Filter cleaning

Discussion in 'General Planted Tank Discussions' started by tennis4you, 17 Oct 2008.

  1. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    When I had just fish (no plants) I was cleaning the canister filter once every 5 months. Now that I have plants in the tank do I need to be cleaning the filter more often? I can only imagine the answer is yes...
     
  2. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,952
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Excellent imagination. Plants produce waste which accumulate in the filter. This organic waste will equal or exceed that produced by the fish and is as toxic as fish/food waste as it decays and converts to ammonia. This places extra stress on the bacterial colonies and blocks filter flow throughput.

    Cheers,
     
  3. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Is there a rule of thumb for cleaning filters or at least how often? I am guessing that because I am less than the 10x turn over per hour that I should potentially be cleaning it more often?
     
  4. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    You could try once a fortnight and see how dirty it gets after 2 weeks. If it seems to be still relatively clear, drop to once every 3 weeks, once a month. I should clean more often than I do too, but I'm quite lazy... I intend to buck up my ideas though :lol:
     
  5. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

    Messages:
    3,955
    Location:
    worksop, nottinghamshire
    i just do it when i see a reduction in flow :rolleyes:
     
  6. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Wow, that is a lot more often than I was doing it but I am more than OK with that... Just so it doesn't disrupt the cycle I am good with it.
     
  7. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    As long as you do it corrently. Rinse all the bio media in tank water you've just syphoned out. Tap water will kill off your bacteria. Also do the same with the sponges, though you should be able to do that under the tap I still prefer to do it in tank water. Every last bit of bacteria is good :D
     
  8. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Indeed. I learned that the hard way a few years back. I only clean with tank water these days. :)
     
  9. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Member

    Messages:
    2,677
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    I tend to clean the pipes/hoses monthly and at the same time squeeze out one tray of sponges (in old tank water of course.) Next month I do one of the other sponges.

    I used to rinse and squeeze all of the sponges monthly at the same time and found I was getting cloudy water for a fair few days (bacterial bloom I assume)

    AC
     
  10. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    I cleaned the filter tonight, it had been almost 3 months. It was a mess. Hopefully that will help some!
     

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