As we have said it is several of the articles on this website and in several of the programs of our podcast, the filter is the most important piece of our aquariums. The correct maintenance of the filter is vital so that our aquarium is in good condition for our fish. In this post we will see, in a simple way, how to perform the maintenance of the aquarium filter.

Why does a filter need maintenance?

Are you really asking me that? EVERYTHING in this life needs maintenance for its proper functioning, and our aquariums will not be less. But as we have already said in this article we are not going to see works and miracles of maintaining them, but we are going to focus on the filter, perhaps its fundamental piece.

A filter needs maintenance to ensure that it works correctly and that the bacteria that perform the biological filtration in the aquarium have good conditions for them to continue doing their vital work. In an aquarium that does not work properly all, or part of these bacteria, could die and therefore the aquarium would be uncycled. And believe me, you don't want this to happen.

How to perform the aquarium filter maintenance?

Our advice is that we review them every week and above all, every time you have stopped for something. For this we will have to look at two aspects.

1. Check that there are no small leaks, or make strange noises, or anything that points to something is wrong.. Check it visually, and especially when you've been moving it to clean it or for anything (to put items into the aquarium, for example).

In external aquarium filters it is more common than the small leaks seem because something does not fit perfectly and when you move it, a drop of water begins to come out (it has happened to me). Check it again a few hours after having moved it, since a droplet after 5-10 minutes is not noticeable, but after a few hours the small leaks are more evident.

And I assure you this happens. My mother called me telling me that the 600-liter aquarium was emptying (although if you throw a glass of water the puddle was larger). It was because a rubber had moved a little and made a drop almost negligible, but after a few hours and if it showed.

2. Check that the flow of water leaving the filter has not lost strength. If we have a very dirty filter, it will lose strength and therefore its operation will be reduced. If you see that the filter has lowered its strength, it is time to clean it, since it is collapsed. If this happens the problem is twofold. On the one hand, if less water passes through the filter, the bacteria have less water to "clean up of ammonium and nitrites" (if this sounds like Chinese, you can listen to Program 4 of Aquarium Pill Pills). But on the other, these bacteria need oxygen to breathe and if they do not get enough water, they die, and the aquarium declines. And I repeat, believe me, you don't want this to happen.

How to clean the aquarium filter?

To clean it, it is essential that our filter bacteria do not die. With which it is FORBIDDEN to clean the filter with water that is not from our aquarium (since it is the only one with the ideal temperature, we know that it does not have chlorine and that our bacteria are comfortable in it). It is also PROHIBITED that the material where the bacteria are dried, so always keep it in water.

To clean the filter just follow these steps:

  1. We turn off the filter, remove it from the water if it is internal and disassemble it.
  2. We put the filter material in water while cleaning all the plastic parts, rubber, etc. If these are very dirty, if you can use tap water.
  3. We clean the material or filtering materials with aquarium water, for example from the one we get for the aquarium water changes. It does not have to remain unpolluted, it is only to rinse it to remove the largest remains that are preventing the water from passing correctly.
  4. We assemble the filter and connect it again.

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