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Old 12-14-2018, 01:37 PM   #1
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Filter cleaning

Ever since I decided to go with planted tank it seems like Iím havin to clean the filter out more often cause itts clogging from this brown sludge like stuff on sponge an media basket. Any idea if this gonna be normal? Iv never had to clean a filter out this much(once every 2 weeks).

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Old 12-14-2018, 04:22 PM   #2
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Pictures and a bit more info would help. How long has the tank been setup? What substrate are you using? What filter are you using? Is this brown stuff only on the filter? Usually brown stuff in aquariums means diatoms which should go away after a bit but I've never heard it described as sludge so you might have something different going on.
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Old 12-14-2018, 04:30 PM   #3
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Brown sludge can accumulate from overfeeding. But not sure why it would because of plants.
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Old 12-14-2018, 04:56 PM   #4
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Filter cleaning

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Pictures and a bit more info would help. How long has the tank been setup? What substrate are you using? What filter are you using? Is this brown stuff only on the filter? Usually brown stuff in aquariums means diatoms which should go away after a bit but I've never heard it described as sludge so you might have something different going on.


When I get home Iíll post pics, an Iím using flora max with root tabs. Feed fish once a day an the amount I feed is 4-5 tiny shrimp pellets, pinch of sinking granules and 2 algae wafers. Most the time the shrimp take off with most the granules an the Coryís an kuhli loaches way the granules am wafers. An itís been setup like this for a couple months when I got rid of the chiclids
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Old 12-14-2018, 05:01 PM   #5
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Brown sludge can accumulate from overfeeding. But not sure why it would because of plants.


An idk Iím just assuming it was the plants or the log cause didnít really start till got rid of couple fish an added a piece of wood an few extra plants. An itís like a medium light brown that covers the bottom of media basket an makes cleaning filter sponge a pain in the rear
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Old 12-16-2018, 03:31 PM   #6
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Ever since I decided to go with planted tank it seems like Iím havin to clean the filter out more often cause itts clogging from this brown sludge like stuff on sponge an media basket. Any idea if this gonna be normal? Iv never had to clean a filter out this much(once every 2 weeks).
Yes, on heavily planted tanks it's normal (in my experience, at least). One of my 20-longs is nearly a jungle, and the filters need maintenance every 10-days to two weeks.You can slow this down by using pre-filter sponges, but they'll still need to be taken care of more often than you might expect.
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Old 12-17-2018, 08:23 AM   #7
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Filter cleaning

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An idk Iím just assuming it was the plants or the log cause didnít really start till got rid of couple fish an added a piece of wood an few extra plants. An itís like a medium light brown that covers the bottom of media basket an makes cleaning filter sponge a pain in the rear

Take the sponge out and squeeze it in to a light bucket or container. If it looks like (see below) light brown amd fluffy, itís probably just mulm. When you look at the sponge in the filter youíre probably seeing mulm covered in a biofilm that gives it a slimy/sludgy appearance. Planted tanks are pretty dirty but if you have a perfectly functioning biofilter (which it sounds like you have) the organic matter is pretty rapidly broken down in to mulm which is what is left when organic matter is broken down to its simplest form. Itís non toxic and good for the aquarium. Just keep on top of the filter so that it doesnít clog and impede gas exchange.

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Old 12-17-2018, 09:33 AM   #8
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Take the sponge out and squeeze it in to a light bucket or container. If it looks like (see below) light brown amd fluffy, itís probably just mulm. When you look at the sponge in the filter youíre probably seeing mulm covered in a biofilm that gives it a slimy/sludgy appearance. Planted tanks are pretty dirty but if you have a perfectly functioning biofilter (which it sounds like you have) the organic matter is pretty rapidly broken down in to mulm which is what is left when organic matter is broken down to its simplest form. Itís non toxic and good for the aquarium. Just keep on top of the filter so that it doesnít clog and impede gas exchange.

Attachment 311299


That is exactly what it looks like
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Old 12-17-2018, 02:55 PM   #9
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That is exactly what it looks like

Then it is completely normal.
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Old 12-17-2018, 03:04 PM   #10
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Then it is completely normal.


Ok cool lol an ya only thing I have in filter is sponge(might add second one just Incase I wanna setup another tank) an ammonia removing media an biomax media. Itís been up an running for few months now
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Old 12-17-2018, 03:47 PM   #11
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Ok cool lol an ya only thing I have in filter is sponge(might add second one just Incase I wanna setup another tank) an ammonia removing media an biomax media. Itís been up an running for few months now

Did you seed this tank with bacteria?
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Old 12-17-2018, 04:38 PM   #12
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Filter cleaning

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Did you seed this tank with bacteria?


No I donít know what that is I started this tank back in feb, then changed the substrate out(caribsea freshwater sand)in May to flora max, then added all my plants when I switched to the new filter.
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Old 12-18-2018, 01:53 AM   #13
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No I donít know what that is I started this tank back in feb, then changed the substrate out(caribsea freshwater sand)in May to flora max, then added all my plants when I switched to the new filter.

Well what lever you did itís worked
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