How do you know it is working?
You can tell the POLY-FILTER is working by observing its color gradually changing from an off-white to a brown color after prolonged exposure to contaminants in your aquarium. Cut POLY-FILTER in half when dark brown in color. If cut cross-section is also dark brown replace with new one.  Another method is to check ammonia levels in your aquarium before installing the POLY-FILTER and periodically thereafter.  A third method is to add medication and subsequently check its concentration in the aquarium water after approximately 48 hours.

When should you replace your Poly-Filter?
When the POLY-FILTER turns DARK in color, it is still operating effectively and does not have to be replaced. However, when it begins to turn brownish in color, it should be removed, discarded and immediately replaced with a new POLY-FILTER.

In those situations where the POLY-FILTER has been subjected to heavy waste product loads for prolonged periods; i.e. ammonia levels ranging from 0.50-1.50 parts per million or higher, and the aquarium water continues to appear yellowish-green in color or cloudy in appearance, then the filter is no longer effective and should be discarded and replaced immediately with a new POLY-FILTER.

For optimum performance, where (in my tank) should a Poly-Filter be placed?
Place the Poly-Filter® resale size: 4" x 8" into any filter system after prefilter material. The Poly-Filter may be cut to fit any size filter compartment. Larger filter systems i.e. wet-dry or canisters may have a chemical medium section to which Poly-Filters may be stacked in series which improves absorbent/adsorbant performance. Instead of adding Poly-Filter Discs to cylinder that has too large a diameter - try cutting Poly-Filter 12" x 12" sheets into discs then add the extra Poly-Filter cutoff pieces.

Can the Poly-Filter® be used to dechlorinate water or break chloroamines apart?
NO! You must use chemical dechlorination before adding water to the tank. Chloroamines require either Sodium thiosulfate or other chemicals to split the chlorine-ammonia bond apart. Once the bond is split the excess ammonia will be converted into Nitrite (NO2-) and then Nitrate (NO3-) through Nitrifying bacteria.

Will Poly-Filter® sorb ammonia, nitrite and nitrate out of fresh and marine water?
The Poly-Filter® sorbs ammonia and organic nitrogen compounds produced by fishes, invertebrates, sharks/rays, turtles and amphibians. The Poly-Filter® sorbs ammonia (NH3) > 0.10mg/L which only occurs above 7.5pH range. Below 7.0 pH mainly ammonium ions (NH4+) are produced which are nontoxic and nonsorbable by Poly-Filter®. Poly-Filter® can help prevent nitrite (NO2-) ions from reaching toxic levels through several methods. Poly-Filter® may sorb some nitrate (NO3-) ions in freshwater. In natural or synthetic seawater nitrate (NO3-) ions cannot be retained by any chemical filtration media due to sulfate ions leaching action. Anytime the sulfate ions exceed 40 mg/L this nitrate leaching back out of filter media is observed. Poly-Filter® sorbs many organic wastes that are converted into nitrates thereby lowering nitrate formation.

Can Poly-Filter® actually remove all traces of any Copper Medication/Treatment? Will Intervetrabrates survive, in a tank, that Poly-Filter® has removed the Copper?
Answer: Yes to both questions. In fact 8 sq. inches or ¼ of a Poly-Filter® will sorb 285.60 - 288.00 mg of Copper ions. Poly-Filter® sorbs any type of copper both chelated and nonchelated forms. We have treated quarantine tanks with copper-formalin for 14 months adding weekly (0.15 - 0.25mg/L concentration) then used Poly-Filter® (without a water change) to remove the copper down to trace element level (0.040 mg/L) and then added Invertebrates. Method of Analysis: Atomic Absorption EPA Methods 7210 & & 7211.

Does Poly-Filter® remove other Fish Medications/Treatments?
Yes, Poly-Filter® will remove all soluble medications. Some medications are sorbed faster than others, Poly-Bio-Marine, Inc.® recommends running Poly-Filter® 3-4 days minimum after stopping treatment. Never remedicate while sorbing old Medication! A Few organic dyes complexed with salts may take longer sorbing than other medications. Always remember, some medications are only partially soluble in fresh or marine water --- these medications can take longer for Poly-Filter® to sorb out of the aquaria.

How does an Aquarium Hobbyist regenerate Poly-Filter® for reuse in an aquarium?
Poly-Filter® is not an ion-exchange resin, therefore it does not exchange ions or anything else back into freshwater, saline, natural or synthetic seawater aquaria. Due to the complex nature of the metabolic waste products sorbed into poly-Filter® ----- there is no safe method of cleaning a Poly-Filter®. You may rinse Poly-Filter® in Distilled Water (USP Grade) to help remove organic particulate matter. Never rinse Poly-Filter® with bleach or chlorinated water - chlorine reacts with sorbed organic matter producing toxic volatile organic chemicals.

My Aquarium Dealer sold me a Poly-Filter® because of a possible "Toxic Water Problem" and the used Poly-Filter® turned an unusual color. Could the Poly-Filter® be analyzed and the toxin or pollutant named?
Yes. Poly-Filter® solves toxic water conditions. However, we strongly suggest that very few people want to spend the thousands of dollars required for sophisticated Toxicological testing.

What does a Poly-Filter® remove from an Aquarium?
Poly-Filter® sorbs excess organics such as amino acids, proteins, lipoproteins, dissolved organic matter, all forms of phosphates, tannins & humic acids and related complexes. Poly-Filter® also sorbs volatile organic chemical such as chloroform, bromoform, benzene, phenols and organophosphate insecticides/pesticides. All metabolic wastes are sorbed by Poly-Filter®.

Does Poly-Filter® remove "Trace Elements" from freshwater or marinewater?
NO!! In synthetic seawater the American Society of Testing & Materials states "Barium, Manganese, Copper, Zinc, Lead, Silver are the only added trace elements occurring in substitute ocean water" Standard D 1141. ASTM further states "Trace element occurring naturally in concentrations below 0.005 mg/L are not included". In other words naturally occurring impurities are not considered. The sodium chloride adds iron at 0.255 - 0.398 mg/L concentration to synthetic seawater mixes. Ref. Morton Salt's Purex Analysis. Many of the other listed trace elements concentrations are below the part-per-billion detection range via Atomic Absorption w/Graphite Furnace. Simply, those other 40_ trace elements presence can't be detected or proven under modern EPA Methods of Analysis. Poly-Bio-Marine, Inc.® published a study showing Poly-Filter's® effect upon Copper , Zinc, Iron, Lead, Mercury, Cadmium + Trihalomethanes Sept. 97 FAMA

How can other Companies selling chemical filtration media imply their products perform equal to a Poly-Filter® in freshwater or marine aquarium?
Simply, because hobbyists don't demand Independent Laboratory Testing performed under EPA Standards and Methods of Analysis. Secondly, other companies add disclaimers to their packages i.e. "only for use on ornamental fish" to avoid FDA & USEPA Regulations. Third, hobbyists don't understand the relationship between quantity of other filtration media versus flow rate and Van der Waal's forces effects. Van der Waal's forces require 1 cubic foot (7.6 gallons) of filter medium per 3-5 gallons per minute of water flow. Poly-Bio-Marine, Inc.® U.S. Patented a new method by which Poly-Filter® avoids Van der Waal's forces effect.

Will Poly-Filter® remove Phosphates in a Fish or Reef Tank?
Yes, Poly-Filter® will sorb Ortho phosphate + Hydrolyzable phosphates + Organic-bound phosphates producing an ultimate Total Phosphorus level of 0.100 mg/L the limit of detection for visual color reactions. No, Poly-Filter® is unique in its function as U.S. Patented sorbent media.  Basically, Poly-Filter® sorbs a percentage of the total phosphates per passage through the media. Other Phosphate removal media flocculate and precipitate Ortho phosphate+Calcium, Magnesium, Strontium, Barium and /or Alkalinity. This means those products actually remove valuable synthetic salt components. Poly-Filter® actually sorbs both PO 4 (ortho phosphate) + Hydrolyzable phosphates without removing Calcium, Magnesium, Strontium, Barium, Alkalinity or trace elements. The other Phosphate removers either alter seawater chemistry or produce leachable i.e. (Red) Iron Filter leaches ammonia and heavy metals. Activated Alumina leaches aluminum while sorbing bicarbonates and trace metals.

 Can Poly-Filter (r) sorb Silicates ?
The answer to this question is complex because there are a number of other types of silicate that will enter solution in a reef tank ,due to actions of microrganisms producing diatom growth. Reef keepers ask about silicate and monosilicic acid (H4SiO4) which are dissolved silicates that are molybdate-reactive ,which means any aquarist can test for their presence using a color-reaction test method. Monomeric silicates are also dissolved and test postive for silicates. These various silicates all produce diatom growth in reef tanks.

Poly-Filter does not sorb these dissolved noncharged forms of silicate.

Next are the more complex forms of nondissolved silicates i.e. collodial silicates and polymeric silicates , which do not react with aquarist's colorimetric test kits. These collodial and olymeric silicates are not well adsorbed by anion exchange resins or other charged media . Low pressure, R/O can remove these forms of silicates but the cost is very expensive for the customer . The build -up of precipitated , complexed silicates produces rapid R/O membrane failure unless the membranes are pressure acid-flushed weekly followed by double distilled water pressure rinses. Obviously, this cannot be easily or safely performed by the average reef hobbyists. This leaves the reef aquarist in a serious dilemma ---- another source of silicates that cannot be detected by simple test kits nor removed from incoming tapwater. Could collodial and polymeric silicates be a source of the mysterious occasional reef tank diatom blooms ? These nondetectable (by aquarists) forms of silica degrade in reef tanks into simple dissolved silicates feeding diatom growth. Poly-Filter can sorb polymeric silicates . Collodial silicates exist in a flux state with a percentage of the particles sticking to each other and organic compounds or complex inorganic compounds which helps form the complex polymeric silicates. As the collodial silicates are converted over to polymeric silicates they are sorbed by Poly-Filter.
Kold Ster-il (r) Sorbs Silicates Poly-Bio-Marine,Inc. sells a special form of filter medium that adsorbs phosphates and silicates for $10.00 retail per 16oz. charge. This filter medium is placed into our 0.20 micron filter bag (located in series) after 12 discs of specially prepared Poly-Filter . Synergistically these media remove all forms of silicate and phosphate from tapwater. These filter media are followed by a 0.50 micron solid carbon core filled with a molecular sieve compound that adsorbs additional heavy metals.

This U.S. Patented form of water filtration is sold under the trademarked name ---- Kold Ster-il (r) The Kold Ster-il (r) system is available in two models and with additional filter media for nitrate adsorption and other special sorption requirements. Kold Ster-il (r) system sorbs tapwater 's contaminates including : chlorine, chloramines, bad odors,tastes, volatile organic chemicals, dissolved organics, heavy metals, pesticides, particulates, alga,fungi,diatoms, parasites, E.Coli , phosphates and silicates but allows the hardness and alkalinity to remain in the filtered tapwater. This type of water is ideal for reef tanks, marine aquaria, brackish aquaria ,most freshwater aquaria, koi ponds, herpetological and other zoological displays. Please visit other areas of our website for more Kold Ster-il (r) information.

References :

1) A.S.T.M. Volume 11.01 Standard D 859 Standard Test Method for Silica in Water.

2) Howery, K The Testng of Poly-Bio-Marine,Inc.'s Filter Media and System under US EPA Standards and Analysis Methods Performed in State & Federal Toxicology Laboratory, FAMA Feb. 97.

3) IIer, R.K. The Chemistry of Silica, John Wiley and Sons, NY,NY 1979

4) Jenkins, D., Snoeyink, V.L. Water Chemistry,John Wiley and Sons, NY,NY 1980