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Old 03-12-2011, 06:44 AM   #1 
BlackberryBetta
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Lightbulb New Aquarium & Decor-How to clean them

So you just bought a new aquarium with new supplies or are cleaning an exsisting one. Or you are reusing some supplies. Both are fine. Here is a very basic guide on how to get them ready for your betta.

Rocks and Gravel: If you are just bringing a new bag of rocks or gravel home from the petstore, they are probably pretty clean. What you can do though is put little piles in a strainer and rinse them under hot water. If you are reusing rocks or gravel, you can boil them and let them bake in the sun to get rid of any parasites and dirt. This might be a pain for those who have large aquariums though. Another method is to rinse them in hot water with lots of conditioner in it.

Sand: For brand new sand, there might be some dust and dirt in it. Get a clean bucket and dump the sand into it (this can be done in smaller groups if you have a larger aquarium). Take a hose and stick it in the bucket to agitate the sand. Use low pressure to prevent the sand from being forced out. The dust and dirt will rise to the top and with continued water from the hose, be forced out. Keep doing this until the water runs clear. For used sand, use the same method, but if the sand is really dirty, you are better off just throwing it out and buying new stuff.

Plants: With new plants, it is best to clean them because you don't know who touched them before you brought them home. You can boil them, but it isn't reccomended. I did it once and it worked, but totally deformed my plants. What works better is to clean them in bleach. The ratio for bleach to water is 1/20. Just let the plants sit in the water for about 20 minutes, no need to scrub or anything like that. Rinse very, very well after. Do the same thing for used plants.

Other Decor: Other decor includes Hide-aways, Statues, and any other fake decor found in petstores. When you get some fake stuff from petstores, it is the same as the plants, you don't know who touched it before you. So do the same bleach treatment ( 1 part bleach to 20 parts water) and let it soak for 20-30 minutes. Take it out and rinse it very, very well. If you are cleaning used decor, use the same method but after you can use a new toothbrush to scrub off any agae under some hot water.

The Aquarium: To clean the aquarium use hot water, vingegar and salt. There really is no exact mesurement because of all the different sizes and types of tanks. Just put however much you think will really clean out your tank. You don't need to fill up the tank, just put about 1/4 hot water in with the vinegar and salt and take a clean towel and scrub all the walls and bottom of the tank. Rinse it out very well and let it dry. You may notice that there are still some salt particules resting on the bottom. You must rinse it out again until there are no visible salt particules and you can't smell the salt and vinegar anymore. Remember to NEVER use soap.

Some useful tools when washing aquarium stuff:
-A new toothbrush
-A sponge
-A bucket
-Gloves
-Old clothes
*Remember to use these items only for fish cleaning and nothing else*
I hope this helped. If there is anything else you would like to see added or removed, please post here!

Last edited by BlackberryBetta; 03-12-2011 at 06:56 AM.
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Old 03-13-2011, 09:50 AM   #2 
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What do you guys think? Anything that needs to be changed?
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Old 03-14-2011, 07:44 AM   #3 
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Ok was it really that bad?
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Old 03-14-2011, 01:35 PM   #4 
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Definitely add a section about never boiling rocks and also the vinegar test and rocks that will pass the vinegar test but still shouldn't be used :)
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Old 03-14-2011, 03:12 PM   #5 
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Why should you never boil rocks? I do it all the time....
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Old 03-14-2011, 03:21 PM   #6 
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Some rocks can explode when boiled if they have air-pockets in them.
Running hot/boiling water on them may be ok but not boiling them in a pot of water.
If any doubt then don't is the best way.

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Old 03-14-2011, 03:22 PM   #7 
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Oh ok, thanks Tomsk!
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Old 03-14-2011, 04:53 PM   #8 
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Yup. I know a few people who have boiled rocks and had them explode. What I tend to do is boil the kettle for a few minutes and then soak them in a bucket outside, that way if they do happen to explode it doesn't make a mess and no-one gets hurt:)
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Old 03-14-2011, 05:10 PM   #9 
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This is pretty informative! Although I would generally advise against the overuse of bleach though.

Other than the fact that bleach is horribly dangerous, and I believe we have younger members on here who may hurt themselves handling bleach without a parent.

Also, I'm not sure about other countries, but bleach here is VERY concentrated. If you were to use it as a disinfectant, they usually recommend a ratio of 1:100 rather than 1:20. Anything more is labeled as "use with extreme caution". For convenience sakes, interestingly, on the back of my bleach bottle it says: "Use one teaspoon of bleach for every 5 Gallons of water".

Bleach also removes colours...so if you have any pretty plants and decorations with sensitive colours, it will come right off (maybe it's a good thing, so it won't melt off into your tank instead X_X).

I still like this guide though, especially about the sand, I'm probably going to get sand soon, and was contemplating how to wash it, haha.
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Old 03-14-2011, 07:22 PM   #10 
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Thanks, I wrote this guide to help other players who need to wash aquarium supplies. The bleach actually doesn't wash out colour. I thought the same thing when I first tried but it turned out fine! But if anybody has any other ways to cleans stuff without bleach please post for the sake of younger players! I will do some research tonight!
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