PDA

View Full Version : "Seasoned" Canister Filters



Samong
05-09-2015, 11:03 AM
I haven't used a canister filter most of my fishkeeping years, really only the last three. Lately my 75g planted freshwater has had some serious excess detritus in spite of being pretty thoroughly understocked. I used to clean the filter out every month or two but now I'm starting a 2 week or so schedule because it is just CHOKED with mud/sludge whenever I open it. I use a gravel vac to skim stuff off the surface, but my water hasn't looked polished and sparkling in awhile.


Do canister filters become slower/fewer gallons-per-hour as they age? Or do I just need to dismantle every last pipe/hose and clean out more than the main compartment and sponges? I have an AquaTop CF400UV that's rated for 370gph, but I seriously doubt it's pulling that much water now. I'm thinking of adding a second canister because 1) I love overfiltering and 2) it could probably use more flow in general; there are still dead spots where detritus accumulates even with a powerhead.

aXio
05-09-2015, 11:24 AM
How long have you had it? I'm assuming since it is an Aquatop no more the 2-3 years. While filters will slow down over time for sure it shouldn't be happening that soon. I have 6 Aquatop canisters at home, most of them over 2 years old now and running perfectly fine.

While you shouldn't have to clean out the "pipes/hoses" unless you want to clean off algae... you should be cleaning out the impeller and impeller housing compartment on regular basis. slime/debris will cover the magnet on the impeller and weaken the pull on the magnet. Also if debris is getting built up in the impeller housing compartment then it would also slow down flow of the canister. I'm anal about my canisters and go ahead and clean the impeller every time I clean out the canister, I think it is a good habit to do at least every other month. Obviously that is a relative time frame as some can go longer with out cleaning and some need to to do it more often.

And then in rare occasions it is possible for the magnet to just go bad. I had only 1 such return on Aquatop with over 100 units sold. Which is MUCH better then most canister brands. If you feel like you have cleaned it out properly and this might be the case then I would contact Aquatop. They have good customer service and should definitely help you out with a new unit.

Hope this helps!

Jakub


I haven't used a canister filter most of my fishkeeping years, really only the last three. Lately my 75g planted freshwater has had some serious excess detritus in spite of being pretty thoroughly understocked. I used to clean the filter out every month or two but now I'm starting a 2 week or so schedule because it is just CHOKED with mud/sludge whenever I open it. I use a gravel vac to skim stuff off the surface, but my water hasn't looked polished and sparkling in awhile.


Do canister filters become slower/fewer gallons-per-hour as they age? Or do I just need to dismantle every last pipe/hose and clean out more than the main compartment and sponges? I have an AquaTop CF400UV that's rated for 370gph, but I seriously doubt it's pulling that much water now. I'm thinking of adding a second canister because 1) I love overfiltering and 2) it could probably use more flow in general; there are still dead spots where detritus accumulates even with a powerhead.

Samong
05-09-2015, 03:17 PM
It's only 3 years old, exactly as long as we've lived in the current house. Love how quiet it is. I doubt I have cleaned out the filter properly regarding the impeller; I have been completely emptying the bucket portion but did not realize the impeller area itself needed to be cleaned. Oh well stupid mistakes teach stronger lessons. :P Are there photos anywhere showing how to take the impeller housing apart for cleaning? Hang-on-back filters are self explanatory, but I don't want to accidentally break something in the canister filter figuring it out cold turkey.

(I grew up on a plethora of small tanks with HOB filters, can ya tell?)

hsd
05-09-2015, 03:48 PM
Here you go video of your canister, showing impeller and all that, being opened up. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-HpHhTfRiE
Like axio mentioned, clean out any goop you see where the impeller goes. Also make sure the impeller itself isn't broken.

Samong
05-09-2015, 06:20 PM
Thank you guys SO much! I took the filter top off, found the impeller, and eeeeeeeeeeeeeeew. ew ew ew. Well it looked exactly what you think three years of not cleaning an impeller would look like. So that compartment has been rubbed/flushed out and I unpacked some of my fine floss to get more water movement, so I'll let it run 24 hours while stirring up the mess that clumps on my plants/decor and report back.

I have two female bettas, about five platies, three bristlenose plecos, and five 1.5 inch cories in this thing, so hopefully now the filter can cope. I'm also going to keep checking it more often and dumping the crud that collects; maybe with the impeller de-sludged the filter can catch up.

caricell
05-09-2015, 11:25 PM
I use the same canister filters (SunSun version) on my large tanks and find them to be the best canisters for the price on the market today. As Jakub said, when cleaning out the filter and replacing the media (I do it every 3 months), I always open the impeller compartment, remove and clean the impeller, and the housing. I've only replaced one impeller in a few years, and it was only because the impeller shaft rubber gasket got stuck in the well and broke the plastic shaft.

Keep these suckers clean, and you'll have them forever. And yes...quiet as heck!

Larry



Thank you guys SO much! I took the filter top off, found the impeller, and eeeeeeeeeeeeeeew. ew ew ew. Well it looked exactly what you think three years of not cleaning an impeller would look like. So that compartment has been rubbed/flushed out and I unpacked some of my fine floss to get more water movement, so I'll let it run 24 hours while stirring up the mess that clumps on my plants/decor and report back.

I have two female bettas, about five platies, three bristlenose plecos, and five 1.5 inch cories in this thing, so hopefully now the filter can cope. I'm also going to keep checking it more often and dumping the crud that collects; maybe with the impeller de-sludged the filter can catch up.

Samong
05-11-2015, 09:22 AM
Welp the water is cleaner than it's looked in ages; there's not nearly so much junk clinging to plant edges. There's still some finer material in the water, but I'm hoping some extra gravel vacs and emptying the canister more than usual will get the last of it. This Aquatop (or SunSun) filter was a big investment when I was a college student and other than my cleaning mistakes has been great. Quiet, thorough, and not such a scary financial commitment as Fluval or Hydor brands. It made wading into keeping a large tank much easier.