So, the industry turned to grease management instead of grease combustion. If you are going to add ceramic rings, make sure you leave your disposable filter in there as long as possible (up to a month) as this will allow any established beneficial bacteria to migrate it’s way to the ceramic rings. Oh, and I admire you for asking lots of questions! Hi Christina and Ian! Phone: (949) 697-5270 Fax: (949) 625-8027 2580 S Decker Lake Blvd Suite 300 West Valley City, UT 84119 Regardless, you’ll need to test your ammonia and nitrite in order to get a better understanding of where in the cycle your tank actually is. I was thinking about keeping the old sponge along with the new one just to be sure i dont get rid of any bb. Chemical media can be skipped and often only one type of sponge is used. Yet there’s some things about it that don’t seem right to me. These pores are so small that you can hardly see them without a microscope…. In fact, ceramic rings’ ability to hold denitrifying bacteria makes it a tempting option. Some people comment that it is like as if the rock has glue on it as it stacks together so well. While it’s not common, you don’t need to place the ceramic rings inside your filter to receive their benefits. It’s an inexpensive media that you can use for the germination and seedling grow phases. You might sometimes hear ceramic rings referred to as ceramic noodles because they closely resemble ditalini, a pasta with the same shape. So to clarify, the order should be, from first to last: Coarse Filter Media, Filter Floss, Ceramic Rings. Check the price. However, just like all ceramic rings are not created equally, I doubt all sintered glass media is created equally and I would be hesitant to recommend a product I have not used. You see, ceramic rings in an established tank, meaning one that has already been cycled, will already be coated in beneficial bacteria. (but are easily removed through water changes). A typical large canister filled with 30 ppi Poret foam (“sponge”), static K1 media or plastic pot scrubbers will give good ammonia oxidation with 700 five-inch mbuna and crystal clear, healthy water with 35 five-inch mbuna. If you still see nitrates there, then this ceramic media shouldn’t cause any issue. Don’t remove all your ceramic rings at once. Lava rocks have been used as a hydroponics and aquaponics growing medium for decades. Warning: It’s very addictive. The ceramic rings are placed underwater inside your filter. So media like lava rock “works fine”. Lava is an attractive rock in its own right so not only is it beneficial, it is also ornamental too. Most commonly, they resemble small white beads. Is there any benefit to adding the old bio rings to the tank substrate? So, questions. Activated carbon, exchange resins, zeolites and chemical filtration media (i.e. The higher the numbers here the better the media. One very important decision to make in the area of filtration is what media to use in the filter. When it’s outside a volcano, geologists call it lava. As you see, these beneficial bacteria are pretty important. I just cleaned filter last night and i cut a new sponge to add in there but im not replacing any bio rings. Great article! . Be careful and don’t expose them to soap, chlorinated tap water or scrubbing. Most of his canisters were filled with a pretty random combination of Matrix, ceramic rings, lava rock and bioballs. Since all biomedia do exactly the same thing, namely provide surface area for beneficial bacteria to grow, this is just rather humorous. I have two aqua clear filters which i love and they make it very simple by showing you what order to place the media. On the activated carbon, it doesn’t really do much except remove bad smells, tannin, phenols and certain medications. If you grab a filter media bag to keep the ceramic rings together and place them over an air stone from your air pump this will generate current through the rings which will allow the beneficial bacteria to filter the water as it passes over them. But no, I would say they are not. I have 2 aquaclear filters which tell me how to place the media (bottom- sponge – middle- carbon – top rings (i actually took out the carbon and just have to sponge and rings – I feel like with everything nowadays there is so much conflicting information in this hobby – I just read a very popular forum that so many people were arguing in the comments about the order of media in an aqua tech filter where you place the media front to back instead of top to bottom like a canister or aqua clear. I have been keeping fish for over 30 years. Regardless of how you do it, you want a sponge before the ceramic rings – the beneficial bacteria cling to the pores of the ceramic rings. I think its been a long narrative sir. And seems to be the best thing to come into the aquarium hobby world. If you don’t take away anything else from this article, remember this: Your ceramic rings are home to beneficial bacteria. It's everything that I need/want in biological media. I have a Top Fin Silentstream 40 Power Filter and its chemical filter is built in the mechanical filter (the activated carbon is inside the filter floss). I really wish I didn't spend about $100 over the years on damn fluval/aquaclear ceramic media and just used freaking cheap abundant lava rock that does the exact same thing probably even better. The second test used half the media that the first test used. However, just because denitrifying bacteria help to combat nitrates, it doesn’t mean that you can skip water changes. The purpose of your filter media is to house billions of beneficial bacteria and other microorganisms that keep your pond alive, crystal clear and algae-free. It is so versatile and you can really have some fun playing around with different pieces and creating various shapes and constructions. Your article was so informative and helpful. Overall, fire glass vs lava rock comes down to personal preference. Well, these bacteria need a place to live. And without these beneficial bacteria, you will experience ammonia spikes, which can kill your fish. Do I need a filter pad or floss, too? Cleaning the Matrix, bioballs and the ceramic rings is decidedly counter productive. Arrange the ceramic logs on the grate in an arrangement that looks like logs in a natural fireplace. I haven't used what is commonly referred to as lava rock. Fluval claims that their C-nodes are better than ceramic rings and I have some in my C-3 filter but my 80-gallon has a fluval 407 with ceramic rings, activated carbon, ammonia remover, water polishing pad and recently I swapped out my Topfin 40 for the C-3 in my 40 gallon tank (only has a gap in the lid made for 1 filter) and I had nowhere to put the Topfin 40 so I placed it on the back of my 80-gallon after cleaning it. Mechanical filtration. It’s just not enough after reading your article. Is the product worth the hype or ceramic rings will do just fine in doing filtration? I just had a look at the price in Australia and I’m pretty shocked, about $60. This is the surface area which should be used for calculating the required volume of filter media for a given weight of fish. Ceramic rings increase their surface area through tiny little pores. Hello again. This is the most common use here in America. You will commonly see this inorganic growing medium used in orchids imported from Hawaii. Chop it up in pieces and stuff it somewhere else? Any advice would be appreciated as well as comments from others. Cheers , I know it’s a lot to take in all at once but you’ll get there . After all, most of it comes down to, well, science! They say you can keep that plastic piece in there with your sponge and bio rings it’s another place that builds beneficial bacteria, I’m a yr into getting technical, Only because I have a gold fish that my GRANDAUGHTER won at carnival and 4 tanks later amd almost 4 yrs. Denitrifying bacteria live deep inside rock, ceramic and other porous materials, where oxygen cannot reach them. Thanks! I’m trying not to overthink it, but it there are too many choices of filter media for my little brain to handle. These tests with aquarium and canister filters also largely confirmed the first tests with buckets and corner filters with regard to the ranking of various media. Chemical filtration. Leave the ceramic rings for two to three weeks before removing the remaining old ceramic rings and adding the rest of the new ones. Lava rock is suited for most all fire pits. Gently swish the water around to remove excess gunk. First you need a mechanical filter, otherwise the biomedia will trap debris and gunk, leaving less surface area for the bacteria to cling to. Doing so will remove any dust that built up from the ceramic rings rubbing together in the packaging. A typical large canister filled with ceramic rings, lava rock or BioHome filter media will give good ammonia oxidation with 80 five-inch mbuna and crystal clear, healthy water with 4 five-inch mbuna. But these claims do serve the purpose of making a lot of money for some creative aquarium supply manufacturers and distributors. Some manufacturers moved from the lava grate system because the lava rock would crumble and leave a mess in the grill. Flavorizer bars sit over the burners, and are designed to perform the same sort of function as lava rocks/ceramic briquettes, but much more effectively. We’re trying to establish a 10gallon tank with an HOB filter with stuffed filter floss and ceramic rings. Dear Ian, I have an AquaClear 50 filter. It’s continuous. I have to applaud you for taking the time for caring for your the fish your granddaughter won. I was just looking at Lava rock and ceramic briquettes for the grill. Assembled Length (cm): 30.00 cm. Higher end barbecues came with ceramic briquettes, which functioned much the same but had the advantage of even heat distribution. Ian you are my savior. This is because crystal clear water is very clean water. In an aquarium, fish are not the only thing that produce ammonia. How do you add ceramic rings to your aquarium? Would I need to place it somewhere different if I changed from cartridges to a pad/floss and ceramic rings, or should it stay put? They are available in bulk in the earth’s crust. Oxygen is consumed by bacteria on the surface of the media which gives rise to anoxic conditions deeper within. I’m sure you figured out that just because your card said 8.0, it could be anything over. The author would like to be able to say he knew what this testing revealed all along and has been using 100% pot scrubbers in all his many canisters over the 53 years he has been keeping aquariums. Chemi-Pure. There’s one product that I came across the internet. Deep inside rock and filter media. Using lava rocks/ceramic briquettes in a Weber gas grill will void the warranty on the unit, and could present safety issues. I'm here to teach you everything there is to know about fishkeeping. I’ve never heard of any filter media that can remove nitrates but a water change or atleast reduce them. You can either crush it up and put it in your filter bag or use it as a decoration in your main tank. Are lava rocks or ceramic briquettes better than metal heat plates? Nevertheless, it is definitely a good idea to change the water often, 80% sounds good, or even 100%. Hello, I’m new to the hobby I’m in the middle of cycling my first tank (no fish) and I have a few questions. This beneficial bacteria removes ammonia and nitrites (harmful chemicals) from your aquarium. 1. would you please tell should I place ceramic rings submerge under water? I’m using a lot of ceramic rings for my filtration needs. Anyways please let me know that i am correct in placing the media from back to front , its confusing because aqua clear is bottom to top and some are side by side. This isn’t a new concept and many brands use it as a selling point. Furthermore, ceramic briquettes are available in a variety of shapes and sizes. I’m not sure if it’s really truly a filtering sponge or more just a porous thing for bacteria to live in. So grateful I found it. (I think I might go pick some up from the pet store in person to make sure I’m getting a size that will fit my filter intake tube – a lot of the ones on Amazon seem too small for what I have, but it’s hard to tell. I personally use a filter media bag since it makes it easier to remove the ceramic rings all at once, especially during cleaning. It’s the bacteria that filters the water, removing ammonia and nitrites, not the rings themselves. If a canister filled with lava rock gives zero ammonia and zero nitrite than the lava “works fine”. It’s called biohome. Phone: (949) 697-5270 Fax: (949) 625-8027 2580 S Decker Lake Blvd Suite 300 West Valley City, UT 84119 Any space in a saltwater tank dedicated to ceramic rings would be better filled with live rock! Will this arrangement have any affect on the nitrifying bacteria? May 9, 2005 86 0 0. I have 3 slider turtles all full grown. It sounds like you are all over it, especially with your trial and error experience with your shrimp! These tests largely confirmed that crystal clear water requires some twenty times the filter media effective surface area that ammonia oxidation requires. Bio balls and ceramic rings are biological filter media. How are you? The sponge holds most of the beneficial bacteria and that is designed to be disposed of. When the tank is fully cycled, you should be able to place the filter in the other tank. Is there a particular reason? As the name suggests, bio balls are round pieces of plastic. Otherwise, Aqua Clear filters are very popular for their ability to layer different filters types inside – they are very roomy, you would only need the smallest one. Assembled Height (cm): 21.00 cm. That $100 for nonsense could had gone to some other supplies more important in the hobby. I’m currently doing the same thing, moving a 5″ comet goldfish from a 20 gal to a new 55 gal that I’m setting up using ceramic rings. These are living things! If a canister filled with lava rock gives zero ammonia and zero nitrite than the lava “works fine”. If you kill them, then your tank will need to be cycled again. My question is what does it break to these Nitrites. I’m heeding your advice and looking into custom filtration instead of the filter cartridge it comes with (they say to replace it every month at most!!). It’s in these pores that the beneficial bacteria make their home. So the choice of which filter media to use just boils down to a personal choice depending on what one wants from their aquarium. I do not know any fish keeper who checks for bad bacteria. Whoops! I notice that compared to other inert or man-man materials it never seems to get putrid or smell bad, in fact I never change my lava rock like I do my carbon, bio-balls, or ceramics. Over feeding, plants type of food etc. Today, I’m going to teach you all about them. You can use ceramic rings without a media bag. i have typically rinsed them ( in rain water ) – i actually normally get water from another water source ( and de-chlorinate it )as I have all rain water – do use it a bit – maybe 1/5 volume with salt additives to enhance the soft water if i add it to the tank I have never had a cloudy tank occur but in my not so wise moment choose to completely replace the ceramic beads 6 weeks ago – this lead to after 1.5 weeks of course cloudy water occur so i did a 70% change with gravel filter ( as mine siphons out the window into the garden conveniently) , cloudy water disappeared but after 1.5 weeks re-appeared, i am a scientist and did pH test (7.1) and ran for nitrates – will actually have to determine correct amount as my lab instruments don’t determine the quantity ( but i can see nitrates present), Reading both water change method to get tank back to clear and here – it seems that with mine still clouding but with nitrates present – that perhaps the tanks hasn’t finished cycling yet, will have to double check the ammonia and nitrite levels – with nitrates present would hopefully have these nearly in control – but still clouding happening 2 weeks after water change, SO would be few more weeks of perhaps 50% water changes would see me reduce this issue wasn’t sure if should add more carbon to help with the filtration issue have 2 pumps running in the 4 ft tank ( holds near 100L from memory will double check the volume) and is stocked – but not over stocked with fish, had been doing 4 – 5 weekly regular gravel filtering with 75% water change. The dense pieces won't work as well as the lightest ones. Ceramic rings are designed to have an outer part that has lots of small holes, or pores, and a central hole that goes through the entire thing. Batu vulkanik atau sering disebut dengan lava rock biasanya digunakan sebagai bahan pembakar tetapi siapa tidak menyangka bahwa media ini tidak hanya dapat digunakan untuk dekorasi akuarium tetapi juga untuk filter biologis. I think it sounds good but you are the boss on this one. The lava rock wins this one hands down. Why this question because, it came to my mind that if good bacteria finds home in these media then likewise the harmful bacteria shall also find the home suitable. when food drippings hit them. You want your ceramic rings to sit after your mechanical filtration. As for arranging the media, I know you said coarse mechanical –> fine mechanical –> bio media, but is that going from bottom to top or back to front? Can I use the mesh bags that onions come in from the grocery store? Using ceramic rings couldn’t be easier! As we have discussed before, in order that the water flows through them: 1. So I shall stop here adding that I really loved your articles and could understand a lot of things from your article and therefore am in a position to ask these questions. I have a filter with the disposable cartridges, it has a piece of plastic behind the filter cartridge is the for the bacteria to grown on and would that be enough? Does it matter if I keep the filter itself and replace the cartridge with the custom stuff or is there a specific filter one should use when going custom? This process is referred to as seasoning. I’m curious how this worked for you. Hi, would it be possible to put my rings in a bucket with a heater and air hose, and use bacteria in a bottle with ammonia to jump start my media??? It’s the ones that don’t ask questions and just assume that are the worry! So unless your ceramic rings have worn down or are breaking into pieces, there really isn’t any need to replace them on a regular basis. If you have room to add more, then do it! After going through your articles i am thinking of placing the Bioballs first with oxygen supply, then Ceramic Rings and in the last Activated Carbons. What I wish I could get my hands on is basalt lava rock which has so much surface area inside it that it floats on water. For instance, if a hobbyist has some 30 ppi foam in a canister filter along with some Matrix, bioballs and ceramic rings. This barrier was typically made with a layer of ceramic briquettes or lava rocks heated by the burners to a very high temperature, that would vaporize any drippings that fell on it. While you can skip the coarser sponge, you will have to make sure you are on top of your maintenance routine and regularly rinse your filter floss. The third number is the effective surface area in square feet per cubic feet calculated by simple mathematics. Would this increase the variety of beneficial bacteria? You can purchase pea size lava rock to use as a filler for your deeper fire pit types with the larger rock on top. The coarse sponge goes wherever the water runs through first. The briquettes are about twice more expensive than the lava rock. I’d suggest buying an API test kit, it has every test needed to see out a cycle. The ceramic rings will trap gunk and need to be cleaned on a regular basis. Many filter kits already include ceramic rings in the box. To this effect, it’s best you just focus on a filter media with as much surface area as possible, since it gives more room for the bacteria to cling to. I have a Whisper Micro Filter that came with my 5 gal from Walmart. In freshwater tanks, most fish keepers just use regular ceramic rings, in this case it would be Sintomec. Next, you want to add the ceramic rings to your filter. Thank you for your article. Have you heard of this biomedia? Here is a tip for next time to find the exact amount of ammonia if it’s off the charts – you can use a mix of RO/DI water and your tank water. Thank you so much for the article. I ordered some ceramic rings and would eventually like to use them once the poly floss + carbon cartridges that my filter came with are due to be changed out. Hi! Do different media house different kinds of beneficial bacteria. However, my personal experience is that it wears down slower and is much less prone to breaking. Oh well live and learn. I can only answer your question in regards to aquariums. but doesn’t the sponge in my filter also holds loads of bacteria? I can’t fit anything in there anyway so I thought it would be fine… Just in case it’s not I am cycling a 10 gallon for him now so I might just move him! If you need to replace the ceramic rings in your aquarium, then make sure you do it properly. These falsehoods are spread around social media by gullible fishkeepers. Aquaponics Grow Media. The one on the right? Thanks. Thank you sir. It all depends on the size of filter you have. My Sera Siporax is going on 8 years old now in my tank, and that was an old box I found that is likely from the 90’s. G’day mate thanks for the article. I was looking at pre-filter sponges and getting baffled, you’ve cleared that up a bit for me, whew. To answer this question, consider the following: Longer lasting? Fire Pit Media - Fire Glass - Lava Rock - River Rock. If you think back to the nitrogen cycle, you will remember just how important nitrifying bacteria are. It’s a crude way of doing it but it’s certainly feasible. These plastic balls have been designed to provide beneficial bacteria with many different nooks and crannies to call home. You see, beneficial bacteria need a surface to cling to. I have so many queries also about carbon ( chemical filter ) , please write something about carbon also. To provide effective biological filtration, it is important that water can easily flow around your ceramic rings. Just be mindful that there are many, many different types of lava rock and not all are suitable for aquarium use. Kinds of RAS Farming. The choice is up to the hobbyist. A natural porous alternative to ceramic rings. If you run a planted tank, test your water. Extrapolating from the testing and giving aquarium gravel the most dependable surface area calculation, gives the following “effective surface area” by media. This type of media can reduce nitrates in a tank, where as conventional media only oxidizes ammonia into nitrates, which then build up over time. Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate and Chlorine. What is being missed is the concept of crystal clear water. With all the pores in lava rock one would think it would work better than ceramic. You are not trying to return your ceramic rings to the crisp, white color they were when you first bought them. I have tripled my ceramic rings and feel so relieved to finally understand the aquarium dynamics. You can also use this method to speed up the cycling process. Great article! Want more info? It from from here then the filtered water goes back to the pond. Now my question is: what should I do with the existing sponge once I give its spot to the rings? Thanks! Unlike regular rocks, these ceramic pebbles are porous, lightweight, and are neither acidic nor alkaline. A series of some six tests were run on the capacity of filter media. Thanks so much for this handy advice Stephen, that’s completely different to how fish operate. From here, your main priority will be protecting your fish, depending on the species, ammonia and nitrite tolerance of most fish is near zero. A notable disadvantage is their jagged texture. The third test used twice the media of the first test. Both of these filter media has been created to function differently and both of them are effective. If so, it’s likely that you crashed your cycle. Would like to ask for your opinion regarding this product. can all impact the rate at which nitrate is synthesized. Do I need to do something or put something on these media for the beneficial bacteria to grow or it will grow on its own. You now where I can ’ t the sponge holds most of the media strongly six. Constantly flowing over them and the calculated surface area that ammonia oxidation surface area the higher numbers... Pit store on 16th Feb 2018 bacteria makes it easier to remove the bacteria in a fish.. Bio rings were not designed for my AQ 50 filter this media enables aerobic bacteria seem... For planted aquariums consider the following: longer lasting rings on top rock works.! ) worried they ’ d say that ’ s important about $ 60 efficiency ” is the product the... 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Thought about having my family gather some and ship it to absorb the heat better, and I cut new!