Does all sand release Silicates? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 11:42 AM Thread Starter
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Does all sand release Silicates?

Does all types of sand release silicates? Are some worse than others?

For example, I've seen a great looking sand called "unipac maui quartz sand". It doesn't say anything about silicates but isn't quartz same as in Glass etc which release silicates?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 12:02 PM
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I used to think this was a huge problem but I donít think so right now. Of course that could change easily. I use sand a lot and I notice I often encounter diatoms, or something similar, in the beginning. In time this seems to almost cure itself and I begin to notice green algae here and there as it does.
Here is an article I ran into last week. It is from the salt side but I think it is just as relevant to the fresh water tank.
http://www.saltcorner.com/Articles/S...p?articleID=63
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Golightly View Post
Does all types of sand release silicates? Are some worse than others?

For example, I've seen a great looking sand called "unipac maui quartz sand". It doesn't say anything about silicates but isn't quartz same as in Glass etc which release silicates?
Quartz is not the same as glass. Sand made from quartz won't release silicates like playsand or pure silicate sand will!

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 03:22 PM
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If quartz sand releases silicates into water, all water on the planet would have lots of silicates in it. Quartz doesn't dissolve at all in water. Quartz is a crystal form of silicate, while glass is a non-crystal form, and also doesn't dissolve in water. If it did, any glass object kept wet would become somewhat frosted, and that doesn't happen. Water soluble silicate is sodium silicate - water glass - a different compound.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2011, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musicmanmoses View Post
Quartz is not the same as glass. Sand made from quartz won't release silicates like playsand or pure silicate sand will!
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If quartz sand releases silicates into water, all water on the planet would have lots of silicates in it. Quartz doesn't dissolve at all in water. Quartz is a crystal form of silicate, while glass is a non-crystal form, and also doesn't dissolve in water. If it did, any glass object kept wet would become somewhat frosted, and that doesn't happen. Water soluble silicate is sodium silicate - water glass - a different compound.
Ah ok.. so Quartz sand should mean it has NO or little silicates?
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 02:00 AM
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Ah ok.. so Quartz sand should mean it has NO or little silicates?
Quartz is 100% silicates, but but not water soluble silicates. The same is true of glass.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 02:24 AM
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Most regular sand you'll find is little bits of rock and quartz... So to your question, no, sand does not release silicates that is, it does not dissolve.
Choose any sand that fits your fancy.


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 07:18 AM
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To some degree fresh sand will increase silicates imo. Mainly because you can't wash away every dust particle inside your sand. It's not the grains that will cause you trouble. It's the submicroscopic film that accumulates as millions of grains of sand rub each other....
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 11:06 AM
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I have the same problem with my sand and it didn't disappear for all most a year I had to insert anti phosphate ceramics but know I have lack of phosphates in my tank (green spot algae indicates).Isn't there a way to remove the silicates from sand before you set up your tank?
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