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Old 04-08-2004, 07:34 PM   #1
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New here and have some questions...

Hey everyone,

New here ofcourse and I am a complete noob to fish tanks. I recently bought my daughters a 10 gal tank and setup and I have a couple questions.

I bought 3 Neon Tetra's to break in the tank and everything is fine so far. I plan on adding probably 4 more fish within the next 2 weeks.

Now for the questions

1. How long do I leave the light on?
I have been running it during the day and turning it off at night.

2. Do I need to have this annoyingly loud aerator in a 10 gal tank?
The filter has a little nozzle that goes up and down to allow air to mixin with the water going through. I'd rather hear that then this loud constant hum.

3. How do I clean the tank and how often? and what do I do to the water?

Like i said I'm a complete noob to this so excuse me if these questions are very very basic. I don't want my daughters getting upset over dead fish 8)

Thanks in advance

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Old 04-08-2004, 07:45 PM   #2
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Welcome to AA Absoluteslite!!

To answer your questions:

1. You should leave your light on atleast 8 hours a day, and what you are doing now is fine... that is what I do to mine, on in the day, off at night.

2. What kind of filer do you have for your tank? If you have a filter that hangs on the back of your tank, a power filter, than you should be fine with the GPH that it will be pushing out. An aerator usually isnt needed if you have an adequatley sized filter running in your tank.

3. To clean your tank, use a gravel vaccuum. You can buy one basically at any fish store. You'll want to vaccuum the scum out of the gravel, and change about 30%-40% of your water every 2-3 weeks atleast. That factor depends on a couple of things also, like how many fish you have, what kind of fish you have, and other things.

Another question.. when you bought the tank, I am assuming that you bought a kit. One that comes with hood, heater, filter, etc. , am I correct?
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Old 04-08-2004, 07:45 PM   #3
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Hiya Absoluteslite and welcome to Aquariumadvice

Welcome to the obsession...erm..hobby LOL Theres a lot to know, but it all does make sense I promise.

Do you have an understanding of the nitrogen cycle? If not, I strongly suggest taking a gander at this article; understanding the cycle is the key to happy healthy fishkeeping: http://faq.thekrib.com/begin-cycling.html

As to your questions, leaving the light on for 12 hours or so is fine. Long periods of light tend to cause algae outbreaks (and new tanks generally get algae anyway so be warned!).

What type of filter do you have? If its a HOB, and the water pours out into the tank you don't need an aerator. The key to good oxygenation is surface agitation. The bubbles don't actually add O2 to the water; they agitate the surface and that enhances O2 exchange. If theres enough surface movement, then the bubbles aren't necessary.

Water changing is pretty important, especially as the tank is cycling. Initially you are looking to keep ammonia and nitrites below .5ppm (if you haven't bought water test kits yet I strongly suggest it). Once the tank is cycled, how big the bioload is will dictate frequency of changes. My tanks get water changes of 20-30% once every week or 2. I do suggest not adding any fish until the tank is cycled, and do know neons are not the best fish to cycle a tank with; they are pretty sensitive to the nitrogenous waste products. Also, you really want to quarantine new fish before putting them into the tank. One never knows what new fish are carrying, even if they look healthy, and it sucks to wind up adding sick fish to your healthy ones. Take a look in our article section for info on QT new fish.

And good luck!
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Old 04-08-2004, 07:48 PM   #4
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Absoluteslite....

First of all....welcome to Aquarium Advice!! Good to have you with us!

As to your questions:

1) You don't mention whether or not you have live plants. If not then the amount of time you leave the light on is up to you. Turning it on in the morning and then off when you're ready to go to bed will be fine.

2) No...you don't need an annoyingly loud aerator in your tank...especially if you don't overstock it.

3) Most experienced aquarists change about 25% of the water in their tank once a week. With a ten gallon tank this isn't that much of a chore. Get yourself one of the relatively inexpensive 'aquarium vacuums' that consist of a large diameter tube connected to a longer, narrower tube. Use this to 'vacuum' the gunk out of your gravel as you drain about 2 gallons or so of water from the tank. Then get the same amount of fresh water from the tap (adjust the temperature so that it is close to the water temperature of your aquarium....you can use your finger as a 'handy' thermometer). Add this fresh water to the tank and you're good to go for another week! You don't HAVE to add any kind of water treatment or dechlorinator to the fresh water unless you really want to play it safe.

I recommend very strongly that you read up on the Nitrogen Cycle. There is a good basic article at the link that follows: http://www.aquariumadvice.com/showqu...q=2&fldAuto=21

Oh....Neon Tetras, while gorgeous, are very sensitive fish and might not have been your BEST selection for starter fish. However...if they're doing OK for you then more power to you! When you're ready to add your next fish you might consider adding a couple of Corydoras catfish to assist with bottom-maintenance chores!

Hope this helps!
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Old 04-08-2004, 07:49 PM   #5
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Gadzooks!! Allivymar and DevilishTurtles beat me to this one!!!
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Old 04-08-2004, 08:17 PM   #6
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*snickers*

You're getting slow in your old age batty!

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Old 04-08-2004, 08:50 PM   #7
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Haha, you know us, we find somebody new, we are compelled to help, just can't help ourselves 8)

And to allivymar, good minds think alike, we posted at the exact same time!
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Old 04-08-2004, 10:20 PM   #8
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[center:4ffcd73bd4] Welcome to Aquarium Advice, Absoluteslite!! [/center:4ffcd73bd4]
It looks like the bases are covered
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Old 04-09-2004, 10:11 AM   #9
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Thanks everybody for the great help!

As for the tank, I bought it from a friend of mine so everything is pretty mixed/matched. It has the hood and all, the filter is a Millennium 2000. I don't have any live plants in there, just a couple fake ones... I'll get a picture of it tonight
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