Opinions on amount of filtration required

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Opinions on amount of filtration required

Post by GoodToGo on Fri Sep 14, 2012 8:41 am

I have a 46 gallon mixed reef which is 3 months old. Currently has 3 green chromis, cleaner shrimp, 3 dwarf hermits, a half dozen snails of various types, and a variety of soft, lps, and sps. Probably 40 lbs of live rock. Eventually a firefish, a midas blenny, and possibly one other fish will be added. I am planning on adding a porcelain crab today.

I am running 3 filters.
1. Remora protein skimmer
2. Filstar XP2 canister filter with carbon, biomax ceramics, and filter sponges.
3. Biosystems 35 HOF with sponge, carbon, and floss

I am running this setup because this is what the tank came with when I bought it used. Is this too much filtration? I want to be able to support filter feeders, does this remove my plankton? Also the HOF is a little noisy, I wouldn't mind removing it.

Opinions? The more the better? Or too much, resulting in the loss of filter food?

Thanks, Paul

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Re: Opinions on amount of filtration required

Post by cdness on Fri Sep 14, 2012 1:35 pm

Keep the skimmer...

Run the Canister filter with the carbon and bio-media only

Take the HOF off the tank as it isn't needed with live rock.

I am assuming your tank is sumpless due to the HOF and Canister.

Honestly you could go down to just the skimmer if you wanted to. The canister filters become nitrate factories if not maintained correctly, but they are a good spot to run some carbon or GFO...

With the use of live rock your main filtration cycle from Ammonia to Nitrate is handled within the rock using bacteria. The skimmer will help remove the organics as well. It wouldn't hurt to add some more live rock (slowly) to the tank as the general rule is 1 - 1.5 pounds live rock per gallon of saltwater. With the addition of more live rock you could end up running easily with no canister or HOF.
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Re: Opinions on amount of filtration required

Post by blennieluvr on Fri Sep 14, 2012 3:05 pm

Are you having any algae growth now?

I don't know what the biosystems thing is and I do not have experience with the other two pieces of equipment so this may not be terribly helpful. There really isn't a right or wrong and you will likely get several different answers. Personally, I would just use the skimmer and scrap the rest. With what you're keeping, I think that will be enough along with weekly water changes. Possibly keep the other equipment if it adds more flow to the tank but a powerhead will do the same thing and you can move it where you want. Maybe keep the filter in case you want to run carbon, etc. one day like CD mentioned but I don't think it needs to run now or all the time...just if needed. You may want to upgrade skimmers down the road? Does anyone know about the remora skimmer from experience?

Best case scenario IMO, drill the tank and put a sump under it with an in-sump skimmer. You can also throw some cheato and rubble rock in the sump for added biofiltration.

On a side note, take it easy adding fish. Go slow and be picky...less fish is better as they're the ones that poop the most. Shocked Inverts can be just as interesting and add a smaller bioload. Your tank is pretty new at 3 months old unless you bought it already established. I'd even say wait another 3 months before you add a fish or for sure that many more fish.

Good luck and post often! Smile I look forward to hearing what other people have to say.

P.S. Is HOF hang on front? If so, I'd get tired of that pretty quick!
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Re: Opinions on amount of filtration required

Post by GoodToGo on Fri Sep 14, 2012 6:20 pm

Thanks for the replies, they reinforced what I was thinking so they must be right! I'm going to remove the HOF (Hang On Filter) and the foam pads from the cartridge filter. I'm going to keep running the cartridge filter with carbon and media, at least until the tank is more mature. Belt and suspenders, for now.

Thanks, Paul

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