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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

I have an Aqueon Minibow 5 gallon w/one betta and a couple of Amano Shrimp that I've had for about a year. One thing I don't like is the filter with the fairly expensive replacement filter pads. The OEM pads are plastic with a small amount of carbon in the middle covered with a floss. A package of 3 is around $12 - ouch. I find they tend to get clogged with algae fairly fast as they sit right under the LED light.

So here's what I've done using stuff from a fluval edge and aquaclear 20 filter (stuff I already have) to modify the aqueon filter:

I've added a fluval pre-filter sponge around the intake (which I'm hoping serves the purpose of the floss inside being the mechanical medium as well as a medium for beneficial bacteria).

I've put a fluval zeo carb satchel (combo carbon & ammonia) inside where the aqueon filter used to go. It fits perfectly and doesn't affect the flow.

Under the carbon/ammonia satchel I've put a layer of aquaclear biomax which I plan to just leave in the bottom tray under the activated carbon for the biological medium.

So I have: stage 1 - pre-filter sponge, stage 2 - carbon/ammonia "zeo-carb" satchel, and stage 3 - aquaclear bio-max.

Am I missing anything, anyone see any issues with these modifications to the minibow filter set up?


* update - since making these changes tonight ... I noticed the amano shrimp are way more active and foraging about.
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