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JTL
08/07/2017, 01:49 PM
How often do you use it? Same for carbon. I have a fuge and the chaeto isn't growing. In fact it is shrinking. I have been using both carbon and gfo, maybe the water is stripped of everything the chaeto needs to grow. Anyway I have been a believer in running carbon 24/7 to keep the water clear and the smell of a fish tank at a tolerable level. There is little doubt the the gfo keeps the phosphates undetectable on my test kit and I would like to avoid an algae problem but it would also be nice not to run this stuff all of the time. What do you all think?

bertoni
08/07/2017, 01:57 PM
A lot of people report problems with Chaetomorpha shrinking away with GFO. I personally would start cutting back on the amount in the system, to see whether the problem can be fixed that way. The problem with turning a reactor on and off is that the organics in the media will start undergoing anaerobic decay, which can produce toxic gases.

JTL
08/07/2017, 02:35 PM
I did a w/c today and my phosphates are 0, Nitrate 0, Ca 520, Kh 8 and Mg 1350. I ordered a large wad of chaeto and it should be here in a couple of days so I will take the gfo offline. The other thing is that I have my water from the reactor going directly into the refugium, mixed with some DT water. It may be too much for the chaeto. It does pose and interesting question. If I keep my phos and nitrate at zero do I even need to grow chaeto, except I want pods. If I can keep the params good and not have HA and other issues I would love to go natural. The tank is still very new and only has about 15 small lps frags and 4 medium fish so the bio load is small. I only plan on having 4 more medium fish so it will still me on the smallish side. The skimmer is extracting a lot of wet skimmate. Still wonder what others are doing on the gfo and carbon front.

bertoni
08/07/2017, 03:27 PM
It's reasonably common for tanks to be fine without GFO. I ran for years without it, and then added a small dose as a safety net. If I had a tank that was responding the way that yours is, I would ditch or cut back on the GFO, too. I'd keep the carbon for the time being, since it can remove toxins and problematic organics, and generally it can't adsorb enough to cause problems if the dose is reasonable.

GimpyFin
08/07/2017, 03:32 PM
I agree with Bertoni in that if you aren't having issues, you might not need gfo. I started using gfo (Phosfiltrum) on my larger tank after having some issues with hair algae. Even after the HA has been gone for a while, I still use a small amount and change it every 3-4 weeks. Not 100% sure that I need to, but with a decent bio load and regular feeding, it hasn't really hurt and the tank continues to do well. I also use biopellets, but I don't use carbon.

My smaller cube tank only has a couple fish so I have pretty much just a filter sock and a small skimmer and tank params stay in check with no hair algae.

JTL
08/07/2017, 04:14 PM
Jon and Brian,
When you guys say you run a small amount, I assume you are doing this in a media reactor. Also are you also running carbon in a reactor? Here is my dilemma. I have a BRS dual media reactor that is supposed to run on an MJ 1200 pump but it doesn't. Even with the valve wide open it barely turns the gfo in the first canister and after a few days it doesn't move at all. This is a common complaint and BRS should stop recommending this combination. Anyway now I either can run one reactor or get a more powerful pump which I am loath to due. Or get another pump and have one for each reactor which is not going to happen. Running off my return pump is not an option.

jayball
08/07/2017, 05:04 PM
Jon and Brian,
When you guys say you run a small amount, I assume you are doing this in a media reactor. Also are you also running carbon in a reactor? Here is my dilemma. I have a BRS dual media reactor that is supposed to run on an MJ 1200 pump but it doesn't. Even with the valve wide open it barely turns the gfo in the first canister and after a few days it doesn't move at all. This is a common complaint and BRS should stop recommending this combination. Anyway now I either can run one reactor or get a more powerful pump which I am loath to due. Or get another pump and have one for each reactor which is not going to happen. Running off my return pump is not an option.

I have a cobalt MJ1200 on my BRS dual media reactor and I have to keep it turned way down. Do you have the marineland or cobalt pump?

JTL
08/07/2017, 06:00 PM
The Cobalt. It has plenty of flow out of the pump but when you hook it up to the reactor it sucks. It may be that I am using about 3' of tubing and going up almost 2' (head).

GimpyFin
08/07/2017, 06:17 PM
Personally, I'm not super crazy about the BRS water filter reactors. I feel there's better options especially for certain types of media. That, and you have to have a good spot to mount them. Anyway, I run gfo in a Bubble magus mini 80 reactor. The small pump is part of the reactor and mounts directly underneath and it works great to keep the gfo slightly tumbling. (I switched the pump that came with the reactor to an Eheim compact 600 so I could adjust the flow rate as needed.) I don't run any carbon, though.

JTL
08/07/2017, 06:20 PM
^ Thanks, good info.

bertoni
08/07/2017, 06:58 PM
Jon and Brian,
When you guys say you run a small amount, I assume you are doing this in a media reactor. Also are you also running carbon in a reactor?
I ran the GFO and the carbon in the same TLF reactor. A Mini-Jet is fine, IME, but I ran them with the flow going down through the media, to avoid tumbling, since I didn't want to abrade either media. That flow direction is going to be less efficient, but more fool-proof.

JTL
08/07/2017, 07:21 PM
So you ran it out vs in? GFO on top and the carbon on the bottom? Still doing it?

bertoni
08/07/2017, 08:10 PM
I ran them in whatever order I dumped them into the filter that day. I think carbon usually goes in first. I don't use the TLF reactor anymore. It's an annoyance to clean.

Wes8888
08/07/2017, 08:16 PM
Not top and bottom. They have the 2 chambers reactors. One for the GFO and one for the carbon.