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Old 07-21-2013, 12:30 PM   #1
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Help!! I messed up bad

Ok I started my tank up waited before adding rock or any invertebrates and nothing would stay alive. I bought the API copper test kit and it read 0ppm but I bought a poly filter and it turned blue stating it had copper in it. So I removed the rocks ran the filter with a new poly filter, still it turned blue. Come to find out instead of using plastic fittings I used brass (a copper alloy duh). So now I'm back to square one and have broke my tank completely down. How to I make sure I remove all the copper or that it's not bonded to anything? I am going to buy new rock, sand and bio balls. What else is there to do as a precaution? Any info would be great thanks!
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:52 PM   #2
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Nevermind everyone makes mistakes just make sure you wash the tank thoroughly, I'd just use a tiny bit of washing up liquid or bleach and rinse it thoroughly, I mean overkill just keep rinsing. But that will definitely rid the tank of any copper traces.

As for the rock keep it and rinse that too, it will dead but you should be able to seed it from live rock when you buy some more. I'd just get rid of the sand, it'll be too much of pain to rinse it all unless you want to give it a go?

Also make sure you rinse all of your equipment that has come into contact with the water.

Keep the thread posted just so we all know how it's coming along.
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:57 PM   #3
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Thanks I will get on that and get new sand, hopefully it's as simple as that. What about soaking the bio balls in a bleach/water solution for a while? Would that help or would it be better to get new? I've had the live rock outside baking in the sun for 2 or 3 weeks but ill wash them too. My excitement has returned lol, I was really bummed out threaten to sell it all but I'm not given up. Thanks!
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:19 PM   #4
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Yeah I'd wash the bio balls I think they'd be ok, just get new filter pads/sponges if you have them. Try scrubbing the balls with a toothbrush or something. This hobby is all a learning curve so don't worry it's only a minor setback just have a think about things before you do it lol. Like air fresheners in the room can really mess a tank up.
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:31 PM   #5
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Would soaking everything be ok? How many parts to bleach and water would be best? I have a big Tupperware container I can fit everything into to soak it
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Old 07-21-2013, 03:12 PM   #6
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I'm not sure the bleach will do much for copper. It's not like you're trying to kill a bacteria or parasite. I think the best route might just be a soak in RODI water combined with a copper absorbing resin.

When you say you used brass fittings, how many are you talking about and were they installed in your aquarium plumbing?
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Old 07-21-2013, 03:19 PM   #7
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Yea I installed 2 brass barb fittings, one on the pump and one on the tank for my supply or return line. So bleach wouldn't work?
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Old 07-21-2013, 06:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bholl View Post
Yea I installed 2 brass barb fittings, one on the pump and one on the tank for my supply or return line. So bleach wouldn't work?

I don't think so. To my knowledge, bleach will not neutralize or detoxify copper. I think there are some chlorine removers that claim to detoxify heavy metals that you might could dump in with your rock to help pull out the copper. I'd follow up with a copper absorbing media in the main tank. I'd also suggest investing in a better copper test kit, just to be 100%. It could be all you were seeing from the poly filter was a trace from those fittings.

Also, from you original post, I'm not clear if you actually had any fatalities and whether or not you cycled the tank.
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Old 07-21-2013, 06:31 PM   #9
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Use Cupra sorb, its made to remove copper.
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Old 07-21-2013, 06:40 PM   #10
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Oh I cycled the tank tried multiple crabs snails etc. they would act fine then go back in there shell in and out couple times then they go in and die. After the tank cycled I could never keep anything alive so now my tank is disassembled and trying to figure out how to get rid of the copper. All my other parameters were within reason. I've had nothing in it for a month, now it's disassembled
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