So this is mostly going to be about adding the inline filter in. I might even try to draw some little picture to describe whats going on, since this was such a pain in the ass. Really, I should have taken pictures, but I’m lazy. Meh.

So, first, let me describe the problem. I think I hinted at it in one of my previous posts, but I’ll get into detail here. The players are:

The only real detail you need to know here is this… the inline heater is intended to set in the OUTBOUND line of the filter. This stands to reason. You don’t want the particulate matter coming in from the tank to potentially get all clogged up in there and cause a mess or worse. So having it go through the filter first, and (presumably) get rid of all the crap first, THEN go through the heater just makes good sense.

Ok, Eheim’s tubing is in metric measurements. The INBOUND line on the filter is 16mm/22mm (ID/OD). This roughly corresponds to 5/8″ ID.  in US outdated backwards keep a brother down measuring. I’m not bitter. Really. The OUTBOUND line is 12mm/16mm (ID/OD), roughly corresponding to 1/2″ ID. Ok. The Hydor has 5/8″ compression fittings on both sides.

Now you can see the issue. Outbound line where it needs to go? 1/2″. So that needs to get adjust up to 5/8″, insert the hydor, Fittingthen back down to 1/2″ again. Big ol’ pain in the butt. Ok, so I hit the hardware store after work, and picked up a couple 1/2″ to 3/4″ (OD) barb fittings. They look roughly like the image to the right. I also got some of the screwdown clamps to make sure nothing would leak. Since we are dealing with metric/US conversions, there is always the minute differences that could be enough room for leaks.

Ok, so now let me see if I can get a decent image of how all this played out…Installation
There we go. Ok, so although the image is kind of tiny, you can see the different size hoses, and where the fittings had to be put in. It should be noted that this picture doesn’t include the shutoff valves eheim provides in order to make disconnecting the filter easier. That is, unfortunately, one downside to this, and something I may end up fixing later. Ideally, I’d want to have those quick-disconnects on both side of BOTH the filter and the heater. That way if I needed to take the heater OR filter out temporarily, I could. As it stands right now, if I want to take the filter out, the heater comes with it. Ah well, down the road.

Lets see, what else. Well… one thing I’m struggling with is that there is really limited space under the tank. Meaning, the stand is pretty space-constricted inside. Getting all of this stuff connected without bending hoses in ways they weren’t meant to be was quite a trick. Also, I think I fixed the leak I mentioned in a previous post! I think what happened is that the quick-connect thinger was not creating a good seal because of the way I was attaching it. Essentially, if you have both of the ball valves CLOSED when you attempt to connect it, you’re creating a compressed pocket of air in there that is inherently resisting your attempts to push the two sides together. Opening one of the ball valves fixes this problem. It isn’t leaking anymore after watching for awhile. HOWEVER, I am getting a leak right below there at the place where the 5/8″ tubing joins to the fitting. This is easily remedied with another screw clamp to fit over the 5/8″ side. So far, I had only used them on the 1/2″ side since that was the side that felt a bit loose. That is a problem that $1.20 can fix. So all in all, I’m pleased. We’ll see how this heater behaves.

Hmm. Ok, so I ordered a few things today. 2 replacement bulbs for the lighting (the actinics are burned out). A power strip that has clock controls to alternate lighting stuff, a submersible thermometer, some water conditioner, and some replacement clips for the filter. Not too bad. I spent some part of the morning looking for an online supplier that was Better Business Bureau Accredited. After four sites failed that test, was not only accredited, but answered the phone for support with a PERSON when I called, and had everything I wanted in stock. I will know next week how they are with shipping and such. Given that part of the order is light bulbs that are quite fragile, this should be a decent test.

Oh, the two pieces of wood I bought the other day are in the tank, and leeching tannins like crazy. I’ll try to get some pictures tomorrow before I do a water change to help that process along. The water just looks really yellow at the moment.

Can’t think of anything else.