This section covers aquarium filtration. This is the most important aspect of fishkeeping. In fact, to your fish, this is as important as the sewage system you have! Without it you can't stay healthy, let alone happy. Neither can your fish!
Filtration mechanisms falls into 3 categories. They are:
Aquarium filters are designed to makes use of these filtration mechanisms. An effective filter will always have a mechanical and biological filtration function. Main types of aquarium filters are
These filters all have their unique advantages and disadvantages and different filters are suitable for different purpose and tank size. They may also be used in combination to take advantage of each filter's strong points.
Mechnical filtration is the physical removal of waste from the water using something to trap the solid particles. Mechnical filtration cannot remove dissolved waste chemicals. Mechanical filtration needs to be regularly washed or replaced. Otherwise, the trapped particles can either clog up the water flow or break down and bypass the filter.
Biological filtration is the removal of waste chemicals by the action of beneficial bacteria living in the bio media. When the water is passed through the media, the beneficial bacteria consumes ammonia and converts it to nitrites and then to nitrates. Bio filtration is the best filtration and it does not need replacing. In fact, the older your bio filter, the more established it is.
Chemical filtration is the use of chemical process to filter the water. It can be in the form of solutions that bind particles together so that they can be picked up by the mechanical filter, or in solid form such as activated carbon which adsorbs dissolved organic substances. Chemical filtration have a 'limit' of how much they can filter. When they are "full", they need to be replaced.