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Diy Sponge Filters

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I posted this for someone else in AA but thought it might have a place here! I'll update with pics eventually. Very simple guide for a very simple project!


- Poret foam or Car wash sponge (with no chemicals or mould inhibitors)

- 1" diameter PVC pipe

- Slate tile

- silicone (aquarium safe)

This isn't the only way to do it, but in simplistic terms, the way to build a sponge filter is thus:

1. Buy some PVC (about an inch in diameter), and some poret foam. Or, if you're looking for even cheaper, Home Depot sells giant natural car wash sponges which I have used in the past with great success (just check the packaging and make sure that it is not treated with a mold inhibitor or ANY chemicles). And buy some slate tiles.

2. Cut your foam/sponge to the diameter that you want.

3. Soak your sponge and get it full of water.

4. Get a Tupperware container that you can stuff the sponge (tightly) in to and do so. Then put the lid on. Throw that sucker in the freezer until solid!

5. Once it's solid, take it out and before it has time to thaw, drill a hole that is SMALLER than your PVC down the middle. e.g if you're using a 1" diameter PVC pipe, use a 3/4" diameter hole down the sponge. You want the PVC to sit tightly in the middle of the sponge with no gap.

6. While it is then thawing out start drilling loads of holes in the portion of your PVC that will be in the sponge (this will be your stand pipe) don't drill the part that sticks out of the sponge. You want the uplift tube left solid. You want the pipe to be the length of the sponge plus a few inches (the closer to the top of the water that your stand pipe is, the quieter it will be)

7. Put the PVC stand pipe/uplift tube in the sponge.

9. Silicone the bottom of the stand pipe tightly to the slate (use aquarium safe silicone of course!)

10. Stick sponge over top

11. Run an air tube with an air stone to the bottom of the standpipe

12. Stand back an revel at the amazing thing you've made for less than $10 (I used to make varying sizes for between $5-$15)

Cheap, simple, highly effective and the added satisfaction of saying "I made that!"

Just a side note, the freezing step isn't 100% necessary but I have found it to be the best way to uniformly drill that hole. If you do it in a sponge that is dry you will shred the hell out of it and it will indeed look like hell!

Good luck! Any questions, please just ask or send me a pm.

Edited by Abby

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The power! The recognition!!! We did goods my precious!!! Reeeal goods!!! Yessssss


Happy to help!

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I made a few big sponges this weekend using 1” pipe, some rock and the round sponge filter replacements for a 55g filter sponge

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