Newbie question pt 1

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Aquarium Advice Freak
Mar 22, 2008
South Philly, Pa.
Okay, first off I just want to say thank you for the warm welcome I received in joining this forum. Second, while I did have a 20gal FW tank working well it was over 20 years ago and much has changed. I presently own a 36gal corner tank (Geneva series by Aqueon) and had purchased a Marineland c-360 filter to handle the cleaning. Unfortunately, the c-360 did not fit into the design of the stand so I dropped to the Marineland c-220. This tank is not set up yet and won't be until I am satisfied that I won't hurt any fish due to my inexperience. I want this tank to be FW. Can anybody help me in understanding what inline heater are? What inline heater will work with a c-220? Also I read in your forums people using different media instead of what is supplied by Marineland. Can you explain this and what you might recommend.
An inline heater is a heater that works in the filter line (or in the filter) instead of having a seperate heater in the tank. What is the diameter of the hose for the filter?

The media you use depends on what you plan to do with your tank and your specific water. IMO, throw away the carbon. It's a baggie of black pieces. It is only really active for about a week. After that the only advantage is that it holds beneficial bacteria. But if you were to get ceramic rings, they hold much more bacteria and never have to be changed. I am running the original bag of ceramic rings that I put in my canister filter 3 years ago.

A Sponge is a must. It is probably included with the filter already. A thick meshy material. Filter floss is also a must IMO. It's a soft white material. It traps the small bits that float in the water. Really polishes it off. You can buy it at Wal-Mart in the crafts section. Basically batting. It's a heck of a lot cheaper than purchasing it from the lfs. A $3 bag lasted us about a year compared to $6 every 2 weeks that it would have cost form the lfs.

Anything beyond that really depends on your ultimate goal. If you are wanting to keep fish that live in a naturally high pH and your tap is low, add a baggie of crushed coral to the filter. I don't really see a need for anything else. If you keep ontop of your water changes and do proper maintenance, you shouldn't need anything to lower nitrates or the like.

Big piece of advice, ask here before purchasing from the lfs. They will sell you 100 items when you really only need 1.
Thanks for the reply (Please read my official "BIG THANK YOU" in my Newbie question pt 2 thread). The outside diameter of the hose is just a little over 3/4 in. The inside diameter is exactly 5/8 in. As for what I'm trying to do with the tank.... My dream is a 36gal FW community tank with driftwood, artificial plants and some rocks.
My canister (Marineland c-220) does not have a "gizzmo" to attach a heater and if I understood you correct, the inline heater gets spliced into the hose. That sounds cool. Less clutter in the tank. Recommendation on a heater?
:uzi:(I had to use this icon - it was too cool to ignore)
I hear great things about the Hydor ETH line of heaters. That should fit your tubing nicely. And you are correct, it is attached in the tubing. A few years ago I saw a canister filter that had a spot inside the filter for a heater but I forget which brand and model it was. Pretty neat design but if you needed to adjust the temp I guess you'd have to take the filter apart.

Considering your ultimate goal, filter floss, a sponge, and ceramic rings is all you will need in the canister.
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