Habitat - Indoor :: DIY Filter

Turtle tank setups and other indoor configurations.

Post Posted: Thu Jan 21, 2010 7:54 pm   DIY Filter Media

I am thinking of making my own canister filter using info from the sticky "DIY Filter" but I am trying to make one the will be large enough for a 100-125 gallon turtle tank. I'm think the pump will need to pump about 800 GPH. I would like my filter to have media in it so that it will be effective biological, chemical, and mechanical filtration. I'm trying to figure out what types of media would be best. I was thinking possibly sand or gravel, Bio-Wheels, and activated carbon. Does anyone have any suggestions as to effective low-cost filter media? Since this filter is going to be so big I'm trying to find filter media that I can buy in large quantaties and not break the bank. My second obstactle is that I can't find a container big enough to be the canister for a filter this size. Since all the pumps are submersible I need something that a large pump will fit inside but is also water/air tight. Any ideas?
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Post Posted: Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:48 am   

For a turtle's tank, in my opinion, chemical filtration is mostly useless. After
mechanical filtration, I max out available space with biomedia. Bioballs (the black
plastic thingy with rounded spikes) are quite cheap. Another option for biomedia
is to use plastic sponges used to scrub dishes. Where I live, bioballs come cheaper.

For a tank that big, I doubt DIY container for canister filter can hold the water
pressure. You may want to research sump system or build an over-the-tank
filter instead.
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Post Posted: Sun Apr 18, 2010 6:56 pm   

I'm of the opinion that certain things aren't worth DIY, and a filter is one of them. You can pick up a used Eheim canister for less than half of retail price, and by the time you build one that's just as good, you're out at least as much money and way too many hours.
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Post Posted: Sat May 08, 2010 4:55 pm   

I built a quick filter from a Wal-mucil canister and it is working great. I had a small water pump from an old desk fountain, so the whole filter cost me $5.00

I've cleared up the water in my 10g tank in about three hours. I'll apply this same design to a larger tank when I get one, I might just use an inline pump instead of an in tank pump.


It will look much better once I get rid of the Wal-mucile label and add a background to the tank!
Image

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Notice the turtle that looks smashed behind the intake filter? Actually he isn't stuck, just enjoying some nice clean water. :)
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Post Posted: Sun May 09, 2010 8:40 am   

Wow, that's a pretty good design! Thanks for sharing. :)
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Post Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 11:03 pm   Re: DIY Filter

i like your design and plans. i would definately like to see your creativeness when you make a bigger filter. i plan on making my own tank/tub and filter soon and i need to absorb as much info on these things as i can! what do you do about stuff getting caught in the intake house though as it seems it would happen quite often. also what about the chemical side of things. i know theres supposed to be some bacterias and special things like that but without a way to "regulate" that how will you combat that :?:
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Post Posted: Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:00 am   Re: DIY Filter

Nice Job, i'm a big fan of DIY.
For turtle tanks, if you need a canister filter, you might as well (if you have the space) build a wet/dry sump tank out of a 10 gallon tank. Get an overflow siphon or overflow box, a basket with the sponge or other filtrate, lava rock, ~300+ gph pump and some tubing.

the lava rock is for the biological filtration, the high surface area of the rock is ideal for lots of bacteria to live on and convert the nitrates to nitrites, and having a 10+ gallon sump tank adds to the overall volume of the tank water.
Animals are such agreeable friends - they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms. ~George Eliot
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Post Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 1:30 am   Re: DIY Filter

It's been a while since someone has posted on this thread but I've been reading it like crazy and join the forum specifically for this. i just made my first canister filter!! there are a few design flaws but i will work them out on the next filter with your help :) I do have a few questions tho. I have a 40 gallon tank and i used a one gallon "canister" with a small pump that does 450 LITERS per hour. My pump is sucking out water faster then the input tube can feed into the canister...i had to adjust the pump to a lower setting. Does anyone have any idea why or what to do in order to fix this problem? I think i need a bigger diameter tube with a stronger pump. ALSO, my input tube has an air pocket as the water is falling into the canister. This only happened after i made the input hose shorter. What's going on? i would like my next filter to have all these problems worked out. please help me out.
thank you
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asis
 
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Post Posted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 4:47 pm   Re: DIY Filter

What kind of pump do you have now? What kind of inlet are you using?
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Post Posted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 9:00 pm   Re: DIY Filter

hey thanks for replying. I pulled it out of a little frog fountain laying around. I believe it's called the ATMAN 302. My tubing is 1/2" X 3/8" any ideas? I think this filter would be good for a 10-20 gallon tank.
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asis
 
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Post Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:13 am   Re: DIY Filter

No prob. Which design are you using? I've never made my own canister but will try to help you troubleshoot :)
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Post Posted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:47 pm   Re: DIY Filter

asis wrote: My pump is sucking out water faster then the input tube can feed into the canister...i had to adjust the pump to a lower setting. Does anyone have any idea why or what to do in order to fix this problem? I think i need a bigger diameter tube with a stronger pump. ALSO, my input tube has an air pocket as the water is falling into the canister.


Most of the name brand caninsters work off a siphon. The pump isn't actually sucking water from the tank at all. A siphon is started from the tank to the filter. Because the input hose to canister to output hose makes a big "U", the water levels in the houses between the input and output balance once the canister is full. (fill a U shaped tube with water and both ends of the U will be of the same height). The pump in the canister merely pushes the water into the tank.... the siphon keeps the canister fed and the water flow is constant no matter what the pump flow is.
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Post Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 12:25 pm   Re: DIY Filter

hmm interesting. When i first used the filter i placed the canister's top level at the tanks bottom level. Then i sucked in air from the output tube to start filling up the canister, When the canister filled with water it began to travel up the output tubed but then stopped half way....that's when i plugged in the pump which pushed the water all the way out the output tube. Worked like a charm for about an hour. Then the pump lowered the water level in the canister till it was sucking a little bit of air and water. Should I lower the canister even more till i have a siphon without the pump plugged in?? If that's the case, then what is the purpose of having a pump? I'm just curious is all.
Thanks for the replies
BTW my design is: input tube > canister with water pump on top > output tube. (all wires are entering the canister threw the top.)

I'm wrong. If i wait long enough the pressure builds and will push the water threw the output tube. I don't seem to have any problems anymore except for a newly discovered leak. Thanks for the help. Maybe I'll make a video on how to build one of these for other members when i make a better design.
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asis
 
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Post Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:40 am   Re: DIY Filter

The point of the pump is water flow. Gravity will pull water down the tube and fill the canister. The weight of the water will also create some pressure through the canister and the media and depending on your canister design it may even push some of the water back up the return hose.

In a perfect closed loop (a simple hose in a U shape), the water will balance at equal heights in the hose and stop. The weight of the volume of water pushing downward in the tube will equal the weight of the volume of water going up the tube on the other side. You'll have no water flow. The pump pushes water out that second half of the system to keep the water flowing.
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Post Posted: Sun Apr 01, 2012 8:16 pm   Re: DIY Filter

hey all,
I have a 55 gallon show tank its kinda tall. I want to build a filter for it but i dont know much about it. I have a pretty 10 gallon plastic storage container that I want to use. I obviously need a pump to bring the water out and something to bring the clean water back in. Does anyone know what I could do here? My turtles are currently in about 6 inches of water. The rock filter I have in there limits the water level. I feel they don't have enough room to swim around with. I want to build something thats not going to cost me a lot of money. Any ideas would be super helpful.
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