How To Clean The Filter In The Aquarium

How to clean the Fish Tank Filter

Fish Tank Filter is a standard equipment, most often located inside the aquarium, which is designed to clean water from food residues, wastes of the inhabitants of the aquarium and other organic debris. Like any mechanism, it needs care so that it can function smoothly. Periodically you need to clean the filter from the accumulated dirt that accumulates in the fillers (most often they are special sponges).

How to clean the filter yourself

Typically, the material for the manufacture of the Fish Tank Filter is waterproof foam. Cleaning the filter yourself is quite simple. It must be turned off and removed from the water. You can rinse it with a regular sponge in warm water. Periodically (every two months) the device should be completely disassembled. Remove the rotor from the filter, and then remove the mucus and accumulated dirt. Also clean the nozzle of the Fish Tank Filter. To do this, do not need any special devices, it is quite suitable for a regular toothbrush.

The most important thing is cleaning the filter elements.

Special attention should be paid to the cleaning of filter elements. The smaller their area, the faster the filter clogs. On average, the internal filter needs to be cleaned every week, and the external one – twice a month. These indicators are determined individually, depending on the entire aquatic system.

How to clean a biological filter

Devices with a biological type of filtration purify water with the help of bacteria that live in filter elements. It is very important to properly clean the filter with this principle of operation. Cleaning should be carried out quickly, in addition, only water taken from the aquarium should be used so that the damage caused to the colonies of bacteria is minimal. The only exception could be aquarium fish disease: after treatment, the filter and fillers should be thoroughly rinsed to get rid of the pathogens and drug residues. In this case, you should not feel sorry for the bacteria.

If the filter is turned off for a long time (more than 2 hours), it is necessary to rinse the fillers before switching on. The fact is that colonies of bacteria, left without oxygen, are converted into organic matter and begin to decompose. If you do not clean the filter, all hazardous compounds will fall into the water and may cause the death of the inhabitants of the aquarium.

The Fish Tank Filter is a pump that pumps water through a special material, on which the remains of food, waste products of inhabitants of the aquarium and other pollutants linger. Periodically, the filter itself must be cleaned of accumulated dirt.

How To Clean The Filter In The Aquarium

Turn off the filter and remove it from the aquarium. First wash it in warm water with a sponge. Disassemble the filter device. Remove the rotor, clean off mucus and dirt, brush the filter nozzle with a toothbrush. Filters are divided by type of filtration: mechanical, chemical or biological. If the filter material is a sponge or synthetic filament and is used to mechanically trap solids, rinse it with warm water at least once a week.

Regularly update materials for chemical filtration, such as peat or coal. Wash the limestone rubble with water in order to clear it of accumulated sludge as soon as you notice slowing down of the water flow through the filter.

Replace biofiltration materials as rarely as possible. During one cleaning, change only the third part of the filter material in order to preserve beneficial bacteria as much as possible. Rinse these filters gently in a bucket of warm aquarium water, as the impurities in tap water kill all bacteria. As far as possible, the filter layer of the bottom filter is better not to clean it at all. If the biological filter is clogged too often, remove the solids with an additional mechanical filter in the form of a sponge or silk yarn. In a large aquarium, you should install several biological filters and wash them one by one. Pay special attention to the multi-compartment filter, which simultaneously performs biological, mechanical and chemical water purification. For example, a sponge that delays solids, rinse every week. A bag of peat, which oxidizes water, needs to be changed every 2-3 weeks. And the gravel, acting as a biological filter, rinse no more than once every 2 months.

How to clean the Fish Tank Filter

How and what to clean the filter in the aquarium?

If your immediate plans include the purchase of an aquarium, then we recommend reading this article more than carefully. It will be about how to clean the filter in the aquarium. It would seem that the procedure at first glance is quite simple. Indeed, experienced aquarists cope with this routine task in minutes. However, beginning fans of the “sea behind glass” may have dozens of questions. For example, how often should the filter be washed in an aquarium? We will try to answer this and other questions right now.

General characteristics of the filter for the aquarium

The Fish Tank Filter is an obligatory, significant piece of equipment that ensures the process of water purification from food residues, fish waste products and other non-healthy organic matter. Eliminating harmful toxic substances, it saturates water with oxygen. Like any cleaning system, the filter itself also needs regular maintenance. How often does an Fish Tank Filter require cleaning? To correctly answer this question, a number of factors must be taken into account:

  • filter size in the aquarium;
  • type of filtering;
  • tank volume and amount of vegetation in it.
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Very small constructions can be easily washed weekly, and the large ones do their job for a month or even longer, so they do not need such frequent cleaning. Be sure to follow the pressure of the water from the filter. As a rule, if it is visibly weakened, then it is impossible to postpone cleaning.

Important: between cleaning the water, the soil in the aquarium and washing the filter should take about a week. During this time, the fish will have time to get used to the new environment before the next "shake" of the ecosystem.

On average, both internal and external filters in an aquarium should be cleaned no more than twice a week. Before proceeding directly to the washing process, we strongly recommend that you familiarize yourself with the instructions for your equipment and make sure that there are no specific instructions or nuances regarding cleaning. And another important factor, without which it is impossible to properly and efficiently wash the filter – this is the type of filtration in the aquarium.

Determine the type of filtering

If you are a responsible, compassionate buyer, then you probably saved the packaging from the equipment and instructions to it. In this situation, determine the type of your filter will not be difficult. Otherwise, you must carefully examine the device in order to further wash the filter for the aquarium as required by the instructions. There are four types of filters:

  • mechanical;
  • chemical;
  • biological;
  • multisection.

The first is the most common option. It is used for most aquariums. As a rule, the mechanical filter in the aquarium is the easiest to clean. The design is arranged in such a way that water is filtered through a porous sponge. It copes with the absorption of waste products aquarium inhabitants. But for effective filter operation it is necessary to regularly replace the sponge.

Chemical filtration is rarely used. It is set for a period after the treatment of fish to remove residual chemicals from the water. For water purification, a peat or coal plate is provided, which after the procedure must be disposed of.

Biological filter is the most difficult to care for. Its filtering system is based on the activity of a group of beneficial bacteria. Improper care and failure to comply with the rules during washing can cause their death, which in turn is fraught with a complete replacement of the structure.

The multisection filter carries out at once three types of cleaning. It is logical that care for him requires an individual approach. It is recommended to wash the sponge on a weekly basis, the peat bag requires cleaning no more than once a month, and gravel, an element of biological cleaning, should preferably be washed once every two months.

Let’s figure out how to effectively and properly clean each of the above filters for the aquarium.

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The algorithm of actions to clean the filter depends on its type. Despite this, there is a generally accepted scheme and some nuances, the observance of which is extremely important. So, we have already figured out how often you need to clean the filter in the aquarium. It’s time to learn how to do it. According to the general recommendations, the sequence of your actions should be as follows:

  1. disconnect the filter from the power supply;
  2. disconnect the external filter block from the aquarium;
  3. carefully, in order not to damage the ceramic axis, pull out the rotor;
  4. wash the rotor under running water;
  5. similarly, wash all other filter parts under running water;
  6. use a toothbrush or ear stick to clean the filter nozzle;
  7. we collect a design and we establish in a former position.
  8. We connect the filter to the network.

There is nothing difficult, the main thing is to follow the sequence of actions. Once again, we remind you that too often you do not need to clean the external filter in the aquarium, as you would not want to. The fact is that the bacteria that live on the cleaning plates, the sponge, regulate the extent to which decay products enter the water. Extremely negative and even destructive influence on them such external factors as:

  • Chlorinated tap water;
  • frequent, sudden changes in temperature;
  • changing pH levels;
  • active mechanical cleaning.

In order not to disturb the biological balance in the aquatic environment of the aquarium, change the filter sponge in the external filter no more than once a year. At the same time, in the internal filter it is ideal to replace only half of it at a time. Thus, the remaining bacteria will gradually inhabit the new surface of the sponge, maintaining the bio-balance in the aquarium environment.

Read more:  Aquarium Water Purification (Fish Tank Filters)

Impeller care

Any Fish Tank Filter is equipped with such an important detail as an impeller. Externally, it is a cylindrical magnet with an impeller. It is mounted on a ceramic, in some cases, a metal pin. Its main function is to provide water flow. During the operation of algae, bacteria and other environmental pollution clog its cavity, making it difficult to operate as a whole. Cleaning this part of the external filter for the aquarium in this case is inevitable. Produce it this way:

  1. remove the impeller from the pin;
  2. wash it under running water;
  3. Wipe the pin with a rag.

Many aquarium owners forget about this simple procedure. As a result, the filtration system fails. In order to perform cleaning on time, we recommend marking the days of cleaning in a notebook or pocket calendar.

Caring for an aquarium is quite a feasible task, even for a child! The main thing to remember is that such mandatory procedures as cleaning the external filter for the aquarium, washing the soil, cleaning the water and interior decorations should be carried out regularly and correctly. Observing all these conditions, you will ensure the smooth operation of all components of the structure and, as a result, the perfect appearance of the aquarium.

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How to clean the filter in the aquarium?

The filter in the aquarium is the most important part of the equipment, the life support system for your fish, which removes toxic waste, chemistry, and if it works correctly, it saturates the water in the aquarium with oxygen.

For the filter to work properly, it is necessary that useful bacteria be divorced inside it, and improper care kills them, as a result creating problems with balance. Unfortunately, most of the filters lack simple and clear instructions for the user to understand.

How To Clean The Filter In The Aquarium

How often to wash the filter

All filters are different, small ones need to be washed weekly, and large ones can work without problems even for two months. The only correct way is to observe how quickly your filter becomes clogged with dirt.

In general, for the internal filter, the frequency is approximately once every two weeks, and for the external one from two weeks for very polluted aquariums, up to two months for cleaner ones. Keep an eye on the flow of water from the filter, if it is weakened it is a signal that it is time to wash it.

Types of filtering

The easiest way in which water passes through the filter material and is cleaned from suspended matter, large particles, food residues and dead plants. Both in external and internal filters, porous sponges are usually used. These sponges should be rinsed regularly to get rid of particles that clog them. If this is not done, the power of the water flow drops significantly and the quality of the filtration decreases. Sponges are consumable and need to be replaced periodically.


An important view if you want to keep complex fish and have a healthy, beautiful aquarium. Simplistically, you can describe it like this: fish create waste, plus food remains fall to the bottom and begin to rot. In this case, ammonia and nitrates are released into the water, which are detrimental to fish. Since the aquarium is an isolated environment, there is a gradual accumulation and poisoning. Biological filtration helps to reduce the amount of harmful substances by decomposing them into safe components. This is done by special bacteria that independently inhabit the filter.


This type of filtration is used in emergency situations in the aquarium: poisoning, after the treatment of fish, to remove harmful substances from the water. At the same time, water passes through activated carbon, the pores of which are so small that they trap substances in themselves. After use such coal needs to be utilized. Do not forget that you can not apply chemical filtration during the treatment of fish and it is not necessary if everything is normal in your tank.

Wash the filter correctly

Just wash the filter may not be the most successful idea, since you can destroy a colony of good bacteria in it. Therefore, it is important not to wash the filter when you make any global changes in the aquarium — a big water change, change the type of feed or frequency of feeding the fish, or launch a new fish. At such times it is very important that the balance is stable, and the filter is a large part of the stable balance in the aquarium.

We clean the biological filter

Washcloths are most often considered as a mechanical filter that retains dirt from the water. Your fish, however, do not care what kind of crystal clear water, in nature, they live in far from ideal conditions. But for them it is important that the water be like less decomposition products, such as ammonia.

And for the decomposition of ammonia and other harmful substances, responsible bacteria that live on the surface of the washcloth in your filter. And it is very important to wash the filter so that it does not destroy most of these bacteria.

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Sudden changes in temperature, pH, chlorinated water from the tap, it all kills bacteria. To wash the washcloth in the filter, use the water from the aquarium, just rinse it in this water until it is more or less clean. Striving for sterility in this case is harmful. You can also do with solid parts – karmic or plastic balls.

Filter replacement

Many aquarists, change washcloths in the filter too often, as advised in the instructions. The washcloth in the filter needs to be changed only if it has lost its filtering ability or has begun to lose the forum. And it happens not earlier than in a year and a half.

It is also important to change no more than half at a time. For example, in the internal filter washcloths consist of several parts and you can only change one at a time.

If only a part is replaced, then bacteria from old surfaces will quickly colonize new ones and there will be no imbalance. Taking a break in a couple of weeks you can completely replace the old content with new and not damage the aquarium.

Impeller care

All Fish Tank Filters contain impeller. The impeller is a cylindrical magnet with an impeller, which serves to create a flow of water, and is mounted on a metal or ceramic pin. After a time, algae, bacteria and other debris accumulate on the impeller and make it difficult to work.

How To Clean The Filter In The Aquarium

It is very easy to clean the impeller – remove it from the pin, rinse it with water pressure, and wipe the pin itself with a rag. The most common mistake is when people just forget about it. And pollution significantly reduces the impeller’s lifespan and the most common cause of filter breaks is impeller contamination.

Develop your own filter maintenance schedule in the aquarium, record when you last did it, and regularly check the levels of ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate in your water. Source:

May 6, 2014admin

How to clean the filter in the aquarium and how often to wash

Novice aquarists have a poor understanding of when and how to wash the Fish Tank Filter. One part of the starter washes the filter incorrectly, the other too late or too early. However, the latter is much safer than the first.

In the article I will tell you how and when to clean the filter for the aquarium and its fillers. To begin with, I propose to speculate how to understand if it is time to clean.

If you think about it, under what circumstances can you understand that the time has come for washing the fillers and cleaning the filter? It can be assumed that in the following cases:

I will decode the list items a little.

When a filler, such as a sponge or padding polyester, becomes clogged in the Fish Tank Filter, the filter pumps the water worse, which leads to a decrease in filter performance and poor cleaning quality, which affects the condition of the aquarium water.

Organic waste and the remains of aquarium feed held inside the filler begin to rot and decompose. This poisons the aquarium water with decomposition products, causing an unpleasant odor, water clouding and contributes to the outbreak of diseases in the aquarium.

Aquarium water quickly loses its transparency, biological balance shifts, and the aquarium dies quickly.

Before you come across the last two points, you will notice that the filter has become worse to drive water away. In this case, immediately clean the filter and fillers.

To clarify the maintenance schedule, flush the filter every three weeks and monitor the condition of the fillers. After a while, you will know exactly when the filter needs cleaning. This is the most convenient way.

How to clean Fish Tank Filter

This is the part of the service where beginners make the mistake of incorrectly washing the filter. For better reasons, beginners wash the filter in hot water, which leads to the death of a colony of nitrifying bacteria, which populates the Fish Tank Filter fillers and performs biological filtration. As you remember, biological filtration helps purify water from toxins, ammonia and nitrites.

For an ideal cleanliness of the filtering fillers, illiterate beginners do not stop using cleaning agents, the remnants of which, when the filter is turned on after cleaning, fly out to the aquarium.

All this does not affect the best way on the biological balance and does not improve the condition of the aquarium.

How to wash the Fish Tank Filter

Without using any cleaning agents, remove accumulated dirt and debris from the filter. Rinse the filter media in running water at room temperature. Experienced aquarists use water that has been drained from the aquarium to wash the Fish Tank Filter.

After washing the fillers, and removing the debris, reassemble the filter and put it into operation.

Never use hot water and cleaning agents, including ordinary soap, when washing the filter elements of the Fish Tank Filter!