Prefilter- do you use one? and how to build it.


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Looking for input on a prefilter. How many don't use one and what problems it creates. Thinking of the Helix skimmer and the prefilter that attaches to the pump.

Or if I can find a diy for a 55 gallon barrel. Planning on a 5000gph pump.
 
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I can't comment on a prefilter. I just have goldfish (I think koi need much more filtration) and a bio-falls filter. My skimmer is a Helix, though, and I have the blue filter pad in it. Technically, that is another level of filtration before stuff gets to the waterfall filter, but I know that's not what you were talking about. I did want to pop on here and say I LOVE the Helix skimmer. It was expensive and digging the hole was a you-know-what -- but well worth the money and the elbow grease. I had to put off the pond a while to save enough money for the Helix. That was tough! But I'm glad I did.
 
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Thanks Bagsmom, good to hear a review on the Helix. From what I have seen the Helix looks great and in the big picture it is not much more $ to do it right. Want to build my own filters, Skippy filter on the falls and a sand filter probably to a pond return.
 

sissy

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Prefilter is a crate in each filter with reusable filter material and quilt batting
 
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Prefilter is a crate in each filter with reusable filter material and quilt batting
To expand on sissy's post , here is what I do. I have two DIY skimmer boxes each one holds 18 gallons of water. They are storage tubs I purchased at Lowes. Upfront is the pre filter material. Front to back : Matala pads ----quilt batting----pump.
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This pic shows all the gunk the quilt batting captures
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Skimmer box
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The water is clear to bottom with a moderate fish load
 

sissy

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anything will work you just have to find what will work the best for your set up
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Thinking of using a 55 gallon drum, smaller drum inside with micro screen possibly 200 microns 0r 150 easier to get.
Gravity feed to the 55 gallon drum, send to the pump from inside the smaller drum. Clean out drain on bottom of 55 gallon drum. might add an air system to loosen the stuff on the screen to flush. Might set the inner drum just below the waterline in case the screen clogs. If the power fails this would allow the dirty water into the center tank but our power is pretty good.
The other choice is top feed a 55 gallon drum and layer course to fine Malta pads with a return to the pump just off the bottom, bottom and top side drain and clean with forced air like a sand filter.
 

sissy

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Neighbor used a barrel until a deer knocked it over and now we built her one like mine .Plus she always had problems with it ,wind would blow and hoses would loosen up
 

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