View Full Version : Filter socks

09/07/2017, 08:51 AM
One thing that's changed since I've been out a while are the addition of filter socks in the sumps. We used to just run with a sponge in the first chamber for the sumps below the bio-balls and it seemed at least to be adequate enough.
Looking at sumps before I bought one recently, it looked like socks were a given for almost every system mfg.
My Eshopps RS-75 went through the first two socks in a day and a half, I'm hoping this will level out some once the tank gets cleaner. I feed once a day and semi-sparingly.

I'm using bleach mixed with RO/DI water to bathe the socks in for a day, rinsing them off with a strong shower spray and then rinsing them again in fresh RO/DI water, then air dry.

I was going to ask about how long to expect out of the life of a sock but I'm sure there's too many variables to be able to give a definitive answer. Tank size, bio load, nutrient level, feeding regimen, number of animals, etc.

With no idea how long it would take to dirty one up I bought an extra box of 3 including the one that came with the sump so that worked out well.
How many do most people keep on hand and how long have your's lasted and what's your tank size, including number of fish?

Just curious what to expect.

09/07/2017, 08:57 AM
40 on hand for two tanks - 150 gallon, 300 gallon. Both run two socks. Change every two days. I can fit 12 socks in a 5 gallon bucket for bleaching and do filter sock laundry once every 6-7 days.

I've had these socks for three years. I think the LFS told me they are 25 micron felt socks.

Wear / tear damage comes more from laundry (cracking plastic rims, holes ripping in them when the sewed threading starts to let go) than anything else.

09/07/2017, 09:05 AM
Hmm sounds like having a few more might be a good idea then and just do one bulk wash to have them available on hand rather than relying on a short supply.

09/07/2017, 09:10 AM
I have 4 nylon socks for my Red Sea Reefer 425XL. When I'm using them, I keep 1 pair in and 1 pair clean and change them weekly or biweekly depending on how much they are gunked up. The majority of the time I don't run them at all though.

09/07/2017, 11:52 AM
Get mesh socks. They rinse clean in the sink in two minutes.

09/07/2017, 02:43 PM
Rarely use them.

09/07/2017, 03:00 PM
I have about 20 or so. I change them every 2 days if they need it or not. I fill a 5G bucket with bleach and water and just rinse them out in the sink then throw them in the bucket. When I'm down to my last one I throw them in the washing machine with an extra rinse cycle. Let them air dry and all is good again.

Deoending on how clean your system is is what will dictate how many you need, but they should be changed every 2 to 3 days before they start to become nitrate factories(BRS did a video on this, and 2 to 3 days was what was recommended).

09/07/2017, 03:02 PM
I have extra sets and change them every few days. When all but 1 are dirty I use washing machine and pure Sodium Percarbonate powder to clean. I rinse/soak them in rodi water after and air dry. My wife laugh than I am doing washing socks for the fist time since we have been married :frog:

09/07/2017, 03:14 PM
I can see using them if you have an abnormal about to crap in the DT but for the most part don't you want to circulate the pods and leftover food for the corals to eat? I think they are good to use on occasion but not continuously. Curious what others think.

09/07/2017, 04:02 PM
Iīd rather use filter floss (in my previous tank 11 years ago) and now I use filter socks.
I clean them every 4 or so days and I prefer to have any small debris or junk out of the tank than inside.
I havenīt considered putting them in the washing machine but sounds great :)

09/07/2017, 04:12 PM
Thanks all, and thank you homer I was wondering about that also.

09/07/2017, 04:17 PM
Still wondering why you need filter socks on a continuous basis.

09/07/2017, 04:39 PM
To try and keep (at least) the larger particles out of the tank. I agree about the pods and leftover food for coral but either way is a trade off. Regular feeding is much easier than cleaning up. i.e. cleaning "a" sock versus a whole tank.

09/07/2017, 05:29 PM
So far I have not heard a convincing argument for running a full time sock.

09/07/2017, 05:42 PM
BRS performed an experiment (https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/video/view/brstv-investigates-what-do-filter-socks-do-for-you/) and if you change them two times a week they reduce nitrate.

09/07/2017, 05:48 PM
BRS performed an experiment (https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/video/view/brstv-investigates-what-do-filter-socks-do-for-you/) and if you change them two times a week they reduce nitrate.

They sell them.

09/07/2017, 05:53 PM
They sell them.

If you watch their videos they have proven items they sell don't work. They aren't going to risk their reputation to make a few bucks off of a piece of cloth.

09/07/2017, 06:43 PM
If you watch their videos they have proven items they sell don't work. They aren't going to risk their reputation to make a few bucks off of a piece of cloth.

Scientific studies from BRS. Too Funny. I use them but not on a regular basis.

09/07/2017, 11:12 PM
I put them on for water change day or if I'm just doing some cleaning. Remove and clean when done and the rest of the week is no filter socks.

09/13/2017, 05:36 PM
Love when people ask questions who've already made up their minds.

09/13/2017, 05:39 PM
And your contribution to this thread is....

09/13/2017, 05:46 PM
Asking the original question.

09/13/2017, 05:57 PM
People have given you their opinions based on their experience.

09/13/2017, 05:59 PM
And I'm replying.

09/13/2017, 06:14 PM
These things can be a pain.
If you keep extras you can stretch out the intervals between washes.
I have systems that use them and some that don't.
Filter socks mainly seem to keep the sump slightly cleaner (less detritus).

09/13/2017, 06:25 PM
As I've found out lol.

I recently ordered extras so that I can have more available when needed on hand. It's just that break in sequence ugh.
I have to use a public laundromat so I prefer to wash them myself at home in 5 gallon buckets knowing at least whats in the container ahead of time rather than chancing it.

Gotcha, less necessary cleaning is a good thing.

09/14/2017, 09:59 AM
Why do so many people still use felt socks when there are better options available now? Mesh has already been mentioned, or even better, and what I use, media cups. They slide right into the sock holder and can be filled with whatever media you like. I use Tunze Macro Wadding and occasionally layer in some carbon. When it needs changing I pull it out and it's a flick of my wrist into the trash. It works so well with chemical media in it I have to be careful.

09/14/2017, 11:04 AM
To be honest smatter, this was new to me after being out of the hobby for 10 years so I thought I'd give it a try and see if it lived up to the claim. Prior, we just ran open sumps with nothing more than 2-3 sponges, live rock, bio-balls and a light. And the deluxe models had a rotating spray bar lol.

I see the amount of detritus it captures that isn't going back into the tank and it does seem to somewhat do the job. Before it was a matter of waiting and waiting and waiting and then likely a Vortex Diatom filter to clean out the small particulates to give you showroom quality polished water which was a part of the bi-monthly maintenance routine along with regular water changes.

At least in theory the dissolving organics being captured and removed makes sense in prolonging water quality and perhaps better overall animal health. I'm not saying it's the end all to be all and with time I may change how I think but what works for one doesn't always work for everyone else.

I do like the idea of mesh socks which seem to be (from everyones opinion I've seen) much easier to clean and maintain and surely much cheaper in cost. At some point I'll probably give it a try but for right now this is how I'm starting off. I'm just trying to find out more about it before I go changing too much is all.
I definitely like and appreciate your tip on adding the media to the front end of the flow though.

09/14/2017, 11:28 AM
Ha! Rotating spray bars LOL, I remember those. I've always been anti-mech, that's why I use coarse wadding only. Sometimes I run the cup empty.