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Old 05-28-2011, 03:56 PM   #1
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Looking for advise on used tank restart

I just picked up a used tank, wasnít ready to start a tank this quick but couldnít pass up the deal.
Need advice on what the next step should be...

When I picked it up it was half full and been ignored for about a month- Still had live hermit crabs and snails, live rock still has pink algae.

The real question is do I dump the ľ tank of salt water I was able to bring when I moved the tank. (Vacuum the sand as I dump it)
Or just start filling it up from with the existing water in it.
ALSO IO water Ė I have a store 30 minutes away that sell it for 50 a gallon, I can get around 20 gallons in a trip
Or can I just restart with tap water and a water conditioner?
I have pulled out all the snail and crabs I could find and some live rock threw them in the only open tank I had a 10 gallon for heat and water movement. Canít run the 55 gal Fluval 405 with water that low and was afraid the heater would cook everything?
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Old 05-28-2011, 05:12 PM   #2
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you don't want the sand, any of it. if the tank has been up for any amount of time with fish, there is probably waste and such within the sandbed. The LR should be kept in the water, but you'll want to make r/o water with the same salinity. Keep the LR under water as much as you can, but once you won't want to keep any of their water. the water doesn't have the good bacteria, the LR does.

I think I rambled there a bit, but keep the rock only, use new water matching the salinity that is in there now. New sand, and that's all I can think of right now.
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:12 PM   #3
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you can always rinse the sand, thgeres no point in throwign it all out when you can rinse all the garbage out and reuse it
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:28 PM   #4
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I just did this a two weeks ago, I regret putting their water in it, as I have high nitrates, I have gotten them cut down considerably with water changes, but that water sounds like bad news. Besides, as everyone said, the good stuff is in the rock, not the water.

Gti_Leo, what is a good way to clean the sand? I know you had suggested it to me, but the sand was more like crushed coral and I couldn't keep it, but how do you rinse sand, I found it was really hard to work with, so I'm wondering if there is some easy way to do it, or just small amounts at a time. And how clean is clean?
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:32 PM   #5
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there is the pillow case method, which you put it in a pillow case and just wash it down and there is the meathod of just putting it in a 5 gallon bucket, put it in the laundry tube and fill it, let it over flow untill the water is clearish. then you can let it dry or put it in and just let it cure and let the system cycle
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:32 PM   #6
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Thanks Nick, I sounds good, hte guy said ther a star fish in there? havent seen it, but I'll be looking as I remove the sand.

As far as washing sand? how do you do that???

I have some green algae on the tank Keep that or get rid of it? I know the pink is good, not to sure about the green.
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:36 PM   #7
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well there is green coraline algae, if its green and on the glass then thats not good
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:38 PM   #8
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Got it GTI-Leo, will give the bucket method a try, give me an excuse to spray the kids with the hose!!!
Thanks Leftyfish - I'll get rid of the water too.... I just got to find a closer place to get the replacement water- Holiday weekend my (not so) LFS is closed....
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:44 PM   #9
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if this guy you're buying the setup from has spare salt just go to your local grocery story and get 5 gallon jugs of distilled water. each jug should only cost a few bucks plus the deposit which you'll get up.

its probably the fastest method of filling the system up and also the cleanest. once its been setup you should invest in a RO/DI unit to use when mixing up water for waterchanges or when toping up the evaporated water with fresh water


5 Stage 100 GPD REEF AQUARIUM REVERSE OSMOSIS WATER SYSTEM RO DI
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:52 PM   #10
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I already went and bought a Bucket of reef salt on the way home with the tank - Thought my neighbor had RO water but his system is down - I will be putting in my own as it will pay for itself quickly.


So my plan is pull the out LR, I got a big plastic tote I can put it in, thats what I brought it home in, get it in new mixed water and then pull wash sand
Then I'll just scrub down the tank, w/ Vinagar and water - I will lose the pink algea that also the glass but it sounds like its better to start right. I'm in no rush to add fish or anything else until we are 100%.
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