Is My Driftwood Rotting? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-10-2020, 06:49 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Is My Driftwood Rotting?

Over a week ago, I bought a piece of driftwood specifically for use in my planted tank that I am yet to build.
I can't boil it, because I don't have a pot that's big enough because this piece of driftwood is almost 20 inches long. So, I was told to soak it in a bucket for a few weeks to make sure it sinks and doesn't release tannins in my tank.
It has currently been soaking for 5 days and I have changed the water in the bucket multiple times.
Today, I noticed that the driftwood smells funky and is softening in a few spots.
Is it rotting? I'm super confused because it was labeled specifically for use in an aquarium, so it shouldn't be rotting.
I'm completely new to putting driftwood in my aquariums because the only other tank I had was decorated by those plastic ornaments from PetSmart, so I'm open to any suggestions or information that you guys might have.
Thanks!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-10-2020, 07:10 PM
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I've gotten many a bad odor when soaking wood, just keep refreshing it until the odor is gone. Mopani rarely does this, but I've got spiderwood in a bucket right now that smells like rotten eggs if I don't water change it every few days. How long it takes depends on the wood mass and how aged it was. Soft spots are concerning though.

Nothing good happens fast in an ecosystem.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-10-2020, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Blue Ridge Reef View Post
I've gotten many a bad odor when soaking wood, just keep refreshing it until the odor is gone. Mopani rarely does this, but I've got spiderwood in a bucket right now that smells like rotten eggs if I don't water change it every few days. How long it takes depends on the wood mass and how aged it was. Soft spots are concerning though.
Ok, I'll keep changing the water regularly and checking in with the soft spots
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-11-2020, 01:39 AM
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I might think waiting for all the odor to be gone is not the way I would go as some wood does have a smell even when just wet from rain. My method is to do a bleach soak to clear anything that might already be on the wood like bugs, worm, fungus or just anything that I don't know about, so I don't want to move unknowns into my tanks----just because.
So if you have a large enough container like a plastic trash can, I recommend sticking it in there, cover with water and weight it down if you find it floats. Rocks are handy and cheap for me but whatever it takes? Add like a 1/2 cup or so of plain cheap bleach with no scents or colors added as we don't want those "unknowns" and let it set for at least a day so that the bleach has time to totally soak into any little spaces in the wood where things might hide. Watch not to get the bleach water on clothing as it will bleach them or make holes!
When you find the wood no longer floats, take it out and set it someplace to dry and let the chlorine gas off. When you no longer get the chlorine smell, it is good to go in the tank.
But if you want to speed the sinking up a bunch, I like to screw pieces of tile to wood as weight and it also lets me choose what angle it sets with the flat base. Quicker and I get more choices. I do often scrape off any soft parts to avoid them coming loose to have to chase them around the tank.
Many will try to scare you about bleach but it is just chlorine mixed in a bottle and stronger than the amount in drinking water, so we deal with it the same way and let it gas off. You smell it around a pool as it gasses off and it does the same with our wood, just give it plenty of time to lose the smell!
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-11-2020, 03:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LolaP View Post
Today, I noticed that the driftwood smells funky and is softening in a few spots.
Maybe worth removing any 'soft spots' with a wire brush etc? If the whole thing is going soft, then that's not good. But if only a few small areas then probably better to remove now rather than have them rotting away when in your tank.

Regards, James
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