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.) 

Was the impeller housing already installed with the 200 model. I did not get those pieces if not. And my biowheel turned for maybe a couple of hours and then stopped 

Asked by: Rosario
Hi Rosario, Yes, we install the impeller and impeller housing here on the production line. Remove them from the right hand side of the filter box, and re-seat them in case they were pushed out of position during shipping. Also, your water level must be to the top of the tank. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-28

What is the electrical rating (voltage and watts) of the Marineland Bio-Wheel Penguin 75 Power Filter? 

Asked by: amigorick
4 watts, 120 v, .12 a BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-28

How many inches away from a wall should I place my aquarium if I choose a Penguin 200?

Asked by: Ilovemanatees
At least 4-5 inches. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-23

my penguin 75 will not suck up water to allow the wheel to turn what should i do?

Asked by: jen1992
We would recommend taking it apart to clean it. The impeller, down in the bottom on the right hand side, is probably clogged. Pull out the intake tube, then the impeller housing to access the impeller. Be sure to clean the bottom of the filter box as well. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-22

Do I need to replace my Bio Wheel? Both of them stop spinning at times and I've noticed that there is a tear between 2 pleats on each of them. I've cleaned the filter as instructed and they are spinning slower than they used to.

Asked by: DebbieD
Spinning slower or stopping and starting are both okay, as long as they do turn on their own. There is nor right or wrong speed. However, if the tears are pretty large, we would recommend replacing them. Try to buy new ones, and float them for a week or so, then swap them with the old ones, in order to not disrupt your biological filter. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-22

Our model 75 filter has stopped working completely, and the water around it is hot. What should we do to get it running again?

Asked by: TheApexPred
You need to remove the intake tube, impeller and impeller housing. Clean them, as well as the bottom of the filter box on the right hand side, where the impeller resides. If you have hard water, use distilled vinegar. Call 1-800-322-1266 if you need additional help. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-22

I have the Marineland Penguin 350, I did thee above & it is still not working. The bio wheel spins if I move it but it seems like the water isn't flowing as hard as it use to & there is no water pushing my Bio wheels yet the filter is filled. Help! :(

Asked by: Char93
I just had to maintenance my Biowheel 100. Here is what I found. The impeller wasn't spinning and when I took the impeller shaft out and tried to spin it I found that there was much resistance to where it wasn't spinning freely at all. I took the rubber boots off the ends and using pliers, carefully pulled the plastic end off of one end to free the shaft. I took it loose and found the antennae of one of my dead ghost shrimp between the shaft and the plastic housing! I couldn't believe it but that kind of thing happens to me all the time. As soon as I put it back together it ran freely again and works perfectly. I hope that is of some use to you. If the impeller spins slowly, the volume of water will decrease in turn.
Answered by: BigKev
Date published: 2017-06-22

I just purchase a penguin 200. The bio wheel doesn't spin. Is there a way to increase the flow? Not sure if there's an adjustment I'm not seeing!

Asked by: Horselady1
No, the flow is not adjustable. Your water level needs to be to the top of the tank, and the purple bearings should be in place at each end of the bio wheel. Make sure they are installed properly. If you are unable to resolve this issue, you may have a warped bio wheel so please give us a call at 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-20

We turned our aquarium off for a quick clean. When I turned it back on our power supply where bio wheel is would not work. We use Penguin 75. It's only 1 year old. What are my options?

Asked by: Jenia
Hi Jenia, You need to take the filter off of the tank, take it apart, and clean it, especially the intake tube, impeller housing, and impeller assembly as well as the well of the motor where the impeller resides. All of this is on the right hand side of the filter. If you need assistance with this please call 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-19

I recently started a tank with two clownfish and the 350 seems to have a strong current on them. Is there any fix or adjustment for current?

Asked by: Benbagbag
The outlet diffuser has two flaps in the middle of it that allow you to adjust the flow somewhat. You can also turn the diffuser to alter the direction of the flow. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-10-04

I purchased one of your Penquin 200 Filters and noticed some comments on Amazon.com about needing an air pump with this filter. Is that true?

Asked by: VickyPar
No, not at all. It provides oxygen by moving the water. You only need an air pump if the tank is heavily stocked or poorly maintained. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-13

is this sill available? and can I get a description

Asked by: Bob54
Yes, our entire line of Penguin filters are very much available. 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: 2017-06-13

Hello I purchased the penguin 200 for my 39 gallon tank last Thursday. I have been seeing comments that I can add a second filter cartridge inside. Is this true? if so could I add now that fish are in the tank? Also which way does the blue part face?

Asked by: rashida
Yes, you can place two filter cartridges inside the filter, and yes, they can be removed or added, after the filter is installed on the tank. It doesn't bother the fish. The blue floss faces towards the back of the filter. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-08

My 38 gallon bow front Marineland has two Penguin 200B filters. The intakes only reach a little below the center of the tank. What is the ideal location off the bottom of the substrate for the intakes?

Asked by: SteveTrustworthy
Hi Steve, It is recommended to place the strainer halfway to three quarters of the way down the back of the tank. Sounds like yours is in the ideal spot. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-07

Hello there!  I have a Marineland Penguin BioWheel 100.  Everything I have read or seen on YouTube says I won't have to replace...but will I ever have to replace the BioWheel?

Asked by: Justin M
Hi Justin M, No, not unless it becomes damaged somehow. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-06

I purchased a new 20 gallon starter kit with a 150 filter. I put everything together and plugged in the filter while the intake was properly submerged and with water in the reservoir. All it does is make noise and blow bubbles insise the unit. Help! 

Asked by: masimons47
The water level in the tank must be to the top of the tank. If it is, then pull up the intake tube and impeller housing, and re-seat them as they may not be properly installed. If you are unable to resolve this issue yourself, please call us at 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-05

I just purchased a 10 gal tank and came with a 75 biowheel. Will the tanks be ok using a penguin 100?

Asked by: Kim85
Yes, the Penguin 100 is rated for tanks from 10-20 gallons. Make sure you only use the intake tube and the bottom strainer. The two middle pieces will only work if you have a 20 gallon tank. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-01

I'm curious if my marineland penguin 200 is defective? On random days & times it stops filtering/pushing water through the bio wheel. I have to lift covers off, (still water inside) lift the impeller housing a little, then it starts working again.

Asked by: Emilio
Hi Emilio, Do you have sand in the aquarium or an air stone near the intake tube? This issue usually happens when sand or bubbles get pulled up into the filter system. Move the air stone further away if that is the case. If it is sand, take the filter completely apart, and thoroughly clean it, then place filter floss inside the bottom strainer, or you can buy a sponge accessory at Petsmart to put over the strainer. If you have neither, then take the unit apart, and clean out the motor and the impeller as something may be interfering with it. Call us at 1-800-322-1266 if you are unable to resolve this on your own. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-06-01

I just bought the 10 gal aquarium starter kit and the 75 penguin was quiet but not good enough so I switch out to a 100 penguin and this one is louder than ever. I need help on any advice to get rid of the rattling sound please.

Asked by: Kkim85
Rattling is usually due to one of a couple of things: - air bubbles trapped around the impeller - pull the intake tube up and re-seat it several times to work the bubbles out - impeller, impeller housing or intake tube not seated properly - remove all of these, inspect them, and re-seat them - air stone near the intake tube - move it - hood pressing against the filter - check to make sure everything is fitting correctly Please call us for further assistance. 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-31

The 10 gallon starter kit came with a heater but it does not fit inside the lid. Maybe I didn't do it correctly but the water like ok the heater and the water level on the top of my aquarium do not match the heater is basically fully submerged into mytank

Asked by: Kkim85
All of our heaters require being fully submerged. They can be vertical or horizontal, and should be under water at all times. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-31

I run twin 350's hob filters on my 125gl aquarium. One of them bought from amazon doesnt sit on the tank correctly and now the bio wheels wont turn. It has been cleaned. Any suggestions out of the norm?

Asked by: Crp0069
The frame on the tank is probably too wide for this filter. However, you might check the stand off. This is a plastic piece on the filter body that holds it level against the tank. You will need to remove the filter from the tank to check on this part and make sure it is there and/or not damaged. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-31

Are bio wheels made of carbon?

Asked by: Koi56
Great question! The bio wheel is not made of carbon. The BIO-Wheel filter forms a large three-dimensional area for cultivating aerobic bacteria which work to eliminate toxic ammonia and nitrite from aquarium water. Read more about filtration here: http://www.marineland.com/Guides/Advanced-Filtration-Infographic.aspx.
Answered by: Customer Service
Date published: 2017-05-31

How many filters does the Bio Wheel Penguin 200 pump need? Thank you.

Asked by: Miss Laverne
Hi Miss Laverne, It needs at least one, but can hold two, depending on your tank's needs. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-23

I have a Marineland 75G tank and I want to use two Penguin 350 filters. The filter doesn't fit on the frame, though, which is odd since I'm using all Marineland products. It doesn't sit all the way down and it makes it lean forward. Any advice?

Asked by: LCLCola
It's definitely a Marineland tank. I bought the LED AQUARIUM 75 & STAND set from PetSmart. I have purchased everything I own for the tank from Marineland except the gravel, driftwood, and the fish themselves (I'd probably get those too if you all sold them). I can see the sticker sticking out a bit but it is obscured by the center brace of the stand. To be more clear, the Penguin 350 will hang on to the frame but the frame on the 75 is a bit thicker than the 29 Gallon I used to have it mounted on, so it doesn't sit completely on the frame. If you sit one on a smaller aquarium and then on the frame of the 75, you'll see what I mean.
Answered by: LCLCola
Date published: 2017-05-19

My bio wheel doesn't turn unless I cover the overflow outlet. I've cleaned all the parts, what else can I do?

Asked by: Jknt
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by covering the overflow outlet, as that should not effect it. If you only used water to clean, soak the impeller in distilled white vinegar, and clean out the bottom of the filter box, specifically the motor well, with vinegar and a paper towel. You may have deposits interfering with the flow rate that only vinegar can remove. Also, make sure your purple bearings are in place at each end of the bio wheel. If you are unable to resolve this, just give us a call at 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-16

I bought a Biowheel 350 and from the beginning it is very noisy. Not "splashy", it's a very loud mechanical sound. The aquarium is right in the middle of our house and can be heard from every room. I don't remember this happening the last time I owned one

Asked by: MrsG
We are sorry to hear you are having some noise issues. Remove the intake tube, impeller housing and impeller. Inspect all of them, and clean any debris off that you find. Also, check down in the well of the motor where the impeller resides to make sure there is no grit or sand, any debris in that area. When inspecting the impeller, make sure it was connected to the impeller housing properly. The blades should not rub the underside of the housing, for example. This would definitely cause a mechanical sound. If you cannot resolve this, please call us at 1-800-322-1255. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-04

We have the 350 and it does not work. Any suggestions on what to do?

Asked by: Tolly
Hi Tolly, That depends on what you mean by "it won't work" as well as how old it is at this time. If it is brand new, pull up the intake tube, and remove the impeller housing and impeller, then re-seat them. They could be in the wrong position. Also, prime it by filling it with water, and make sure the water level in the tank is to the top of the tank. If this is an older filter, the same basically applies, except you need to clean the parts, especially the impeller and the well of the motor. Please call us if you cannot resolve it. 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-08

I have a emperor 400b filter both bio wheels were stored with something laying on them they look like new but some of the pleats have a fold in them I can not seem to straighten out I tried soak them in water bending them back could I use a hair dryer

Asked by: Moew
As long as the bio wheels will turn, it doesn't matter what the folds are like. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-05

Purchased a penguin 350 a friend, all parts dirty/nasty. I have been told I don't need to replace the bio wheel, but should sterilize by soaking in bleach/water mix for 30min, rinse, & dry. Is this correct?

Asked by: KJZ1
Hi KJZ1, We would recommend cleaning the plastic parts with a distilled white vinegar and hot water mix then rinsing well with hot water alone. As for the bio wheel, as long as it is intact, and will spin, you should not need to do anything. Everything living on it will dry up and die off. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-05-02

Right out of the box it isn't working. I followed the directions to the t, but it isn't working. The motor is going but it isn't sucking up the water. I pulled apart the housing for the wheel and it rotates fine.

Asked by: halle
Hi Halle, Make sure the tank is filled to the top, and you have primed the filter with water. Re-seat the impeller, impeller housing and intake tube. If one of these is not seated correctly, it won't prime. If your water level is really low, it won't prime, and if there is no water in the filter, it will not prime. Call us if you continue to have issues, 1-800-322-1266. BREX
Answered by: BREX
Date published: 2017-08-19
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