What precautions do I need to take?

Before installation or maintenance, or before putting your hands into the aquarium, remove the power supply from all the electrical devices under water. Read the instructions.

Before installation

Check that all the components of the product are undamaged, disconnect all the electrical devices and make sure the voltage of the product corresponds to the mains voltage.

What is the purpose of the product?

This is an aquarium filter for internal use only, with water of a temperature of up to 35°C (95°F).

Where should I install the Prime filter?

Position the filter in an appropriate place under the aquarium; in order for it to be primed  correctly, it must be placed at a lower level than the aquarium. If you wish to position it on the side of the tank, it can be primed on the floor and then moved after it has been set in motion;

At what height should I place the re-entry of the water into the aquarium?

The deflector should be placed a few centimetres below the water level, cutting off the excess part of the delivery tube, in line with the indication MAX WATER LEVEL.

Are the filtering materials provided clean?

Although maximum care is taken during packaging, Hydor recommends rinsing them before use.

How should I start up the Prime filter?

Just pour a glass of water into the priming chamber of the filter, through the opening on the head of the filter, and then plug the device into the socket.

How can I access the priming chamber of the Prime filter to pour the glass of water in??

To pour the water into the priming chamber, just pull outwards the red safety button located near the suction tube (IN), and at the same time turn the blue or red plug in an anti-clockwise direction. Once you have poured the glass of water in, remember to screw the plug back in carefully until the blue or red button clicks into place.

How does the flow indicator work?

The flow indicator is a simple instrument composed of a transparent tube and a red elastic band, mounted on the suction tube, able to register the suction depression generated by the clean filter. When the filter becomes clogged up, the depression level is reduced and the water level in the tube changes. 

How can I regulate the flow indicator of my Prime filter?

The flow indicator of the PRIME filter must be regulated so it always shows how efficiently the filtering materials are working. It must be regulated when the filter is used for the first time, and every time the filtering materials have been washed or replaced. Therefore, you must: start up the filter; check the level of water inside the suction tube; disconnect the filter and all the electrical devices in the aquarium from the power supply; position the red ring midway between the water level of the aquarium and the water level of the suction tube.

I have a turtle tank and the water level only reaches halfway up the wall of the tank. Can I still use the indicator?

If the water level is much lower than the level of a standard aquarium, it is best to disassemble the transparent tube (in these special cases, the indicator will not work).

What should I do if there is a drop in the flow of a Prime filter?

When the filter reduces the flow of water delivery, and the filter or tubes have not been shifted, it is usually because the mechanical filtering materials (sponges, poly wool pads, etc.) have become clogged up.

I've checked the filtering materials, and they're clean, but the flow has still dropped…

Check that the IN and OUT valves are open;
Check that the pre-filter grid connected to the suction unit is clean. It must not be blocked;
Check that there are no choke points in the flexible tubes ;
Check for the presence of foreign bodies, such as pebbles or leaves, both in the suction tube and the valve connected to it.

How often do I need to change the active carbon of my Prime filter?

The power of absorption of the active carbon runs out in a few days. The use of carbon is recommended when it is necessary to eliminate chemicals, medicines and colourants, following the indications on the product. N.B.:  the carbon must be removed from the filter each time any medicines are given to the fish.

How often do I need to change or wash the ceramic cylinders of my Prime filter?

The ceramic cylinders must be washed when they look dirty. N.B.: in order to avoid depleting the useful bacteria in the substrate, the cylinders should be rinsed using water from the aquarium, and not with tap water, since the chlorine in tap water would kill off the bacteria colonies.

How often do I need to change or wash the sponges of my Prime filter?

The sponges, since they carry out the coarse filtering, must be washed at least once a month, and must be replaced regularly, because as time goes by, simple washing is insufficient to completely remove the residue that builds up. The sponges must also be replaced when they are no longer flexible, when they shrink, or when it is no longer possible to eliminate 100% of the waste trapped in the pores.

How often do I need to change or wash the poly wool pads of my Prime filter?

The pads should be replaced every time maintenance is carried out.

In what order should the filtering materials be inserted into my Prime filter?

There are different schools of thought on this issue. From the point of view of biological filtering efficiency, it makes little difference how the materials are positioned. All we can do is offer some advice on how to position the materials, starting from the bottom. For sparsely populated aquariums: large-pore sponge, cylinders, carbon/zeolite, fine filtering poly wool pads. For densely populated aquariums: cylinders, large-pore sponge, carbon/zeolite, fine filtering poly wool pads. The second option is better for decanting the particulate matter of the aquarium.

When should the rotor of a Prime filter be cleaned or replaced?

The rotor should be cleaned every time maintenance operations are carried out, taking care to clean the cavity of the motor (read the instructions). It should be replaced every two years.

My Prime filter is noisy upon start-up; what's wrong?

During the start-up phase of the filter, all the air in the pipes and the various chambers in the filter is pushed out. Therefore, during the first minutes of functioning, the PRIME filter is a little noisy. This noise will disappear as soon as all the air in the filter (trapped in the cylinders and the carbon) has been eliminated by the flow of air in circulation.

I'm having trouble priming my Prime filter.

Check for blockages or choke points in the flexible tubes. If you have not already done so at the installation stage, make sure the tubes are connected to the aquarium as directly as possible.

I'm having trouble priming my Prime filter (2).

Check the water level of the aquarium, which should be more than 3/4 the height of the transparent tube connected to the suction tube. To solve the problem - also indicated by a noise around the suction unit - you should, if possible, top up the water to the level indicated above. Alternatively, eliminate the transparent tube with the blockage indicator.

I have primed my Prime filter, but the water is not coming up the delivery tube.

There is probably air in the rotor chamber; this will usually be indicated by air bubbles coming out of the delivery tube. In this case, you should shake the whole PRIME filter in working conditions.