It is an aquarium filter that hangs on the side or back of an aquarium. If it is a HOB protein skimmer, install it and then see how much room you have left along the back wall of your aquarium. The Tidal filters can be set up in seconds by hanging them right on any open side of your aquarium. The Marineland is my overall favorite and the best premium filter on the list, but if you need a filter for a reef tank, the Seachem would be the option I’d go with. Journals. Just like the sand, it will become colonized over time and become the MAIN area for your Nitrifying Bacteria to colonize and become part of your Biological Filter. This could be a lot for a beginner! While you can usually buy replacement pads pre-filled with media, it may be cheaper and more effective to cut your own pads and fill the baskets with your choice of bulk media instead. The main purpose of Activated Carbon is to absorb organic pollutants and heavy metals from the water. More surface area for a given space will help process waste better and allow for higher bio-loads = More livestock . View my About Me page to find out more about me & my mixed reef aquarium. The best way to set up your HOB filter to aid in helping these above filters is to: By using the filter media mentioned above they work really well for smaller aquariums, last a long time and you can fit them in small areas – Perfect for HOB filters! Manufacturers often advertise their HOBs as having unique or special features like adjustable flow rates, LED indicator lights for routine maintenance or to alert you that the filter pads need changing, multiple media baskets and separate biological filtration stages. There’s also the sound of your impeller and outflow to consider. Filter technology has come a long way since then and HOBs are now manufactured in the budget and premium ranges and for tanks of all sizes. It’s also become quite common to include a third stage for biological filtration, though the effectiveness of these stages vary. HOBs may not be the best choice for an aquarium in a TV room or bedroom if you’re sensitive to noise. When I first started keeping fish there were only two brands to choose between, and neither HOB was available for tanks under 10 or over 100-gallons. To really get the most out of your filters there are a few upgrades mentioned earlier and some others that can really improve their operation. It’s never easy to make a short list of HOB filters to review, simply because there are so many brands and models! Cheaper filters often require frequent impeller replacement to mask their sound and keep the water moving. Im concerned that the HOB will suck air in... what are the adverse effects of doing that? Intakes usually have a plastic screen to prevent fish from being sucked into the filter, but you may need to adjust this if you have a lot of delicate fish, shrimp or fry in your tank. You will just hang it on the back of the fish tank, and it will draw water using a lift tube and a small pump. Probably should have gotten this a long time ago, but I've got a Chromi that's being picked on in my reef and have him in a internal breeder box now. “Saltwater aquariums need high-tech, top-of-the-line equipment, Right?” Wrong! This is a manufactured mix of Activated Carbon and a ‘Purigen’ type of ion removing compound that helps to remove organic waste and absorb the harmful Ammonia, Nitrate and Nitrate compounds. It is suitable for medium to large tanks and filters 264 gallons per hour. One challenge with maintaining a HOB is keeping the impeller clean and free of algae, sand or other debris. A HOB or Hang-On-Back Filter is exactly what it sounds like. Marine Depot provides Saltwater Aquarium Supplies for Reef Tanks. That will kill all the Nitrifying Bacteria on it – Wash it in a bucket of saltwater!). The Seachem has a large capacity filter basket and prevents water from by-passing the media and pads. Aqueon-branded filter cartridges fit inside these holsters, or you can customize the pads and media used. While I’ve chosen these as the best representatives of the modern HOB, this is by no means a definitive or exhaustive list of filters. In a saltwater aquarium, this is usually taken care of by: This is the growing and reproduction of bacteria used to process toxins. This design also increases evaporation and may increase build-up on your tank. A Hang-On-Back (HOB) or Power Filter can be used on smaller saltwater aquariums with Live Rock & a Protein Skimmer to provide the 3 means of filtration required for a healthy reef tank. HOB filters are mainly used for housing chemical filter media. You just need to understand its limitations and the work you have to do to maintain it for success. I often modify HOBs with a fine sponge filter tip instead of using the plastic screen that comes with it. Once you’re convinced a HOB is the best choice for your tank, how do you go about researching and choosing a filter? Will drilling a small hole at the intake of the HOB at the water level work? Don’t get it confused with the newer Whisper IQ, however, which has a different design. It’s so packed with features I can’t even list them all here! Although HOB Filters can be a great starter filter to your new aquarium there are a few cautions you have to be aware of to ensure it works at its best. In a saltwater aquarium, this is usually taken care of by: This is the capture and absorption or conversion of microscopic particulate matter. If you have hard tap water, I’d even pick the AquaClear over the Marineland to reduce the amount of time you spend cleaning mineral deposits off your tank. While this is a very quiet HOB, the AquaClear below is quieter. Power filters and hang-on protein skimmers are not what is typically used on a show reef aquarium display, but that doesn't mean they don't have an important role in the reefing hobby. Protein Skimmer – This will be your main method of Mechanical Filtration by removing organic particulate from the water. This Could Be Serious! They are created just like the sponges to provide the most amount of surface area per piece to get as much bacteria growing as possible. You will never be disappointed. The magnetic impeller is directly exposed to the water moving through your filter but the motor is protected and stays dry. Recommended usage is 1ml for every gallon. Just like sponges, the ceramic media can trap detritus if not washed regularly (When I say washed, that is not washed under a tap! The best way is to first purchase the best skimmer recommended for your aquarium. This simple system is fairly quiet, and features a 3-stage replaceable cartridge with Bio-foam for bacterial growth. By the same token, HOB filters are portable and reasonably priced to the more intricate in-tank type of filters. As this matter breaks down they release Nitrates and Phosphates into your water. HOB filters do work for freshwater tanks. Let’s take a look at the best hang on back filters and talk about why their popularity has skyrocketed in the last decade! Learn how your comment data is processed. Many premium HOBs also have extra baskets or containers to hold additional types of media for targeted chemical filtration. Most brands use a tablespoon or two of media at most in their premade pads, which limits their chemical filtration. Free shipping. link to Can Aquariums Cause Mold? In general, the HOB models would be cheaper than the Canister filters, so if you are on a budget and still need a great aquarium filter, you can always opt for the HOB filter. That will help you identify the filters that have features that work the way you need them to and help you avoid those with gimmicks. To find out even more about what each of the filter media mentioned above does and what is a refugium see the further down and in the links in the ‘Further Reading’ section at the end of this article. If You Are Interested In How I Make A Living From This Website –, The Ultimate Guide to Saltwater Aquarium Acronyms and Terms, Ideal Marine Aquarium Water Parameter Values, MarineLand Penguin 200 BIO-Wheel Power Filter, Aqueon QuietFlow LED PRO Aquarium Power Filters, Top-off system fitted to replace your aquarium, See This Tank In My Setup 30g-75g Guide Here, Types of Aquarium Filter Media & What They Do. To keep a HOB filter working efficiently and prevent the build-up of detritus it could need cleaning every couple of days. It comes in a bag which can be placed in the filter and will have to be disposed of once it is exhausted. By design, HOBs have at least 2-stages of filtration: Mechanical and Chemical. Seachem Laboratories Tidal Power Filter, HOBs are one of the easiest types of filter to install in new or existing tanks, HOB power filters are electrical and don’t require a separate air pump to operate, They come in more sizes than any other style, since they are available for tanks from 5 to 500-gallons, HOB design allows the filter pads, media, and motor/impeller to be accessible for routine maintenance, They offer 2 or 3-stages of filtration and filter pads/media allow for customization to provide the exact type of filtration your tank needs, The ideal style of filter for community fresh and saltwater aquariums planted tanks and reef tanks, Easily used as either your primary filter or as a secondary method of filtration for larger or more complicated aquatic set-ups. Recommended usage is 1 unit for every 5 – 40 gallons. The Bubble Magnus QQ1 has the look of a small hang on the back power filter, but the QQ1 is designed strictly for protein skimming on nano reef aquariums. The outflow is where the Penn Plax gets interesting. $649.99. This allows you more space for equipment and it can keep everything out of sight. Still, a big reason I love HOB filters is the ability to easily customize their stages! This is a great option for marine tanks because it has a built-in protein skimmer. Your actual flow rate will depend on the condition of your filter’s intake tip, pads, media, impeller and motor. Tidal 110 HOB Power Filter …and for ease of maintenance, HOB filters are a great option in these situations. While most manufacturers sell pre-filled replacement pads with media that you can just pop in the filter, you also have the option of buying padding in bulk and cutting your own if you prefer to save money. My advice here would be to rather than by the biggest in the range, buy two filters that will fit side by side. Penn Plax HOB Filter. SRO-5000 Internal Super Reef Octopus 5000 Skimmer. The main downsides to using Hang-On-Back equipment, not just filters are: Luckily there are some other options you may want to consider: AIO Aquariums stand for All-In-One Aquariums and they are in essence an aquarium with a filter compartment manufactured into the back of the tank. Most of these systems fit easily on a standard-sized rimmed aquarium, however. Some HOB filters may work well for small saltwater tanks. She is an expert in setting up new tanks and maintaining naturally-planted freshwater habitats, and has experience raising a wide variety of aquatic species. Having a sump allows you lots of space for equipment and it keeps EVERYTHING hidden out of sight. His media baskets for HOB filters allow for just the filter floss to be easily replaced without having to remove the whole media basket. The MarinePure Gems are specifically designed to be small in size to allow them to fit in the small media areas of HOB filters and All-IN-One Aquariums. 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