Each aquarium should have a filtration system that will purify the water, ensuring the health of the fish and plants. As it is known, wastes that are left behind by the inhabitants of the reservoir, as well as the remnants of food, suspended particles of soil are very harmful for fish. Not eaten feed is oxidized, turning into toxic ammonia. In order for the water to pass through all the steps of cleaning in a timely manner, it is better to make an external filter for the aquarium with your own hands. It will prevent the appearance of harmful substances that can poison living beings.
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How to design an external filter?
Before you make an Fish Tank Filter with your own hands, you should understand how the filtration system works. The biological filtration method in an aquarium is the process by which ammonium is converted to nitrites, then to nitrates. Biofilation is carried out thanks to beneficial microorganisms that live in the aquatic environment. This process depends on the amount of oxygen absorbed, so it is important to maintain a constant supply of aeration in the tank using a filter and a compressor.
See how the homemade external filter made of plastic bottles works.
To make an external biological filter with your own hands, you should prepare the following materials:
- Plastic bottle of mineral water 0.5 l;
- A plastic tube with a neck diameter of this bottle;
- Compressor and hose to it;
- Aquarium pebbles with a diameter of up to 5 mm.
A plastic bottle should be divided into 2 parts so that fragments of different sizes are obtained from it. It should make a cup with a neck and a big bottom. The bowl should be directed with the side of the neck up and firmly planted in the bottom. In the outer circle of the bowl you need to make several openings through which water can flow into the filter. The recommended diameter of the openings is 3-4 mm, their arrangement is in 2 rows, with 4-6 holes in each.
Next, the tube should be inserted into the neck of the bowl so that it entered into it tightly. After the procedure, you should not notice any gaps or holes between the tube and the neck. The length of the tube itself is chosen taking into account the projection above the structure by 2-3 cm. At the same time, it should not touch the bottom of the bottle. If the step is done incorrectly, water will not be able to flow into the mechanism.
Take the gravel and put it on top of the bowl with a layer of 6 cm, and cover it with a piece of padding polyester. Install a hose in the tube from the aerator, and fix it. When the mechanism is ready, it must be placed in the aquarium. Then you should turn on the compressor in order for the filter to start its work. In the existing equipment, beneficial microorganisms will appear that process ammonia into nitrates, which forms a useful microbiological environment in water.
How does a hand-made external filter work?
The self-made external filter is constructed on the basis of aerolifting: air bubbles that come from the compressor, rise to the tube, from which they come to the top, and lower with them the water flow from the filter. Clean and oxygenated water enters the upper compartment of the glass, and passes through the gravel. Then the water enters the bowl through the hole, goes down the tube, and enters the tank. Synthon here functions as a mechanical filter. This material prevents the silting of the gravel substrate.
External filters chemically and mechanically purify water. It is better to install such structures in a large aquarium with a volume of 200-400 liters. For more spacious aquariums with a capacity of 500-1000 liters will need several such devices. Branded external water treatment systems are expensive, so it’s best to do it yourself. Materials are inexpensive and accessible to everyone.
Another way to make an external filter
For the following external filter you need to prepare the following details:
- Plastic container with a tight lid (you can take a box for storing cereals);
- Sponge or thick material of porous structure;
- The tight water pump and the union for fastening to a capacity cover;
- Material for biological filtration (medical cotton, ceramic granules);
- Several suckers, resin adhesive texture.
See how to make an external filter with your own hands.
Instructions for making the filter:
- It is necessary to take a thin file, and make cuts along the entire perimeter of the lower compartment of the plastic container. The cuts will pass the water.
- Put a sponge in this plastic container, on it – cotton wool or another element for biofiltration.
- On the cover of the tank, make holes that will correspond to the diameter of the pump nozzle.
- Insert the fitting into the hole made, and secure it with resin or aquarium silicone.
- At the nozzle should screw the pump, which can create pressure inside the container.
- On the side of the container, which is wider, you should attach a few household suction cups.
- The internal filtration system can be considered finished. Suckers can hold the device on the wall of the aquarium.
Such a homemade filter can be mounted not on the wall, but put it on the bottom of the tank. The soil will also play the role of a biological filter. A plastic nozzle can be attached to the exit hole of a plastic in the form of a long tube that goes outside. Then after cleaning, the water will be saturated with oxygen.
Instead of a small plastic container, you can use a plastic canister or a canister of stainless, non-toxic metal. This design is suitable for large aquariums, you can put in it large cassettes and cartridges with filtering elements. You need to maintain homemade filters with the same frequency as the branded ones.
If the filter is leaking, check all its elements:
- Whether clips of the mechanism are densely closed. You may have inattentively secured the parts with glue or resin. You can solve the problem by securing the clips again.
- A sponge or suction cup may become dirty in the running filter. Mucus and debris can be cleaned with water. Check the cleanliness of the design every month.
- Damage to the plastic container, which will have to change, tinkering with the filter itself.