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Old 08-26-2010, 03:57 AM   #1
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External canister filters

I've long been thinking that I'd prefer to have an external canister filter, instead of the internal one I have now.

I've been looking at the Fluval 205, which is rated for up to a 200 litre tank, but I only have 64 litres, would it be ok to use this filter?

I would go for the 105 (for up to 100 litres) but I'm thinking of getting a new tank in the range of 125 litres so ideally would like to have a filter which works with that too.

My question is, is the Fluval 205 a good filter? And is it and external canisters in general noisy? The tank is in a living room setting and the quieter the better! The current noise from the internal filter is ok, but we set it on "bubble" mode recently and that wasn't!

Any advice or comments welcome!

135 litre (35 US gallons) 6 Black Widow Tetra; 3 Mollies; 3 Bronze Cory; 1 Pygmy Cory; 6 Gold Barbs
27 litre (7 US gallons) 6 Guppies.
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:42 AM   #2
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Most people go with canisters because they're quiet. I've heard a lot of good things about Fluvals.

Coming from an HOB filter background, I'm very skeptical of canister filter capacity claims. For HOB filters, I generally take the rated capacity and cut it in half.

Flowrate is another rating I look at. I like to turn my tanks over approximately 6-10 times an hour. For your tank, that'd be 350-700 Lph.

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Old 08-26-2010, 10:03 AM   #3
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I currently have a Fluval 205 running on my 1-month-old 26gallon tall (~96L) and it's been working great so far. The canister is currently inside the aquarium stand, but the stand is open in the back and I can only hear the canister motor running if:

1. I stick my head into the cabinet.
2. For about 30 minutes after I've had it restarted for a water change.

3. It also made a bit of a racket for the first 3 days after being installed, but it was just "breaking-in" and got a lot quieter after that.

Some things you may want to invest in when buying a Fluval:

1. Strong pair of sharp scissors, or a boxcutter. This is because - fluval sends their filter tubing as one long length of tubing, and you'll be making at least 2 cuts through thick plastic in order to get the lengths cut to attach to the intake and output.

2. A tub of Vaseline or Petroleum Jelly. Fluval canisters use a rubber gasket to seal the lid onto the canister, and that gasket has gotten a bit of a reputation of leaking if it is let to dry out during a filter cleaning. Best way to prevent leaks is just lube the seal up with Vaseline whenever you're doing a filter cleaning.

3. Rubber bands. The fasteners that Fluval uses to "clip" the tubes into the tank are kinda weak, so you may need some extra "uumph" to tie down the tubes to the tank brackets.
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Old 08-26-2010, 10:09 AM   #4
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Also, the 205 only comes with a standard "widemouth nozzle" for the filter output. If you don't want that nozzle creating current in your tank, you may need to buy a separate spraybar.

The 205 also has a flow control valve that lets you slow down or speed up the amount of water that the filter processes, without damaging the motor. I've found that it's perfectly fine on my 96L tank to just run the canister full-tilt and it doesn't disrupt hardly anything in the tank (slight "breeze" on the plastic plants.)

I just have to shut it off whenever I'm doing a waterchange that goes below the level of the nozzle, otherwise it sprays water against the glass so hard that it's created a fountain out of my tank.
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Old 08-27-2010, 05:18 AM   #5
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a water pump and a 5 gallon bucket can turn into a good DIY canister filters

u will save more on DIY.
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Old 08-27-2010, 09:25 AM   #6
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I have the 205 Fluval on my 29 gal and a 305 Fluval on my 55 gal. Not noisey at all. Pretty quiet actually. Keeps the water clean so I really appreciate having them. A good investment.
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Old 08-27-2010, 07:08 PM   #7
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i have a Fluval 305 canister on my planted 55 gal, along with a power head... but the Fluval has really been amazing for me. you get great water clarity, adjustable flow, minimal noise, and i've had really good experience with their customer support as well. my canister is not in any type of cabinet or anything, sits right behind my tank, and the fans from my light are louder than the filter.. using the canister allows me easy customization and choice of media that fit my tank. i do water changes once a week, and give my canister filter a look and a rinse once a month.
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:41 PM   #8
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I have a Fluval 305 on a planted 40g, a 404 on a BW 80g and 2 405s on a 115g, I wouldn't trade them for anything.

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