DIY car cabin filter for outside skimmer air line? WHAT?

Flippers4pups

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It's well understood that inside air quality can suffer during the winter and summer months for most of us in the U.S. and those C02 levels can climb high inside effecting our tanks PH.
During nice weather, all one has to do to help this is to just simply open some windows when the humidity and or temperature is close to what we keep our houses at. But not for us, especially in the midwest during late fall through winter and summer.

There has been numerous hobbyists that have gone to great lengths to get fresh air to their systems for this reason. Using a C02 scrubber attached to the skimmers air intake is one way, but the media needed to make this work can get expensive over time. Another way is to just run a airline from outside to the skimmers air intake with a means to filter the air. Filtering the air is most important if your unsure of what can be in the air at any given time.

Filtering the air can be done with many different ways. One is to use a water filter canister filled with filter floss and some activated carbon or a DIY canister with the same. The filter floss catches the large particles of dust and pollen etc.. and the activated carbon for air pollutants such as fertilizer, insect sprays, lawn mower exhaust etc....

The amount of "filtering" material can impede the amount of air flow through the canister and effect the skimmers ability to pull air.

So, with all that said, what about a car cabin filter that has activated carbon infused in it? If one could build a "air box" to allow the use of a filter like this, wouldn't this work?

Your thoughts and experiences attempting a DIY filter for this application is much appreciated!
 
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laverda

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It's well understood that inside air quality can suffer during the winter and summer months for most of us in the U.S. and those C02 levels can climb high inside effecting our tanks PH.
During nice weather, all one has to do to help this is to just simply open some windows when the humidity and or temperature is close to what we keep our houses at. But not for us, especially in the midwest during late fall through winter and summer.

There has been numerous hobbyists that have gone to great lengths to get fresh air to their systems for this reason. Using a C02 scrubber attached to the skimmers air intake is one way, but the media needed to make this work can get expensive over time. Another way is to just run a airline from outside to the skimmers air intake with a means to filter the air. Filtering the air is most important if your unsure of what can be in the air at any given time.

Filtering the air can be done with many different ways. One is to use a water filter canister filled with filter floss and some activated carbon or a DIY canister with the same. The filter floss catches the large particles of dust and pollen etc.. and the activated carbon for air pollutants such as fertilizer, insect sprays, lawn mower exhaust etc....

The amount of "filtering" material can impede the amount of air flow through the canister and effect the skimmers ability to pull air.

So, with all that said, what about a car cabin filter that has activated carbon infused in it? If one could build a "air box" to allow the use of a filter like this, wouldn't this work?

Your thoughts and experiences attempting a DIY filter for this application is much appreciated!
It should work. You just need a container to hold the filter that is sealed on one side with a air line to your skimmer. The few cabin filters I have seen are pretty large. You might look at some of the HOB filter media with carbon. I would think they might be better size wise. An air box could be 3D printer fairly easily for the smaller filters. If your skimmer is far away, an over sized air line will help minimize any restriction in air flow.
You got me thinking I should build one for my skimmer intake.
 

homer1475

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Umm one thing here...

Why are you worrying about filtering the air? We don't filter the air entering our homes. So we need to filter the air entering the tank, but just opening a window next to the tank without filtering is ok?

My airline just hangs out a hole in the floor I drilled(my house is on piers so I have a crawlspace under), and been that way for about 5 years with 0 problems(except for the occasional spider that makes its way up the airline).

People tend to way over think and way over engineer things in this hobby.
 

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Interesting idea! I know where I live, filtering the air is probably a good idea.
 

salty joe

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I don't know this to be an absolute fact but read somewhere that carbon for filtering water is not the same type for filtering air. Is so, presumably the cabin filter would have the right carbon.
I think it's a great idea. BTW, I use a HEPA filter from a vacuum cleaner to filter the air that bubbles my phyto.
 
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Flippers4pups

Flippers4pups

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Umm one thing here...

Why are you worrying about filtering the air? We don't filter the air entering our homes. So we need to filter the air entering the tank, but just opening a window next to the tank without filtering is ok?

My airline just hangs out a hole in the floor I drilled(my house is on piers so I have a crawlspace under), and been that way for about 5 years with 0 problems(except for the occasional spider that makes its way up the airline).

People tend to way over think and way over engineer things in this hobby.

We have a lawn company service our yard six times a year. They spray for bugs and grubs and fertilize the yard. Neighbors lawn mower is a two stroke and puts out a cloud each time they cut the grass. They spray their yard twice a year for pests and fertilize as well several times a year. When it's nice and the windows are open, we close them when the neighbor cuts their lawn and close them when the yard service let's us know when they will be by.

I don't think that's over thinking putting a airline/filter outside the house, quite the opposite, it's only right to filter that air. Definitely don't need that in my tank. Respectfully.
 

cobast

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I've been thinking along the same lines. I want to punch through the wall into my garage which always has lots of fresh air but it also gets occasional paint or chemical fumes which I would want to filter out.
 

TDEcoral

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We have a lawn company service our yard six times a year. They spray for bugs and grubs and fertilize the yard. Neighbors lawn mower is a two stroke and puts out a cloud each time they cut the grass. They spray their yard twice a year for pests and fertilize as well several times a year. When it's nice and the windows are open, we close them when the neighbor cuts their lawn and close them when the yard service let's us know when they will be by.

I don't think that's over thinking putting a airline/filter outside the house, quite the opposite, it's only right to filter that air. Definitely don't need that in my tank. Respectfully.

I think when they say over think/engineer they're referring to using a cabin air filter and having to build a filter box when there are smaller, cheaper, and easier options that are available. While it's an interesting idea, it seems kind of like reinventing the wheel to me. If you do give it a try I'd be interested in seeing how you do it and what kind of results you get.
 

homer1475

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We have a lawn company service our yard six times a year. They spray for bugs and grubs and fertilize the yard. Neighbors lawn mower is a two stroke and puts out a cloud each time they cut the grass. They spray their yard twice a year for pests and fertilize as well several times a year. When it's nice and the windows are open, we close them when the neighbor cuts their lawn and close them when the yard service let's us know when they will be by.

I don't think that's over thinking putting a airline/filter outside the house, quite the opposite, it's only right to filter that air. Definitely don't need that in my tank. Respectfully.
You know I often don't think about people living in the 'burb's, or anywhere not here where you can look out your window and look into the neighbors house. My closest neighbor is about a half mile away, so I don't think about stuff like that.

Spray the grass? You mean you actually have grass and not just green moss? lol up here in the mountains grass doesn't really grow well.
 
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Dom

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We have a lawn company service our yard six times a year. They spray for bugs and grubs and fertilize the yard. Neighbors lawn mower is a two stroke and puts out a cloud each time they cut the grass. They spray their yard twice a year for pests and fertilize as well several times a year. When it's nice and the windows are open, we close them when the neighbor cuts their lawn and close them when the yard service let's us know when they will be by.

I don't think that's over thinking putting a airline/filter outside the house, quite the opposite, it's only right to filter that air. Definitely don't need that in my tank. Respectfully.

Bugs, insecticide, motor exhaust and more. These are risks with outside air and filtering it as it comes in makes sense to me.

But would an air intake line placed up high, say out the roof instead of through the floor eliminate the need for filtering?
 

Breadman03

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We have a lawn company service our yard six times a year. They spray for bugs and grubs and fertilize the yard. Neighbors lawn mower is a two stroke and puts out a cloud each time they cut the grass. They spray their yard twice a year for pests and fertilize as well several times a year. When it's nice and the windows are open, we close them when the neighbor cuts their lawn and close them when the yard service let's us know when they will be by.

I don't think that's over thinking putting a airline/filter outside the house, quite the opposite, it's only right to filter that air. Definitely don't need that in my tank. Respectfully.

The skimmer, using an exterior air intake, is actively mixing that air (and stuff) with your water. Having a window open will allow a notable amount of that stuff into your house, but some may settle out before reaching your tank and it isn't being introduced nearly so directly into your water.
 

Miller535

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This is very interesting. I have often wondered about what could be going into my air intake. Currently it just goes out of my house and is fastened pointing down to the side of my hose. One of my biggest fears is a bug crawling the whole way into the skimmer pump and getting mulched up into my tank. I think I will think about filter options for this. Thanks for the thought process
 

Adamantium

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Bugs, insecticide, motor exhaust and more. These are risks with outside air and filtering it as it comes in makes sense to me.

But would an air intake line placed up high, say out the roof instead of through the floor eliminate the need for filtering?
Not necessarily. If you have a wood stove, an oil burner, or anything else that exhausts out a chimney you'd have just as many, if not more, issues.
 
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I’ve DIY’d one from a vape bottle. Even if it only reduces dust, it’s probably worth it I reckon.
 

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