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Bulk activated carbon-good source?


20 Dec 2008
As per header.

I am using carbon in my filter, but it's way too expensive in small quantities.

Does anyone have any recommendations? There are loads at varying prices on eBay, so not sure what to go for or avoid.

Take a llok at this, it explaines about all there is to know..

Actualy almost all bulk portions of carbon pellets available in the lfs is the wrong one. Dont'know if wrong is the best word for it, it's the less efficient one actualy best to use for air filtration, but for water it is not porous enough to perform optimaly. And there for a waste of money, it will clog up much to soon make it even less effective..

Thinking of cost-effectiveness you might be beter off thinking about why are you using it and do you realy need it that much.. It doesn't do much good regarding water quality.. Bottom line is it does the contrary, your water might look a tad clearer, but what the carbon takes out are actualy the very healthy himuc substances which cause the water to color slightly. So if you do not use it for personal preferences and aesthetics, there is not much other reason for using it other than filtering out added medications when the tank has been treated with this.

A tanin stained tank from driftwood will clear up eventualy with doing water changes, depending on the volume and kind of wood used this can take a while. But maybe then doing extra water changes for this periode is still much cheaper than bying and filtering over carbon. It only will take i bit more effort to do and involves having some patience.

Another thing i noticed myself, because i do not filter over carbon and do not mind and actualy (my fish and so do i) prefer slightly tanin stained water. I also build my own lights. But this is just a side note i like to share for who likes to know.. I see light having significant effect on how the water color is perceived. I have a tank with some 10.000k light above it it has slightly stained water but it looks very clear. Compaired to the other tank which has 6500K looks much more stained/yellowish, but it realy isn't. It's the light creating this effect. 🙂 Anyway could be something to consider, invest long term in carbon or invest in changing some light sources, that requires some calculation for what is cheaper in the end.
Coincidentally I have ordered new lights yesterday- the Chihiros A series which runs at about 8000K. I rarely replace my carbon, but baulked at the replacement at the LFS at £12 a pop. It does make the water clear, and my thinking was along the lines of if I could get it cheap I would continue to use it- £12 every 4-6 weeks is definitely not worth it.
Instead of carbon use Purigen. Same positive effects - reduces tannins and some organic wastes but generally leaves the inorganic ferts we add alone. Also it can be recharged with bleach atleast 4-5 times before needing replacement. Save the AC for removing medication or an emergency like if someone sprays pesticide around your tank.
Cheap AC would be available from drinking water filter suppliers or Lab chemical suppliers