Cleaning Rena XP2 Filter

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Aquarium Advice Regular
Mar 10, 2009
I just bought a used Rena XP2 filter and i was wondering how i should clean the pads/filters inside the canister? I want to clean everything just in case the last person had any diseases or parasites in their tank. Whats the best way to get the foam/mesh filters clean and sterile? The filter has the black bio stars in it, is it ok to rinse them and reuse them or do they wear out over time? Also, is there a way to tell the age of my XP2? I've read a few post about the motors wearing out which results in a less of water flow.

On a side note - I got this filter with a setup i bought off craigslist today. I got a 75G tank with a Rena XP2, Marineland stealth heater, Whisper 60 or 100 air pump, moonlight, thermometer, and some chemicals + food for $100. :D
Also, I currently have a 55G with a Marineland Emperor 400. When I switch over to the 75G will the XP2 be sufficient for a planted community tank or should i run the Emporer and the XP2? I dont really like the look of HOB filters so i was hoping to run just the XP2 but im afraid it wont be enough.
First of all well done on that amazing deal!!!

Secondly with regards to the xp2:

I have one and i find that the carbon filter can just be cleaned by running under hot water. White filter will need replaced. Stars: Rena say they should be half replaced every 6 monts... to be perfectly honest rinse them all through, they are fine. The motor can be a problem.. just take it out clean it in hot water and make sure the housing around it is algae/rubbish free.

Finally you can never have too many filters and with that size of tank i would definately use both!! i have a 40 gallon tank and i run the xp2 and an interior tank filter!

You got a great deal.
I’m using and XP2 on my 46 gallon and love it. It’s so quiet that I have to put my ear very close to the unit to see if it’s running.

I don’t use the carbon filter at all. They’re very expensive and the carbon will remove some of the ferts used. I use the foam pads in the bottom basket, Rena starz in the middle and Polyfil (not the fireproof kind) from Wally world in the top basket.
When I clean the media, I squeeze out the sponges and polyfil in old tank water.
When the poly gets old, I just change it, a big bag costs about $5 at WM.
Did you get a manual with the XP?
When you rinse the media in the sink, don’t fill the canister with water yet.

Replace the baskets, media and clamp down. Replace the canister under the tank empty and when you clamp down the quick disconnect on the hoses, water will siphon into the canister. Then after plugging in the power, you can tilt the unit to expel excess air.
You don’t have to reprime because water is trapped in the hoses.

Awhile back I did have an internal leak that drove me nuts. The SP2 would suck in air and spit it out the spraybar and it was quite audible. Finally found the leak, it was in the intake neck (U shaped at the back top). I used electrician’s tape which I hear is aquatic safe. I taped the neck from below the water line all the way to the top of the priming cap.
That stopped the leak and noise. Here is a thread:

Incidentally, at, the reps are quite helpful and they sell Rena parts.
Go visit the site and there is a great FAQ section there also.

Good luck
Thank you for the good tips. I do have the manual for the filter but i did not get the spray bar. It just has tubing with a flow regulator at the end. I cant wait to get everything setup. I'll take pictures once i do!
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