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The following situations only occur some of the time as the Aquaripure filter normally cycles without any problem.
It has been over eight weeks and my filter has still not cycled: The Aquaripure might have difficulty cycling if it is not the primary biological filter. The solution in that situation is to get rid of the excess biological filtration. For example, get rid of most or all of the bio-balls in a wet/dry (definitely keep some if the tank is well stocked.) Don’t worry; the nitrate filter will be there to pick up the slack. If you have followed all the instructions and the filter still doesn’t seem to have cycled the filter can be fed nutrients up to every four days and the flow rate adjusted every day or two. In some challenging tanks users have reported great success injecting nutrient every two days along with adjusting the flow rate every two days. It is also recommended that UV lights be turned off. If you do want to use UV then limit it’s use to maybe an hour a day or so as you do not want the water to be too sterile, you still want some microfauna in the tank. You should reduce the flow rate by 25-50% if injecting nutrient and adjusting more often does not work.
The flow rate of my filter fluctuates excessively: This is actually a good sign as it means that the nitrate filter is beginning to work. Some fluctuation is inevitable and normal. When the nitrate filter is fed it creates a bacterial bloom within the filter that creates resistance to the water flow but this is also what cleans the water and removes nitrates. Just make sure you are opening the flow control valve completely and then adjust downward to the correct flow rate. If you still feel the flow rate slows excessively you can increase the flow rate when you set it up to 25-50% to compensate.
The pump is noisy, stopped, or making bubbles: Bubbles sometimes may be present for the first few weeks. The red pressure release valve will eliminate those. If the power to the pump is shut off for a brief period of time then there will be a pressure differential between the pump and the Aquaripure, water will quit flowing through the filter, and the pump will have to be “reset”. Sometimes pressing the pressure release button will correct this. If not, then to reset the pump take the following steps: 1) Unplug the pump 2) Disconnect the inflow line from the pump 3) Plug the pump back in and wait 15 seconds 4) Reconnect the inflow line back to the pump.
After I feed the filter there is a slight cloudiness in my tank or my fish do not look well: Occasionally there might be a slight cloudiness and this is not a concern. It normally disappears on its own in a day or two but if the cloudiness is severe then water changes are recommended. Reduce the amount of nutrient injected by about 25% or until this problem is eliminated. If the fish in the Aquarium swim strangely or look distressed after connecting the Aquaripure then a water change is recommended as a precaution and you should make sure you have adequate surface water flow and aeration in the tank. An aquarium using the Aquaripure needs more aeration than normal. If the situation is severe please watch our video on how to resolve cloudy water issues.
The effluent of the filter smells: It is normal for a filter to have a slight odor but it should only be noticeable if you put your nose within a few feet of the outflow tube. It you find that it is noticeable in the room then there is an easy solution. Moving the outflow tubes location can help some. Running the effluent through a small bag of carbon will also help remove odor. Normally the odor will have be a mild gassy odor. If the odor is a strong rotten egg smell then you can increase the flow rate by 25% (not decrease) and reduce the amount of nutrient injected by 25%. Usually any noticeable smell is temporary and will go away on its own or is easily remedied. As the filter cleans the tank the odor will diminish over time.
Can I medicate my tank when using the Aquaripure?
Unfortunately most products designed to kill algae or fish disease can interfere with the Aquaripure in a number of ways, even if they say they are safe for bacteria.
They will decimate the microfauna population of a tank as well as kill off a lot of the bacteria in the Aquaripure. A small hospital tank is recommended as an alternative. If you really feel you need to medicate the tank then Aquaripure recommends turning off the Aquaripure and medicating the tank for 2 days. Then run a lot of carbon in the tank for a day to absorb the medication and THEN turn the Aquaripure back on. This will still decimate the microfauna in the tank so you should also add a little live phytoplankton, rotifer, copepod mix to the tank to re-seed it with microfauna after this.
If the filter has ever been completely off for any more than 4 days then you need to follow the directions found in the next FAQ answer directly below.
How do I store the Aquaripure for later use? The Aquaripure can remain dormant (no water flow through it) for up to 4 days without any problems. If it has been longer than 4 days and you wish to restart the Aquaripure then it is recommended you let aquarium water flow slowly through the filter while you discard about 5 gallons or so of the effluent. Again, you do not want the water that is in an inactive Aquaripure filter going back into the tank. If you wish to not use the Aquaripure for longer than two weeks then it is recommended you drain and prepare it for permanent storage.
The vast majority of the water in the filter can drained from the unit by removing the tubing and tilting at an angle it so that the inflow of the unit is at the very bottom. The filter may need to rotated and flipped several times to get as much water as possible out of the unit. Then you need to obtain a cheap air pump and connect it to the inflow tubing and let air circulate throughout the unit until it is completely dry internally. This may take a week or so. When finished, the Aquaripure will be functionally as good as new and ready for storage as long as needed. You can also rinse it out well with tap water, leave it full of tap water, but you will want to rinse it out again really well before using it again. It the storage will be long term drying it out is preferred. When you re-connect the Aquaripure you can purchase additional bacterial culture for faster cycling. Without adding bacterial cultures the Aquaripure will cycle naturally but will take much longer, about 12 weeks.
For more details or all other questions just contact us.