Seachem Matrix is one of the best filter media you can get for biological filtration as it will remove ammonia, nitrites and nitrates.
You can check out this guide at Aquarium Blueprints to see how to use Matrix as a substrate for your fish tank.
Can you use Seachem Matrix as substrate?
As biological filtration, the Matrix is designed to provide surface area for the ammonia, nitrite and nitrate consuming bacteria to grow.
Therefore, you should be able to use this media as a substrate without any reduce biological filtration efficiency.
Should you bury Sachem Matrix under another substrate?
We don’t recommend Seachem Matrix under another substrate. This is because the media requires frequent maintenance in order for the biological filtration to remain effective.
By burying Matrix under another substrate, you will need to remove the other substance first before removing the Seachem product. You are just making the maintenance a lot harder than it needs to be.
Therefore, if you want to use another substrate along with Matrix, we recommend placing the other substrate underneath.
How to add Seachem Matrix as substrate in your aquarium
In order to add Seachem Matrix as a substrate in your fish tank, we recommend taking the following steps:
1. Before putting the media in your tank, we recommend giving it a thorough rinse to remove any dust and other small particles from the pebbles.
2. If you are using tap water to rinse, make sure you first add the tap water in a water container and then add a water conditioner like Seachem Prime to remove chlorine and chloramine as you don’t want either of these chemicals in your aquarium.
3. After rinsing the Seachem Matrix, we recommend putting the media using a filter media bag.
By placing them in bags, you will prevent some of the pebbles from floating in your fish tank. Having Matrix in a bag will also make maintenance a lot easier as you can simply remove the bags as opposed to having to pick up the pebbles spread out all around the tank.
If you are looking for a filter bag, then we recommend getting the Aquatic Experts Aquarium Mesh Media Filter Bags, which you can find on Amazon with this link.
4. After putting Matrix in the filter bag, you can then place the bag in your aquarium.
5. Repeat the process if you have other filter bags filled with the Matrix media.
How to maintain the effectiveness of Seachem Matrix as a substrate
In order to keep your Seachem Matrix effective, you can do the following:
1. Every time you do a water change to your fish tank, you should remove the filter bags containing the Seachem Matrix.
2. Remove the filter media from the bags and place them in a water container.
3. Next, you need to rinse off any visible debris off of the medias.
If you are using tap water to rinse, make sure you mix the tap water with a water conditioner to remove chlorine and chloramine as both of these chemicals will kill off your beneficial bacteria.
4. After thoroughly rising the pebbles, put them in back in the filter bags.
5. Finally, place the rinsed Matrix-filled bags back into your tank.