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Old 12-04-2006, 11:08 PM   #1
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Need help changing substrate

Hi everybody, I have not posted in a while computer was commiting suicide, all fixed now so here goes. I have cc for substrate and I hate the way it looks now so I have decided to go with live sand. My question is how do I remove all the substrate without causing a spike in ammonia and stressing out all my fish I have another empty tank to move the live rock and fish to while I remove the cc but will the bacteria on the rocks be enough to keep the levels under control. I have no way to cycle another tank so I am kinda in a pickle any help would be great I would like to get this done before Christmas the tank looks terrible now. Thanks again, Sue
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Old 12-04-2006, 11:42 PM   #2
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I did my 55G in 3 separate sections. I removed 1/3 and replaced with sand. Waited a week and did the next. This gave the bacteria plenty of time to migrate to the new substrate. I have heard of folks doing it 1/2 at a time, I just wanted to be safe.
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Old 12-05-2006, 10:42 AM   #3
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I agree with Scott , do it in sections. Hope all goes well Sue
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Old 12-05-2006, 11:08 AM   #4
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One more thing, have a PWC ready and test your parameters.
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Old 12-06-2006, 12:47 AM   #5
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Ok thanks everybody is there any way to do a substrate change all at once I have some other issues like fireworms,red slime, and green hair algea that I was hoping the change would help me cure or at least get a jump start on getting rid of these problems. Thanks again, Sue
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Old 12-06-2006, 10:45 AM   #6
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I`m not sure about the whole tank as I have not removed my substrate but I sure would be afraid of nasties that are trapped under your CC and removing all might stir alot of it up causing a mini spike. Maybe someone with experience can answer this. Hope all goes well.
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Old 12-06-2006, 11:57 AM   #7
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I agree with mel. The fireworms (you sure they aren't bristle worms?), will move into your LR, more than likely, if disturbed. Your algae problems are from excess nutrients...possibly built up in the CC.
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Old 12-06-2006, 04:34 PM   #8
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I have done mine all at once and the best advice I can give if you want to do it that way is to have lots of fresh mixed water ready ...
I did it like this drain the tank into 2 or 3 tote bins
1 for fish keep a filter on it to keep the water circulated and the fish waste collected . 1 for corals PH for circulation . 1 for live rock ...next have your sand ready remove old substrate place in new live sand (no need to rinse it ) add live rock back aquascape to your likign add water (do not keep live rock exposed to air for long periods as this will cause massive die off... and a big cycle next add your corals pump water back in , then add about 2/3rds water from the fish back in add fresh mixed salt water drip fish to new perameters ... add fish back in top off with addtional salt ... keep some CC or get some live sand to seed the new stuff with have a test kit on had and extra salt water incase you need to do a H20 change ... you should have very little if any effect on your critters from this I have done it several times on the 2.5 and the 7gmb ... with no ill effects ... and no losses ... you will likely see a mild diatom bloom from this tho
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Old 12-06-2006, 05:12 PM   #9
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Wow, sadie, I just moved my LR to one side of my tank and removed/replaced it with the new substrate, I didn't take out any fish or LR. I did not have any fatalities. My tank is a 55G.
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Old 12-06-2006, 06:32 PM   #10
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Hee it does seem hard but it really wasent ....I did it by compleate tear down due to size of the tank but it is a viable option should they wish to do it that way ..I also figured it would not allow alot of junk from the CC to ecape to the water column and possibly give a cycle . Man I need a bigger tank *Dear santa I have been fairly good this year ..... I saw a 22 gallon cube .... *
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