Functions of activated carbon
Activated carbon is used in aquariums as a chemical filtration media where water is being filtered by chemical reaction. That being said, carbon will also behave as a mechanical filter as well where it traps dirt particles in them. This means that carbon is able to remove both organic and inorganic impurity.
Other than that carbon is also used to remove odors. It is also highly effective in removing medication after treatment.
Overall carbon will give you a more polished clean water for your fishes.
How is Seachem MatrixCarbon different?
The most unique feature of MatrixCarbon is its spherical bead form. This gives the MatrixCarbon 2 major advantages compared to any other brand in the market.
The spherical shape allows optimum hydrodynamics and will not pack. It allows maximum water flow while allowing maximum contact with its high density binding sites. Ordinary activated carbon in the market that is either in granular or cylindrical will suffer compacting where water is not washing thru the carbon or channeling where water passes thru without much contact with the carbon. This usually happens when it is either being packed too tight or not tight enough. The spherical shape of MatrixCarbon solves both of these problems resulting in more efficient filtration.
Lowest phosphate contain
All activated carbon contains phosphate. This is because the ingredients that are used to manufacture naturally contain phosphate. Phosphate in carbon will hinder the absorbing capacity while phosphate that leach out into the aquarium will encourage algae growth. Sulfuric acid is used to wash activated carbon to remove ashes and phosphate but it will never be able to effectively remove all phosphate. That being said, many brands would claim that they are phosphate free even when there is still a low concentration of phosphate in the carbon.
But because of the hydrodynamic properties of MatrixCarbon, more ash is washed compared to other brands. Therefore, it has the lowest leachable phosphate on the market.
If zero phosphate leach is desired, Seachem Seagel, which is a mixture of MatrixCarbon and Phosguard will prevent any phosphate being leached into the water. Alternately Seachem Purigen that is made out of special synthetic polymer has zero phosphate contain and in the same time has zero effect on trace elements making it highly suitable in aquascaping application.
How to use
250ml of MatrixCarbon will effectively filter 400L of water for 2-3 months depending on the quality of the water. In very dirty water, lifespan might be shorter. Bag MatrixCarbon in either Seachem The Bag or Seachem Zip Bag and rinse well before use. All chemical filter media should be placed in the last stage of a filter system. When MatrixCarbon absorbing capacity has been reached, replace it with a new one to maintain the highest water.