Jump to content

What is the best way to RR clean a large ACO sponge filter?

Recommended Posts

I have a large, or maybe extra large, ACO sponge filter that was in a tank with leeches. Is there a recommended method for RR cleaning to make sure the inside of the base gets completely cleaned and all the leeches that might be hiding in the base are killed 

I am tempted to buy new sponge filters for all my tanks, but I feel like putting that much plastic into a landfill is not what should happen.

Is it best to have the sponge off the plastic parts?

Is it best to have the base on its side or flat on the bottom of the bucket?

Will putting a bag of rock on the sponge to keep it submerged prevent the flow of CO2 to all the parts of the sponge?

I'm also doing ACO heaters and a bucket or 2 of plants.  Once I can move the life stock out of the 55 gallon tank with leeches, I will be doing some huge plants, that are 3/4 or of the water. figuring out how to submerge enough of the plant and cover everything is still beyond me. I think about it every time I look at the tank. Catching the kuhli loaches will be tricky. I thought they died, then they started coming out for brine shrimp. catching the hillstream loach also looks tricky. I'm hoping to get the in the feeder trap, but the have lots of algae to munch on, so I will need to remove a lot of that to get them hungry.

Anyone recommend a cheap source for a lot of seltzer? We can't seem to find it in 2 liter bottles around here. 1-liter bottles are also a lot of plastic, even if it gets recycled.

Thanks for your input

KittenFishMom and her crew

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would probably buy replacements for the heater and the sponge filter, but I doubt I could bring myself to throw the old ones away if they looked to be in good shape.


the substrate would all get thrown out though.


I would likely allow filter and heater to thoroughly dry out, then treat via carbonated water, salt, bleach, disinfectant of choice,  rinse dechlorinate etc as needed and then allow to dry thoroughly again…


before using again I would likely set up in a bare bottom tank for several weeks with nothing in it to make sure nothing hatches…


I read where some leech eggs survive extended periods of freezing to -90 cwhich blows my mind….  I havent read about how they survive extended dry periods, but brine shrimp eggs do, so who knows.  Hence my thought of reimmersing in a bare bottom aquarium again and observing before reuse…


I understand @mynameisnobody point though given the cost of a sponge filter, and how much is your time and labor worth….  At $12.00 for a new filter, how many minutes do you want to expend servicing the old one to get it leech free?  I just grew up spending a lot of time with Grandparents who early teen years and young adult years were heavily influenced by the Great Depression and it left an indelible imprint on their lives and by transmission also influenced mine…

Last night I spent time removing sensors, circuit boards and fans from a 5 year old refrigerator that developed a refrigerant leak and no longer works to keep the fridge cold.  I replaced it with the same model.  (It was not a design flaw, but poor workmanship in the assembly.). I saved the doors of the unit as well as the glass shelves and compartments.  The original fridge cost me $500.00.  And the replacement cost for all  the parts I saved is pretty close to that…. Yes, it is highly unlikely I will use all of the parts.  If I knew which part would break or fail, I would only keep that 1 part….  But likely, if the sealed refrigeration on new fridge lasts 15-20 years which it should, I should see at least a few of those parts come in handy.  And it is nice to have parts on hand if uncertain if it is a sensor or circuit board…. You can swap to check…. And you dont need to wait a week for it to ship to you….

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Pepere I am a daughter of a daughter of the depression. I am always saving things just in case. I like your game plan.

I will replace the sponge filters. All the substrate will go to the rose bushes and lavender plot.  I think I will plant the plants in soil and not try to RR them. I will also buy new heaters and clean the ones I have and the set the up in a bare bottom tank in the fall and see what develops. 

Thanks for your input.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

RR is not the best method for cleaning hardscape and equipment. RR kills all beneficial bacteria so there is no advantage over hydrogen peroxide and hot water. 
Pour H2O2 directly on everything soak if you can for 15-30 minutes and then Rinse clean. 

H2O2 will be faster and take less product. 

Dismantle the sponge to clean. 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...