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Old 07-20-2009, 12:56 AM   #1
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Sand?

I was thinking of getting an additional tank, upwards of 40 gallons and i was thinking of what substrate i should use. I know it will be a planted tank and i was wondering if sand is at all a possibility. I have only been familiar with straight gravel or eco-complete and i would like to know a little more about sand. It seems like it would be less costly than gravel or eco-complete.
-can it be vaccumed?
-are there any cons to having sand?
-can it be sand from a local beach or is there a special kind of sand?
-Will it affect plant growth at all?
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:08 AM   #2
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Sand can be vaccumed, I think (let someone else chime in). If you don't stir the sand weekly or have something stir it there will be a buildup of toxic gas bubbles. Just use PFS as it is less than $20 for a 40lb. bag. Sand from a local beach could be contaminated/polluted. It won't affect growth, it's just like gravel, it just holds the plants down.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:24 AM   #3
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Sand can be vaccumed, I think (let someone else chime in). If you don't stir the sand weekly or have something stir it there will be a buildup of toxic gas bubbles. Just use PFS as it is less than $20 for a 40lb. bag. Sand from a local beach could be contaminated/polluted. It won't affect growth, it's just like gravel, it just holds the plants down.
I agree on the Pool Filter Sand but the pricing is usually around $6 for 50 pounds at most home depot and lowes. And the sand is actually easier to vacuum as things tend to want to stay on top so you just run the vacuum about half an inch off the sand to suck up waste without kicking up a bunch of sand.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:34 AM   #4
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less than $20
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:35 AM   #5
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Yeah i was just going to say.. go with pool filter sand. I had my doubts about it.. but when i got it and tried it out it looked amazing in my tank. Also, with a regular gravel vacuum you just keep it away from the sand like Rzorbacksfan said. Also.. i got 100lbs of PFS for about 15$ so its not pricey at all as far as sand goes. Some of the "sand" you see in petsmart cost like $25 which is ridiculous. Also i know some pool stores have different shades of the pool filter sand so you can always look for lighter or darker color of the sand. My local pool store had White PFS, regular, a lighter color sortof like tropical beach sand, and then he had white with little black granules. So i think it all depends on where you get it from.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:38 AM   #6
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get some malaysian trumpet snails to stir the sand up a little
i use root tabs to feed root feeders...
i use playsand i got from homedepot at around $5 per 50 pounds, but i hear pool filter sand is better because the size of the grains are a little bigger and it wont compact as tightly as playsand
if you have corys they'll love it too...i feed my fish live worms once in a while and the worms that escaped love it too

just remember to wash wash wash and wash a little more and wait till the cloud settles down once the tank has been set up
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:40 AM   #7
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Only reason I pointed it out was less than 10 would have been more accurate and the weight was off, not meaning to step on your toes just throwing in my experience since I just went through changing over to PFS.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:54 AM   #8
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Only reason I pointed it out was less than 10 would have been more accurate and the weight was off, not meaning to step on your toes just throwing in my experience since I just went through changing over to PFS.
Oh, lol. Thanks for clearing that up, I haven't seen a bag of PFS in a year.
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Old 07-20-2009, 01:58 AM   #9
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Oh, lol. Thanks for clearing that up, I haven't seen a bag of PFS in a year.
Just wanted to let you know that it wasn't my intention to undermine you just giving a fresh perspective.
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:21 AM   #10
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So, who has actually bought Pool Filter Sand at Home Depot or Lowes? I have seen Play Sand but never PFS. PFS here from a Pool store is about $10 for 20 lbs.
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:24 AM   #11
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So, who has actually bought Pool Filter Sand at Home Depot or Lowes? I have seen Play Sand but never PFS. PFS here from a Pool store is about $10 for 20 lbs.
I got it for $5.99 at my local home depot, it was right next to the play sand along with stones and pavers.
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:30 AM   #12
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Now I am going to have to go back and check. I just bought 200 lbs of playsand for my 115G cichlid tank, but I really want PFS. Hopefully if they have it I can take back the Playsand and get the PFS.
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:34 AM   #13
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WHAT!? 10$ ?? for only 20lbs? Thats bad lol. i got 100lbs for 15$.. so like thats 7.50 for 50lbs... I've never seen PFS at lowes/home depot either.. i went to both stores before i found out my teacher owned a pool maintenance company. Maybe select home depots have them? Idk.. from my experiance they didnt have any of it. :/
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Old 07-20-2009, 02:34 AM   #14
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Now I am going to have to go back and check. I just bought 200 lbs of playsand for my 115G cichlid tank, but I really want PFS. Hopefully if they have it I can take back the Playsand and get the PFS.
I would definitely suggest trying to make the switch the PFS looks way better and is much cleaner than the play sand.
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:23 AM   #15
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Here in Vegas pool supplies are much more expensive. Many, many more pools=supply and demand.
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:32 AM   #16
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Here in Vegas pool supplies are much more expensive. Many, many more pools=supply and demand.
I would still give home depot and/or lowes a chance maybe they don't gouge as bad as the LPS.
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Old 07-20-2009, 05:02 PM   #17
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Here in Vegas pool supplies are much more expensive. Many, many more pools=supply and demand.
Whoops page reload re post.
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Old 07-30-2009, 04:42 PM   #18
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Go sand. I just switched and the fish and I both love it! I picked up 50lb of play sand at Home Depot for a little more than $3 and it makes about a 4" deep bed in my 29g. My amazon swords seem to be doing fine in the sand and the other, newer plants do ok when my catfish leaves the plants rooted for more than one night. I was surprised at how fast the sand started to go anaerobic though. I started getting black patches in the sand within two weeks, but they cleared up when stirred.
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:54 PM   #19
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i got play sand and live sand in my 55gal tank. i put it in 2 days ago and it is still very cloudy what should i do?
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:58 PM   #20
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Wait for it to settle, or hang an extra filter on there to try and filter out the particulates. Did you rinse heavily first?

Is your tank saltwater? To my knowledge, bagged live sand is only saltwater (and IMO worthless). Going on the far fetched notion that it is actually bacteria populated, fresh and salt water bacteria strains are different. So even if it was 'live', is your tank is fresh then it's dead now.
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