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Old 09-28-2013, 12:44 PM   #1 
shadepixie
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New gravel smell?

I bought some black Marina gravel at Petsmart last night to add some dept and texture to my substrate, as I've only got pebbles and small rocks there now. When I opened the bag, I noticed it had quite a smell, like mothballs. I rinsed it thoroughly and soaked it overnight in hot water. I rinsed it again this morning, and it still smells. You can smell it a bit when the gravel is covered in water, but I have to put my nose right next to the water. When I grab a handful of gravel up and bring it out of the water and smell it, though... whew! It stinks. Like mothballs, that's the closest thing I can compare it to. Anyone experienced this? Should I return it or does it wear off?
Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-28-2013, 01:47 PM   #2 
Kittiesdragons
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I'm pretty sure that isn't normal and I don't remember having that issue with my gravel. I'd be afraid it would make my fish ill :(
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Old 09-28-2013, 01:58 PM   #3 
peachii
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They paint the gravel, so you are probably getting the residual paint smell from it. I washed some gravel I had in really hot, hot water and alot of the black paint washed off of it. I was quite surprised and won't use gravel again.
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Old 09-28-2013, 02:20 PM   #4 
Perseusmom
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Its not normal, I had the same type issue with their gravel only it smelled like oil or something so I emailed them and asked and they said it was not normal that the gravel should not have any odor to it and they sent me a new bag and guess what it had the same smell. I did not use either bag what a waste but better safe then sorry.

I will say however when I first got my tank and bought the same gravel and there was no odor or smell to it and its been fine in my tank for over a year and a half now.
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Old 09-29-2013, 06:32 AM   #5 
Polkadot
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Last week I bought a packet of shimmery green gravel that I was going to sprinkle in Mako's tank with his black gravel,and it had a horrible smell too,kind of what you described like mothballs or something.Even after I had left it soaking in hot water the smell was still very strong.I didn't like it at all & didn't use them.I've never had that smell with any other gravel.Plus it said something on the packet that it was already pre washed & ready to add instantly,but as soon as I opened the packet the strong smell hit me.I was too worried to use it.I don't think you should either.Better to be safe than sorry.
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Old 09-29-2013, 12:55 PM   #6 
shadepixie
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I returned it, ended up going to a garden store and found a beautiful, glossy, fine, dark black gravel made from polished natural stone. It was a bit more expensive but it had no smell whatsoever. I switched it last night (turns out larger pebbles as substrate trap a ton of crap underneath them!) and it looks amazing. :) Plus, I can actually find my ghost shrimp now!
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Old 09-30-2013, 05:06 AM   #7 
Polkadot
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That's good.Black gravel is great,it makes everything stand out well.
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