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Old 11-22-2010, 06:52 PM   #1
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Substrate is Gettin dirty

So I've recently had the problems and was told to switch to ro/di water and stop using chemicals so now that I've done that my substrate is starting to look very dirty should I clean it with the syphon hose by stiring it up a bit?
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Old 11-22-2010, 08:34 PM   #2
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Whatever you do, Do not stir it up. You`ll have an ammonia spike that might kill everything in your tank. Is this a sandbed or Crushed coral? Maybe get a vacuum. Also some nassirus snails will help if it is a sand bed. Also a bullet goby will sift the sand if you have a sandbed.
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Old 11-22-2010, 08:45 PM   #3
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how old is this substrate? if your tank is brand new, the ugly sand bed is something that everyone seems to run into for a short time. i wouldn't stir it up either. is it a brown covering? might be diatoms. a very common happening in new tanks that goes as fast as it came.
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Old 11-22-2010, 09:43 PM   #4
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It's crushed coral substrate and ya it's kinda orangey brownish but there's also patches of green hair algae slimy stuff but ya I used to have an orange diamond goby and he was great for stirrin up the bottom to keep it clean cuz he's eat it and it'd come out his gills clean. So do u think it will just go away? And definetly don't use the siphon hose and clean it?
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Old 11-23-2010, 06:27 AM   #5
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you don't want to purchase a sand sifter if you don't have sand.
actually, with the crushed coral, i would vacuum it regularly.
what i would rather do is completely remove the crushed coral and use something smaller, like aragonite based sand, slightly larger than sugar granules. the reason is, the larger the granules, the more chance for detritus to get caught between the crevices and cause nutrient issues, as in your case.
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Old 11-23-2010, 11:10 AM   #6
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well im not gonna go and switch my substrate but i just wanna make sure its ok to vacume it? cuz ive heard that i dont wanna stir it up atall and with the vacume it sucks it up alot and then drops it again so its gettin stirred up a bit but just the top of it.....is that ok? the reason i ask if cuz i see all these nice pics of reef tanks and just fish tanks and they all r soo clean lookin and my rocks all look clean cuz i got about 60 or so hermit crabs and about 25 big snails in there but they don't really clean the substrate and i had a diamond goby in there keeping it clean but he jumped out and died one night and i don't wanna get any new livestock until i get my tank parameters under control.......but ya so stif up a bit with the vacume or NO?

-Dan
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Old 11-23-2010, 09:35 PM   #7
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those pictures of nice reef tanks- i am willing to bet they don't have crushed coral beds, and the FOWLRs probably vacuum the sand bed if they have CC. crushed coral beds are nutrient traps. it's going to fight against you the entire time you keep it.
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Old 11-24-2010, 01:10 AM   #8
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I vacuum the "dirty spots" of my sand bed, but only the top 1/2" to 1" or so - it's about 4" deep in those areas. I haven't had any issues in the 4+ years I've been doing that and maybe do it once every month or two.
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:04 AM   #9
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And u have crushed coral substrate?
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Old 11-24-2010, 10:25 AM   #10
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And you know it`s not that hard to replace the CC. Many people here have done it. You just need to siphon up the CC about 1/4 of it at a time and use a PVC pipe to slide the sand down to the spot where you removed it. I would do 1/4 areas about every week or two.
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