Setting up all sponge filter setup for 125 - help

SwampFins

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So I'm in the process of trying an all sponge filtration system for my 125 and I wanted to see what would be the most efficient way of setting this up.

I will be running two Hydro sponges for 125 gallons each and a third sponge rated for 100 gallons.

Aside from this I have a circulation pump in the tank and dwarf water lettuce on the surface to help with nitrates.

My question is, would it be just as efficient to stack all sponges in one corner of the tank or should I run the separately across?

I also have a power head I could use to have more water flow instead of using an air pump, but then I'd miss out on the aeration benefits of the normal sponge setup?

FJIMG_20190608_180513.jpg
 

TheReefer

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That might be just as effective as having 3 sponge filters, not sure. But what I will tell you is that you likely won't be able to keep up the filtration like that with a red devil as that red devil produces a lot of waste, especially seeing as a red devil will likely tear the sponge filters apart and rearrange the entire tank. What I would suggest is getting either a canister filter or two and using the sponges as a prefilter and using an extra sponge filter as supplemental filtration, getting 2-3 aquaclear 110s or seachem tidal 110s and again using the sponge filters as prefilters and use a spare sponge filter (if you have one) as supplemental filter, or (what I would do) go for a sump (40-70 gallons) and run the sponge filters in there (that way you get the benefits of aeration and the sponge filter, but the red devil can't tear the sponge filter apart).
 

tiger15

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You have a nice scape except that the sponge filter and a bag of bio media are eye sore. Sponge filter belongs to grow out tank, not for show tank. Do you have room behind the tank? You can hang two to three HOBs behind the tank like I do with my 125. I use Penguin HOBs which are half as expensive as AC, slim box design so it takes up less room, and easy to clean, just don’t buy the cartridges and make your own. I am no fan for canisters either because they are PIA to clean and vulnerable to leak.
 
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TheReefer

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You have a nice scape except that the sponge filter and a bag of bio media are eye sore. Sponge filter belongs to grow out tank, not for show tank. Do you have room behind the tank? You can hang two to three HOBs behind the tank like I do with my 125. I use Penguin HOBs which are half as expensive as AC, slim box design so it takes up less room, and easy to clean, just don’t buy the cartridges and make your own. I am no fan for canisters either because they are PIA to clean and vulnerable to leak.
Agreed, go for another filter instead of sponge filters.
 

lp85253

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don't let anybody talk you into a certain type of filter for that tank , sponge filters will work well .. you do need some flow( powerheads).. and frequent large wc's.. but the sponges are every bit as good for a tank that size as any other form of bio filtration..sumps aren't "better" , cans aren't better.. hob's aren't better.. just different .. if it was me , i would do 2 big sponges .. a hob for mechanical and a powerhead (probably on a sponge )...
 

SandNukka15

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3 large sponge filter will work. If you dont see it as an eye sore then use them. Just make sure to rotate squeezing 1 out weekly. With sponge filters I feel like it's very easy for the nitrates to be released back into the tank water from fish waste as soon as the air pump is removed and the sponge filter is moved
 

Backfromthedead

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I feel like youre onto something with the stacking idea. I have done this with my sponges with good results.

What air pump and diffuser are you using? Youre gonna need some power to achieve proper turnover.

If you diy a 90 degree bent pipe out of the top of the sponge instead of the normal straight pipe, it will shoot out a current in whatever direction you point it. When you couple this with a powerful air pump you can get quite a bit of water moving in one direction. I suggest perusing swisstropicals.com and checking out their jetlifters to get some ideas for this. If i ever do a sponge only setup again im gonna try one of their tower block filters.

Ive tried the powerheads but dont like them as much. The sponge tends to easily clog right around the powerhead whereas the air driven flow creates a uniform suction throughout the stack of sponges.

As for aesthetics, get creative in concealing it with rocks and logs. Penn plax makes air line that looks like a leafy vine. Ive seen plenty of setups where youd never even notice the sponge.

Good luck with your build! Cant wait to see it up and running.
 
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SwampFins

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Thank you for the comments, its always helpful to consider all angles.

So I decided to run all 3 filters for a few days and I was amazed at how clear the water was. Looks like the sponge is a lot better at trapping the small particulates than any other filter I've had.

With that said, I did notice there were some obvious dead spots in the tank being 6ft long so I decided to remove 1 sponge for the sake of gaining more real state in the tank and bought an fx6 to go with it. $200 sale at petsmart!

I figure I can stack the other two sponges so they take less space and hide them behind driftwood and plants.

I just set this up last night so well see if that combo does the trick. I definitely want to keep some sponge action in there as a polishing factor and bio backup.
 

lp85253

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if you end up not liking the can you could do just the sponges and add powerheads (on or off sponges) for circulation.. iv'e been doing this a while (20 yrs) .. the thing i found out , filtration is over emphasized as a *huge* part of keeping fish.. you can do as much with less filtration and more *big* water changes.. i do 2 40%-50% wc's per week in summer and 2 25% per week in winter ( colder water .. i do more gravel vac's).. it's going to vary with stock and climate and also how much gravel vac'ing you do.. but 2 things always work for me .. i don't do lots of filter maintenance( no more than once a month at most , even on hob's).. and less stock than most people have .. overstocking tanks is a recipe for problems..
 

duanes

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Most powerhead these days have a venturi port, that if hooked up with a tube above the surface, provide at least as much, or more aeration that an air pump, beside giving current (depending on the power of the powerhead.

above is a small powerhead with the venturi port hooked up to an air line.
Below a stronger pump with venturi tube attached.

The one above sends aeration across over half a 6 ft tank.
 
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