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Old 03-09-2009, 12:00 AM   #1
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Need help with my aquarium after move... no fish, but trying to keep water...

Hello,

I just divorced my wife, , and it has put my aquarium in a real bind. I have successfully moved it several times, but this time, I think I may have really done some damage. It was about two weeks ago and the weather was in the thirties, and I didn't keep all of the water, I was trying to make my move easier, so I just kept the water and rocks (72 gallon tank, kept about 2/3rds of the water). Well I was so happy to get all my stuff out of the house and the divorce papers signed, and I got a contract on my new house, that I totally neglected the tank. The tank got way too cold, and I haven't had lights or filters/pumps running for 2 weeks now, and I just got around to doing it today. I turned on both the lights and the pump, and the water turned very cloudy and it stinks. There are a lot of dead worms and other type of small sea creatures, it looks like the crabs are still alive, but not much else seems to be moving.

Can I continue to light and filter the water and expect it to get back to better days? Or am I past the point of no return and do I need to empty the water and start over?

I don't have any fish right now, and don't expect to get any soon, I really just have the tank for atmosphere and to watch the coral grow and so forth.

Advice needed on how I should proceed please.

Thanks.
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:57 AM   #2
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If the water stinks, that's not a good sign. You have corals in there now? I can't imagine they're still alive if the tank got cold and it hasn't had lighting for 2 weeks... but if they are, I'd do some water tests and some major water changes to get things back in order.

Even if you don't have corals anymore, I'd do some water tests (salinity, pH, ammonia, nitrites, nitrates) to figure out where you're at. The results of those will probably make it obvious if you need to change out the water or not.
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Old 03-09-2009, 01:42 AM   #3
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thanks for the reply, but I don't think you understand my circumstances. I am not in any position to be testing or treating water right now. I am in the middle of moving from a hotel to a rental house to my new house here in a few days. I don't have access to my stuff, it's in storage, and normally I would've left the lights on and filters working and things would've settled fine, but this time I wasn't diligent and now my tank is cloudy and stinky.

I'm just not sure if it is recoverable or not, since I've never been in this circumstance before.

Thanks.
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Old 03-09-2009, 03:05 AM   #4
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Hmm. You're right. I didn't read any of that in your first post.

I guess if the tank is sitting in storage somewhere, whether or not its recoverable (at this stage) is anyone's guess. Pretty sure if a tank is sitting with no power for two weeks, it's a total loss.
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Old 03-09-2009, 08:11 AM   #5
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Post what you have up on Craigslist and try to give sell what 's alive. Or just donate to the lfs in your new area. Goodwill right now might go a long way when you want to restart the tank.

Good luck on the restart (both yours and your tank)
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Old 03-09-2009, 08:28 AM   #6
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Is your plan to set it up again when you get into the new house? If so, I'd remove everything and clean it/the tank. Put the rocks in a tub of water with a small powerhead and heater while you clean.Check the tub for ammonia to gauge what condition they're in. The rocks might be base rock by now with nothing living on them.

When it's time to set up, add the rock, new sand, and re-cycle. Take your time.

And it's either "congratulations!", or "I'm sorry" for the recent life change. Whichever shoe fits.
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Old 03-09-2009, 11:23 AM   #7
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thanks austinsdad, and for all the other replies. I am going to be setting it up again soon, so I guess maybe I will just put all the rock in water and try to make it work as base rock and throw away all the nasty water.

I'm thinking I'll just keep the sand, but set it outside to dry it out or something.
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Old 03-09-2009, 11:32 AM   #8
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I'd suggest new sand. Even though dried out, I'm thinking it might stir up all kinda nasties once in water again. I don't think I'd chance using it again
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Old 03-09-2009, 09:25 PM   #9
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Well I came home from work today, having left the circulation pump on but the light off all day, and the water is kinda (relatively) clear again and it doesn't stink. I guess I'll give it a while before I chuck it.
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