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Vortex D-1 Diatom filter not working as well as it used to

1950 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Brilliant
Hi Folks,
I have had my Vortex D-1 for about 3 and half years now and it has been a real trooper for me. I used to use it whenever I would get a green water outbreak or whenever I had company that would be looking at the tank. We call it the "guest filter." :)

Anyway, lately, it has not been performing as well. The motor and flow seem to be working as well as ever, but I can't get the green water cleared up the way I used to be able to. I have it on a 10 gallon tank that is pea-soup green, but it has not cleared it in over 24 hours.

I have tried: 1) replacing the little polyester bag that the diatom powder sticks to 2) buying new diatom powder thinking that the old stuff had too large a grain and that the algae were going through the spaces in the powder.

I don't know what else to try. Does anybody have any insights? It is supposed to be able to combat green water, correct? Are there other places in the filter that I should check for gaps, etc.

Thanks in advance,

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If the flow is good, and you replaced all the guts I would say it works fine. Is the powder sticking to the bag as normal?
Maybe you should try a UV..
Thanks, Orlando.
Yes, the powder is sticking to the bag the same way it ever did. I was thinking that is was working ok mechanically, it just isn't cleaning the water as it should be. Unfortunately, UV is not an option in this situation. Does anybody else have any suggestions?
It should completely clear up a 10 gallon tank in about 30 minutes. Something is definitely not right.

Is the little plastic tube that reaches the bottom of the filter sealing right? That's the only thing I can think of aside from the bag being clogged, but you mention replacing that.

Have you tried contacting Vortex?
Those were my thoughts exactly, Aaron. I did check the tube and it seems ok. I tried to email Vortex and never received a response.
I have the XL but the D1 looks similar.

Does it sound like its sucking air?
You may need to replace the shaft seal.

There should be a detachable part x that connects the filter bag to the main housing. Be sure that the tiny hole in part x is alligned with the intake tube.
Thanks, Brilliant.
Are the two things you are suggesting related? Is the shaft seal the same issue as the lining up the holes? Thanks again for the reply. I will look into what you said when I get home. It always sounds like there is lots of air in the system, but I can't recall if this has always been the case. It has always been really loud, but I don't think it was designed to run full-time.
Why not call Vortex? They are great there. They helped me with mine. Their number is 850-836-4121
I will give them the benefit of doubt and say email isnt their speciality! ;)

If the hole is lined up and its still sucking air then the air is coming from lose hose, crack in housing or bad seal. First I would check the hole, then prime it up really good (you do not need to add DE for troubleshooting). If it continues to suck air check housing for cracks and be sure the tubes are tight and no air is coming in on intake side. If its still sucking air the its the shaft seal.

Replacing the shaft seal is almost like a ritual. You have to grease it just right with the lubricant (not provided) and let it sit over night to seal before you run it again.

These damned filters work so great I have put up with soo much to keep them going. I hope all this helps. :)
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