HELP!!! Aquarium Filter

karg(z4-5)June 24, 2006

I've inherited a set up aquarium with no information at all. My sister just helped me clean it (40 gallons) and we cleaned the filter too. The problem..........

How do you get the filter to work again? Its an eheim and we put water in it but is there a trick to priming it?


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What type of eheim?? What model?

With the older type, essentially you have to "suck" out the air to get it to start. There's a bulb device that's sold that does this.

You do hear the motor running right? And the impeller IS spinning?

I haven't had an older model eheim for a long time - so I can't remember how I used to get it first started.

I found this on another site - you may want to check it out and see if the instructions work for you:

How to prime canister filters:

"* STEP 1: Make sure that there is NO water in the canister. Install all the media, hoses, input and outlet pipes, close up the canister and make sure that all valves are OPEN.

* STEP 2: Make sure that the water in the tank is filled up to the top. Now if you filter has an integrated priming aid, i.e. EHEIM ecco and Pro II, proceed to engage the priming device and then immediately proceed to STEP 3. If your filter does not have a priming aid, i.e. your 2215, and you are using a spray bar, 1) disconnect the spray bar form the output hose and 2) apply a short but strong suction on the OUTLET tube. As you are doing so, keep an eye on the INTAKE tube. As soon as you see water go up the intake and then down the tube on the outside of the tank, STOP applying the suction and now gravity takes over and the water continues to fill up the canister. Immediately re-connect the spray bar to the outlet tube.
NOTE: All that is needed is a short strong suction of a couple of seconds.

* STEP 3: If the spray bar or outlet is under the water, it will be bubbling as the air is expelled by the incoming water filling the canister. You may plug in the unit when the bubbling has stopped or when you see that the water has filled up the flexible outlet tubing. NOTE: The water will fill the outlet tubing to approximately 3" to 4" of the top of the tank water level.

* Note: Priming the EHEIM Wet/Drys models 2*27 & 2*29 is slightly different from standard canisters.

This is the "official' way to prime canisters, if you have your own way of doing so that works for you that's great. I was just trying to list an easy guideline for those who are wondering how. With this information there is no need to use any additional pumps to pump water into the canister, no need to turn the canister upside down or put the intake below the water level and hope that you can reconnect it to the canister in time before you make too much of a mess."

Here is a link that might be useful: click here

    Bookmark   June 24, 2006 at 5:45PM
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I have the Pro11
I add all the filter materials add old tank water to top of filter materials. Connect up push pump 2-3 times then start it up and it never misses a beat.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 12:10AM
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I think it's the type that doesn't have a priming button. All of my current eheims do - I just can't remember how to start the type that don't.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 6:30AM
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I don't see a priming button and there has been nothing left behind that looks like a primer. I'll check with an aquarium store but I know they don't sell eheim within 100 miles of where I live. I'm not expected to blow or suck with my mouth am I???

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 11:03AM
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People swim in lakes, and fish tanks are much cleaner, so I don't understand people's aversion to ingesting a bit of it. But I'm sure you can find the missing part online somewhere, or perhaps make one. If it ends up being too much work, just get a new filter and put the old media inside it.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 1:08PM
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Just try following those instructions. Is the eheim filter you have circular?

Eheim is really one of the better filters out there. And very quiet.

Yes - you may have to suck the air out of the tubing. There is a device that does this (like a rubber bulb thingie) but you can also just do it by mouth. Have a bucket nearby if you want to spit out.

Essentially you just want to get ALL the air out of the tubing.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 1:49PM
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james_ny(z7 NY)

I'm guessing its a canister filter [sits below tank]. I remove the return to tank hose and run a short hose to a bucket on the floor. Start filter and run water into bucket until bubbles stop. Unplug filter and carefully switch hoses. I wrap a dishtowel around filter to soak up any spills.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2006 at 9:31PM
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I had a problem with my filter and the guys at were very helpful

Here is a link that might be useful: fishfishfish

    Bookmark   December 31, 2010 at 4:05AM
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