Unlike some other types of aquarium filters, the Fluval filter is designed for use outside the tank. Locating the filter outside the tank itself provides a number of benefits for aquarium hobbyists, including easier cleaning and operation. Hobbyists can also determine at a glance when the filters need changed, something that can be difficult to do with in-tank filter designs. But in order to operate properly, Fluval filters need to be installed correctly and started the right way.
Place the Fluval filter beside or beneath the aquarium. For proper operation, the filter must be beneath the water line of the tank. Never install a Fluval filter above the aquarium's water line.
Measure the distance between the filter and intake and exhaust system on the filter and the tank itself. Cut the tubing to the proper length.
Cut a 5 to 7.5 cm (2 to 3 inch) piece from each hose and install the hose valves.
Attach the connector hose to the intake spout. Attach another connector hose to the output spout and lock them into place with a hose locknut.
Place a hose valve into each connector hose and tighten it with a locknut. Attach the hose to the valve on the spout labelled "IN" and tighten it with a hose locknut. Connect the other end to the rim connector.
Position the strainer at the bottom of the intake stem. Attach that intake stem first to the rubber elbow and then to the rim connector.
Attach a hose to the spout labelled "OUT." Fasten the hose with a locknut.
Open both of the valves, then suck all the air from the exhaust assembly. Watch for the tube to fill with water and flow into the canister. This siphon action is what causes the filter to work.
Place the suction cup brackets on the exhaust and intake hoses. Attach the filter to the side of the aquarium if desired.