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Old 10-15-2014, 06:18 PM   #1
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Swapping filters

Hi all,
I've been playing around on aqua advisor and other than my tank being overstocked it's very under filtered. I'm currently have a Marineland filter on my ten gallon. I'm not sure the size but I know it's rated for a 10 gallon.

My question is how do I go about upgrading the filter without messing with the BB. I'm gonna get a fluval aqua clear 20 or 30 (I'm upgrading to a 20 gallon next year). I heard that fluval is the best as far HOB filters go.

I was thinking about putting the bio wheel in the filter instead of the carbon or just let the wheel float around for a few days. Taking the fish out and starting a new cycle is not an option for me as I'm in a dorm and have no other tanks.


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Old 10-17-2014, 03:26 AM   #2
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Hi Mickeybags

As far as swapping the filters you can use the media from the old filter (ceramic noodles or bio balls) and place it in the new filter, if you don't have and biological filtration in the current filter don't worry too much just keep an eye on the nitrogen cycle for about a week but you should be fine just installing the new filter.

You could also run both filters for a couple of days just so the new filter has a chance to 'mature' without effecting the tank a whole lot. Fluval is a great brand and I highly doubt you'll encounter any problems with it.

Cheers and good luck.
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Old 10-17-2014, 03:46 AM   #3
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I went from a Marineland to an Aquaclear/Fluval too.

I tossed the bio wheel, but peeled all the blue filter floss off the Marineland filter cartridge and dumped out the charcoal. Charcoal holds a LOT of BB after it's not "working" anymore. I wrapped the charcoal in the floss and threw the whole wad into the new filter and didn't have any ammonia appear, on my 29 gallon, even though it's slightly overstocked and went 18 hours with no filter.

I also had an extra thing of floss in there though. So you might consider pulling the paper pleats off the biowheel and putting them along the sides of the box on the new filter (where they rub off on the new media but don't interfere with water flow). Or something like that. The wheel floating doesn't do much good IMO, since you need it's bacteria to populate your new filter.

A pantyhose sock of substrate, in the filter box, could help too.




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Old 10-18-2014, 01:09 PM   #4
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I would go ahead and get the AC 30. It works great on a 10 gallon and gives you plenty of filtration. If you will be upgrading to a 20, you might even want to go for the 50.

As others have said, just try to put as much of the flossy/spongy stuff from your old filter into the new one. Or even better, run them both for a few weeks and your new one should get seeded and start growing the BB.
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Old 10-22-2014, 08:42 PM   #5
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Just a comment on charcoal holding BB when it's exhausted. It also discharges all the toxins it has adsorbed when it is exhausted, so having old charcoal is really not a good idea. It's not needed for most filtration, unless you have meds or smells to remove and should be discarded after it has done the task of removal.

Ceramics, sponge, floss, bioballs, crushed lava rock, even plastic scrubbies that are aquarium safe all make good bio media. Floss has huge surface area and need not be tossed with every cleaning. I keep it until it begins to shred into small bits. Then I replace half at one time. Sponge is perhaps one of the best biomedia, easy to clean, rarely grows algae, and lasts a very long time before it deteriorates enough to need replacing.

Squeezing the water from a dirty filter into a new one is a good way to 'seed' it with BB too, or just transfer all the media and add some new media. If the new tank has no livestock, be aware you have to keep feeding the bacteria, with pure ammonia or put in some fish or snails. Then add stock slowly, so the BB can catch up with the new load in a short time.
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Old 10-24-2014, 05:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
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Just a comment on charcoal holding BB when it's exhausted. It also discharges all the toxins it has adsorbed when it is exhausted, so having old charcoal is really not a good idea. It's not needed for most filtration, unless you have meds or smells to remove and should be discarded after it has done the task of removal.

Ceramics, sponge, floss, bioballs, crushed lava rock, even plastic scrubbies that are aquarium safe all make good bio media. Floss has huge surface area and need not be tossed with every cleaning. I keep it until it begins to shred into small bits. Then I replace half at one time. Sponge is perhaps one of the best biomedia, easy to clean, rarely grows algae, and lasts a very long time before it deteriorates enough to need replacing.

Squeezing the water from a dirty filter into a new one is a good way to 'seed' it with BB too, or just transfer all the media and add some new media. If the new tank has no livestock, be aware you have to keep feeding the bacteria, with pure ammonia or put in some fish or snails. Then add stock slowly, so the BB can catch up with the new load in a short time.
Solid info, but carbon doesn't leech anything out that it's absorbed. It just doesn't work that way.
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Old 10-24-2014, 05:30 AM   #7
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Solid info, but carbon doesn't leech anything out that it's absorbed. It just doesn't work that way.

Plus 1 - it has to be quite extreme ph values outside of aquarium range to do so.
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Old 10-24-2014, 06:12 AM   #8
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My mistake then. I'd been told by someone who knows more chemistry than I do, that this does happen. Nice to know it does not.

But also, carbon does not absorb. It adsorbs. If it is evil spellcheck changing words, it's annoying for sure. But ADsorption is not the same thing at all as ABsorption.

This explains adsorption.

Quote
" Adsorption is a natural process by which molecules of a dissolved compound collect on and adhere to the surface of an adsorbent solid. Adsorption occurs when the attractive forces at the carbon surface overcome the attractive forces of the liquid."
Unquote

Just thought it would be nice to note the difference. Activated charcoal doesn't work like a sponge soaking up a spill.

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Old 10-24-2014, 07:44 AM   #9
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Good point
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Old 10-24-2014, 09:14 AM   #10
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Swapping filters

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Originally Posted by Delapool View Post
Plus 1 - it has to be quite extreme ph values outside of aquarium range to do so.

I've read that carbon must be put in a zero oxygen environment and heated to 900 degrees C in order for it to release (burn off seems more appropriate) what's been adsorbed. Obviously I haven't tried this


This idea about carbon leeching toxins always makes me laugh, because people are worried about the stuff getting back into the tank that all of us who don't use carbon don't bother to remove....
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Old 10-24-2014, 09:34 AM   #11
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I've read that carbon must be put in a zero oxygen environment and heated to 900 degrees C in order for it to release (burn off seems more appropriate) what's been adsorbed. Obviously I haven't tried this


This idea about carbon leeching toxins always makes me laugh, because people are worried about the stuff getting back into the tank that all of us who don't use carbon don't bother to remove....

Lol - don't think my oven goes that high either...

I'll have to see if I still have the article - it was a ph of 4 or something needed as one way.
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Old 10-24-2014, 09:51 PM   #12
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Yeah, they cook it at quite high temps and there are a number of different types, depending on exactly what needs to be adsorbed.

And it is a bit funny, worrying about leaching when most of us don't bother to use carbon in the first place.
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