I have treated myself to new media for my filter, new sponges, new pellet things and carbon ( even though I have never used carbon ). I have only changed a couple sponges since I got the tank a year and a half ago, I'm pretty sure the filter is not doing a great job ( although my water is fine ) so thought I would replace the media.
What's the best way to do it, can I just switch the pellet things straight over and then wait a while to do a sponge and so on? Do I need to rinse the carbon or just put it in? It came with bags so do I just chuck it in the bags and put it in the filter?
I don't want to remove too much of the good bacteria at once but I'm guessing thas in the sponges?
Def don't change everything all at once. Some of the advice I've read online is to only change your media if it is absolutely falling to pieces. Since I stopped changing my filter sponges routinely (unknowingly destroying shed loads of good bacteria) my tank has been much more stable.
You can rinse the carbon bags and put that it, then just change part of the sponge filter, keeping lots of the old stuff in there. If you have 2 sponges, changejust one, or even cut out half of one.
It is pretty much falling apart, the tank and filter was 2nd hand so the media is pretty old, some of my sponges were changed 6 months ago so I'm only going to change a couple. Hopefully I can do it all over a few weeks without messing up my water.
Rinse everything before you put it in to get rid of any dust, and then yes, replace very gradually. I wouldn't bother with the carbon personally because it does need replacing quite often. The other stuff only needs replacing when it's really knackered.
When you change the sponges, I would give the old sponges a good squeeze into the filter so that you can transfer as much of the bacteria over as possible. Give it a few weeks in between changing the ceramic stuff and the sponges.