Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

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TwoTankAmin
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Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by TwoTankAmin »

In the last 10 days I had an Eheim canister go leaky. No matter what I tried, it would not stop. Fortunately, I have a couple of then on the shelf and was able to replace the entire head which is where the pump is. I was able to deduce that the leak was coming from inside and was neither the head gasket nor the hose connection tap gaskets at fault So It was off to Google to find the cause and solution

The Eheim Pro II line has a large priming button. The mechanism needs a bit of vaseline applied now and then. To prevent leaking this priming assembly has a gasket to prevent leaks. I turns out that this gasket can either fail or get crap on it that causes it it to leak. Eheim does not want users to fix this themselves and did mot sell replacements. Fortunately, a gent in the ISA decided to make an working replacement. It also turns out that doing the replacement is tricky. Without proper instructions there are springs involved that can come shooting out unless one removes several screws in a slow and rotating fashion.

So I now have a pair or replacement gaskets (I always want one on the shelf) and written instructions and links to Youtube directions. I will attempt the replacement down the road. I was worried as heck the the next Eheim I was going to clean might have some issues as well. These filters have been running for 13 -15 years. I was right to worry, it leaked like a sieve when I reassembled it and hooked it back up. It needed the head gasket replaced. Fortunately I have a few spares. For most replacement parts for the Pro II line I have to order from Ebay UK. *sigh*

But the universe never likes us to become smug about things going well and has many ways to remind us we are never really in control. I went to do weakly maint. on my Altum angel tank. This has a 3 way monitor, one that continuously displays conductivity/TDS, Temp. and pH. It indicated the pH probe needed to be re-calibrated. So I set out to do this. I put the probe into the pH 4.0 solution and when appropriate I hit the button to reset and I got and "err" message.

A bit of research indicated this was due either to bad calibration solution or the need to replace the probe. Not knowing what the problem was, I ordered both new 4 and 7 pH solutions and a new probe ($47 worth). Right now water that I know is right around of pH 6.0 shows on the monitor as 7.3 :-Q I will try the new solution and if it works, then I will return the probe, My bet is it will be the probe. the water in the tank is stained from almonds leaves, alder cones and rooibos tea. The tip of the probe is stained brown and it wont clean off.

I am supposed to be a fish keeper, not an equipment technician/repairman. :-p
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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by JamesFish »

Sadly kit is built to fail. Older kit seems to have a much better life span.

Used JBL externals for over 4 years few problems. But switched over to HMF and sponge filter combo as find it less hassle. (JBL can't be held responsible for puppy damage)

Only thing I chew up now is an air pump about once a year. Which is generally speaking easy and cheap enough to replace.

Currently got 2 heaters that need attention and are < 2 years old but the one 18 years old is working fine....

Fish keeping is never easy as it's a constant balancing act.

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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by Bas Pels »

Would the tools not fail, keeping fish would be a lot easier indeed.

That´s precisely why I try to use as little tools as possible.
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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by dw1305 »

Hi all,
TwoTankAmin wrote:
Thu Jan 23, 2020 12:29 am
.......The Eheim Pro II line has a large priming button. The mechanism needs a bit of vaseline applied now and then. To prevent leaking this priming assembly has a gasket to prevent leaks........A bit of research indicated this was due either to bad calibration solution or the need to replace the probe. Not knowing what the problem was, I ordered both new 4 and 7 pH solutions and a new probe ($47 worth). Right now water that I know is right around of pH 6.0 shows on the monitor as 7.3......
I am supposed to be a fish keeper, not an equipment technician/repairman.
I know the feeling. I don't like filters with priming buttons, electronics etc. they are just extra bits that can fail. I've got Eheim Classics that are at least 20 years old, they have two gaskets, there isn't much that can leak.

Because of the way most pH probes work they won't ever have a long life in very dilute solutions. If you did want a probe that is likely to be long lasting you can get solid state ISFET probes, but they are quite expensive. That is why I tend to use conductivity (TDS) as a proxy for pH etc. the probes are lot more robust and the meters need much less frequent calibration.
JamesFish wrote:
Thu Jan 23, 2020 7:11 am
Sadly kit is built to fail. Older kit seems to have a much better life span. But switched over to HMF and sponge filter combo as find it less hassle....
Bas Pels wrote:
Thu Jan 23, 2020 7:34 am
Would the tools not fail, keeping fish would be a lot easier indeed. That's precisely why I try to use as little tools as possible.
That is the answer, no single point of failure.

cheers Darrel

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TwoTankAmin
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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by TwoTankAmin »

For most folks in the hobby, there is no way to avoid single point failure. You can run two filters in a planted tank and use two heaters as well. But, unless one has a back-up generator to cover an extended power loss, one can lose every fish they own. And just having a small gennie to power tank related stuff is not enough. If the power fails during the dead of winter when its 20F outside or the peak of a summer heat wave when it is pushing 100F outside, one's tanks can still be toast. And having a whole house back-up system is no guarantee either. We have had one for about a decade and there have been a few occasions when it failed to start.

For some reason this all reminds me of that old joke about the development of a fail-safe parachute. It is guaranteed to open on impact.........

That Eheim part came and I did the replacement. I wont know if it solved the problem since I swapped the head that was leaking for one on the shelf that was not. Based on what I found when I opened things up, I believe the solution will be fine. There was a lot of very sticky white stuff inside on both the gasket and the tube it was supposed to seal. I think I might have been able to clean it all and have it work O.K., but I chose to de-goo the filters parts and to replace the gasket since that filter has been running for 16 years.

I would note by way of the above, that despite the changes over the years and some specific model related issues that were addressed, Eheim is still making great filters. My oldest Eheim Pro II 2026 has now been running for about 18 years and, for the first 10 years, pressurized CO2 was pushed through it.
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dw1305
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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by dw1305 »

Hi all,
TwoTankAmin wrote:
Mon Jan 27, 2020 4:35 pm
For most folks in the hobby, there is no way to avoid single point failure.
Point taken, and I know that.

I use tank heaters and Eheim canister filters as well. Someday, I tell myself I'll do it all properly, but I think "someday" is still probably a long way off.

cheers Darrel

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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by Jools »

Especially given the single point of failure is often the fishkeeper. At least in my case. ;-)

Jools

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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by Proteus »

This reminded me when I am slowly getting back into swing of things keeping fish all of the tank wipeouts in my past from a breeding colony of L264s that still had the white tips to the paynes catfish entire tank loss due to equipment failures over time to have two of everything when it comes to filteration and heaters. I was pleasantly surprised to find a compact 200w heater the size of 2 deck of cards instead of that long rod form we all are familiar with and nervously put it in the QT tank looking in alarm when it kept switching on and off not trusting it a bit but within few days it had shown me its doing its job.

I am still glad my trusty brand of Aquaclears are still alive and running so grabbed them for my few tanks am assembling together. Ehiem canister filter always gave me problems with the leaks like OP mentioned. Its amazing how some of the techs evolved and others remained the same. Failures is always that boogeyman in my dreams. Just pretty please when power goes off that I am home and able to switch on the battery operated aerators until powers back on. Thats all I ask fates for.

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Re: Keeping Fish is never Quite easy

Post by Viktor Jarikov »

"That's all I ask fates for." Haha... same here, same here.

Yes, Jools, for me too the most common point of failure is located in the sweetest of spots, right between my ears :)

A natural or semi-natural fish pond is the no-single-point-failure set up, not that nothing whatsoever can happen to it :)
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