Home Made Filter Cartridges?

  • Joliet Jake
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Joliet Jake created the topic: Home Made Filter Cartridges?

I was just wondering, are any of you making your own Filter Cartridges for your Bio Wheel type Filters?

I have a new Bio Wheel Canopy that has 4 Bio Wheels and thus, 4 Marineland filter cartridges and those things are about $17-19 U.S. for a replacement 4-Pack.
Now I'm confident that I can save alot of money by somehow making my own replacement Cartridges. I have seperate filter basket slots that I can use for activated carbon or whatever else I might need to use but the initial Mechanical Filtration is nothing more then a floss or sponge pad at best. I was thinking that I could simply save the frame from the initial filter cartridges, strip away the media that has a small pocket of carbon and replace it every maintenance period with a slab of foam or other bulk type media that I can cut to size.

Anyone else doing this at present? At $17 for 1 set of replacements, I'd be foolish not to seek an economical replacement. These are Marineland's Rite-Size D cartridges and they come in a variety of sizes depending upon the filter you have.
I'm sure there's got to be a better less expensive alternative method. Let me know if you are doing similar and I will also post if I succeed in an alternative. ;)

(YES, I know I could have gone with a large Canister Filter or two and that would have been perhaps less expensive to maintain (if you use generic bulk medias) but I have had large Eheim's in the past and found that route to be a tad messy. I have currently a Bio Wheel Canopy from Marineland on a smaller tank and that has but one Bio Wheel and one filter cartridge and I happen to like the easy no fuss maintenance of simply pulling out the cartridge and sliding a new one in place from the top of your aquarium, with little to no mess. So I was and am willing to bear more expense in trade for the convenience and ease of maintenance. Now I am just seeking a financial short cut on the maintenance too.)

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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c_etude replied the topic: Re:Home Made Filter Cartridges?

I don't use a bio-wheel, but my over the tank filters, but you can do substitutes at much less money.

With sufficient bacteria, you really DON'T need carbon--unless you specifically want to remove a chemical, or it's a new tank to help keep ammonia levels down (until your bacteria grows better).

You can actually use Marlineland's "Rite-Size filter pad" which can be cut to any filter. Those are cool. They do work. Other companies make them.

PERSONALLY I like Aqua-Tech products, and their replacement filter cartridges are quite cheap compaired to others I seen. They may fit. Measure it and see and compair one in the store.
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  • Joliet Jake
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:Home Made Filter Cartridges?

c_etude wrote:

I don't use a bio-wheel, but my over the tank filters, but you can do substitutes at much less money.

With sufficient bacteria, you really DON'T need carbon--unless you specifically want to remove a chemical, or it's a new tank to help keep ammonia levels down (until your bacteria grows better).

You can actually use Marlineland's "Rite-Size filter pad" which can be cut to any filter. Those are cool. They do work. Other companies make them.

PERSONALLY I like Aqua-Tech products, and their replacement filter cartridges are quite cheap compaired to others I seen. They may fit. Measure it and see and compair one in the store.


That's exactly what I have on order right now. Marineland's bulk filter pad that I will simply cut to size for each filter slot. I agree I don't need the carbon and it's a joke the amount of carbon is so little in those all in one pads anyway. I will keep bulk carbon on hand and some filter bags should I ever need to add that to a filter slot.

If I had to actually spend $17 US every other week to replace all 4 of my filter cartridges, I'd go broke or at least would whine about it. There's got to be a less expensive way and I intend to find it. The key is just to find some suitable bulk padding and that stuff may just be it. I'll bet theres better and less expensive stuff around too so I will continue to look. These filter Manufacturers are like the Lexmark Printers where you get a good inexpensive printer cheap and then they make all their profits selling you overpriced replacement ink cartridges.

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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Joliet Jake replied the topic: Re:Home Made Filter Cartridges?

Not to talk to myself here or answer my own post, but this is too good to be true almost for me.. The "bulk" filter pad material I ordered came today and what a savings I can now realize.

In my filter hood I have 4 bio wheels with four filter pads (one per wheel) and the replacement cost would have been roughly $17 per 4 pads.
With this bulk pad, I can cut out of it 12 pads. 12 Filter cartridges would have cost a total of $51 US but this bulk pad (which is the same exact material made by Marineland and may in fact be a tad heavier ) cost me only $5.99 US for the whole thing.

BINGO!!! ;)

:whistle: :whistle: :whistle: :silly:

Ken, 51, NJ-USA (2 Tiger Oscars)
Need to give away one healthy 1 year old Oscar if you know of anyone interested. See the adoption thread for photos. Thanks!
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c_etude replied the topic: Re:Home Made Filter Cartridges?

Oh yes! And reuseable over and over and over and over and over again :-)
Though I DO use carbon only for these reasons:
(1) Establishing a new tank--keep in for AT LEAST a month (requires about two changes in most cases)-until bacteria are vigorous.

(2) Deliberately removing a chemical such as antibiotic.
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