Betta Fish Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all, I've been researching in preparation for bringing home my first betta. I have not kept fish for years so I've been learning a lot online about proper housing, feeding, etc. I've been able to find answers to most of my questions but I'm having a little trouble right now figuring out when and how often to change filter cartridges.

The aquarium kit I'm planning to get comes with a 10 gallon tank and several accessories including a Marina Slim S15 filter. I'm under the impression that this is a good filter because it has an adjustable flow and good reviews from betta folks.

More info about the filter: It has 3 filter cartridges- 2 Bio-Carb, 1 Bio-Clear. The Bio-Carb description says: "...a mix of Carbon and Ceramitek effectively removes toxins and increases biological filtration. It is very important to replace every few weeks to ensure that the carbon is actively adsorbing all the impurities so that your aquarium water remains crystal clear." And the Bio-Clear says: "...a mix of Zeolite and Ceramitek effectively removes toxic ammonia, which causes stress on fish. Ammonia remover gradually becomes inactive, therefore it is very important to replace every few weeks."

Now, I've read that some filters can just be rinsed instead of replaced, but the company recommends replacing these filters every two weeks, so I'm not certain what to do. My questions are:
1. Should these filters be replaced instead of rinsed?
2. Is 2 weeks a reasonable amount of time for the filters to be used, or can they be replaced less frequently?
3. I understand that I should not change the filters while I'm fishless cycling the tank. But how soon after cycling should they be replaced?

Thanks for any advice!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
868 Posts
zeolite only works until its loaded with ammonia and the carbon only works until its covered with bio-processing bacteria.

The fact that Marina is cutting both with some kind of rock doesn't surprise me, both cartridges are worthless.

Getting replacements for it may be a major concern and I sincerely doubt that the filter can be slowed down enough for bettakeeping.

For some reason they put the biological "support" media in with carbon and zeolite so you'd throw our your biological filtration each time you replaced them. I swear there's a conspiracy to never employ anyone with any aquarium experience in the design and sales of equipment.

If you're looking for a "slim" filter I'd suggest spending $35.00 at Walmart to get a 10g tank kit and a small air pump then buy a heater and sponge filter online. You can put the tank right against the wall that way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,821 Posts
You can purchase a carbon filter and change the media to sponges.
You NEVER have to replace sponge medias. They hold healthy bacteria. I usually rinse mine every month in old tank water that I drained for a 50% change.
The only time you'd have to replace them is if the whole sponge gets very gunky or starts falling apart.

Also, consider making a baffle for the filter if the water current is strong. Most bettas dislike the strong water flow created by filters. Some like it, but most dislike it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
Companies will advise you to replace filters so you will buy more and spend $$ on their products.
The truth is that most of you beneficial bacterial lives in the filter so when you replace it, you toss all those friends you made in the cycling process and your tank will have to go through a mini cycle to recolonize the new filter.

What "stops" working in your filter is the carbon and it's really not something needed on a cycled tank. If you are set in having active carbon in your tank, you can just replace the carbon part of the filter as indicated on the user manual.
I don't have carbon at all in my cycled tanks because I use sponge filters and my fish do just fine.
When I had cartidrige filters, I would toss out the carbon and fill the cartdrige with filter floss never replacing the cartdrige and just carefully rinsing in old tank water during water changes to remove lose dedris.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,821 Posts
Companies will advise you to replace filters so you will buy more and spend $$ on their products.
The truth is that most of you beneficial bacterial lives in the filter so when you replace it, you toss all those friends you made in the cycling process and your tank will have to go through a mini cycle to recolonize the new filter.

What "stops" working in your filter is the carbon and it's really not something needed on a cycled tank. If you are set in having active carbon in your tank, you can just replace the carbon part of the filter as indicated on the user manual.
I don't have carbon at all in my cycled tanks because I use sponge filters and my fish do just fine.
When I had cartidrige filters, I would toss out the carbon and fill the cartdrige with filter floss never replacing the cartdrige and just carefully rinsing in old tank water during water changes to remove lose dedris.
100% excellent information that NEEDS to be spread among fish owners.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,666 Posts
Another reason why most companies in the US advocate the use of "carbon" filter cartridges is because the often contain zeolite which diminishes the ammonia content within the tank greatly

Carbon clears the water, cleans excess nutrients, Eliminates tannins, etc. the one that eliminates ammonia is considered zeolite. But your main concern when changing any type of filter media is that it greatly effects the filter bacterias colony, and numbers. With fewer bacteria. Your tanks ability to eliminate toxic substances such as nitrites, and ammonia diminishes greatly, meaning that they will spike resulting in mass deaths, and most likely. Many sicknesses to break out within the tank
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,821 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Great information! I'm just getting started looking for the right filter, so thanks for bearing with me. I don't need the filter to be slim...there are only two things I'm looking for- that it's right for betta, and fairly quiet. All the filters I've seen have been similar to the Marina, and the Marina sounded like the best of the bunch; I hadn't even heard of this sponge and air pump method. It sounds a lot more appropriate (especially if you think the Marina's flow will still be too strong) for betta and more economical, as well. Could someone please link me to what I would need to do sponge filtration for a 10 gallon tank? I'm seeing all these sponge filters and air pumps and powerheads on Amazon and pet sites and don't know where to start. (I'd go to the local aquarium store and ask but it's a a bit of a drive, so I'm trying to get online the things I need to set up the aquarium).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,821 Posts
Great information! I'm just getting started looking for the right filter, so thanks for bearing with me. I don't need the filter to be slim...there are only two things I'm looking for- that it's right for betta, and fairly quiet. All the filters I've seen have been similar to the Marina, and the Marina sounded like the best of the bunch; I hadn't even heard of this sponge and air pump method. It sounds a lot more appropriate (especially if you think the Marina's flow will still be too strong) for betta and more economical, as well. Could someone please link me to what I would need to do sponge filtration for a 10 gallon tank? I'm seeing all these sponge filters and air pumps and powerheads on Amazon and pet sites and don't know where to start. (I'd go to the local aquarium store and ask but it's a a bit of a drive, so I'm trying to get online the things I need to set up the aquarium).
I support MarineLand completey and long time.
Lifetime guarantee
and I've NEVER had issues with them.

Also, onto sponges, just get a regular filter. Doesn't matter if the media it comes with is carbon or not. And purchase something along the lines of these:
http://www.petco.com/product/105485...-Pad.aspx?CoreCat=MM_FishSupplies_FilterMedia
http://www.petco.com/product/107996...erts.aspx?CoreCat=MM_FishSupplies_FilterMedia
http://www.petco.com/product/5539/M...Pads.aspx?CoreCat=MM_FishSupplies_FilterMedia

I have the last product. I use it in Spike's 5.5 "once carbon" filter and I WILL be using it in the 75 gallon's "once carbon" filter.

As far as air pumps. I've yet to find a use for them other than creating pretty bubbles. Some fish enjoy playing with the bubbles. Maybe someone more experienced with air pumps can give their 2 cents....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,301 Posts
Sponge filters are used with airpumps. They are, imo, the best option for bettas because you don't have to worry about a current you will have to baffle by modifying the filter or your fish's fins being shredded by the intake.
I use these:
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=3945
with this airpump:
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=19779
I"m currently running 2 filters on the same airpump suing this valve:
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=19780
It allows your to split the airflow and adjust it.
They are not the prettiest things on earth but great for bettas... you get used to them after a while. I will never use any other filters again. To compensate for the space that the filter takes in the tank I burried my heaters in the sand.
Here's how my tanks look:
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top