Water Polishing Filter for Aquarium – w/ Seachem Tidal HOB
One of the best ways to improve your waters clarity is by adding a water polishing filter for aquarium. These supplemental filters have many benefits and are easily maintained. Using the Seachem Tidal hang on back filter as your Polishing Filter is a major bonus!
An aquarium water polishing filter is an additional, supplemental filter to your primary filtration. It’s purpose is to improve your waters clarity by housing fine mechanical media and possibly chemical media that can be replaced much easier and more frequently than any other media in your primary filter.
Do you know about the Tidal? Possibly the best hang on back filter on the market…you know what scratch that. It is the best HOB filter on the market and if you’ve never heard of the Tidal series HOBs from Seachem and Secce then you’ve been missing out.
Luckily you’ve stumbled upon this article where you’ll get some details on why the Tidal is the best and how to use it as a very efficient water polishing filter for aquarium.
Now while this wont be a complete review on the Tidal since there’s tons and tons of information out there detailing how awesome this filter is, and I’m sure most of you already know this.
So instead I’m just going to highlight some specific areas that make this filter the best in the game but I’m also going to discuss how to utilize it as a powerful polishing filter.
Water Polishing Filter with Seachem Tidal
So what sets this HOB apart from the rest, It’s the entire design as a whole. Seachem, together with Sicce, just understand the common fish keeper and what we need in a filter. Its easy to set up, its easy to clean and maintain, its super quiet, and best thing of all is that its self-priming.
What does that mean, it means that after you set it up on your tank all you’ve got to do is plug it in and it works. Not only that, but if there’s ever a power outage for whatever reason this filter will turn on and provide filtration without you having to do a thing. The reason is because of how the pump on this filter was designed.
Competing HOB Pump Flaws
Most competing HOB’s have their pumps on the back of the filter which sits outside the tank. This is a major flaw because in order for the filter to start running, YOU have to fill it with water first.
Well what happens when the power goes out while you’re asleep or at work? Yea you guessed it, some of you have even experienced it.
The filter will not restart on its own. It will remain off until YOU or somebody fills it up with water again. And its especially ‘no bueno’ if nobody notices that the power went out, like if no one was home when it happened.
Seachem Tidal Pump Design
Seachem and Secce eliminate this huge flaw by placing the pump on the front of the filter which keeps it submerged in the water all the time. This means that during a power outage or even first time start up it can self-prime.
It will fill up the basket with water and run on its own every time without fail. Seachem even offers a 3 year warranty against defects of materials and workmanships, bet you didn’t know that.
This is by far the number 1 reason why the Tidal is king, but there are other super cool features included that just run up the score when it doesn’t even have to.
Seachem Tidal Features
Its got a surface skimmer guys, this pulls water into it at the surface as well as at the filter intake, so if you’ve got any dust or debris that accumulates at your surface this skimmer handles that like a breeze!
And guess what, you can adjust how much water comes in from the skimmer and from the intake tube. Along with that adjustment is also the standard adjustment for output water flow which all HOB’s should have, if yours doesn’t, its time to upgrade…Get one of these!
Its designed for bottom to top water travel which ensures water goes through all your media and its a far better design than those back to front water flow HOB’s.
It doesn’t use replaceable cartridges which suck for many reasons, we wont get into that in this article but you can read more about why here.
Its got a heater holder attachment so you can mount your heater up close to the intake which is always ideal, its got a maintenance notification button which pops up to notify you when the filters clogged and needs maintenance, the internal media basket is huge and completely removable for the easiest maintenance around, and check this out…
The basket connects to the lid so you can take the basket from your tank to your sink or wherever without dripping water all over your floor. I’m telling you, Seachem thought of everything!
Tidal Sizes and Models
No, you don’t have to go with a big 110, the Seachem Tidal comes in 4 sizes for your respective tank size.
The tidal 35, 55, 75 and 110 are named that way for a reason. The numbers tells you what size tank its recommended for, tidal35 is good for up to 35 gallons, tidal 75, good for up to 75 gallons and so on, super simple.
But with any manufacturers recommendations you have to remember that they don’t know what’s in our tanks. If you’ve got big fish or an over stocked tank like my 210 gallon here you will want to over filtrate. In the case of an overstocked African Cichlid tank you’ll want to double up for sure.
Which leads me now into using the tidal hob of your choice as a polishing filter. But why use a polishing filter.
Why use a Water Polishing Filter
Well, polishing media in any filter needs to be replaced often. Getting into you’re filter every month or so just to replace the polishing media is going to disturb your filtration more than it needs to be disturbed.
This is where having a separate, supplemental polishing filter comes in handy.
Keep your primary filter setup as normal and use the separate polishing filter for all your fine and chemical media that needs to be replaced the most often, leaving your primary intact and undisturbed longer.
Seachem Tidal as a Water Polishing Filter
The basket in a Tidal is so huge you can really pack this thing in with tons of mechanical media which is going to grab and trap all the particles in your water making it super slick and clear.
The flow rate on Tidal HOB’s is also going to turn your tank over more than competing HOB’s which means your water is getting polished that much more.
The Tidal 110 has a flow rate of up to 450 GPH!
Water Polishing Filter Setup w/ Seachem Tidal
First off, we always want to include the thick, blue course sponge that comes with the tidal. This is going to trap the bigger particles which will help in not clogging up your fine media so fast.
Next part is simple, grab some fine mechanical media of your choice.
For an HOB I prefer Poly Fil because its the cheapest and one of the easiest to install and replace, all you’ve gotta do is grab a handful of it and stuff it down onto the basket. Put enough to fill the basket but not so much that it pushes the top off the filter.
For an additional boost to your polishing filter throw in a bag of Seachem Purigen which is going to absorb all the dissolved organics in the water.
Dissolved organics cause heterotrophic bacteria to grow in your tank which are the big ugly cloud causing bacteria we don’t want. So by absorbing those organics you prevent them from growing giving you another level of clarity.
Now you’re all set to install your basket and plug your filter in and its ready to go, I promise that you’ll see improvement in your clarity overnight!
Water Polishing Filter Maintenance
Keep in mind though that this polishing filter will need maintenance more often than your primary filter, but that’s ok,
because its super easy to pull the basket out, toss the poly fil and Purigen, and replace it with new media and reset!
If you don’t see improvement in your water clarity its because you’ve got other problems going on in your tank, don’t worry, they’re most likely very common problems that most beginners go through.
I’ve got your solution for that too. My best selling book now comes in eBook and Paperback and its guaranteed to give you crystal clear water, or your money back, check it out!