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Old 03-24-2004, 06:44 PM   #1
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Questions on my new AquaClear 30

Just installed it and it runs great.

A couple of questions:

1. The instruction manual advises changing the sponge filter monthly, the carbon bag every 2 months, and the BioMax bag every 3 months. What do you think of this recommendation? Seems costly! But I also don't want to compromise the water quality.
2. I have a half-carton of leftover carbon that I was using with my old TopFin 20 filter. Any way I can use this for the carbon bag on the AC 30? I was thinking of getting a fine-mesh bag from the LFS.

P.S. I ended up not getting a bio-wheel filter because of what grimlock said in my other thread, about the bio-wheel drying up and killing all the nitrifying bacteria on it. I live in the Eastside of Seattle where power outages are, unfortunately, a regular occurrence during windstorms and road work, and so decided not to risk that happening with a bio-wheel.
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Old 03-24-2004, 06:53 PM   #2
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I presume you mean AquaClear 300?

1.) Squeeze the sponges while submerged in used tank water, then replace in the filter. Most of the waste will come out with a few squeezes, and the sponges will stay loaded with bacteria. Resist the urge to just start scrubbing the sponges together to get the waste out, you just start wiping off the bacteria at that point. Replace the sponges (one at a time) when they do not return to their original shape after you squeeze them, or they start falling apart when squeezed.

2.) Use media bags for the carbon. AquaClear sells these for their various filters. I paid $3 for 2 at one of my local shops. Or you can use almost anything that is fish safe and designed for filter media. Using bulk carbon in bags is much cheaper than the prebagged stuff.

To help with water polishing, I use a thin layer of filter floss between two sponges. The sponges hold the floss in place nicely. Then I put the carbon right on top in a little media bag. So it goes like this:

carbon in media bag (top)
sponge
floss
sponge (bottom)

This setup works really well, it has enough surface area for a lot of bacteria and has good mechanical as well thanks to the floss. If you want some extra bio, you can cut a sponge in half and do this:

carbon in media bag (top)
bio media in media bag
half sponge
floss
half sponge (bottom)

You can use all sorts of other media layouts to suit your situation, those are just some ideas.
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:04 PM   #3
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Hi grim! Actually the one I bought today was an Aquaclear 30 for 10-30 gallon tanks (just checked the box). Did they change the name? Maybe the smaller ones have a lower number, I dunno.

Mine only has one sponge. It is supposed to be:
BioMax pellets in mesh bag (top)
Carbon in media bag (middle)
Sponge (bottom)

The manual says to only change one media at a time, and never all 3 at the same time.

What is filter floss and water polishing?!

Thanks,
Myriam
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:11 PM   #4
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They could have changed the names or something

Filter floss is like pillow stuffing, just a fine fluffy material. It works really well for trapping smaller particles that can get through the AC sponge. I had a noticable improvement in clarity when I started using some floss in the filters.

Once you get the media established, you will likely only need to change the carbon when needed, and replace a sponge every year or so. The cheap cost of ownership and easily cleaned media is why a lot of people keep using AC once they start. If you use floss, you just throw it away when you clean the filter and put more in. Floss is really cheap. I spent $3 on a box and has been using it on two tanks for 8 months now, the box is still 3/4 full.
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*15H marine*
-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
-2x Mushroom Leather // Metallic Green Star Polyps // Pulsing Xenia // Striped Xenia // Blue Mushroom
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:22 PM   #5
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Where do you buy the floss? Is it something that is in the walmart sewing section like a polystyrene fill or am I completely off
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:26 PM   #6
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I got this stuff:

http://www.bigalsonline.com/catalog/...tegory_id=2835

It is compacted in the box so you get quite a bit of it. I use layers of it it in my Triple Flow corner filter, AC Mini, and my Ecco canister. It was cheap enough that I am not worried about buying a huge bag of stuff at Wal Mart to save $2 over the span of a few years. Plus the box looks all official with the rest of my fish stuff If I was filling up mutliple canister media compartments with the floss, I would probably be a bit more concerned about the cost
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*26 freshwater*
2x Sunburst Platys (2M, 2F) // 3x Neon Tetras (?) // 2x Cherry Barbs (1M, 1F) // 2x YoYo Loaches (?) // 1x Bushy Nose Pleco (M) // 1x Clown Pleco (?) //

*15H marine*
-30# Live Rock
-Mixed Snails (Nassarius // Cerith // Astrea // Black Turbo // Mexican Turbo)
-8x Blue Leg Hermit Crabs // 1x Banded Serpent Star // 1x Cleaner Shrimp
-1x Royal Gramma // 1x Percula Clownfish
-2x Mushroom Leather // Metallic Green Star Polyps // Pulsing Xenia // Striped Xenia // Blue Mushroom
-Remora + Maxi-Jet 1200 // 2x Maxi-Jet 600 // Maxi-Jet 400 // Visi-Therm Deluxe 50 // Current USA Orbit 2x 40w PC
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:35 PM   #7
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Aww, wish I would have looked into that earlier. Over the last couple weeks I had 2 orders at BigAls and would have definitly picked some up! Next time Thanks for the link and help btw.
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Old 03-24-2004, 07:54 PM   #8
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Aquaclear 30?

I just did a quick search on the web and aquaclear does not have a "30" model. There's AC Mini, 150, 200, 300, and 500. And I went to the website too, so they haven't changed the name. Are you sure its an aquaclear and not a poser brand? Does the box look like the one in this pic?

http://bigalsonline.ca/catalog/product.xml?product_id=22123;category_id=1721
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Old 03-24-2004, 08:11 PM   #9
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Actually I was at Pet Smart the other day and saw that Aqua Clear did indeed Change the packaging..The Models are the same but the packaging is different. The best way to tell which model it is, Is to check and see what the GPH is. I'm thinking the AC 30 is the same as the AC 150 or 200. I think they did this so beginners would be able to tell which would be suited for their aquarium size without having to look all over the box for the size. HTH
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Old 03-24-2004, 08:31 PM   #10
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Actually, the poly stuff for pillows is basically the same as the filter floss. I have read of folks who have used the pillow stuff instead, although I'd be a little hesitant cause I don't know if that kind is treated with anything.
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