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Re: DIY sump

> > Is this thing with bioballs a novelty? and what are
> > they good for?
>Bacteria and good flow through, you can use anything with high surface
>area(Lava rocked etc).

I must add to the master's reply:

There is one other factor to consider, and that is the tendency of the 
media you choose to clog. Depending on your tank conditions this may or may 
not be a big problem, but remember that materials with smaller pore sizes 
will clog more easily. Bioballs with their relatively large openings will 
have less surface area but will also show very little tendency to clog. 
Lava rock is basically a stone sponge, and while it will have *MUCH* more 
surface area than the bioballs, it will also be much more prone to getting 
clogged with gunk.

If you have very clean tank conditions and aren't expecting to have the 
filter being exposed to any particulates then you should be OK with just 
about any media. If you are going to have the filter exposed to 
particulates (fish waste, etc.), then you may want to consider using a 
media that is more easily cleaned and less likely to clog.

> > Are bigger balls better than smaller ones?
>Bigger balls are _always_ better than smaller balls.
>Smaller balls are embarrassing.
Haha. Can't say I would have expected this answer :-)

> > Can it be achieved
> > with other materials as well?
>Sure lava rock etc. Large gravel etc.
>High surface area and good even flow through.

Anything that won't react with the water. Most plastics should be safe, 
especially polyethylene and polypropylene that aren't routinely doped with 
anything. I recommending avoiding plastics that are colored RED, since 
there is something in many of the red pigments used in plastics that 
results in red versions of plastic things not getting NSF approval for food 
use. I've seen lots of catalogs where all the colors of buckets are NSF 
approved for food service use EXCEPT for the red ones. A good example is 
the Rubbermaid "Brute" trash cans, where white, yellow, gray, and black are 
NSF approved, but red is not. I'm not sure what the problem with the red 
is, but I recommend avoiding red plastics in aquariums just to be safe.


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