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Old 12-07-2012, 04:55 PM   #1 
minkymink
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Filter Media

So I have this tank (http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...AvailInUS%2FNo) and apparently I'm supposed to replace the filter cartridges once a month. I buy the filter cartridges specifically for the tank and they have carbon in them. The thing is, by replacing my cartridge every month I'm removing my bacteria which is keeping my tank from cycling. Is there any kind of filter media I could put in my tank that I wouldn't have to switch out?
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:03 PM   #2 
sandybottom
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fooey. only change out the filter once it falls apart. or unless you need to remove meds from the water. i put a small sponge in my filter or ceramic media. it doesn't have to be a large amount. that will house bb colony and when it is actually time to change the filter, i have the backup on the sponge etc.
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:08 PM   #3 
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So I can just use a plain sponge? Doesn't it need to have carbon or something in it? Sorry I'm kinda new to all of this!
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:14 PM   #4 
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As Sandy mentioned, you don't need to change the media unless it's really falling apart. Carbon is not necessary if you already have sponge or foam as the general media. Any type of sponge can work, as long as it hasn't been used before and it's those fluffy holey type ones.

As long as you rinse/swish the sponge a couple of times a month it should be fine and you won't have to change it.
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:15 PM   #5 
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Thank you so much! This really helped me (:
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Old 12-07-2012, 05:16 PM   #6 
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You're welcome, and happy fish keeping! :)
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Old 12-07-2012, 06:25 PM   #7 
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just make sure sponge is aquarium safe. some of the big yellow car washing sponges have other chemicals in them.do not use antibacterial. for obvious reasons.
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Old 12-07-2012, 06:41 PM   #8 
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For that specific tank and filter it is OK to toss the cartridge if you want because it has the biowheel. The biowheel is never supposed to be cleaned or replaced unless it breaks. The bacteria will colonize the wheel so if you do toss the filter cartridge, you won't be tossing out the majority of the bacteria. I had that tank too but it got busted when I moved from alaska to NY in January

It's a different story if you are using most of the other filters. I have Aqueon and Tetra 10i filters and for those, I don't bother with their actual cartridges. I stuff the inside of the filter with Filter Sponge/foam made for the Aquaclear filters. This stuff:


If you do need the chemical filtration that you get from the carbon, that will become ineffective after about a month but unless you have smelly water or are trying to remove medication, chemical filtration isn't really needed. Sponge will last ALOT longer then the cartridges as well. I kept those till they started to fall apart anda then I started using the foam.

You might be able to stick some foam where the cartridge is supposed to go but if i remember correctly, it goes in the hood in a rather shallow location. I would think you could can easily cut a peice of aquaclear foam to fit

Ohh, I also use this foam to baffle filters. Stick it where the water flows out of the filter

Last edited by Tikibirds; 12-07-2012 at 06:50 PM.
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