Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 08-27-2011, 04:04 PM   #1
Look It Up
 
librarygirl's Avatar


 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 7,052
Black gravel turning white

Hi, first I hope this is the correct forum for this question....

I am currently fishless cycling a 20 gal tall. I have standard black aquarium gravel, but I've noticed that it's starting to turn a whitish color, as if the black color is coming off. I have two types in there if I remember correctly: Top Fin and Estes; I can't tell if one or both are changing color as they are mixed but it's starting to look ugly.

Is there a black gravel that is recommended that won't turn color, or should I try a black sand (I like the black look best so I'd like to stick to it if possible). Also would completely changing out the substrate interfere much with the cycle?

Thanks!
__________________

__________________
Every living thing is significant.
🐠 Guide to Starting a Freshwater Aquarium
Community Rules | Custom Site Search
librarygirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2011, 04:34 PM   #2
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Reygan2's Avatar



Tank of the Month Award
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Western NC
Posts: 1,776
Quote:
Originally Posted by librarygirl View Post
Hi, first I hope this is the correct forum for this question....

I am currently fishless cycling a 20 gal tall. I have standard black aquarium gravel, but I've noticed that it's starting to turn a whitish color, as if the black color is coming off. I have two types in there if I remember correctly: Top Fin and Estes; I can't tell if one or both are changing color as they are mixed but it's starting to look ugly.

Is there a black gravel that is recommended that won't turn color, or should I try a black sand (I like the black look best so I'd like to stick to it if possible). Also would completely changing out the substrate interfere much with the cycle?

Thanks!
I'm also thinking about changing to black, maybe even sand, so I'm also interested what to use and how it will effect my beloved BB
__________________

__________________
Reygan2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2011, 04:49 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
glassbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 449
Hmmm...I can't recommend a gravel as I have been using the same gravel for at least 20 years, and it has never flaked or changed color. It's by Estes.

But about your beneficial bacteria...some of the advice you get will depend on where you are in your cycle. How long have you been at it, and what are your current readings for ammonia, pH, nitrite, and nitrate?

You should be able to switch gravels (and keep the cycle going) if you bag up all of your current gravel in mesh filter bags (or clean nylon stockings). Keep the bags wet with old tank water, while you add new gravel back into the tank. Refill, add chlorine remover, let it all circulate for an hour or so to be sure the chlorine is gone, and then place the old bagged gravel back in the tank, flat on the new gravel. The more contact, the better. Then keep on with the fishless cycle and the necessary testing. Hopefully, the BB will transfer to the new gravel and you won't get set too far back.

I am not sure about the correct time to start removing the bags...i.e. is it ok to remove them slowly while the cycle is developing or is it better to wait until the cycle is done and THEN remove them slowly? I will have to defer to someone else on that part.
__________________
glassbird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2011, 08:40 PM   #4
Look It Up
 
librarygirl's Avatar


 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 7,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by glassbird View Post
Hmmm...I can't recommend a gravel as I have been using the same gravel for at least 20 years, and it has never flaked or changed color. It's by Estes.

But about your beneficial bacteria...some of the advice you get will depend on where you are in your cycle. How long have you been at it, and what are your current readings for ammonia, pH, nitrite, and nitrate?

You should be able to switch gravels (and keep the cycle going) if you bag up all of your current gravel in mesh filter bags (or clean nylon stockings). Keep the bags wet with old tank water, while you add new gravel back into the tank. Refill, add chlorine remover, let it all circulate for an hour or so to be sure the chlorine is gone, and then place the old bagged gravel back in the tank, flat on the new gravel. The more contact, the better. Then keep on with the fishless cycle and the necessary testing. Hopefully, the BB will transfer to the new gravel and you won't get set too far back.

I am not sure about the correct time to start removing the bags...i.e. is it ok to remove them slowly while the cycle is developing or is it better to wait until the cycle is done and THEN remove them slowly? I will have to differ to someone else on that part.
Thanks! About half of my gravel is Estes too but there's no way to know if it's the Top Fin and/or the Estes that is changing color. I know the TF probably is; can't say whether the Estes is too. Changing it out and leaving the old gravel in the tank in bags is a good idea, then I could remove each bag slowly when the cycle is done to make sure it stays stable.

Any recommendations on black gravel or sand to use? I'm almost tempted to try sand as I like the look of it better now that I've seen photos of tanks with sand; any recommendations? Also any drawbacks to sand that I'm not foreseeing (other than that it needs to be rinsed throughly first!). Would a normal gravel vac be able to vacuum sand? I'm not sure whether to try the Estes again either just in case it's changing color too and as I said now that I have a reason to change I'm tempted to try sand.
__________________
Every living thing is significant.
🐠 Guide to Starting a Freshwater Aquarium
Community Rules | Custom Site Search
librarygirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 10:53 AM   #5
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
glassbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 449
Check out this thread that I put a comment into regarding sand. There is a recomendation by another member in my post about good black sand brands.

Can't really help with cleaning sand...never used it! I understand that there are some tricks to cleaning it, but could not tell you what they are!

Black gravel or sand?
__________________
glassbird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 10:58 AM   #6
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 172
the best way to gravel sand is to take your gravel vac and just hold it close enough to the sand that it will suck up the stuff on it. the waste should be lighter than the sand to the point that you can suck it up without sucking up much sand. if you need to, you can swish the vac back and forth a little to kick up the waste and just vac it from the water
__________________
jeffp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 11:04 AM   #7
Aquarium Advice Activist
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 192
Estes makes a good looking sand that I know people like or a lot of people use pool filter sand. Pool filter sand will probably be what I try next, because its cheaper and works done from what I understand.
__________________

__________________
amesdrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
gravel

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Black gravel or sand? Cleggat Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 8 12-11-2011 05:24 PM
black or white sand? Rinzy Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 56 07-31-2011 01:00 AM
Tip of my volcano stars arm turning white... JVS__RAMBO Saltwater & Reef - Sick Fish or Coral 1 07-18-2011 08:48 PM
White spots on my Black Molly. warthog76za Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 7 07-13-2011 08:56 AM
white mouth neon tetra +very fat bloated black tetra andrew davies Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 13 07-05-2011 07:37 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:20 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×