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Old 09-05-2008, 07:22 AM   #11
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A power filter is also known as a hang on back (aka HOB) filter and literally hangs on the back of the tank. It is something along the lines of the Hagen AquaClear 50 or the Marineland Emperor 400. These are probably the most preferred filters for general usage because they combine biological, chemical and mechanical filtration methods in one easy to maintain unit. A power head is a water pump that can be submerged in a tank to help water circulation or provide suction for air filters and under gravel filters (aka UGF). An example of this would be the Hydor Koralia. The two aren't mutually exclusive. Power heads can be used in tanks that already have filtration to make sure there aren't any 'dead spots' where water doesn't circulate properly.

Gene Heitman - 12 tanks (11 freshwater and 1 saltwater), 206 gallons, 20+ species of fish/shrimp/snails, 52+ species of plants ... 10 years ago I just wanted 1 tank with some fish
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Old 09-05-2008, 08:26 AM   #12
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I've ran and Undergravel filter in my 95 gal tank since I set it up 7 years ago. I originally did this because thats what we had when I was a kid (in the early 70's). It's only since then that I found many aquarists don't care for them. I ran it with a powerhead driving each draw tube. I also had 1 Whisper HOB filter.

That setup worked so-so for a few years but I didn't have much success keeping fish I wanted (long story).

After a few mistakes I started hanging out in forums like this and found out a golden rule (at least for FW): You cannot have to much filtration!

So I replaced my Whisper with 2 Marineland Emperor 400's and using some PVC pieces, changed the UG to reverse flow. This dramatically improved the water conditions in my tank. This is a planted tank and with the reverse flow, I don't have to worry too much about vacuuming the substrate and disturbing the plants.

Just a few months ago I removed one of the Marineland HOB's and installed a Marineland canister.

Fish, plants are doing well and the water is always crystal clear.

So in general I would say UG filters are a great addition when used with other filtration devices.

The Fishroom project
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filter, filters, undergravel, undergravel filter, undergravel filters

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