just rinse new pieces in some tank water before adding them to the filter. I will reuse the same piece (washing in tank water) for years, or until it quite literally falls apart.
You got your answer there!!. Just to add, you can add extra polyfil, if you need it. Just be prepared to change it out every few days. I put it in any space in my hobs and just change it out every couple of days. I also have it as my last piece of media, that the water goes through. The stuff you have should be fine and it is already doing it's job. Just keep up with the water testing. Goldfish have high bio-loads and grow pretty large.....
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Old 05-30-2013, 05:54 PM   #9
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Just keep up with the water testing. Goldfish have high bio-loads and grow pretty large.....
I hear you there! The goldfish (feeder fish for $.28) was my idea after every fish I bought died for various reasons. The Shabunkin is my daughters, while she is working out of town for the summer. She's 19 and insists she's going to have a pond at a house she has decided she will get when she gets back. I wish she hadn't gotten it as she is a little unrealistic about her plans.
As for changing the polyfill often? No problem! I'm home all the time, (disabled) and have TONS of the stuff. But I will get it so it isn't wrapping the filter cartridge. Hey, do you think it could replace that cartridge in there? It is the kind with carbon in it, but I took the carbon out of it.
Oh, that's another question. I got a bunch of used carbon from a friend (no idea what kind of tank he had not how well it was kept). Can I do something to that carbon to make it good again? Safe to use? I frankly have WAY more time than money, so I'd rather not have to buy that when I have some, you know? I read someplace on here you could re activate it in the oven. I live in AZ, so outdoors can be my oven!

So thank you everyone! You have been most helpful.
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Old 05-30-2013, 05:57 PM   #10
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How did I get smilies in that?

. .8
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