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Old 08-31-2014, 09:36 PM   #1
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Turning off filter at night

I recently purchased a 4 gallon Marineland tank to give my betta more space. What I didn't realize, till I started to put it together, was that it has only one power source that connects to both the LED lights and the filter. The problem this presents is I can not use a timer for just the lights.
Question, if I put the whole system on a timer, that is both the lights and the filter, what will happen to the bacteria culture if it is off for 12 hours? It is a bio-wheel type filter that also has a filter cartridge.


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Old 08-31-2014, 09:44 PM   #2
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The lack of oxygen from the filter would be a problem in most aquariums. Neither the fish nor the bacteria would do well long-term. Then again, a 4-gallon tank is small and Betas seem to survive in poorly-oxygenated environments. I'd move the tank to an area where the lights do not bother anyone at night.

That is incredibly dumb engineering on the part of Marineland. Is there at least dim setting for night?
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Old 08-31-2014, 09:47 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by PNWaquarist View Post
The lack of oxygen from the filter would be a problem in most aquariums. Neither the fish nor the bacteria would do well long-term. Then again, a 4-gallon tank is small and Betas seem to survive in poorly-oxygenated environments. I'd move the tank to an area where the lights do not bother anyone at night.

That is incredibly dumb engineering on the part of Marineland. Is there at least dim setting for night?
Fish need total darkness for majority of the night. Not much you can do here.
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Old 08-31-2014, 09:51 PM   #4
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I should have added that when plugged in the filter is always on and there is a button to turn the lights off and on, even a moon light, so it's not as dumb as I made it sound. It's not always convenient to turn the lights off and on when they should be, out late or out of town for a couple of days.
What if I just put it on a timer when I knew I would not be able to do it manually. I could also add a air stone.
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Old 08-31-2014, 09:55 PM   #5
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I wouldn't suggest shutting the filter off at night. Your filter media may dry out and kill off a bunch of your bacteria. It's best to leave it on all the time and turn the light on/off manually. If you're going to be out of town, just leave the light off.
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Old 08-31-2014, 10:08 PM   #6
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Thanks, I figured it was a problem to leave the filter off that long. Short term I'll turn the lights off manually while I try to find a matching power source so I can separate the lights from the filter. It's not a regular plug, the prongs are connected to a box, whatever you call those things.
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Old 08-31-2014, 10:54 PM   #7
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If your room has ambient light then just turn the light for viewing your fish.


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Old 08-31-2014, 11:11 PM   #8
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Thanks everyone. I've got to think through this. Don't want to make compromises that take away from full enjoyment for me and quality of life for the fish. This is a neat little package, but seems built for an office, where you come to work in the morning and flip the lights on then flip them off when you go home.
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Old 09-01-2014, 10:42 AM   #9
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If its just a betta, it should be okay with no airstone or filter as they breathe from the surface. As for your bacteria, i wouldnt risk turning off the filter for any length of time longer than a water change.

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Old 09-01-2014, 10:55 AM   #10
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I would buy another filter and disconnect the marineland. A filter for that size tank would be very cheap and you could probably get a better one.

Although spending more money isn't really the idea. It will solve the problem. You could even run both and let the marine one power down for 12 hours while the other runs.


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Old 09-01-2014, 03:08 PM   #11
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I'd cut the wire going to the light and hook it up to its own power cord, if it was me.
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