The longest running Amphibian Community on the Internet.

Tags Register FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Caudata.org Store


Initial setup/capacity questions

This is a discussion on Initial setup/capacity questions within the Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate forums, part of the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) category; Hi, I've been bitten by the axolotl bug, and have spent the last several weeks reading the forums, axolotl.org, and ...

Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate Discussions on tanks, temperature, filters, gravel, lights etc.

Reply

 

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 5th July 2014   #1 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Nationality:
Posts: 89
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: Xtophr has shown reliable knowledge
Question Initial setup/capacity questions

Hi,

I've been bitten by the axolotl bug, and have spent the last several weeks reading the forums, axolotl.org, and other sites for information, and have some additional questions on setup/sizing that I don't immediately see addressed elsewhere.

In my household, a chiller is required; I've tried to keep temps low practicing with a 10 gallon tank using an air pump and fans, but can't manage to keep the water under 72 F consistently. I was planning on using a box filter with carbon, substrat or biomax, floss, and an air pump, but since a chiller needs a) something to pump water into it, and b) that water needs to be filtered, the options (I think) are:

* A sponge filter, connected to a pump, going to a chiller
* A canister filter going to the chiller
* A sponge filter before the canister filter leading to the chiller. The added sponge to increase the area for bio filtration, cut down on the water current, keep redundancy of bio-filtration if the canister fails (by using an air pump), and possibly easier cleaning (less frequent maintenance of the canister)? Plus, I'm already fishless cycling a ATI Hydro Sponge III in a 10 gallon tank...

The chiller I was looking at, an Aqua Euro USA Max Chill 1/13 HP, is rated for up to 50 US gallons, and apparently "ideal" for 40. The specs in the manual online state a recommended flow rate of 50-260 GPH.

A 40 US Gal breeder tank is 36"x18"x17", a 30 Gal breeder tank is 5 inches "less tall", but has the same "base" size. Would either of these be sufficient to house three adults eventually, as height isn't as important as the floor size? Would it be better to go with a 33 Gal Long (48"x13"x14") or a 40 Gal Long (48"x13"x17") in order to give a larger possible maximum distance apart, or is the added horizontal depth of the breeder tanks more "comfortable" for them, versus being sandwiched between two pieces of glass only a foot apart? Or does it not matter either way regarding longer vs deeper base? Hoods for the breeder tanks seem harder to find, and eventually I'd like to go with a low-light LED setup for a few plants that survive in the dimmer/cooler axolotl environment.

Is the recommended filter flow rate for axolotls 4 times the tank volume per hour? How much would the flow of a canister filter be reduced by the addition of a sponge pre filter and a post-chiller? I'm leaning towards an Eheim classic canister filter, and am planning to base the model on the needed flow rate. I had initially looked at the Fluvals, but reviews seem to indicate they have leakage issues when they lose power. Any recommendations on canister filters?

Thanks



Xtophr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th July 2014   #2 (permalink)
Banned
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 285
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 1
Rep: Jonjey has a given some bad advice or info, or has behaved inappropriately
Default Re: Initial setup/capacity questions

Hi there, I don't know much about chillers as I've never owned one but I do have some notes that might help.
The typical formula for an aquarium canister filter for optimum is that the gph should be 10x your gallons. So a 40 gallon tank would do well with a 400+ gph filter. However, in a lot of store brand canisters they will rate high for their gph, so a 300 gph canister will say it's good for up to 75 gallons. Why does this happen? I'm not sure. Are they really good for up to 75 gallons? Again, not really sure.
As for the sponge filter, most sponge filters work from an air pump. I've never seen one that attaches to a canister filter's intake or anything like that. I would say the best bet would be to simply keep the sponge filter operating with the air pump the way it's designed for and have that on the opposite side of the tank as your output from your canister filter. This will filter water that is opposite of the filtered water coming from your output, to create an overall cleaner aquarium.
And I'm not sure if chillers attach inline with a canister filter, I was always under the assumption that they worked just the same as a canister filter (pulling water in and pushing it back out on their own) but I could be wrong. If they need to be hooked to a canister filter out-line then the flow rate wouldn't be effected very much I don't think.

And as for the 30 gallon vs 40 gallon breeder question. A 30 gallon breeder can hold 3 adults, a 40 can hold 4. The difference isn't much a question of floor space but more of volume. The higher volume of water in the tank the better that water can handle a higher bio-load. Meaning that more water allows for more fish/axolotls etc.



Jonjey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th July 2014   #3 (permalink)
Prolific Member
 
Boomsloth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Nationality:
Location: [ Members Only ]
Posts: 903
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: Boomsloth has given good advice and informationBoomsloth has given good advice and informationBoomsloth has given good advice and information
Default

As said above the larger water volume of the 40 would be ideal and easier for keeping the water in check. As for the chiller, yes they do need to be hooked up either with a pump or canister filter. Honestly I would use a canister and attach a sponge prefilter to the intake. Like you said it will prevent axolotl gunk from building up in the filter and keep the filter maintenance very minimal. You should then use a spray bar placed on the opposite end of the tank. Axolotls don't require air pumps or fancy filters. The prefilter sponge will hold a good majority of the biofiltration but I'd avoid getting something like carbon for the filter. You can use any type of ceramic or bioballs. Purigen is a relatively new product that makes the water crystal clear. This doesn't mean you won't have to spot clean when needed.
As long as the axolotl can turn around comfortably you can create more vertical space for them to hang out. You don't need to skimp on the lighting either and try looking into floating plants. They will create shade and absorb nitrates.
I recommend the eheim classic. A little pricey but a powerhouse that never breaks down.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



Boomsloth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th July 2014   #4 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Nationality:
Posts: 89
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: Xtophr has shown reliable knowledge
Question Re: Initial setup/capacity questions

Here's where I saw the 4X tank volume hourly filter rate:

http://www.caudata.org/forum/f46-beg...tml#post411153

And also, for generic tanks (not axolotl specific):

Choosing the Proper Flow Rate for Your Aquarium

which seems to indicate that more than 4X is too fast for good use of the biological filtration media, and that less than 1X would be too slow.

Looking online, specifications for canister filters seem to quote flow rates from 3X to 5X the capacity of the tank.

It sounds like the amount of biological filtration provided would be more important than flow rate; space for enough good bacteria, and some reasonable flow rate to get the ammonia to it, without disturbing the axolotls.

Since the Eheim Classics don't seem to have an adjustable flow rate, I figured it'd be best to get the right things from the start, as trying to 'cut down' on the flow rate by restricting the intake or outtake might presumably wear out the pump on the filter.

The Eheim Classic 2213 is rated for tanks up to 66 gallons, has a pump output of 116 gph, and a 'filter circulation' of 102 gph, or 2.5 tanks per hour. I was wondering if others had used this in a 40 gallon tank, or whether it would be insufficient in reality vs. theory? The next-higher, the 2215, is 93 gal/163 gph/134 gph which in terms of tank size is more than double what I have, but in terms of gph filtered is 3.3 tanks per hour. Presumably this one is more than enough?

==================

Here are a few of the links about base size versus water volume:

http://www.caudata.org/forum/f46-beg...tml#post381308

http://www.caudata.org/forum/f46-beg...tml#post358698

Thanks



Xtophr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th July 2014   #5 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Nationality:
Posts: 130
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: NadeZ has started on the right path
Default Re: Initial setup/capacity questions

You want 4x the actual flow/circulation rate, which is normally 10x the advertised LPH/GPH



NadeZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th July 2014   #6 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Nationality:
Posts: 89
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: Xtophr has shown reliable knowledge
Question Re: Initial setup/capacity questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by NadeZ View Post
You want 4x the actual flow/circulation rate, which is normally 10x the advertised LPH/GPH
OK, I'm confused.



Xtophr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th July 2014   #7 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Nationality:
Posts: 130
Gallery Images: 0
Comments: 0
Rep: NadeZ has started on the right path
Default

So for example for my 170L (45G) tank, I want the water to be filtered 4x per hour which is 680LPH (180GPH). Now the fluval 206 claims 780LPH (206GPH) but this is the rate of the pump alone. Once the pipework and media are included, the actual output is nearer to 460LPH (121GPH). The 10x rule is for that claimed 780LPH (206GPH), since the actual output is generally about 40-60% of this. Some brands are upfront about the true circulation rate, for others you may have to do some research.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk



NadeZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
beginner, canister filter, chiller, size/water, sponge filter, tank aquarium

LinkBack
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads

Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hailea 150A chilling capacity danchristopher Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate 5 26th February 2012 22:29
Capacity nursemelody North American Newts (Notophthalmus & Taricha) 3 17th March 2011 01:55
Question: Initial Tank Kib0y Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate 11 29th December 2009 13:39
Freezer capacity? grius General Discussion 14 6th April 2009 13:36
Capacity Question BubbaPhat Newt and Salamander Help 12 5th August 2007 19:29


All times are GMT. The time now is 12:55.