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Biomax On Aquaclears


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I don't own aquaclears, just those marineland penguin power filters, but I decided to buy a couple packets of those biomax cylinders because they were cheaper than the giant jugs of bio-media and they already come in little baggies for easy handling.

However, I noticed on the box that it said to change the aquaclear biomax every so often, but is it safe to leave in indefinitely? Does anyone know if it will deteriorate? I was thinking of buying some bio-sponges too, will those be okay to leave indefinitely as well?

Thanks in advance. :heart

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I had a penguin running with two cartridges and a bag of the aquaclear bio-max shoved in there. As far as how long they last, I am not sure. I have read some people saying they have seen the bio-max deteriorate as little as in a year's time. I have had mine for a year and they are just fine. The bio-max houses the beneficial bacteria. So throwing them away is not a good thing unless you have a backup source of those bacteria (which in your case would be your wheel.)

For the sponges, are you thinking of using these in place of the penguin cartriges?? Regardless, usually all you need to do is swish them out in the tank water (that you're changin out) and put them back in. If they are looking pretty shabby, get new ones. But these can last pretty long, too.

Hoped that helped ya!

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Thanks for your input chico! Maybe there's something about the way that the aquaclears work that contributes to the deterioration. Hm, ponder...

So I guess I'll just cross my fingers and hope for the best. :)

As far as the sponges, I wasn't going to replace the filter cartridges, just cram some extra sponge material for bio-housing. I've done it before, but now I'm getting paranoid. Sorry I'm so weird.

Which would be better: Getting the ceramic stuff or sponges? At first I would think sponges because it's easier for the water to pass through all the pores, but I would be able to cram more cylinders in. Decisions decisions!

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The instructions say to replace the biomax every 2 months, I cannot understand why except that chico said they deteriorate over time. I have only had mine a couple of months.

I say keep the biomax until it starts falling apart. Rinse well each time you rinse your sponge to get rid of excess mulch.

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I've been running BioMax in my two Aquaclear 300s for over two years now. It's all that's in the filter, no sponge, DEFINITELY no carbon, no zeolite, just bio mendia. No deterioration to them yet, I rinse them in tank water (during a water change) when I remember,which is never. I guess Hagen wants you to replace them, more $$$$ to them. I've also running Seachem Matrix in an Eclipse 1, works great. I just added a sponge on the intake to grab the solid waste. As you can probably tell, I focus on bio filtering (just like Mother Nature), keep your ammonia cycle in check and everything else seems to just work out.

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DEFINITELY no carbon, no zeolite, just bio mendia.

Dr. T, if you're out there, I'd like to hear your exact rationale behind the no carbon. I know that when Asian fishkeepers keep Koi in aquariums, they use lots of carbon to help purify the water. I typically do not. But about three weeks ago, I removed all the river rock from the bottom of my 180 gallon tank to go "barebottom". The water got funky for awhile and I put carbon cartridges in the two Rena Filstar XP4's running on the tank. The water cleared up, quickly. But I have had a BUGGAR of a time building substantial nitrobacter colony to keep the nitrite level below 0.25. I'm wondering if the carbon has anything to do with that. I can't blame absence of substrate, because I have a 90 gallon sump atached to the 180 with maybe 120 pounds of clear glass marbles over a highly aearated ug system in that sump. Total volume for the system is around 280 gallons with the sumps and filters. This particular set up is home to my TWO favorite, 7" Wakin. Hardly overstocked. I'm starting to suspect that carbon is the devil and intend to take those cartridges out, tonight.

Do share your rationale.

Thanks.

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I've never had bad experience with carbon, but they do take up a lot of space and they're "used" up within a few days.

Did you take out all your gravel at once CometKeeper? That's where a lot of nitro-bacteria live and if you go barebottom too suddenly it can result in a giant bump in the cycle. :(

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Nenn, I did take all the river rock out of the 180 gallon tank at once but I have the 90 gallon sump attached to that tank, with tons of marbles left intact in that sump as well as another wet/dry filter on the 180 with very large bio-ball capacity left undisturbed. So even though the river rock was removed all at once, not all of the substrate/media was removed from the system. I did expect a bump in the cycle. Nitrosoma colony is intact. I had a slight rise in ammonia for about 24 hours after removing the river rock and then it went to and has stayed at zero. But I have been registering 0.25 for nitrite for three weeks now, changing 100 gallons of water [of the 280 or so], every two or three days. Something kicked my nitrobacter colony in the pants... The only changes made have been removing river rock [again, only part of the media/substrate] and adding carbon to my filters. Theoretically, the nitrobacter colony should not have been wiped out, albeit their habitat was disrupted.The 0.25 nitrite level is not bothering my fish. Wakin are tough rascals and that is a relatively low dose of deadly poison <sigh>. But it is bothering *me*. ;) Our tap water registers zero for nitrite.

AH! One more thing I did was use a clarifier by Sea-Chem when I removed the river rock and the water clouded. Hmmmm..... Wondering if the clarifier might have zapped a good part of my nitrobacter colony. One more reason not to use chemical agents in our Goldfish aquariums is one never knows what the effects on the nitrogen cycle are going to be. I knew better. Quick fixes usually "ain't". Willing to bet the clarifier is the culpreit. Anyway, my other aquarium has zero nitrite and a normal nitrate level, so I transferred some media from that tank to the larger set up. Will see what's up in a week or so.

Thanks for your interest, Nenn. :) Hope you're having a terrific weekend.

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