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Hi, I just got a Fluval 304 from someone who had it running on a reef tank. I'm looking to use it on a planted tank setup with shrimp and was wondering about cleaning and reusing the ceramic biomedia. It's relatively new, and is very clean looking. I was thinking of rinsing it thoroughly, letting it soak a few days and then leaving it in the sun to dry followed by another rinse. Would this be ok?

I had originally thought of bleaching it, but I am concerned the bleach will soak in deep and not thoroughly rinse out with a use of dechlor or soaks and rinses.

Did some major googling and came up with zilch on the topic of reusing old reef bio media on a planted tank. I'd appreciate any thoughts.

Thanks!
 

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If it is ceramic it should not have large pours to have residual bleach trapped...

Personally I would bleach it and do a agitated rinse to insure dislodging the bleach...



john
 

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I have reused ceramic bio media (both the balls and the cylinders) but all I did was rinse and soak it in very hot tap water for a couple of hours then dried it out for 2 days prior to reusing it. I have never had any problems doing it that way but there have been a couple of times that after doing this, the media had a distinctive smell and I had to throw it away.

You could certainly use a bleach and water soak (I would not use bleach at full strength but maybe 1:5 or 1:10 bleach:water) for 24 hours, then rinse well and soak in about 2 cups of water with 2 tablespoons of Prime or other dechlor for 12 hours. Rinse well and if you smell any bleach, redo the dechlor/water soak. I do a lot of recharging of Purigen and Seachem's instructions use a 1:1 bleach and water ratio and the dechlor soak gets rid of the bleach every time. I have also used the bleach and water soak for cleaning old cannister filters and hoses when they sat a long time prior to cleaning and it has worked just fine.

YMMV.
 

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My canister filter came off a salt setup. What i did was run it connected to a 5 gallon bucket of water with a lot of vinegar and bleach in it. The vinegar is really good at breaking down any salt buildup inside the filter. I then dumped the bucket and ran water with several capfuls of prime in it through the filter. The hoses, filter and bio media came out very clean.
 

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You can bleach it with no worries. You can also simply rinse it very well in fresh water and use it..

There is nothing in / on the biomedia coming from saltwater that will harm a fresh water tank. I have switch media back and forth from fresh to salt many times and never had an issue. Anything that lives in a Marine tank will be killed over time in freshwater and vise versa.

Just make sure you remove any "gunk" that might have accumulated over time. Not that it is in itself harmful, but it will decay in freshwater and could cause a huge spike.
 

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One way in which I clear the pores of airstones that have become clogged which should also work with biological media is to soak them in a hydrogen peroxide solution for 24 hours and then let them dry for a couple of days.
 

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I see no reasons why you have to bleach the old materials. Just soak it in water for a night and dump out the old water and re-soak again. This is how you see deaths or stories of what happens in peoples tanks. It is just from a salt water tank.
 
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