View Full Version : changing carbon

03-12-2010, 04:18 AM
How often do you all change your carbon? I've been changing it out once a month, but having the three tanks I go through quite a bit of it. Since I've never noticed any yellowing of the water I'm thinking I can stretch the changes out some.

03-12-2010, 04:22 AM
I change every month. If I skip a month I notice my old water in my WC bucket has a slight yellow tinge to it.

03-12-2010, 04:24 AM
I change mine every 4-6 weeks. I don't really notice a difference either but I run it anyways :razz:

03-12-2010, 04:26 AM
I change out at the beginning of every month

03-12-2010, 04:47 AM
Once a month here.

Tom R
03-12-2010, 04:56 AM
I change mine out every 30 days giver or take a day.

Tom R

03-12-2010, 05:01 AM
Once a month. I'm using some really fine carbon in a phosban reactor so after 4-5 weeks its so plugged up that barely any water is travelling through and I'm forced to change it.

03-12-2010, 05:23 AM
i haven't changed my carbon in my 12g nano since the day i bought it... now going on 2 years...lol heres a pic

03-12-2010, 06:28 AM
Monthly (well, approximately) for me too. I think I notice the tank is brighter the day after a switch out which tells me I might be stretching it out a bit too long. :neutral:

03-12-2010, 04:06 PM
I change about once a month, if I go longer the water does get a tint of yellow.

06-14-2010, 01:13 AM
Oh my someone told me once a week! PM me if this is too much...

06-14-2010, 07:37 AM
Oh my someone told me once a week! PM me if this is too much...

who was that.....LFS?:razz:

monthly for me too

06-14-2010, 04:35 PM
Oh my someone told me once a week! PM me if this is too much...

Once a week isn't necessarily a bad thing but to me its a waste of carbon, I change monthly or if the tank is looking kind of scuzzy I"ll change it more often than that, never more often than 2 weeks.

06-14-2010, 05:41 PM
Anyone use Chemi-Pure?

06-15-2010, 08:45 PM
Lol was the LFS, i will do it every two weeks and see how it looks

06-16-2010, 03:45 AM
Anyone use Chemi-Pure?

Yep I've used it, can't say I see any better results than regular carbon though. The chemi-pure elite is supposed to have a phosphate remover in it, I haven't tried it though.

07-14-2010, 09:04 PM
I like to use carbon and purigen. Not 100% sure how purigen works but before I started using it my ammonia/nitrate levels fluctuated daily and since I added purigen it's been at 0 for a long time now. I was gonna test it again by removing my baggy for a week and see if there were changes. On a side note I do a daily 2Gallon water change and a 5Gallon water change on weekends for my 40 Reef so I'm not sure if that plays a factor with fluctuation. Tanks starting to look real good now though so I'm happy with my regime.

07-14-2010, 09:32 PM
I change once a month. However, I think it might vary depending on if you use carbon in a reactor or in a bag.

I just have a bag hanging in my sump and my thinking is that rate of flow through it is lower so once a month is fine. If I had a reactor, I might rethink that.

I haven't entirely convinced myself this thinking makes sense yet though !

Interestingly enough, if you read what the carbon people say, they say to only use carbon intermittently in a marine tank. I think 99%+ of people here run it full time.

07-14-2010, 11:39 PM
There have been reports that too much carbon use can be a contributing factor to HLLE, but I use a fair amount of carbon and I've never experienced HLLE.

07-14-2010, 11:46 PM
Once a month for me too. Just run it passively in a filter bag.

03-19-2011, 02:57 AM
Carbon is one of those things that just need re-charging! If you wanna make it last and save some money....clean it and then run it under REALLY cold water! This will recharge the Carbon thus leaving more money in your pocket for your hobby! I change mine every 6 months and seems to be working good for me! :wink:

03-19-2011, 03:10 AM
I don't suppose you have any references to support that claim?

03-19-2011, 04:47 AM
I don't suppose you have any references to support that claim?

+1 :pop2:

I do mine monthly as well, Im probably a little ahead of the ball game as I use a fair bit for the system size but its not something I really want to play around with. Safe then sorry.

03-19-2011, 05:09 AM
Anyone use Chemi-Pure?

I do & think it's the shiz nit, elite that is, I change it about 8 weeks. Also run a small bag of Brightwells pellets change about monthly & Crystal clear over here. Po4 @ 0 :)

03-19-2011, 05:21 AM
I don't suppose you have any references to support that claim?

I don't...never looked...has worked for years in my freshwater! Carbon does not change that much in salt?

03-19-2011, 07:16 AM
I'm not a big fan of using wikipedia... I prefer properly published information. But I'm also a tad bit lazy so here you go:



The regeneration of activated carbons involves restoring the adsorptive capacity of saturated activated carbon by desorbing adsorbed contaminants on the activated carbon surface.
[edit] Thermal regeneration

The most common regeneration technique employed in industrial processes is thermal regeneration.[17] The thermal regeneration process generally follows three steps [18]:

* Adsorbent drying at approximately 105 C
* High temperature desorption and decomposition (500–900C) under an inert atmosphere
* Residual organic gasification by an oxidising gas (steam or carbon dioxide) at elevated temperatures (800C)

The heat treatment stage utilises the exothermic nature of adsorption and results in desorption, partial cracking and polymerization of the adsorbed organics. The final step aims to remove charred organic residue formed in the porous structure in the previous stage and re-expose the porous carbon structure regenerating its original surface characteristics. After treatment the adsorption column can be reused. Per adsorption-thermal regeneration cycle between 5–15 wt% of the carbon bed is burnt off resulting in a loss of adsorptive capacity.[19] Thermal regeneration is a high energy process due to the high required temperatures making it both an energetically and commercially expensive process.[18] Plants that rely on thermal regeneration of activated carbon have to be of a certain size before it is economically viable to have regeneration facilities onsite. As a result it is common for smaller waste treatment sites to ship their activated carbon cores to a specialised facility for regeneration, increasing the processes already significant carbon footprint.[20]
[edit] Other regeneration techniques

Current concerns with the high energy/cost nature of thermal regeneration of activated carbon has encouraged research into alternative regeneration methods to reduce the environmental impact of such processes. Though several of the regeneration techniques cited have remained areas of purely academic research, some alternatives to thermal regeneration systems have been employed in industry. Current alternative regeneration methods are:

* Chemical and solvent regeneration [21]
* Microbial regeneration [22]
* Electrochemical regeneration [23]
* Ultrasonic regeneration [24]
* Wet air oxidation [25]"

03-19-2011, 07:30 AM
Thank you! Wow... Had no idea! lol! I think i will be buying more Carbon from now on...!

03-30-2011, 12:56 AM
There have been reports that too much carbon use can be a contributing factor to HLLE, but I use a fair amount of carbon and I've never experienced HLLE.

What is HLLE??

03-30-2011, 01:43 AM
What is HLLE??

Head and lateral line erosion. Some blame it on excess carbon or carbon particles in the water. It can also be caused by poor nutrition I think.

03-30-2011, 02:31 AM
Tangs will get it if they are fed too much meats and not enough kelp, algae and nori.