View Full Version : Bio wheel interfere with CO2?

01-27-2004, 1:41 PM
Just a quick question. Does running a bio-wheel qualify as "surface disturbance?" Does anybody run this in a planted tank without having to run CO2 injection, etc? That is basically the only surface disturbance I have, and was just curious if this causes loss of CO2 in the tank.

01-27-2004, 2:03 PM
Yes and yes. But I have started dosing with F. Excel lately and have noticed improvements.

01-27-2004, 5:46 PM
I dose Flourish Excel every-other day. Are you dosing daily?

01-27-2004, 5:50 PM
If you dose with flourish excel, surface disturbance is not much of an issue since you are not putting CO2 into the water. I would NOT recommend a bio-wheel with CO2 injection. You will loose a lot of CO2 with a bio-wheel. I used to have to inject about 5 times as much CO2 when I had a bio-wheel.

Captain Hook
01-27-2004, 6:30 PM
I have been dosing Excel every other day for about a month. Not sure what it is doing though because I have used it since set up.

01-27-2004, 7:01 PM
So would you recommend that I eliminate the bio wheel? I don't plan on doing injections if its not feasible. Its a biowheel 30 on a 36 gallon tank.

01-27-2004, 9:43 PM
With a 36 gallon, dosing with Flourish Excel can get pretty expensive in the long run. I would suggest you try DIY CO2 or a pressurized system. I would then get rid of the bio-wheel.

If you are going to stay with the Flourish, you can probably keep the bio-wheel.

01-28-2004, 12:26 AM
I was using a Bio Wheel on my 10-gallon planted tank but have since removed it. I cut a piece of foam to fit the outflow of my power filter and now there is no surface disturbance at ALL.

Dosing with Flourish Excel at the moment but I just got a 5lb CO2 tank that I'm getting ready to setup :D

I'd also like to change to one of those small, Eheim "Ecco" canister filters. I think that the smallest one would do fine on a 10-gallon :)

01-28-2004, 11:31 AM
I'm thinking about a filter change. Right now I'm running a magnum 350. It's a bit of a hassle to clean, etc. So I'm thinking of a power filter. Any recommendation from fellow planters on whats good? I always hear aquaclear, but I really like Marinelands products. Just wondering what you all use and like. Thanks!

01-28-2004, 11:34 AM
I have switched to all canister filters on my planted tanks. I have a fluval 204 on my 20 gallon and a filstar XP3 on my 55. I like the filstar (even though it is hard to get started). It it designed really well. My next filter will be an eheim canister.

01-28-2004, 11:48 AM
So if I keep the magnum running, then maybe the bio-wheel just has to go?

01-29-2004, 1:15 PM
emoore, how far below the surface of the water in the tank, is the top of the Filstar? I have found that my Filstar runs and prime's much better when it is lower.
Fresh, any type of bio-wheel is a detriment to CO2 injection. It will not effect the amount of Carbonic Acid derived from the dosing of Excel, so you have two options......keep the bio-wheel and dose the Excel or go with DIY CO2 and lose the bio-wheel.


01-29-2004, 2:38 PM
djlen, the top of my filstar is about 2.5 feet below the top surface of my tank. It starts really easily when I just clean the filter and not the hoses (using the quick disconnects) but when I clean the hoses and have to try to restart the syphon, I have a few problems. The syphon never want to keep going. I usually have to fiddle with it for 15 minutes to get a continous syphon.

01-29-2004, 5:10 PM
I start my canister filter with an aquarium vacuum. Just pop the input uptube off the filter and stick the small end of the vacuum tube against it (doesn't have to fit tight). Lower the whole vacuum under the water level until it's full of water, then lift the wide end out upside down. All the water in the vacuum will shoot up and into the filter. Doing this once should be enough to prime most filters if the canister already has water in it.

Regarding HOB filters, you can keep it, just put it on a timer so it runs at night. Then you get a lot of filtration at night when churn doesn't matter, and a calm surface during the day to keep in the co2. Just make sure that the filter side of the U tube is below water level so the U tube keeps water in it when it's off, otherwise it'll syphon out the filter and de-prime itself.

01-29-2004, 10:42 PM
Turning off a filter for significant intervals is a good guarantee of no biofiltration. The filter will function as a mechanical filter only. Bad practice IMHO. Not in my fish tanks, thank you very much.

01-30-2004, 11:41 AM
Ok, I mothballed the biowheel. Hopefully I'll see the plants grow a little better. The magnum's return plumbing isn't very helpful as far as preventing surface disturbance. They have the diffuser, but its not deep enough under the surface. Perhaps its there to do just that, disturb the surface. I ended up tilting the diffuser, so that will help as well. The water on the surface has movement, but no waves, so hopefully that will help.

02-01-2004, 5:39 PM
Just following the discussion on biowheels and CO2.

I just set up a 29 gallon planted tank and because the eheim 2213 I ordered came without some of the parts, I was forced to improvise and came up with and emperor 280 which does have a biowheel.

However, there is a feature whereby you can adjust the flow so the surface disturbance is almost nonexistent.

Is there some other issue visa vi C02 and biowheels apart from surface agitation?

I suppose I could get the replacemant parts for the eheim..and then figure out how to set it up..lol

02-01-2004, 5:54 PM
For optimum absorption of gas, there should be zero surface disturbance of the water. Bio wheels cause a direct conflict with this principle. It can be overcome with an increase in injection but is an unnecessary expense.
In a small tank where a product like Seachem Excel is used to administer Carbonic Acid to the water table, a bio wheel causes much less a problem.