use filter sock or not?

Fish Keeper82

New member
Since my 170 gallon tank sprung a leak I'm switching to a 125 and might be redesigning my sump. I did not use a filter sock before and wondering weather to use one this go around.. what do you think?
 

Jade5051

That guy...
I've never used them but I'm going to try them on my new 75g setup. They are really cheap on ebay, come straight from sweatshops in China and only take 3 weeks to get here. :ape:
 

sowildpaul

New member
Since my 170 gallon tank sprung a leak I'm switching to a 125 and might be redesigning my sump. I did not use a filter sock before and wondering weather to use one this go around.. what do you think?
If no filter socks, don't expect water clarity. Expect a lot of detritus that settle down all over your sump floor that can cause high nitrates/phosphates. Your choice.
 
Last edited:

MidwesternTexan

Average Joe
If no filter socks, don't expect water clarity. Expect a lot of detritus all over your sump floor that can cause high nitrates/phosphates. Your choice.

+1, I used to hardily ever use them.

Now on my 180, I usually do.

To see how much crap they are taking out eveyr few days before a change,
I'm going to keep usinig them now.

I use the large bags, I'm also flowing at least about 600gph thru the sump
 

sirreal63

Go Spurs Go!!!
Premium Member
If no filter socks, don't expect water clarity. Expect a lot of detritus that settle down all over your sump floor that can cause high nitrates/phosphates. Your choice.

If it is settling in the bottom of the sump, then how is it in the water column affecting clarity? If it is floating around the aquarium before reaching the sump, then how is a sock getting it before it reaches the sump? This makes no sense.

FWIW I have collected this so called nutrient laden mass from my sump, allowed it to completely settle and measured the nitrates and phosphates, it is exactly the same as the rest of the tank water. I have done this numerous times now, at all different times and moon cycles, it is always the same.
 

Fish Keeper82

New member
If it is settling in the bottom of the sump, then how is it in the water column affecting clarity? If it is floating around the aquarium before reaching the sump, then how is a sock getting it before it reaches the sump? This makes no sense.

FWIW I have collected this so called nutrient laden mass from my sump, allowed it to completely settle and measured the nitrates and phosphates, it is exactly the same as the rest of the tank water. I have done this numerous times now, at all different times and moon cycles, it is always the same.

Agreed.....I had my 170 gallon running for 7 years with no sock and I did not even siphon the detitrus. When my tank sprung a leak the sand was filthy when i was removing it from the tank,and there was alot of detitrus on bottom of my sump when i was cleaning it out , but IN 7 YEARS MY NITRATES NEVER GOT OVER 40 PPM with minimal water changes and I mean minimal since it was FOWLR. Water was super clear too.
Only reason I'm thinking about sock is to keep the unsightly mess out of sump/ sand. Nitrates are not an issue IMO. I know alot of people would argue this but i seen proof 7 years.
 

alexx2208

New member
CPR pre filter holder ...anyone use these?

I use one, and it's great. Although it either needs to be on flexible tube line, or on hard tube with disconnectors, as the 6"+ long pvc tube that goes into sock has to be removed for the sock to be removed.
 

Reefvet

New member
If no filter socks, don't expect water clarity. Expect a lot of detritus that settle down all over your sump floor that can cause high nitrates/phosphates. Your choice.

That simple not true.

I'd suggest you do a little more reading before you make such ridiculous posts.
 

sowildpaul

New member
That simple not true.

I'd suggest you do a little more reading before you make such ridiculous posts.
I read that many people who use socks say they (socks) help a lot. Socks or pads or filter floss, etc as a mechanical filtration are to trap detritus that is mostly made up of uneaten food and fish waste (poop) which cause high ammonia/nitrite. Biological filtration is there to convert those chemicals. Once it converts to nitrate, it can build up without water changes or other methods that reduce nitrate. As for phosphate, it comes from detritus, doesn't it?

Annoying (unwanted) algae can't live without nitrate, phosphate and light. That's the reason why we have biopellets and GFO or algae scrubbers (to reduce those chemicals).
 
Last edited:

kevin_e

New member
If it is settling in the bottom of the sump, then how is it in the water column affecting clarity? If it is floating around the aquarium before reaching the sump, then how is a sock getting it before it reaches the sump? This makes no sense.

FWIW I have collected this so called nutrient laden mass from my sump, allowed it to completely settle and measured the nitrates and phosphates, it is exactly the same as the rest of the tank water. I have done this numerous times now, at all different times and moon cycles, it is always the same.

How did you test organic matter for something that it may produce days, weeks or months down the road as bacteria break it down and why would you expect nitrates to climb in a test vial on the order of seconds??

You will go through periods where sediment is suspended, whether from your activities or natural. Socks help remove that from the water column. My fish are constantly stirring sand or rock fines up.
 

sowildpaul

New member
Agreed.....I had my 170 gallon running for 7 years with no sock and I did not even siphon the detitrus. When my tank sprung a leak the sand was filthy when i was removing it from the tank,and there was alot of detitrus on bottom of my sump when i was cleaning it out , but IN 7 YEARS MY NITRATES NEVER GOT OVER 40 PPM with minimal water changes and I mean minimal since it was FOWLR. Water was super clear too.
Only reason I'm thinking about sock is to keep the unsightly mess out of sump/ sand. Nitrates are not an issue IMO. I know alot of people would argue this but i seen proof 7 years.
Did your tank have algae bloom while it had 40 PPM nitrate?
 

sirreal63

Go Spurs Go!!!
Premium Member
How did you test organic matter for something that it may produce days, weeks or months down the road as bacteria break it down and why would you expect nitrates to climb in a test vial on the order of seconds??

You will go through periods where sediment is suspended, whether from your activities or natural. Socks help remove that from the water column. My fish are constantly stirring sand or rock fines up.

It had already been in the sump for months, and new gunk is added daily. If it were the rotting cesspool people seem to think it, it would still be adding its excess nutrients. What it is, is the leftover bulk after virtually all nutrients have been removed.

By not using mechanical filtration you are not filtering out the planktonic life in the tank, that life is your friend and utilizes the food source available. It is already in very short supply in our tanks, why intentionally reduce it further? If there is a food source available, life will find a way to consume it, that is unless you are filtering out that life. Look at your tank, is it loaded with pods, sponges, micro stars and worms? Now add in bacteria, and not the junk in a bottle, it further processes food. If left alone that life will adjust its numbers to the available food.

I have struggled for years to have any measurable nitrates, I feed heavy and only change out about 10% of the water a month. Where are the nitrates going? Why isn't that so called rotting mass of junk in the sump adding nutrients to the water? I don't carbon dose, haven't in several years, I do have measurable po4, and a little GFO keeps that in check. What I do have is a tank full of pods, worms, stars, and sponges growing everywhere.

You certainly can utilize mechanical filtration, and carbon dose and use a lot of GFO and keep those nutrients in check, but that isn't the only way, and probably not the better way.
 

ReefCowboy

New member
I use instead of socks regular 12"x 4" media bags(fine, 300 microns) on the return pipe to the sump, using a zip tie.
You can buy them by the packs way cheaper, and replace them weekly. I feed my tank zooplankton 2x3 times a week and those fine particles get trapped in the bag without escaping to the sump. One bag still would last a good week IMO. When it's time to replace, cut the zip tie with scissors, tie a new bag in.
Socks, regardless of how cheap you can get them can still be expensive after a while and clog way too fast. This is just my humble opinion
 

thebigblue

New member
I use a 7" diameter 200 micron felt sock on the drain line from the display tank in the sump. The sump was designed for one so I'm using one for now.

My tank is new, but after the first 30 days the sock was pretty dirty, so I tossed it and put in a new one.

I found a source online that sells them for $6 each. I know some guys machine wash them with bleach but I just can't make myself do that...:)
 

Reefvet

New member
That's the reason why we have biopellets and GFO or algae scrubbers (to reduce those chemicals).

Again, I suggest you keep reading. You're drawing a lot of incorrect conclusions. Many successful tanks run not only without filter socks but without biopellets, GFO and certainly ATS.

Here's a self contained frag tank (25 gal actual volume), no sump, no mechanical filter of any kind, no carbon or GFO, just a HOB skimmer. Small water changes weekly (10%) and frags are growing very fast. High bioload from fish contributing to color and growth of corals because I'm not filtering detritus. Water is very clear.

There are SPS, LPS, an RBTA, softies and Palys. Kessil LEDs provide a 10 hours photoperiod.

37nano81014C.jpg
 

Bretts05jeep

New member
I designed my sump to be able to use one incase I stir up a lot of stuff in the tank while cleaning. It is good to have the option if you want to use it. You could always remove it if you want to.
 

ReefCowboy

New member
Again, I suggest you keep reading. You're drawing a lot of incorrect conclusions. Many successful tanks run not only without filter socks but without biopellets, GFO and certainly ATS.

Here's a self contained frag tank (25 gal actual volume), no sump, no mechanical filter of any kind, no carbon or GFO, just a HOB skimmer. Small water changes weekly (10%) and frags are growing very fast. High bioload from fish contributing to color and growth of corals because I'm not filtering detritus. Water is very clear.

There are SPS, LPS, an RBTA, softies and Palys. Kessil LEDs provide a 10 hours photoperiod.

37nano81014C.jpg


Pretty sweet and clean tank! Good job
 

sowildpaul

New member
Again, I suggest you keep reading. You're drawing a lot of incorrect conclusions. Many successful tanks run not only without filter socks but without biopellets, GFO and certainly ATS.

Here's a self contained frag tank (25 gal actual volume), no sump, no mechanical filter of any kind, no carbon or GFO, just a HOB skimmer. Small water changes weekly (10%) and frags are growing very fast. High bioload from fish contributing to color and growth of corals because I'm not filtering detritus. Water is very clear.

There are SPS, LPS, an RBTA, softies and Palys. Kessil LEDs provide a 10 hours photoperiod.

37nano81014C.jpg
Well, first of all, it looks beautiful. How old is it? Since you are not filtering detritus, how do you prevent algae bloom?
 

Fish Keeper82

New member
Did your tank have algae bloom while it had 40 PPM nitrate?[/

Long post warning:
No lighting was not strong enough to help algae. Thats why i didnt do too many water changes( parameters were fine for FOWLR)
And that's my whole point 40 ppm nitrates in 7 years ....and I know this is going to sound extream but I did about 30 percent water change once a year. Don't beat me up for it..... params were fine I have a blue tang and green chromis that are 7 years old.
I had about 300 lbs of live rock and a 4"deep sand bed. And the whole reason deep sand beds turn nitrates into nitrogen is because you don't stir it up. No oxygen zones in the sand because detritus clogging up is part of the reason. No one does a 30percent monthly water change in the ocean right? no monster water sock in the ocean?
I'm thinking about getting a sock is because it is unsightly in the sump. Even if you use a sock there no way you are getting all the detritus out of the sand without a constant sand storm.
thanks for all the replies I can still see the debate is as same as it was when I started in the hobby. I think ill stick to what was successful for me and no sock
 
Top