Carbon Filtering: Under, Over or Just Right?

BRS

So what do you think about running carbon as a filter for your aquariums?

  • Underrated

    Votes: 60 13.2%
  • Overrated

    Votes: 75 16.4%
  • Just Right

    Votes: 321 70.4%

  • Total voters
    456

lesterfish

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Just right. Run it in a reactor 24/7. Change it every 3 wk. I like the BRS rox 0.8 keeps the water crystal. I use 4 Tbs for a 40 gal system.
 

NigelRichardson

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Just right... HOWEVER... I need to remember that sometimes Carbon does "too good a job" and that I need to pull it out sometimes.

I remember from my freshwater days that having a carbon bag in at the same time as dosing medicines was counter productive... Carbon isn't necessarily selective in relation to what it pulls out of the water...
 

hanslanda

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I feel its just right.
I run a BRS dual and some of my water quality issues have gone away completely. I've yet to discover a negative.

HOWEVER, I will say that the BRS dual reactor is underrated.
I use to use chemi-pure but I felt they didn't last nearly as long as the were supposed to and if I changed it at the frequency I needed the cost would have been ++++. The dual reactor allows you to buy bulk media and track usage. plus there's no competition on a GFO reactor against chemipure. The GFO reactor just has insanely more filter capacity as well as its flow thru design making it much more effective in general.

Being able to vary the flow rate is an added benefit and should allow basically anyone to make this work for thier setup.
 

LifeAquaticLB

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Just right. You’ll think it’s overrated until you haven’t used it for a while. You can tell how great it works after the lights go out and you look into the tank from the sides with the room ambient light. Makes it crystal clear!
 

Ratherbeflyen

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1. Carbon is overrated for the hobby in general. Especially in HOB filter cartridges that contain a few grams of carbon and a nitrate absorbing media. The cartridges are sold to new hobbyist's as a complete filter, and it's just not effective for all filtration needs. However, it does make a lot of money for the HOB sales department.

For people who are more knowledgeable about what carbon actually does, and what it doesn't do, then I vote just right.


2. I run ~1/2 cup of carbon in a media bag, changed weekly. My only expectation is for the carbon to remove some the color pigment build up and any toxins the corals release.
 

Jerlet80

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We're going to start a new weekly QOTD where we feature saltwater aquarium methods, ideas, tricks, equipment, livestock etc. where YOU the viewer will decide if the subject of the topic is deserving of the Underrated, Overrated or Just Right rating! So let's get this started and if you have ideas for topics please message me!

Today we are going to talk about running carbon as a water filter for your aquarium. So what's the 411 and carbon? Aquarium carbon is often used in the aquarium industry for the removal of toxic organic substances, odor and discoloration from your tank.

1. So what do you think about running carbon as a filter for your aquariums? Underrated, Overrated or Just Right?

2. Do you currently filter your water via carbon and if so how?


Untitled-3 copy.jpg


image via @Bulk Reef Supply
Well after snowApocalypse on Texas o am seriously thinking of running carbon. I normally just use filter floss with carbon. Holy in, but it’s not getting the job done. I lost all my acan colonies and have done 4 25% water changes over the last two weeks to try and battle and more loss. It didn’t help that my salifert nitrate test kit was giving false reading by over 30 PPM. So I would have to say canon is the next step in battling my loses. I hope that it stabilizes my tank and I can say it’s JUST RIGHT!
 

cajunreefguy

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1. So what do you think about running carbon as a filter for your aquariums? Underrated, Overrated or Just Right?
Just right, I have a mixed reef and it helps with the chemical warfare from all the corals. My wife's arm used to get red and irritated just from reaching in the tank.

2. Do you currently filter your water via carbon and if so how?
Seachem Matrix Carbon in a Spectrapure Dual Media Reactor along with Kola GFO. It gets changed when I notice the slight tumbling stop.
 

galantra

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This is where I truly wonder. So when I first started my tank I would run carbon 24/7 . It did help improve how clear it was and when I had the yellow tint it resolved that issue. After some time I ended up using it less since it would strip some of the chemicals and elements I was dosing. With that said my water remains clear even without prolonged use. Don’t get me wrong I run the carbon when I change filter socks to avoid that issue with the skimmer acting up. But then again I let my skimmer stay off for a day or two with this issue; and that’s pretty much the only time I run it.

I feel it’s good to always have on hand specially if something gets into the tank specially metals or serious emergencies. There is a reactor all setup just not running
 

jarviz

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i just started using a carbon about a week ago instead of CPE and liking the results so far. Does anybody have any experience with this? they have some great reviews and marketing lol

 

Peter Houde

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The question is no fair. We don't have the option for "I don't know". Sure, I use carbon (a lot, roughly 12" x 14" surface and about 2 inches deep) in line before biofiltration in the sump. But I go from replacing it anywhere from every month or two to >6 months. More frequent changes knocks down the nitrate a bit but I'm not sure I ever saw a big difference. The water is always clear. But my tang lost facial color. Carbon-induced HLLE?
 

Clownfish_Boy

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Aquarium carbon is often used in the aquarium industry for the removal of toxic organic substances, odor and discoloration from your tank.

1. So what do you think about running carbon as a filter for your aquariums? Underrated, Overrated or Just Right?

2. Do you currently filter your water via carbon and if so how?
That is correct, @revhtree , carbon removes toxins and other undesirables from the water. I have it in the filter pads in my Marineland HOB filter.
 

green behind the ears

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Run carbon 24/7/365 in a brs reactor. Love how it reduces toxins from softie warfare, and the tannins that can cause your water to tint to the yellow side. Never have noticed a negative side effect, other then when I was running very cheap carbon and a kole tang developed HLLE. Never could pinpoint it to that, but when I changed to better quality carbon and fed better, it went away.

Do I think its overrated,, underrated or just right? Just right in my case as it keeps my water crystal clear.
Hi , HLLE ?
 

kutcha

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I feel carbon is overrated in certain aspects. It is not in my mind something that should be run 24/7, I feel it has its purpose to remove impurities but it extinguishes to quickly to be a permeant filter but great for cleaning up the water in a pinch in such cases as nems going through the pump or other possible toxin releases.
 

Koty

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Just right but.....110-gallon reef tank, use a small Clear FX in the original bag in the exit from the refuge before the skimmer/ Maxpect balls compartment. change it once 40-60 days. Deliberately getting "low exposure".
 
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vlangel

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We're going to start a new weekly QOTD where we feature saltwater aquarium methods, ideas, tricks, equipment, livestock etc. where YOU the viewer will decide if the subject of the topic is deserving of the Underrated, Overrated or Just Right rating! So let's get this started and if you have ideas for topics please message me!

Today we are going to talk about running carbon as a water filter for your aquarium. So what's the 411 and carbon? Aquarium carbon is often used in the aquarium industry for the removal of toxic organic substances, odor and discoloration from your tank.

1. So what do you think about running carbon as a filter for your aquariums? Underrated, Overrated or Just Right?

2. Do you currently filter your water via carbon and if so how?


Untitled-3 copy.jpg


image via @Bulk Reef Supply
I am a fan of running carbon myself, especially for a softie tank. It definitely helps with chemical warfare and it also gives the water a crisp look by reducing and absorbing tannins.

Yes I am currently running carbon. I have never noticed that it contributes to lateral line disease and I have a tomini tang. I do always rinse my carbon to get the dust off it. I also use smaller amounts but change bi-weekly as once the pores are clogged it is no longer effective.
 
BRS

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