View Full Version : Filtration

06/21/2006, 10:29 AM
I have been rather frustrated and could use some help, please.

My 125 gal. SW tank on the main floor drains into my 65 gal. basement sump. The water passes through my old wet/dry sump which has 3 trays for filter pads and a biowheel (with which I have never had problems with nitrate build-up) before it enters the main sump through slits I have cut in the side of the wet/dry. I liked this idea because it gave my a place for filter pads and it also acted as a container for reduction of microbubbles (as some people use the baffle system instead). BTW I do have a very good 5" DSB and approx. 130# of LR.

Dispite using 3 filter pads I still have a lot of very fine particulate matter floating around in my display tank which is driving me nuts. My main sump also has a powdery residue of sediment on the bottom which I have removed once but now has returned again.

I have recently thought about adding a Canister Filter to my system to see if the microfiltering property would get rid of this floating stuff but it seems that many people really don't like Canister Filters because of harboring nitrates and I already know that many would feel I am already asking for trouble using a biowheel. Also, the $300 cost for a tank my size seems a bit much since I already have some filter in place. So after reading and searching RC and I finally found a source for micron filter pads/sheets.

So I am wondering, do you think I might kill 2 birds with 1 stone, so to speak, by using the micron filter pads in one ot the wet/dry filter drawers? And if so, which draw ( currently the last filter pad that the water passes through seems to get the dirtiest) ?

How exactly should filter pads be cleaned and with what?
And, how often should the old pads be changed out with new ones?

Geeeez, this is long. I hope you check your personal forum occassionally and see this as I noticed no one has posted here is a while.



06/27/2006, 09:26 PM
Hi Funloven,

Sorry about the late response.

I am curious as to what is causing the particulate in your water.

Is it possible that something, such as fish or other critter could be stirring up your sand? I used to have a crazy tomato clown that loved to stir up my sand and aggravate me. Is the particulate always visible?

Using the micron pads in the sump would catch a lot of particulate matter but there are a couple things to consider:

If the filter pad gets plugged with waste, is there a way for the water to bypass it without flooding your basement? The reason I bring this up, a friend of mine had a very large fishonly system and he used micron filter socks in his overflow drains, but the way the drain was setup, it had no way to bypass the filter when they became plugged and he came home to wet basement and a very large pump sucking in air.

Also, depending upon your flow rate and the amount of particulate in your tank, the filters would have to be cleaned fairly often, sometimes every couple days.

As far as a canister filter goes, when I ran one on my 75 gallon tank, with just a sponge and not a micro filter at the time, I had to clean it every 2 -3 days. It was more trouble than it was worth and after about a month, I pulled it off completely.

As far as cleaning flat filter pads, like those that sit under the wet/dry drip plate, I ran them under the sink and gently ringed them out.

I have heard people suggest cleaning the filter pads in diluted bleach but I was always too afraid of poisoning my tank.

I would suggest replacing the filter pads when they get severely stained, thinned out or if they begin to fall apart.

One thing that I do to reduce particulate in my tank is, I still use the sponges in my overflows. For my tank, they are easy to clean every few days and while they do not work anywhere near as well as a micron filter, they do collect a lot of floating particles.