Oliver Knott: How to protect aquarium filter inlets
In the world of aquascaping, filter inlets and filter outflows made of glass or stainless steel are a popular means of spicing up the look of the filter tubing in the aquarium. Standard filter inflows, also called filter inlets, are usually simply filter tubes closed on on side, with a curve that leads out of the aquarium and with multiple slits in the suction end. These are narrow enough to prevent fish and adult shrimp from getting sucked in, but baby shrimp and fish fry are in danger of getting swallowed by the filter - which would be deadly for them. In this video Oliver Knott presents some useful yet stylish helpers that make baby-proofing the filter inlets easier.
Of course it is possible to just cover the filter inlet with a piece of filter sponge so no small creatures get sucked in by the filter. However, filter sponges are quite voluminous and not really nice to look at, especially not in an otherwise stylish and elegant aquascape. Apart from that they tend to clog up since fine sludge gets caught in the pores, and, over time, densifies the sponge and severely impairs the filter’s performance.
In the video Oliver Knott demonstrates the installation of filter guards on some Aqua Rebell glassware filter inlets. Filter guards are fine-meshed baskets made from stainless steel, which fit precisely over the glass filter tubes. Please make you use the appropriate filter guard for your pipe diameter and the slot length of the filter inlet. From our shop, filter guards are available for standard lily pipes sized 13 and 17 mm in diameter. If your inflow has long slits, make sure to pick a filter guard with an according length so the slits are fully covered. Oliver Knott is installing an Aquasabi Filter Guard Fine Mesh L - long enough to cover the slits entirely - on an Aqua Rebell - Glass Inflow IF4 - 17 mm.
There are special-design filter guards that fit hang-on glasswares, such as the Aqua Rebell Glass Mini Inflow MI2 - 13 mm, which you can see in the video. Even glass surface skimmers (e. g. the Aqua Rebell Skimmer Glass) can be equipped with special filter guards. These guards protect the bottom part of the glasswares, where the water is sucked in.
By the way: More info on the topic of intake protection can be found in this article in our Aquascaping Wiki.