Aquascape biofalls into a small bog filter


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I cleaned the filters in my biofalls...yuk! So since I already have a bog filter I am wondering if anyone has just removed the filters, extended and caped, the water inlet with 2” PVC with oodles of slits and filled the box with gravel making it another bog filter. Then the top could support more plants.
What do you all think?
 
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I just converted a150 gallon stock tank skippy filter into a bog so guess it could be done with any filter.
Thanks. How much water are you pushing through it? I would have to send about 1500 gph to maintain the waterfall and am thinking that would be to high a flow rate for a bog to work. I really do not quite understand the relationship of water flow to bog performance. When I decreased the water flow to my current bog, the water cleared up. But that could have been due to other factors, like rainfall or cloudy days which both happened when the pond cleared up. Unfortunately it is back to green algae now but not as bad as it was. That is why I am exploring this bog in waterfall box idea.
 

mrsclem

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Running 1600gph with a 4" outflow pipe. Plants are doing well but a little yellow so thinking not getting enough nutrients. Going to shut down one of the 2 filters running and see how it goes.
 
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Running 1600gph with a 4" outflow pipe. Plants are doing well but a little yellow so thinking not getting enough nutrients. Going to shut down one of the 2 filters running and see how it goes.
How is this working out. Strongly considered turning my biofalls into another bog filter.
 
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Working great! water is clear 5 feet down! Pulled media from other filter but keeping pump running to keep circulation up.
 

mrsclem

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I still can't believe that a 10x10x5.5 pond with only a couple of water lilies hanging on the sides is being filtered by a 150 gallon bog! I do still have 4 window boxs lightly planted on one side, 7 adult koi and 12-15 1 year olds.
 
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Split the water feed and have a small amount go to the big and the majority go to the falls when your home and a diverter or just shut off S to direct the amount of flow you want when your home
 
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How is this working out. Strongly considered turning my biofalls into another bog filter.
I'm wondering if you did that and how it turned out
I'm exploring different things I could do in the future to up the filtration as my koi grow
 
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I took out the bio balls as I got tired cleaning them and the bag. They just get jammed up with the fish poop and there is no way they were doing any good. They are a pain to clean too. I replaced them with Matala filter media in both waterfall box and in skimmer. Still need to clean the filters but they are easier to clean. I made to full sets of pads so I can pull them out of the skimmer or waterfall and put the clean ones back in. I only do one or the other at a time. The skimmer and waterfall are the Aquascape Medium size with the Aquascape Aquasurge 3000 pump. About 1/3 of the water goes thru the waterfall, the rest goes through the bogs.
 
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I took out the bio balls as I got tired cleaning them and the bag. They just get jammed up with the fish poop and there is no way they were doing any good. They are a pain to clean too. I replaced them with Matala filter media in both waterfall box and in skimmer. Still need to clean the filters but they are easier to clean. I made to full sets of pads so I can pull them out of the skimmer or waterfall and put the clean ones back in. I only do one or the other at a time. The skimmer and waterfall are the Aquascape Medium size with the Aquascape Aquasurge 3000 pump. About 1/3 of the water goes thru the waterfall, the rest goes through the bogs.
I've always thought the bio-balls looked hard to clean so I never even try them, thanks for confirming my theory.

In my new pond, I have a 40" Pond Builder waterfall, it was filled with green Matala pads and did awesome the first year, but after I rinsed them in Spring they started clogging , so I switched to all black (someone on here suggested) pads.
After switching to black pads we regained the water flow and the pond cleared...but now I wonder if the black pads have enough surface area . I would like to add additional filtration just in case, but I don't know what would be the best choice....I know a bog would be ideal, but it's not an option with my setting.
 

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I've always thought the bio-balls looked hard to clean so I never even try them, thanks for confirming my theory.

In my new pond, I have a 40" Pond Builder waterfall, it was filled with green Matala pads and did awesome the first year, but after I rinsed them in Spring they started clogging , so I switched to all black (someone on here suggested) pads.
After switching to black pads we regained the water flow and the pond cleared...but now I wonder if the black pads have enough surface area . I would like to add additional filtration just in case, but I don't know what would be the best choice....I know a bog would be ideal, but it's not an option with my setting.
I'm pretty sure the bioballs are NEVER supposed to be mechanical filters, but rather, biofilters. The water should go through a mechanical system first (the pads). You shouldn't have to ever clean the balls.
 
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I'm pretty sure the bioballs are NEVER supposed to be mechanical filters, but rather, biofilters. The water should go through a mechanical system first (the pads). You shouldn't have to ever clean the balls.
This is exactly how mine is set up - the biofall box has two heavy black filters & the bag of bioballs sits on top of them. We take the entire thing apart & clean it once a year. The bags of bioballs do get pretty gross & gunky, but it's easy enough to just rinse them off with the hose. We do this in early winter (December) and then store everything until early Spring when we put it all back together. Since the biological action is way down when the water is cold, I don't worry about not having them in there. Plus, my entire pond is full of gravel & rocks which more or less makes the entire bottom surface a 'biological filter' and place for bacteria to colonize.
The filter mats in my skimmer boxes get rinsed off once a week or so, except during winter.
 
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I'm pretty sure the bioballs are NEVER supposed to be mechanical filters, but rather, biofilters. The water should go through a mechanical system first (the pads). You shouldn't have to ever clean the balls.
My mechanical filter is my skimmer. I clean the bio fall once a year as I thought most people do (?)
 
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The filter mats in my skimmer boxes get rinsed off once a week or so, except during winter.
In my skimmer, I have a black Matala and another 2" coarse black pad. The Matala pad gets rinsed once a week and the other pad I rinse every day
 

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My mechanical filter is my skimmer. I clean the bio fall once a year as I thought most people do (?)
only if all the solids fall to the bottom of your skimmer; otherwise, they're transported then to your bioballs, yes? I always figured a skimmer was for filtering surface debris. I suppose if your skimmer is large and deep enough, with some sort of solids prevention, it can be such but ususally you're going to need some sort of matting to slow them down. That said, using a 'bog' can have the same issues but lifting the pump higher than the bottom should alleviate much of any 'clogging' as you'd see and clean in your mats. That's why I think 'large and larger' for a bog works best as these same solids have time to decay naturally without clogging the system while keeping them out of the water column.

And I didn't mean NOT to clean the bioballs but that they should never be a problem such as the OP was noting. The bioballs are really only to provide a lot of surface area for the denitrification process.
 
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only if all the solids fall to the bottom of your skimmer; otherwise, they're transported then to your bioballs, yes? I always figured a skimmer was for filtering surface debris. I suppose if your skimmer is large and deep enough, with some sort of solids prevention, it can be such but ususally you're going to need some sort of matting to slow them down. That said, using a 'bog' can have the same issues but lifting the pump higher than the bottom should alleviate much of any 'clogging' as you'd see and clean in your mats. That's why I think 'large and larger' for a bog works best as these same solids have time to decay naturally without clogging the system while keeping them out of the water column.

And I didn't mean NOT to clean the bioballs but that they should never be a problem such as the OP was noting. The bioballs are really only to provide a lot of surface area for the denitrification process.
Thanks @brokensword I understand what you mean.
My skimmer box is the Pond Builder Elite 15", it's the largest I could find, hope it's big enough ?
Dimensions: 30.75” x 23.5” x 26”
Dimensions of Pump Area:
19” x 10” (top) 19” x 14” (bottom area) x 21” max. water depth
Max. Pump Flow: 20,000 gph
I have a 9,200gph Titlewave pump that sits on the bottom. It came with a net and a Black Matala pad and then I added the 2" course black pad after the Matala pad. The box seems clean.

So do you think that the pond would have more surface area if I replaced 2 pads in the bio-fall, with some bio-balls?
 
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brokensword

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Thanks @brokensword I understand what you mean.
My skimmer box is the Pond Builder Elite 15", it's the largest I could find, hope it's big enough ?
Dimensions: 30.75” x 23.5” x 26”
Dimensions of Pump Area:
19” x 10” (top) 19” x 14” (bottom area) x 21” max. water depth
Max. Pump Flow: 20,000 gph
I have a 9,200gph Titlewave pump that sits on the bottom. It came with a net and a Black Matala pad and then I added the 2" course black pad after the Matala pad. The box seems clean.

So do you think that the pond would have more surface area if I replaced 2 pads in the bio-fall, with some bio-balls?
you have a pump in your skimmer, right? It would be interesting to put a mechanical mat/mesh filter around it and see how much solids actually get into your pump and then into your bioballs. I know from my experience with a pre-bog filter that more than I thought was going through. I believe it contributed to my bog1 getting clogged and therefore, dug up. But, it was small, only 4x4 surface area and 40" deep. I think that was a main factor in what happened. When I expanded, I still used the pre-bog filter (but only for a few months as I re-thought the whole issue) and I'd clean my version of a 'filter mat' every other day, depending on what micron mesh level I was using. Typically, that was 300 (the larger the number, the smaller the particle that can pass). Using 200, I didn't change it even once a week, but always wondered exactly what was happening to my newly enlarged bog. I decided to test everything out this past August (eliminating the pre-filters) and so far, water is still just as clear and no discernable clogging of the new bog. Next couple of years will be the real test but I'll be more diligent re removing plants more often, which could have also been a factor.

But the idea is bioballs are for bacteria, not stopping solids. No doubt they accumulate as they're IN the water being pumped, unless you're prefiltering as I was above, and over time, will clog up the system a bit. I think if you're rinsing the bioballs often, the system is being overun. Seems you should be able to get at least a month or more out of just leaving them alone, but I'm sure this is all contingent on total bio area and if there's any pre-filtering plus how fast the flow is.

See, I think for a skimmer to be most effective, the solids from the pond HAVE to drop off into the sump of the skimmer and NOT be passed to your biofiltration. If you have the right size or not, I cannot say, other than to try the test I outlined above. If you get a lot of debris on a mat between pump and it's housing, you'll know. I always assumed skimmers HAD such feature to allow solids to drop out, but as you can tell, I don't use one so am passing on what I've gleaned from reading. Were it my system, I'd definitely insure adequate bioarea that was pre-filtered, or as I've done, a really large bio area (my bog) in which miniscule particles get their chance to decay naturally without me having to wash rinse repeat.

Hope I'm not making this more confusing!
 

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