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How often should you clean your canister filter?

Hi,

My name is Monika, I have a fluval 406 canister filter, I have had it on my 60 gallon tank since I bought it six months or so ago.

I am now wondering how often I should clean out the canister filter? Not really sure, any advice, anything I should know before I open it up? Like will it smell really bad?

My biggest fear is that it will spill all over the floor and stink up my apartment.

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