fluval C2/3/4 HOB filter with wet/dry incorperated!!


Reefing newb
I purchased this filter for my 35g hex setup....I got a skimmer so I figured this would help especially since there's no Bio wheel and it also has a wet/dry filter in the little HOB.... but I've never seen anyone with it or heard any good reviews on it.... I'm new at this so I'm wondering what you all think of it....I'd like to hear the feedback from u pros...what u all think? :bounce:
Most people arent big fans of powerfilters. However I like them. For a fowlr system you wont have to worry as much about nitrate issues. So cleaning it wont be as often as with a reef tank. I still think I would give it a good clean every two to three weeks. You dont really need the bio part of the filter. Your bio filtration will be in your live rock. I have a much less fancy powerfilter on my reef tank with all the bio crap taken out. When I want to run carbon I put in a cartridge and change it weekly. When I dont want carbon I just run it empty for flow and a nice ripple across the surface. This and a hob skimmer will work on a fowlr, if you have enough live rock and if you maintain it. You will still need to do water changes every two weeks or so.
Thx Ted...since your the only reply, have u looked at the specific filter I'm talking about? With me having it and a skimmer as well with a good amount of live rock...do u think I can do water changes weekly or biweekly? I don't wanna push it but I figure I'm playing extra safe with all the kinds of filtration.
I was not familiar with that filter (most people do not use HOB filters, especially if they have a skimmer) and it looks so high tech. :lol: I was like, "Oooooh shiny!" It does look like it is more suited for freshwater. But HOB filters and wet/drys are.

I am firmly in the camp that filters such as these are worse for your water quality than not having them at all. Especially since you have a protein skimmer. I'm not sure why you would need one.

Even with no filtration whatsoever -- no filter, no skimmer, you should be just fine doing water changes once a week or once every other week. If it was me, I would go with only the protein skimmer and do water changes every week or two.

Since you are using this filter (and again, wet/drys are generally frowned upon in saltwater), watch your nitrates carefully. They may start to go up. Like Ted said, you will have to keep it clean. That's the downside to these filters -- they end up being more work than they are worth because if you don't keep them clean enough they start to ruin your water. Most people recommend that you clean them thoroughly once a week.

If your nitrates start to go up, there's a sign that you need to get rid of it altogether and just have a skimmer.

A skimmer and live rock is really all you need. Especially in a small tank like yours. Many people with a tank your size don't even use a skimmer because water changes are all they need.
I looked up that filter on line as well, never have seen one in person. My opinion on power filters is normally keep it simple. Basically a box with a pump. Provides flow at a cheap price and has a easy pace to put carbon if I choose to use it. However, you are doing a fowlr. You dont need all zeros on your test kit. Nitrates for fish only arent going to be a big deal. You will still want them low because of the cuc or if you have shrimps in the system but its not as big a headache as a reef. Since you have already bought it and if you are like me its already out of the box and wet. Run it and see what it can do. If your traites go up then gut the inside out. If it is a large unit (being that it has some sort of wet/dry in it would have to be) you could mod it into a hob refugium in the future. I had a tertatec pf500 that I did that with on a 10 gallon and it worked really well. I even won the first 10 gallon reef contest using it. A year after the heater failed in it and boiled the tank but that was more my fault then anything. :twocents:
Ted....how could I change it into a refugium...I'm not savvy on a refugium...I've read a lot but when it comes down to sumps and refugium I just don't get em....and bifferwine.... I know I don't see many reefs with wet dry .....but I thought the bacteria build up on the Bio balls was a good thing....like my setup has c nodes , so I figured same positive outcome....figured it would be like a boost for the extra bacteria in live rock.....not sure if I want live sand....but that's also why I stood away from a hob with a Bio wheel...trying my best to figure out my way in this saltwater game
First off if you have live rock in your tank, 1 to 2 Lbs per gallon, that is where the good bacteria will be. As long as you have the live rock you dont need any place else for it. Bio balls where created for this purpose and it works well in fresh water tanks. In salt tanks they tend to collect to much crap and become a nitrate factory. It doesnt happen fast, usually 6 months to a year but it does happen. Again not a huge issue because you are going fowlr. For reefs it becomes a big problem.

A refugium is just a place that things can grow undisturbed. Most people have cheato and a light in it. The cheato eats phosphates, nitrates, things like that. When it grows larger you divide it and throw out or sell to the lfs or a friend what you no longer need. So in a nut shell, things you dont want in your water make the cheato grow and you export it out of the tank by halving it every month to two months. You do need a light on the cheato, a cheap clip on fixture with a 6500k twisty bulb does the trick. (that is what i use)

Converting a power filter to a refugium is really simple. Get rid of the top and any thing else that comes out of the box, bio mat, filter cartridges etc. leaving a empty spot to place the cheato. Place a light shinning on the cheato and presto you now have a fuge.
Hmmmm....I see...so I'm thinking if I notice my nitrate levels raising...then I should just eliminate the cnode wet dry section and just use the regular carbon and filters? I don't know what a cheat is....but it does sound simple...but how does the cheato help if the water passing thru it goes back into the tank....in my case cause its in my hob?
the cheato needs the water flow, it is basically a plant and will eat nitrates, phosphates etc. its really simple, the easiest type of natural filtration there is.
Definitely sounds like it....do u think I should just do that from the beginning....or should I wait till I have live stock in the tank? But it sounds quite simple...all I have to do like u said is just keep it small enough in the filter....does that also mean, eliminate everything in the filter...pads /carbon/etc
If it was me I would run it the way that it is and see how it works...your still a fowlr and you can control trates with water changes...
I'm definitely going to do water changes....but if u think the regium idea is better then I'll just go in that direction....im not trying to get out of water changes cause in all reality I have a small tank...so its only 20% which is around 4-5 gallons....not much...I just don't want infections like ich .... waisting money and everything dieing....another question....does the cheato need 24hrs of light or 8...
OK so after watching several videos and doing research...I've decided to change my fluval c3 into a hob refugium... I'm going to have live rock in it and chaeto. I hope this will do well with the nutrients in my tank although I don't expect it to do much with nitrate levels cause my hob is small compared to tank...but after my tank is cycled and up and running I'm going to activate my plans of the refugium... wish me luck....thx ted