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Old 08-18-2013, 07:47 PM   #1
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driftwood

How long should I soak driftwood in water before I put it in my fish tank. I called my fish store and they told me it releases tannins into the water so I had to soak it in water before I put it in there to get rid of them.
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Old 08-18-2013, 07:58 PM   #2
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How long should I soak driftwood in water before I put it in my fish tank. I called my fish store and they told me it releases tannins into the water so I had to soak it in water before I put it in there to get rid of them.
You'll probably need to soak it for a week or two at least, depending on the type of wood. Change the water daily until the the water remains clear. You may need to weight it down so that it stays submerged.
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:51 PM   #3
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How long should I soak driftwood in water before I put it in my fish tank. I called my fish store and they told me it releases tannins into the water so I had to soak it in water before I put it in there to get rid of them.
Boiling it is the quickest way to remove tannins. As was said, until the water is clear....
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:54 PM   #4
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Boiling it is the quickest way to remove tannins. As was said, until the water is clear....
Just curious, when you've boiled driftwood, did it completely screw up your pot? I've heard it leaves a nasty residue on the pot.
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:40 PM   #5
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I bought a pot JUST for driftwood. That way I don't screw up a lot of pots...LOL. I only boil mine to sterlize it. I scrub it really good first! Then i boil it for about 2-3 hours. I have angels in my tank so I don't care about the tannis. What is released into my tank actually helps to buffer and condition the water. Kinda like blackwater extract.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:10 PM   #6
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Yeah I 'borrowed' a large pot from my mams house, that I forgot to leave back..lol. It does leave a residue but if it's just for that, no problem. Purigen will remove tannins also...
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
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I think a couple of weeks is a very, um, optimistic estimate, to leach wood. I have some wood in my tanks 16 months old that still leaches colour. Not a huge amount but some. Water is a pale yellow by the time its water change time.

All were soaked in a bucket for a minimum of three months, some for six, all were bleached a bit. Some were bleached a lot, which makes them a bit lighter in colour when wet, but not a lot. It makes them look quite white when dry though.

Boiling helps to remove colour faster, but won't remove it all and it does not smell that good while it cooks. In case there are other people in the house who may object to the odour, bear that in mind.

Unless the wood needs soaking to waterlog it so it will sink, soaking to remove tannins is optional really. The colour will come out in tank water, for sure, and you'd have to either use carbon to take it out, or do more water changes to weaken the colour.

Amazon 'black water' tanks make use of wood for precisely this reason, that it leaches tannins and other substances into the water that black water fish love. Darkens water, can go as dark as coffee with new wood, but it gradually lightens over time. I'm hoping by next summer my wood may have stopped leaching colour.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:28 PM   #8
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I think a couple of weeks is a very, um, optimistic estimate, to leach wood. I have some wood in my tanks 16 months old that still leaches colour. Not a huge amount but some. Water is a pale yellow by the time its water change time.

All were soaked in a bucket for a minimum of three months, some for six, all were bleached a bit. Some were bleached a lot, which makes them a bit lighter in colour when wet, but not a lot. It makes them look quite white when dry though.

Boiling helps to remove colour faster, but won't remove it all and it does not smell that good while it cooks. In case there are other people in the house who may object to the odour, bear that in mind.

Unless the wood needs soaking to waterlog it so it will sink, soaking to remove tannins is optional really. The colour will come out in tank water, for sure, and you'd have to either use carbon to take it out, or do more water changes to weaken the colour.

Amazon 'black water' tanks make use of wood for precisely this reason, that it leaches tannins and other substances into the water that black water fish love. Darkens water, can go as dark as coffee with new wood, but it gradually lightens over time. I'm hoping by next summer my wood may have stopped leaching colour.
Must depend on the type of wood...I soaked my piece of Malaysian driftwood for 7 or 8 days in a tin washtub in the back yard, changing the water once a day and it hasn't tinted my water at all. The water was very pale yellow for the first few days of soaking, but it never got very dark. It stayed in as long as it did because it didn't sink initially. I weighted it with a brick and it finally sank after about a week.
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:53 PM   #9
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I guess every piece of wood is different. I have both Mopani wood and the dark brown 'driftwood' that comes from the tropics. Both leached for ages.. I honestly don't know which pieces are still leaching, but I assume it is all of them, to a greater or lesser extent. I don't really mind the pale yellow tint to the water much, but it is noticeably lighter after a water change.
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:01 PM   #10
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I LOVE the black water look. I have mopai, which is super dense. So all I did was rinse it in super hot water and threw it in my tank. Had it about 3 weeks now and my tank is light watery tea. I always am scared to do a w/c and lose the pretty colour! I would only soak it for long if you don't like the color. If for it to sink, people tie rocks to them all the time until they sink on their own. Good luck!
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