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FAQs about Wet-Dry, Trickle Filter Filter Material (Other than Bio-Balls)

Related Articles: Trickle Filters, pt. 1 By Bob Goemans, Physical Filtration, Denitrification/Denitrifiers, Nitrates and Marine Systems

Related FAQs: Wet Dries 1, Wet Dries 2, Wet-Dries 3, Wet Dries 4, Selection, Set-Up, Pumps, Plumbing Issues, Bio-Balls FAQs, Bio-Ball, Wet-Dry Media 2, Modification/Conversion, Operation/Maintenance/Repair... Biological Filtration, Biofiltration 2, Fluidized Beds, Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates, PhosphatesDenitrification/Denitrifiers,

Expensive, but highly effective sewage treatment ring media comes in a variety of sizes, models.

Bio-balls and live rock   1/23/12
Hello Bob-
I am the guy who has the tank that was running dangerously high because the overflow was undersized.  I have re-plumbed with a double overflow box which I think will work much better. 
<Ah good. After all these years, I still have occasional dreams/nightmares of water running on the floor!>
In the process I added true unions and a valve on the output side of the submersible pump.
<Very good>
 Much better I think.  I have not restarted the sump because I am waiting on live rock.
<Oh, I would re-start it>
(Difficult to get livestock to Nebraska in winter!)  I have read numerous times on WWM that bio-balls in a trickle filter cause excess nitrates and live rock is better. 
<It is indeed>
What I am not clear on is if I just replace the balls with live rock frags and let the water trickle over the LR or does it need to be submerged constantly? 
<It does not. Late last year I was out in Fiji for a couple months helping put up a new collecting station w/ friends, and we placed a few thousand pounds of such wild-collected rock in bio-filters that had water just sprayed onto them (trickling, draining out the bottom of containers) into a recirculating sump>
There is a piece of egg crate that sits on a shelf about two inches above the floor of the sump.  This is where the bio-balls were.  The water from the overflow falls on a diffuser pad with a filter pad beneath and then trickles down.  There is only one baffle in my Amiracle sump with  a gap of about  1 and 1/2 inches from the floor of the sump to the bottom edge of the baffle.  So water flows fairly freely from upstream to downstream side, although it does back up into the upstream chamber depending on the water level in the sump.  Should I add a second baffle downstream that is flush with the floor and maybe eight inches tall (1/2 the total height of sump) to hold the water back on the LR better?
<I would not myself>
 My second question has to do with potential cycling of the LR.  My LFS guy says that this LR is cured so I can use it immediately with no ill effects.
<In a perfect world... I encourage you (in place if the flow between the sump and main tank are turned off) to re-cure, isolate the new LR, check it for undesirable critters, a few weeks ahead of comingling>
 Does that sound OK as I have livestock already in the tank which is currently running on a hang-on filter and two powerheads since the sump is shut down.  I would hate to put the live rock in the tank and sump and have it affect the livestock negatively.
<I understand, and agree>
 I guess I should mention that the tank is 46G bow front with 50  pounds of LR already and about 2 inches of aragonite and LS bed.  As always, thanks so much for your much appreciated wisdom.
Lance in Nebraska
<Glad to share. BobF in overcast S. Cal.>

Bio Balls or ceramic rings, 3/14/11
Good morning team
Hope all had a great weekend.
<Yes thanks.>
I am considering adding additional material such as Bio balls or ceramic rings to increase the amount of beneficial bacteria in my tanks.
Firstly is this a good idea?
<It has it's pluses and minuses. Are you having an issue with ammonia/nitrite now? If not the addition of bioballs is not going to change much as the bacterial growth is limited to it's food supply. See here for more.
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/volume_3/cav3i6/trickle_filters.htm .>
What would you recommend Bio Balls or ceramic rings?
Many thanks in advance.
Re: Bio Balls or ceramic rings, FW  3/14/11

Hi Chris
Many thanks for your reply.
One of my tanks (AquaTropic 80 (110L) planted tank ) with 3 neon tetras and 2 male Colisa labiosa, 4 of the male guppies and 5 male Pseudomugil furcatus has a nitrate spike since yesterday(even thought it is nearly 12 months old) 0.3 have been doing 2/3 water changes a day to keep it below 0.1.
<Nitrate? This is generally the end product of the nitrogen cycle in FW tanks, and anything below 20 ppm is generally considered ok, and that is from the marine side, freshwater fish are generally even more forgiving.
Nitrates are removed by water changes, no bacterial process will reduce it further with a few exceptions like a deep sand bed or commercial denitrator. Now if we are talking nitrite, then you have a problem and may benefit from more filter media for the desired bacteria to colonize.>
Thought adding additional ceramic or bio ball in a bag at the back of the tank might help to keep it stable.
<Will if nitrite is an issue, but not for nitrate.>
Many thanks again.
Re: Bio Balls or ceramic rings, 3/14/11
Hi Chris
I meant Nitrite not Nitrate.
Thanks for your help.
<Then I would go with some added filter material, can't hurt.>

Removal of a Tidepool II Bio-Wheel!! 3/7/08 Good Day Gentlemen, <And ladies, hello Heath.> I have a few questions for you concerning a Bio-Wheel out of a Tidepool II sump if I may. <Sure.> I have read on your site and have gathered that this Bio-Wheel could contain nitrates, or nitrate causing waste. <The problem is detritus accumulation that would otherwise be exported out of your system, not that big an issue with the Bio-Wheels compared to bioballs.> My first question is how much could it actually harm if it were a two year old system?? The reason that I ask this is because my nitrates are around 40 right now. <Yes, high.> I performed a 20% water change and it lowered the nitrates to around 30 for about 2-3 days, next thing I know, back at 40.? Obviously something is causing it. <This fast a rise is likely due to feeding or stocking levels.> Everything that could cause nitrates in the sump has been removed (blue-bonded pads, filter socks, old reactor media, etc.). The tank was recently moved (4 months ago) to my new home, so everything behind the rockwork was cleaned out as well. The only thing I could guess at is the Bio-Wheel, and if you guys will, please tell me if it could be the problem. <Not this much, this fast. Take a look at your substrate and circulation, these are much more likely to be the culprits. The mechanical media mentioned above does have the benefit of exporting the detritus, if cleaned frequently.> Here are the rest of the stats before I ask my other questions: 95g 125 lbs of LR Tidepool II sump Aqua C EV-120 skimmer PhosBan Reactor w/Pura phosphate media 9 watt UV Sterilizer (don't know if this matters) 3/4" - 1" sand bed 1 ocellaris clown, 1 medium fairy wrasse, 2 PJ Cardinals, and 1 cleaner shrimp + various snails and crabs (small stock list for this size?) 1 bubble tip anemone and various small mushrooms. Temp at 78 F,? ph 8.0 (a little low), SG 1.023, <Low also, shoot for 1.025-1.026.> nitrates @ 40 I ran out of calcium and alkalinity test liquid...sorry for the incomplete info! <No problem, not important regarding nitrate.> I have 20lbs of additional cured rock (Marco rock if you've heard of it, it's completely bleached out? and dry) that just finished curing a week ago, even though it's having a diatom bloom right now, could I add it and curve any problems that the removed bio wheel could cause? <No, dry rock is not live rock, it will take time to populate and become some semblance of live rock. With the amount of additional live rock you will be fine removing the Bio-Wheel.> Third, what potential problems could I encounter from the removal of the Bio-Wheel and how do I prevent them? Fourth, how would you recommend removing the Bio-Wheel and what would you do to prevent any problems? <You should have no problems simply removing it, I would simply take it out.> I appreciate your patience with me and any advice that you may have for me. Unlike Bio-Balls, it's all or nothing with this wheel, and I would rather err to the side of caution in removing it. Thank You Again, Heath <Welcome, thank you for writing. All will be fine with the live rock to take over. Scott V.>

To denitrify or not!   1/16/07 Crew,     Happy New Year to all.  Have a question that I have been pondering for a while now.  The question is  regarding the last phase of the nitrogen cycle and what appears to be a fairly simple solution for mitigating high levels of nitrates in Wet Dry filters. <Okay>    The Bio Rocker Wet Dry filters have a "BioSlab denitrifying block", <Ah, yes... the old ceramic porous material...> which because the block is fully submerged in the sump, and I assume is anaerobic, supposedly converts Nitrate to Nitrogen gas and Oxygen. <Mmm, aerobic, hypoxic to no oxygen internally>     If this indeed is effective, why isn't the answer for reducing Nitrates in aquaria utilizing Wet Dry Filtration, simply to completely submerge biomedia or Live Rock in the Wet Dry to create this anaerobic zone? <Mmm, the various materials employed are almost entirely two-dimensional... one could use various ceramic (e.g. Bio-mech), glass beads (e.g. Siporax)... other choices like LR...>     What am I missing? Either this process is effective or the Bio Rocker concept is snake oil?  Any ideas     Thanks     Roy <Mmm, not snake oil... just one of the "Roads leading to Rome". Understanzee? BobF>

Re: To denitrify or not! Mention of "the way"    1/17/06 Bob, Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. Based on your response, my question then really is ... Why hasn't this become the "Tao" of marine and reef fish keeping?  No one would ever experience a Nitrate problem! Thanks Again Roy <Gots me... folks would be able to keep their systems "wu wei" if they studied, thought about what they were doing, eh? BobF> Wet dry filter pads  - 03/22/06 Hi James  <Hello Matthew.>  Do you guys encourage the use of filter mats in a trickle filter system?  I'm planning on turfing mine and all they seem to do is block the water flow.  <Personally I think they are a great tool for removing detritus providing they are changed on a weekly basis.  If they are blocking the flow, they either need changing, the mat is too dense, or your pump is too large for the wet/dry in question.  James (Salty Dog)>

Looking for filter socks  9/18/06 When my new aquarium was set up, they used a large filter sock, about 12 by 18 with a compressible rubber ring and some kind of net reinforced felt material. really nice and works well.  Problem is the aquarium company changed hands and no one knows where the filter came from and no one can find a replacement on line.  Can you give me any leads?  Thanks.  Eric F. <Oh yes... the best... Emperor Aquatics: http://www.emperoraquatics.com/ Bob Fenner>

Re: filtration on saltwater and plant tanks Thanks for the quick reply!<You're welcome> In regards to the Zoo Med Powersweeps- if they stop rotating won't they still serve their purpose or will I be better off replacing them with a couple more Maxi-Jets or something different? <They will still pump water but in short time they won't rotate.> Also wondering if it is possible to replace the media in the Eheim wet dry filter as it is filled in the Eheim pro with the addition of the pads and have it work like the pro ( according to the manual you can only use Ehfisubstrat for the wet/dry to function). Probably a stupid question- sorry <No stupid questions, just stupid answers. I don't know that I quite follow you.  You want to replace the Ehfisubstrat with something else?  The Eheim wet/dry will not function as a power filter as such although any media (carbon, etc) will still be useful in that regard, its just that you won't get constant water flow through it as I understand the Eheim wet/dries pulsate up and back.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks again, Karen

Sumps, Wet-Dries Hi Bob Thanks for your advice re below.  I have read the bio-ball FAQs and am a bit confused? <Okay> 1) If I take the bio-balls out then what is the point of having a sump? Is it just to remove the ugly site of skimmer and heater? Could I have then just purchased an external canister filter and put in some filter floss, noodles and activated carbon? <Mmmm, all you list is of value, plus added volume, aeration, another isolated spot to separate livestock... Canister filters not nearly as valuable> 2) If I slowly take out the bio-balls and then add some live rock and increase the volume of water - I could probably submerge a few pounds of LR. Can I mix both bio-balls and live rock during a transition period? <Yes> Wouldn't I get a massive build up of detritus in the bottom compartment where the heater is sitting? <Mmm, not really, and not a real issue/problem... some of this mulm, which is mainly beneficial, can be siphoned out every few months> 3) Is there a point in having a spray bar any more? What should I do to now to replace this? I guess it could also have the added benefit of reducing noise? <Drip trays are far better than spray bars... don't clog, restrict flow, and never break down> Thanks Simon <Bob Fenner> 

Playing In The Tidepool! Howdy gang! <Hey there! Scott F. with you today> Discovered WWM.COM a few days after setting up a 70 gal marine tank,  (what luck!),  I got a Marineland Tidepool 1, receiving a Mag-drive 950, as soon as it shows up, to replace the Rio 2100, for water return thru 1/2 " ID check valve & ball valve. Water is input to the Tidepool 1 bio-wheel thru the SOS overflow. Question, what media do y'all recommend for the three media trays? I am now using the following; first (top) tray has Matrix media (SeaChem) with blue bonded filter pad on top, 2nd tray (middle) has a product called "aqua chargers" made of a "bio-flex" polymer that's self cleaning"?", pre-colonized with a high density nitrifying bacteria blend with a blue bonded pad on top, & the last (bottom) tray has blue pad with a layer of activated carbon topped of with another blue bonded pad. <Ya know what, Scott? I'd keep things really, really simple, and not even use the BioWheel assembly. Basically, let the tidepool become your water processing center for your system. Live rock and sand in your tank will become your filter. The sump will handle the water inflow, and contain your heater, protein skimmer and a bag or two of activated carbon. That's it...easy! The beauty of the Tidepool, or any sump, for that matter, is the flexibility that it offers the aquarist. As far as the media trays...I'd only use one of them-and use the blue bonded pads for removal of gross particulate matter...and change them a few times a week so they don't become nutrient traps. I am not a big fan of plastic filter media in sump systems...keep it simple and natural...IMO> The tank was set up on 12-14 & has started to cycle with two damsels. After spending a few days studying this site, I ordered a Remora Pro skimmer to help with the live rock I am going to/should have already, put in the tank. The main concern is the aqua charger (bio-ball like) media, what is the opinion of the staff on what to replace this type of media with? <As above. The bacteria contained on these media are/will be/have been colonizing your system, so I don't see a huge advantage in using these types of "precolonized" media. BTW, the Aqua C Remora is one of the best HOT skimmers on the market, and was a nice choice.  However, if possible, you may want to see if you could exchange it for an Aqua C Urchin Pro, which is an "in-sump" model, you could really take advantage of the sump, IMO> This web site is definitely worth its weight in live rock (gold) when it comes to information! Thanks ever so much! Scott <Good luck with your new set up! Keep studying and learning-sounds like a neat system you have planned! You'll be fine! Feel free to write us any time! Regards, Scott F>

Clogged wet/dry sponge Hi, I have a 100 gallon Uniquarium that was in my office for 5 years and serviced by a local shop.  I have recently shut down the office and brought the tank home.  After a few weeks of having the same shop service it, I began to care for it myself as they were charging me an arm and a leg due to my home being a bit far away for them.  Recently, the tank has much more water in it than it should and it seems that the chamber with the bio balls is a little low.  Additionally, the chamber to the far left is full to overflowing. <hmm.. maybe a sponge is clogged. I would purchase a new sponge or just clean out the old one. also the tubing could be clogged> I don't know EXACTLY how the water flows through this system, but I suspect that there is a clog between the left most chamber and the one directly adjacent to it.<yes, I believe it may be the sponge.>  Can you clear this mystery up for me?<just replace or clean out the sponge> Thanks Adam Anthony<Your welcome, IanB>

Live Rock and wet-dry filter media Bob: I've got a pretty heavily stocked, fish-only 75 gallon system, running on a DIY wet-dry filter and an Aqua C EV-90 skimmer. I recently purchased a 44 lb. box of Fiji live rock, and it's now being cured in its own tank. It will be quite awhile before I have the chance to buy much more live rock, and 44 lbs won't itself be enough for filtration purposes in my system. On the other hand, the bio-balls are a major nitrate factory, so I'd like to take out as many of them as possible. QUESTION: When I add the 44 lbs. of live rock, how much of the wet-dry filter media can I safely remove? Does about half sound right? Thanks. jwl  >> Wait till no ammonia, nitrite are showing in your tests... then you can start to remove the wet-dry media... about a half every couple of weeks maximum... IMO Bob Fenner

Wet/dry media, skimmer placement in relation to media Hi Bob. I hoped to get your opinion on a couple of items. If a person was to use a w/d trickle filter on a high bio-load saltwater setup, do you see any advantages to using either the colorful plastic bio-media that comes in most filters, or in using DLS media? <Yes, some, absolutely, given enough circumstance for thwarting the over-driven effects of nitrification... i.e. anaerobic/hypoxic denitrification in the way of a deep sand bed area, plenum set-up, purposeful/functional denitrification rig, sufficient macro-algae/photosynthate mass...> It seems to me that the DLS would have greater surface area per volume (I could be wrong).  <At some point, times in its use... but this "Double Layer Spiral" (DLS) mix of netting, batting (polyester) turns into a bunch of "wet toilet wad" over its cycle time (when installed till replaced/serviced)... all in all plastic biomedia (mock-ups and downs to Pall Rings of sewage treatment technology) are more consistent in their functionality> Also, I notice that when DLS is used, you get a proliferation of little shrimp and what-nots living in the media.  <A very good benefit, but what happens when you move, switch out the DLS? Better to skip both these materials and move ahead to live rock and macro-algae lit-sump technology... perhaps with some core/Siporax/EHFI-mech media, with polyester/Dacron ahead of it in a sheet to remove particulates...> I would think that this would benefit the health of system at least by providing a kind of "refugium" that is providing natural food to the aquarium, and that there could be other possible beneficial effects of this little ecosystem in the bio-media. (?) Also, I know that it would be ideal to place the fractionator "upstream" from the bio-media, but its not near as easy to setup that way. Most manufactured products wont work that way, and even DIY isn't that easy to do from my experience. My question is; how dramatic is the decrease in the effectiveness of the fractionator if it does end up having to be downstream of the bio-media? <In my experience, all "things" else being equal (impossible), not much...> Or is it that big of a deal at all? <Ah, wish I had said, written that. In most all cases, "no big deal". Now I have... partial credit?> Thanks. Dan <You're welcome. Bob Fenner, www.wetwebmedia.com>

Wet/Dry Filter Question Hello, I have set up my 90 gallon tank and getting ready to add live rock to start cycling process. When the water comes into the overflow box down to my filter, should I put a blue pad on the shelf before the water hits the bio balls, or would my beneficial bacteria simply grow on the blue pad. <Good question, and a good idea to place a pad of Dacron/polyester foam as you suggest.> I have it there now, but I wanted to double check before I add my rock. I was told I needed to add a blue pad to my filter. What do you think? <The "blue" is just an add-on to "batting material", Dacron polyester... if you find yourself using a bunch of this look into buying it "in bulk" at a yardage store... same stuff. Bob Fenner> Thanks again!!! Regards, Fred

Re: nitrates high! Dear Bob, OK now I'm REALLY confused. I quote you from the site you referred us to: "by using a typical wet-dry you will find a surplus of nitrates produced... and need to find ways to rid the system of the same... Instead, more "balanced" filtration approaches like using live rock, macroalgae, a mud sump... won't." Where do you describe the "mud sump"?  <Oh... let's see... do need to write a complete "piece" about these... How about here: http://WetWebMedia.com/mudfiltrfaqs.htm Please read through these FAQs and use the Google search feature on our site (WetWebMedia) with the words "mud", "sump", refugium, Leng Sy...> Isn't our crushed coral what they call a deep sand bed that has denitrifying bacteria? <If deep enough, not too-circulated, depending on grade, composition...> Would rustling through it disrupt this even if there is detritus in it? <Yes, to some degree> Everything I read said the trickle, while expensive, was the safest way to go (aside from a totally LR system).  <The "safest" way to go about what? Live aquatic closed-system filtration? Depends on many qualifying criteria, but not the "safest".> If we remove the Biobale, how will the ammonia be broken down?  <By nitrifiers elsewhere in the system... once going (cycled) there are plenty> How will LR do anything different from the Biobale? What's the best course to transition? <All this posted on our site... Please read: http://WetWebMedia.com/liverock1.htm  and beyond in the "Curing LR" FAQs sections> Last night, we vacuumed out a huge amount of black gunk under the Biobale. Hopefully we did not kill any helpful bacteria (or that gunk wasn't anaerobic bacteria). Nitrates are still sky high. I'm reluctant to change much more water since it's now approaching 50% in 3 days. <Not clear to me here... what is approaching fifty percent?> If we go out and buy lots of cured LR, won't a lot of that die in the transition and make matters worse? <Some die off, but likely no problem.> Then, we REALLY need a protein skimmer, right? Even, then, isn't that too traumatic? <Do you not have a skimmer currently? You very likely would/will benefit from ones use> In answer to your light question, our light is 4x20 watts (2 actinic, 2 full spectrum). Can LR survive OK on that? <Yes> We planned to be fish only (except our hermit and cleaner shrimp). It gets hot and we did not want to go metal halide/chiller. <Do try at least "some" live rock... you will not be disappointed I assure you> I can't seem to find a place that sells macroalgae. Where do you get that stuff. I've been hearing about some Caulerpa ban??? Regardless, I'm sure our little tang would love to snack on it. <Do check with the etailers posted on the WWM Links Pages> You just can't win. Sorry to always be so discouraged. Even if our system crashes, it has be 8 months of happiness (in between the crises). Thanks, Allyson <Ah my friend. You are on the brink of clarity. Do keep your eyes on the prize and study. Bob Fenner>

Running Wet/Dry Filtration along with Live rocks Hello Bob. <Hi there> I am new in setting up a salt water system. I am still in process of cycling my tank. I have a 75 Gallon (Jebo) tank, 150 lbs of Hapai, Tonga and Fuji live rocks. 40 lbs of live sands. I have AquaC-EV120 Skimmer under the stand and another simple one (Kaco) on the top. Water comes down the over flow channel inside the tank to a good size Wet/Dry unit, then through AquaC skimmer and pumped back to the tank. After 5 weeks, Ammonia is zero, Nitrite is at 5.0, Nitrate at 10 and PH at 8.2. My question is: what are the good or bad things about combination of Live rocks & Sand with Wet/Dry filtration system? <Mmm, none really... given there is some sort of "balance" between the aerobic and anaerobic driving/capacity of each> I plan to have fish and corals in my tank in near future. Current lighting is 220W. Do I have to increase wattage for corals? <Not necessarily... depends on the type of "corals" in question, the type of lighting "watts" you're referring to.  You would do well to "spend" some time and money buying and reading over Eric Borneman's and/or Anthony Calfo's books on Aquarium Coral husbandry ahead of investing in livestock or other mechanicals. These works can be searched through the e-tailers listed on our links pages on WetWebMedia.com Bob Fenner> Thanks in advance. -Albert

Wet-Dry Filter Hello Anthony! <greetings, Thanassis> I finally bought the wet-dry filter we have been discussing about. It is an EHEIM 2229 Wet-dry (circulation cap. 550 L/hour). This filter is proposed for larger aquariums (mine is only 200 lit) , but I thought that it would be nice to have this big size in case I upgrade to bigger tank in the future.  <very wise> On the other hand I have been told that it would be better to have it half-filled with filter media , since my present aquarium is much smaller than the capacity of this filter, otherwise it would built a too big number of bacteria colonies,  <not true... bacterial colonies only grow in size to the load put upon them> which would mean a "too much of biological action" in my aquarium and which is supposed to be bad for the water. I do not know if this can be correct. <not correct... I'd play it safe and fill it with media... better water flow through media that way too> I installed the filter and it is running properly. I filled all three canisters with sintered glass (EHFI Substrat) , which is recommended by EHEIM, but I filled just the half of each canister for the above reason.  <a very coarse foam block stuck onto the intake strainer (inside the tank) as a bulk prefilter often extends the life and cleanings of the media inside such external filters> I am running at the same time the already existing external filter , an EHEIM 2224, where I have the bioballs and Substrat and which has proved to be insufficient for my system, "modest" as you wrote, and may be the reason of often illnesses of my fishes. My dealer told me it would be better to run both filters at the same time forever, but what I am thinking is to run them both for two months and afterwards take out the material of the 2224 and put it in the wet-dry filter (both bioballs and Substrat). What would you advise? <the wet/dry filter is a better environment for biological media...agreed> Best regards, Thanassis <kindly, Anthony>

Wet-Dry filter & Oodinium!!!! Hello Anthony! <Cheers, again, Thanassis> "a very coarse foam block stuck onto the intake strainer (inside the tank) as a bulk prefilter often extends the life and cleanings of the media inside such external filters" Yes, this is exactly what EHEIM also recommends and is included in the package of the Wet-dry filter (I have it on already). They recommend to keep it on for 6 weeks and then take it out. I consider of cleaning it and put it back. <yes, agreed... I like to rinse and reuse it constantly> Well, whenever I realized that my fishes started to have Oodinium (especially the Blue Tang) I immediately treated it with OODINEX, an ESHA product, which is a light medication (can be used also to invertebrates) and the signs of the illness went away on the third day of the treatment. This time this is not the case. After a 4-day treatment with OODINEX the spots did not disappear, but on the contrary I realized today (it is the 4th day) that they have become more. I have a copper-based medication in my stock (the CUPRAZIN from Waterlife), <Actually... I do not feel that copper if effective at all on Amyloodinium (velvet). The parasite buries into the fish too deep to be killed by copper before the fish does! Formalin based products have been shown to be effective as well as consecutive daily dips (5-8).> afraid of a serous problem if I put CUPRAZIN inside it. but I afraid to use it, since OODINEX is still in my system. <Polyfilters will clear this promptly when that is the only concern> On the other hand I feel that I have no time to take the OODINEX out with my skimmer or carbon, because this would take at least two days, and it would be too late for my fishes.  <Overnight with the Polyfilters> I am thinking of taking the risk and put tomorrow morning CUPRAZIN, because otherwise I could lose my fishes.  <still... I don't think this will be very effective... better off to do aggressive freshwater dips> In the instructions of OODINEX it is only mentioned that it should not be used at the same time with any other treatment, but there is no indication for waiting two or more days in order to make another treatment. <indeed...most medications do not stay in solution for even a few days> Do you have any experience with the above medicines? What should I do? Perhaps by the time I receive your answer I may have already taken some action on this (now it is 02.32 a.m.), but still I would like to have your advice. Thanks and best regards, Thanassis <best regards, Anthony... PS. I recently sold one of my books through Amazon.com to an aquarist in Cyprus. Is that close to you?>

Wet/Dry Prefilter I just added a Rio 2500 & an inline chiller to my 125 gallon FO tank that already has a Rio 4100 pushing the circulation. Here's my problem, the wet/dry can't handle the water returning through the two returns & starts to overflow above the filter floss. As a partial fix I replaced the old floss (that was used for about 2 months) <Way too long to go without replacing. I replace all prefilters at least monthly, if not every other week.> & the water is flowing fine. I am considering drilling about twice the number of holes in the lid just below the filter floss to allow for a higher flow rate inside the wet/dry. What's your take on this? <If you keep your prefilter cleaned, you will probably need to take no further action. -Steven Pro>

Wet/Dry Media I was looking at using shotgun wadding, the plastic, (non-biodegradable, clear) kind. <I have never done any reloading myself, so I don't know what this stuff is/cannot recommend it.> Someone also suggested the plastic scouring pads made by 3M. <I have seen these used in pond filters. They will work, but not the best. They will trap debris and probably channel the water too much.> I was in Home Depot last night and saw a plastic filter media used for filtering in air conditioning systems. It comes in sizes up to 36". Have you seen this material and what do you think of using it in a wet/dry? <I have seen and used various HVAC products for prefilters to W/D's, but not for the media itself. Again, they tend to trap too much particulate matter.> Thanks, Skipper30217. <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Rinsing Wet/Dry Media Hello again fellows, I read yesterday on the Daily FAQ that someone was being advised against rinsing their filter media with fresh water, as it kills all of the microbes. I rinse my media from the wet/dry trickle filter in fresh water. Is this wrong? <Yes> If so, what should I rinse it in? I don't have another tank set up, but I could use the water from my water changes. <The water change water will work fine, but far easier/better to prefilter the media well and not need to rinse at all.> Also, does dried seaweed, like Seaweed Selects pollute the tank just as any other food? <Yes, if it goes uneaten and allowed to decay.> Thanks as always! John <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Re: Rinsing Wet/Dry Media Thank you Steven. Just a clarification. In my wet/dry I have four trays. Top is a white poly filter, second is a blue colored fine filter with about 3/4" carbon, the third is the another blue filter with a carbon filter pad, and the last has nothing in it at all. <Ok, not at all what I had in mind. I thought you were talking about rinsing bioballs or other similar media. This seems to be more of a mechanical/chemical filter.> I never rinse the carbon with freshwater, only the filter pads, and foam prefilter on the overflow. Is this what you mean by pre-filtering the media? <It is fine to wash the prefilters because you do not wish to encourage bacteria to live there. These trays are more for mechanical filtration, fine water polishing. In fact, the more you rinse these, the better. Daily would be great.> Thanks for the clarification, John <I hope I understood what you have this time around and that my advise is applicable. -Steven Pro>

Re: Wet dry filter (as) with sump Hello, <<and hello to you,>> I am taking your suggestions and using a 24x10x18 sump instead of a wet dry filter. <<ok>> I am going to add live rock, but should I also add live sand? <<Your choice, if you run without, it would be much easier to vacuum out accumulated detritus.>> With the live rock in the tank do I need to feed that sump any or just have lights? <<Some people just leave out the prefilters, and that would 'feed' the sump. Also your call on the lights. If you leave them out, the sump and live rock will grow more cryptic items, not always seen - would be interesting.>> If you suggest to add live sand, should I put sand sifters (Nassarius snails, etc) in the tank and again should I feed it? <<If you decide to run sand in the sump then by all means, some Nassarius snails would work well.>> Thanks,
<<Cheers, J -- >>

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