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Old 07-26-2015, 03:10 AM   #1
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How to change my Oscar tank substrate

I have a 75 gallon Oscar tank with one Severum, I bought the tank for 100 bucks with everything including the stand it came with gravel but recently I been doing some research and I was thinking of changing to sand, I already have a 50 pound bag of pool filter sand, anyone have any suggestions on how to change the substrate without recycling your tank?
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Old 07-26-2015, 09:08 AM   #2
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You should be able to change it out without cycling again cause most of your beneficial bacteria is in your filter. If you're worried you could put some of the gravel in a mesh filter bag and put it in your tank after you do the switch. I've changed out substrates on three tanks with no cycle problems. What I did was drain as much as I could into buckets, net fish out into bucket. Run filter on said bucket, scoop out gravel, replace with sand, then when I filled back up I used the bucket water and new water. It's like a big water change and deep cleaning.
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Old 07-26-2015, 12:00 PM   #3
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I agree you should be able to change the substrate without a cycle but I tend to disagree that most/all BB lives in the filter with the exception of bare bottom tanks. I believe that the bb loves surface area and gravel has lots of it, combine it with the detritus that gets caught in gravel and you have a great place for BB, however that said the majority of the bb that receives ample water flow for your filtration is in the filter.
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Old 07-26-2015, 12:06 PM   #4
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I recently changed my substrate in my tank. Huge cycle. Get some stress zyme and you will be fine.


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Old 07-26-2015, 12:55 PM   #5
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Thanks, is pool filter sand okay? I've looked at several different websites with varying answers.
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Old 07-26-2015, 01:13 PM   #6
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I've heard play sand is good


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Old 07-26-2015, 06:13 PM   #7
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I used this stuff that was used for paving, which cost like 10 dollars for a 50 pound bag, which is spendy. It takes about 4 days to settle and after it does, it never stays suspended in the water for more than 10 mins. If is because it is has a certain structure where smaller pieces cling together and that is why it is used for paving.

Play sand works but needs a ton of cleaning.


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Old 07-26-2015, 06:23 PM   #8
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Upgraded from a 72 to a 125.... Brand new substrate(sand) and 100% water change.... Used same filter.... No cycle and no casualties....


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Old 07-26-2015, 09:02 PM   #9
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I like pool filter sand as it is fine enough that detritus suits on top but heavy enough not to get too much sucked up in a vacuum.

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