BIO Wheel

Q. Do I need a BIO-Wheel?

Yes. Biological filtration is critical to the success of any aquarium. If your system has a BIO-Wheel, a culture of ammonia-neutralizing bacteria will grow on its surface. The bacteria will thrive because as the BIO-Wheel provides "wet/dry" biological filtration. As it rotates, the bacteria are nourished by the larger amount of oxygen in the air and water.

Q. My BIO-Wheel isn't turning. What should I do?

If your BIO-Wheel has, in fact, stopped completely, it is probably either because the BIO-Wheel is out of position or because water flow is not strong enough to push the BIO-Wheel.

If water flow is reduced...

  • Unplug your system.
  • Inspect the BIO-Wheel carefully to make sure that there are no obvious obstructions to rotation and that it spins freely when in proper position.
  • Remove the impeller housing and magnetic impeller assembly and make sure the impeller assembly is clear of any obstruction and free to rotate. With a clean cloth or brush, clean the impeller, intake tube and impeller housing.
  • Make sure your aquarium is filled to the bottom edge of the aquarium frame or the level specified in your owners manual.
  • Restart your system. NOTE: If you have a power filter that hangs on the back of the aquarium, be sure to fill the filter box with water.

Q. When should I clean or replace my BIO-Wheel?

Unless it becomes damaged, there is no need to ever replace your BIO-Wheel. A BIO-Wheel actually improves with age. 

Q. My BIO-Wheel is making a lot of splashing noise. Is that normal?

When a BIO-Wheel is new, it has a tendency to rotate more rapidly, which can cause a "lapping" noise. Over time, as the bacteria culture grows, the BIO-Wheel will slow and operate more quietly. (To immediately reduce the sound of water hitting the wheel, grab each end of the wheel simultaneously and gently turn them in opposite directions. This will cause the incoming water to contact one side of the wheel before the other, reducing noise level.) 

Bio Wheel not spinning fast like initially. Water seems to be flowing good. In fact it almost seems the water is backing up. Replaced filter even though it looked clean. Last replaced 6 days ago. Just replaced again and still not spinning.

Asked by: Rickyk
You need to take the filter apart and clean the parts of it. You probably have a dirty impeller or debris in the motor. Or the intake tube has debris in it. The filter is backing up because of this so the flow is not powerful enough to move the bio wheel. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-25

I have a 5 gallon tank, and the filter that came with it wasn't so great. So I upgraded to the 100 ( it was the smaller in the store) I didnt realize there was a 75. Will the 100 be ok or to powerful?

Asked by: Chey80leigh
Depends on the types of fish, but probably too powerful since it can handle a 20 gallon tank. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-20

will this filter add enough oxygen to the water to eliminate the use of an air stone

Asked by: scottmo24
Yes, unless you are overstocked or do not do water changes regularly. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-18

What is the wattage rateing for the penguin 350. Im trying to calculate how much it cost and how much power im useing per month and per hour.

Asked by: 1234567890
20.4 watts, 120 v, .17 a BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-17

I have a eclipse 1 wet-dry filter system my question is can I replace the impeller of a different size in order to get a better flow across filter media and bio-wheel?

Asked by: joebess
No, the impellers are system specific. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-13

How much power do these use? I have a 200 and a 350. Not sure why it is not listed on the box...

Asked by: Eric C
It is actually listed on the motors of the filters.... They both use 20.4 watts, 120 v, .17 a. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

When u purchase the bio wheel 200 new dies it come with the bio wheel?

Asked by: KaydenBS
Yes, it comes with the bio wheel and your first cartridge. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

Got a new 350 filter and with in 3 months, it started making noise and doesn't pump water continuously. It stops pumping in between so frequently. Any idea ?

Asked by: Bharath
It most likely has some debris caught somewhere. Remove it from the tank, take out the intake tube, impeller housing, and impeller, and clean each part. Also clean out the well of the motor in the bottom of the filter box. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

Have my Marineland filter for about 10 years now, when do we need to replace it? Or do I ever need to replace it?

Asked by: Angel M
If it is working well, there is never a need to replace it. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

My filtration system lessens pretty rapidly due to slimy algae buildup in the tube and impeller. I have to clean it out about once a month. The bio wheel stops turning and develops a white crust. Probably minerals. Is this detrimental to the bio wheel?

Asked by: Tdavis4
Sounds like you need some help with the tank in general. Yes, if it is not spinning, it can be a problem for the bio wheel as a lot of the bacteria could die off, if left out in the air to just dry up. Are you doing monthly water changes? The white crust sounds like hard water or it could be a water mold. We would recommend either switching to bottled natural spring water if the tank is small, or if larger, then you might want to invest in a purifier for the faucet or a RO unit. If so, have a supplement to add minerals/trace elements back into the water when you do water changes. Another option would be adding peat to the filter or a water softener pillow. We could be more specific in our help if we had more info on the tank. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

I would like to construct a lift tube extension for my Penguin 100 filter (This is the round lift tube, like the old 75, not the rectangular style). What tubing dimensions will I need to slip-over the OEM lift tube?

Asked by: DJ Saberniak Jr
We have not made a round intake tube in 20+ years and do not have specs for such. The Penguin 100 has always had a square tube, but our old Mini and 99 had rounded ones. We recommend taking the intake tube with you to a DIY hardware store and matching up the tubing with it. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

 I found two buckets of fish and an aquarium in the parking lot. The penguin water thingy doesn't make any noise when plugged in.  Where's the fuse? It's big, has two filters that rotate. 

Asked by: one666mom
Wow, poor fish! Pull the intake tube up and out of the filter body, then reach in and pull up the piece the tube came out of, the impeller housing. You may need to clean out the entire filter system. If you see hard water deposits, use white vinegar. Instructions for the Penguin 350, which you have, are on our site: http://www.marineland.com/Products/aquarium-filters-and-protein-skimmers/penguin-bio-wheel-filter-saltwater-filter-freshwater-filter.aspx BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

After my power went out during Hurricane Harvey, I cleaned my filter and tube And re -plugged in the pump.  The impeller noise is horrific-  It is so loud! I have had this pump for several years and it has never been this loud.  Any ideas ?

Asked by: Lake girl
Make sure you primed it with water. Also, take a q tip or corner of a paper towel with some vinegar and clean out the motor region. Soak the impeller in white vinegar. You may have some deposits that are causing the impeller to rub something. Another possibility could be that it received damage from the power coming back on. We do sell replacement impellers, so you may need to replace it. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

How often to change the actual filter cartrage on filter once a month?

Asked by: Shownuff
Typically, once a month, but it will depend on your stocking level, how much you feed, and so forth. Sometimes it may be 2-3 weeks. In some cases, you can go longer than 4 weeks, but 4 is a good average. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

I have a Penguin 200 Biowheel Power Filter. I have a Saltwater tank. What do you suggest using to help keep sand out of the impeller?

Asked by: TiffanyW1
There are foam or sponge-like accessories sold separately for this purpose or you can use loose filter floss to stuff the bottom strainer. Some people use the toe of a nylon stocking tied over the strainer. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-12

I have a 38Gal Marineland bow front tank kit that came with the Penguin 200. I would like to increase filtration. What filter would you recommend or add, and is it necessary or good idea?

Asked by: JTInc
The more filtration, the better in most cases, but it is not exactly necessary, per se. That particular tank has a center brace, which means any filter you decide to use cannot be longer than 14". We do not have a larger power filter that will fit that space. You could go with a canister filter such as the Magniflow 220. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-09-19

Hi! I have a 10 gallon tank that is currently dealing with a power outage. The filter and biowheel stopped and dried out for 3 days now. Should I get a new biowheel once the power starts up again? I'm worried about starting from scratch.

Asked by: arianaa94
No, just do small partial water changes of the tank each day, like around a gallon or two. This will keep providing fresh oxygen to the tank and keep the biological filter alive until you have power again. Feed the fish very, very little, once a day. Float the bio wheel if you want to, but it will re-develop bacteria once it is going again. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-09-13

What is this maximum edge thickness the 200gph filter will hang off of. We are planning to use a plastic tub and the edges are thick so would it be able to fit and hang off of it?

Asked by: just1question
The area under the spillway of the filter is approximately 2.5" wide. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-09-25

I recently bought a used aquarium with a CBW-1 system. it has been used with fresh and salt water previously. should I consider replacing the bio-wheel before I start it?

Asked by: JScott
Hi JScott. We're not familiar with that system. If the bio-wheels are intact and there is no history of disease in the tanks it was used in there is no reason to replace it though.
Answered by: Customer Service
Date published: 2017-09-08

My last bio whell system have a spray bar for bio wheel. I just bought a new aquarium and have the penguin 200 but don't see a spray bar,Also how do you adjust flow rate?

Asked by: Paul62
The Penguin line does not come with spray bars, the Emperor 400 is the only one that does. You can close off the mid-level strainer to adjust it somewhat, but it will not reduce it greatly. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-30

Hi! I have a brand new Marineland 29 gallon tank that has been set up for about a week and a half. Everything was working fine but all of a sudden the bio-wheel will not turn. It hasn't even been 12 days. Help!

Asked by: NewFishMom
Make sure your water level is to the top of the tank and has not evaporated down. Lift the intake tube and re-seat it in case some debris has become lodged in it or in the impeller, and as a last resort, remove the intake tube, impeller housing and impeller, in case something got pulled in and is caught, reducing the flow rate of the filter. Please call us with questions or if you cannot resolve this. 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-30

On this unit, can I add an additional media container? My Marineland filter has one and I need to replace it. Its about 10 years old and the impeller assembly is shot.

Asked by: shankshot9
The Penguin 100 does not take a media container, no. It has room for two cartridges. Only the Penguins 200 and 350 take the media containers. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-29

Just got the penguin 200 won't suck water running and bubbling in the top of filter

Asked by: Joel B
Make sure your water level in the tank is all the way up to the top. Also, pull the intake tube and impeller housing out then re-seat them back into the filter. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-23

I have penguin bio wheel 200. After the electric went off in the whole house for like three seconds it won't turn on again. It is plugged into a good power strip. Is there a reset button somewhere powerstrip works for the rest plugged into it. Thanks!

Asked by: Robinleigh
No, you simply need to take it apart and clean your impeller and the inside of the motor. Most likely it is clogged or overdue for a cleaning, which is why it did not re-prime on its own. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-23

can it be possible to replace just the motor of a 150 penguin filter ( the part with the cord)

Asked by: nani
No, this is not available separately. However, the impeller is in case that is the actual issue, which is usually the case. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-21

I have the 350, and my didn't come with a Spray bar and the chemical filter parts ? 

Asked by: Ramon14
The Penguin 350 does not come with those parts, the Emperor 400 does. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-21

I had a tank with a really bad ich infestation, will they linger in the biowheel?

Asked by: C_willie
No. If you just finished dosing though, it is a good idea to come back 7 days later and do one dose to make sure you killed all of the larvae. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-17

How do I order the bio-wheel assembly. part PRBW150B AND PRBW2350B

Asked by: wwtwo523
Thanks for asking, wwtwo523. You can order those directly from our website! Just type the item numbers in the search bar, add to your cart, and check out.
Answered by: Customer Service
Date published: 2017-08-08

I just got the biowheel 100 yesterday. Today I noticed it had too much suction. I adjusted the light gray piece on the filter. SNAP. Then... for an hour I tried to get the filter to work. The biowheel doesn't spin now. What is the problem?!

Asked by: Feisty_Unicorn
Well, first, there is no such thing as too much suction. When you closed the lever, you either slowed it down so much it can't pull enough water to turn the bio wheel correctly or you moved the intake tube slightly out of position so it is not operating properly now. Pull the intake tube, impeller housing, and impeller out of the filter box and inspect them. Re-insert them, and make sure the water in the tank is to the top. Call us if you are unable to resolve. 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-01

Can I change a Bio wheel 350 from a saltwater filter after being stored for years to a freshwater filter?

Asked by: kidfish
You should be able to by cleaning the parts with white vinegar and rinsing them well. You may need to replace the bio wheels. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-07-28
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