Written by Kate Barrington Updated January 29, Learn about the differing points of view and guidelines on using carbon in your aquarium.
Activated carbon for the aquarium is a form of carbon that is usually made from bituminous coal, lignite or wood. It is often abbreviated as AC on the forum.
The primary use of activated carbon, or AC, is to filter the aquarium water of foul odors, yellowing compounds DOC and to remove medications from the water column. Some hobbyists use it regularly and some don't use it at all. Some swear at it and some swear by it.
I'll try to give you the basic info to get you started and you can decide for yourself whether or Charcoal as fishtank water pollutant removal you think it's something you will want to use. This carbon comes in various shapes and sizes and not all AC is equal. The most common shapes are granules and pellets.
There are powder forms as well, but those are not used in aquariums. Generally speaking, the more porous and lighter the carbon the more surface area it has for adsorption thereby making it more effective at filtering the water. Many tap water filters are made to use AC and it does a great job at removing odors from the water.
This can apply to your aquarium as well.
What Does Activated Carbon Do? AC is mostly used to: Remove odors from the aquarium water Remove yellowing compounds Remove medications, supplements and plant fertilizers If you go several weeks in between water changes you or your significant other may start to notice a smell coming from your aquarium.
Pop some AC in your filter and the smell will go away rather quickly.
If you're running a reef tank or planted aquarium and you want to get the most out of your lighting you can also run AC to remove yellowing compounds from the water to increase light penetration. Use with caution though. You don't want to start using a bunch AC in your sump or filter because it could lead to light shock for your corals.
This would depend on how yellow your water was to begin with. AC can really make a big difference in the clarity of the aquarium water. Try looking into the side of your aquarium.
Can you easily see through the other side? If not, you may have a lot of dissolved organics or yellowing compounds in the water and AC can clear that up for you.
If you have recently purchased fish and you are medicating them in quarantine you may want to run some AC to remove the medicine from the water column after a treatment period. You should also keep this in mind when starting medicinal treatments. Remove the AC from the filter beforehand, otherwise it will remove the medicine from the water column doing you no good.
Freshwater planted tank keepers that use fertilizers with their plants sometimes refrain from using AC because it is thought to remove the fertilizer from the water column.
Some say that the plants will use up the fertilizer before the AC will.
But, how do they know that for sure? I would personally take the AC offline when using any kind of supplements to get the most benefit from that supplement.
Bring the AC back online once a period of time has passed and you think the supplement has done it's job or you think enough time has passed. I'm not going to recommend one brand over another. I will however tell you what I personally look for after having used AC for years in all of my aquariums.
The first thing I look at is the particle size. Too small less then 2 mm in size should be used with a media bag of some sort, otherwise the small particles will be all over your sump or aquarium. I usually buy acid washed hydrochloric acid washed carbon because it has the smallest amount of phosphate and it has the smallest effect on pH.
I've used both pellets and granules and both work well. The pellets allow for better flow through the reactors but the granules supposedly have more surface area making them last longer. When comparing multiple brands of AC you'll want to compare weight for a given volume.
The lighter the AC, the more porous and the better it will be. The lighter acid washed carbons are more expensive too. There are some good videos on youtube that will show how effective one type or brand of AC is over another.Activated carbon is carbon that has been treated in such a way that creates a large number of tiny pores, greatly increasing its surface area.
This massive surface area allows it to absorb a large volume of material, making it useful for removing pollutants from both air and water. May 24, · What is Aquarium activated carbon Carbon is the most widely used chemical filtration. It is highly porous and adsorbs heavy metals, odors, colourants, organic contaminants, pollutants and.
Activated charcoal provides important chemical filtration of aquarium water, removing harmful toxins such as chlorine and heavy metals that sicken or kill pet fish. Over time, however, charcoal reaches it limits of what it can absorb, making necessary the cleaning or replacing of the carbon.
Activated carbon is carbon that has been treated in such a way that creates a large number of tiny pores, greatly increasing its surface area. This massive surface area allows it to absorb a large volume of material, making .
Activated Charcoal For Fish Aquariums Activated Charcoal For Aquariums When it comes to maintaining the water quality in aquariums, activated charcoal remains the best product for filtering the water and keeping the environment clean and healthy.
Activated Charcoal for Filters Because of activated charcoal's incredible adsorption ability, it is an ideal choice for air and water filters. When used appropriately, charcoal filters will effectively clean the air and water by electrostatically binding pollutants to .