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Old 07-02-2013, 03:03 AM   #1
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My tank is now chernobyl

I had a healthy tank, 15 cardinal tetras, 4 siamese algae eaters, and around 10 shrimp of different variaties.

Yesterday I swapped out my eheim classic green tubing for some clear tubing (it was advertised as PVC and aqaurium safe).

Skip forward 12 hours, the lights come on and the shrimp are dead, the SAE's are barely moving and the tertra's aren't eating. The surface of the water smells like petrol/plastic and there's a thin pastic layer coating the glass.

What can I do? I've already turned off the filter and taken it out of the tank and done a 50% water change. I'm concerned that some chemical from the new filter tubing is responsible. If so, I have no idea if the tank is now 'chernobyl' or if I can get away with simply doing water changes and using a better quality filter tubing. If the plastic leached some chemical that fast, isn't my entire tank now toxic no matter what I do?
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:07 AM   #2
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was there something wrong with the green tubing? where did you get the clear tubing? what was it called exactly?
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:15 AM   #3
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The green tubing was completely coated on the inside with algae, sediment etc. Especially on the intake side. The main reason for the change however was i'm going to get 'lilly pipes' and simply they look better with clear tubing that green'.

The 'troublesome' tubing does not have a brand name, i live in china and it was 2.5rmb per meter 'so around 40 us cents per meter'. However given that it was advertised as being for aquariums and made of PVC, i thought it would be safe. I've water-cooled computers before using 'tygon' tubing, which is very expensive and is used in the medical/beer brewing industries. Even that tubing had a plastic smell to it, so at first I wasn't concerned that this tubing has a strong 'scent' to it before using it. In a computer system, some plastic leaching is normal which would build up on water blocks etc. But after just 12 hours plastic residue is visible on the glass... this is some seriously low quality tubing that I used. By comparison, a computer cooling loop runs warmer than 26c and takes months for this to occur.

I have now ordered some ADA 12/16 tubing, apparently non-toxic, no smell and made from acrylic. However my main concern is, if I've introduced toxins into the tank, there's no way of knowing if they are completely gone. I honestly do not know what to do at this point. Even a 100% water change might leave residue toxins on rocks, plants etc, not to mention inside the filter.

If anyone has any suggestions please offer me some advice. I feel quite guilty about this, killing these fish and potentially turning what was a thriving tank into a toxic wasteland. If you smell the tank, the surface of the water smells like chemicals/plastic/petrol.

I did some research and PVC shouldn't be toxic to fish, but i'm in china and as some of you might know, quality control isn't the highest priority here.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:19 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by baobeiiiiiiii View Post
The green tubing was completely coated on the inside with algae, sediment etc. Especially on the intake side. The main reason for the change however was i'm going to get 'lilly pipes' and simply they look better with clear tubing that green'.

The 'troublesome' tubing does not have a brand name, i live in china and it was 2.5rmb per meter 'so around 40 us cents per meter'. However given that it was advertised as being for aquariums and made of PVC, i thought it would be safe. I've water-cooled computers before using 'tygon' tubing, which is quite expensive and is used in the medical/beer brewing industries. Even that tubing had a plastic smell to it, so at first I wasn't concerned that this tubing has a strong 'scent' to it before using it. In a computer system, some plastic leaching is normal which would build up on water blocks etc. But after just 12 hours to it visible on the glass... this is some seriously low quality tubing that I used. By comparison, a computer cooling loop runs warmer than 26c and takes months for this to occur.

I have now ordered some ADA 12/16 tubing, apparently non-toxic, no smell and made from acrylic. However my main concern is, if I've introduced toxins into the tank, there's no way of knowing if they are completely gone. I honestly do not know what to do at this point. Even a 100% water change might leave residue toxins on rocks, plants etc.
That's your problem it was probably made in a horrible factory china doesn't have the same standards as most countries and false advertising is everywhere there
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:21 AM   #5
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Do you run carbon in your filter? If so, when was the last time you changed it?
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:27 AM   #6
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Also this has me worried because I have 500 feet of airline tubing and it was only 6$ at the time http://amzn.to/1b4cvjr
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:41 AM   #7
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Definitely will have to do some large water changes as well as adding fresh carbon to your tank. Pulling everything out and giving it a thorough cleaning would also be a step that you will need to take.
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Old 07-02-2013, 12:50 PM   #8
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Sounds like there was some grease or oil coating on the tubing..probably to keep the plastic from rotting...as most plastics even pvc with degrade over time......try to syphon the water off the top or gently scoop it out with a cup or something like that or another way is to leave the filter off wait for it to come to the surface and gently use paper towel and dab it off the surface....once it is all gone water changes to keep it all fresh.
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Old 07-02-2013, 01:13 PM   #9
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Sounds like there was some grease or oil coating on the tubing..probably to keep the plastic from rotting...as most plastics even pvc with degrade over time......try to syphon the water off the top or gently scoop it out with a cup or something like that or another way is to leave the filter off wait for it to come to the surface and gently use paper towel and dab it off the surface....once it is all gone water changes to keep it all fresh.
Always a good practice to use water to rinse things and have a bucket for new aquarium stuff and let the items soak in dechlorinated water over night
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Old 07-02-2013, 01:21 PM   #10
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Always a good practice to use water to rinse things and have a bucket for new aquarium stuff and let the items soak in dechlorinated water over night
YUP!!!!

I'm OCD with everything new clothes, dishes, toothbrush etc ..... I wash everything new. Simply because i know the people at a factory won't take the time to do so properly.....To much wasted time and money for them....unless it's medical then well they have to clean it regardless

It's good practice to clean everything new for an aquarium even if it looks clean...you never know who or what handled it.
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