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TOPIC: Wet / Dry Trickler Filter vs Submerged Sump Filter

Wet / Dry Trickler Filter vs Submerged Sump Filter 3 months 6 days ago #72312

  • ohern4ever
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  • Microgeophagus ramirezi
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As I mentioned before I am going to add a two DIY sump based filters to my new 165 gallon tank. The plan is to use Sterlite drawers along with tubs for the filters.I was thinking of how I am going to setup the filters. First off I guess I need to decide if the filters will be trickle towers or submerged media sumps....correct? My first question is how do I setup one vs. another? Is it as simple as how much water you add to the sump to start with? If I add no water to the sump to start except to submerge the pump, will that make it a Trickle tower filter, vs. if I add 20 gallons of water to a 30 gallon tank, does that make it a submerged media filter?

Opinions on which is better? It seems like a trickle tower would be better simply for the fact the water would become more oxygenated as it flowed from one compartment of media to the next and then finally into the main sump. On the other hand, I am thinking it will be a bit louder with two of these going at the same time. That being said, with a submerged media filter I could just add an airstone to the sump and oxygenate the water there, or in the tank itself if I decided. Again thoughts?

If I did the trickle tower filter I was going to use plastic pot scrubbies for one layer and then maybe bio balls in the other.( after the filter floss on top for mechanical filtration of course). For a submerged tank I was thinking of using something like a marine pure bio block, bio max, or basically any other media you would otherwise put into a canister. I would think that perhaps the scrubbies wouldn't be a good option in this setup, or perhaps they would be just as good??

Any thoughts you guys have would be very much appreciated, especially the DIY folks here. Thanks.
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Wet / Dry Trickler Filter vs Submerged Sump Filter 3 months 6 days ago #72313

  • Aquamoo
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While trickle towers are technically the "best" type of filtration/sump, I prefer submerged media sumps for several reasons. The first is that it is very difficult to get a trickle tower to be quiet (which may or may not bother you). The second is that you are sacrificing a lot of water to get the media emerged. The amount of water that is added from a sump can greatly increase your total water volume if you choose to do so. If you choose to make a emerged media filter, The King of DIY's videos are pretty good. Here is my spin on one before I converted it back into a submerged media sump as I missed the extra water volume:

- Aquamoo

If you have an emerged media sump (trickle tower) make sure you have filter socks that keep most of the debris going into the media otherwise it is going to fill p with mulm and become the dreaded nitrate factory that so many people complain about
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Wet / Dry Trickler Filter vs Submerged Sump Filter 1 month 4 weeks ago #72353

  • ~rush~
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Agree ^^.

Trickle filters have long been known to be the superior biological filters. However - for the benefit of immediate ammonia/nitrite consumption to really be an issue over water volume I think that you would really have to be running a high nutrient system which is just not something I've ever really done. We promote stocking a tank on the low side, which normally results in lower nutrients which if done properly can reduce the potential harm of an ammonia or nitrite spike. It certainly can still be deadly but I think for me one of the huge upsides of using a sump is the additional water volume.

I don't think either is a bad choice. Kind of splitting hairs here, but I guess were I in your shoes I'd go submerged media, max additional water volume.
"My Country is the World, and my Religion is to do good." -Thomas Paine
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Wet / Dry Trickler Filter vs Submerged Sump Filter 1 month 4 weeks ago #72357

  • pacu mom
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We run a wet/dry filter. While it provides all the biological filtration for our tank, it does have drawbacks during power outages. During a power outage, I would wake up due to an oppressively quiet house. My first thoughts were about the fish tank. I would get out of bed and add enough water to the main tank to overflow and submerge the bio balls in the wet/dry filter. I was always afraid of die off of the beneficial bacteria in my filter. (We actually had an ammonia reading only once after an outage) My next step was getting the battery powered air pumps going. This was all well and good if I happened to be home when the power went out. I solved this problem with a 20 KW generator that powers on within 5 seconds of the main power source going out.

Because of this one factor alone, I will never run another wet/dry system. Submerged media in a sump or a filter system where the media stays wet when the power is out is what I choose now (even though theoretically it's a non issue with our generator)
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