settled fine dirt removal and capping? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-21-2012, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
 
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settled fine dirt removal and capping?

How do I remove the fine dirt that settles on top of the leaves after setting up my first soil-based tank? Everything I do, even gently, stirs up more and resettles on everything I just cleaned. I could get into what I've tried but someone who knows better already knows what I'm going to say.

Also, to prevent/reduce it in the future, should I cap it? I used New Amazonia and I have some nice ADA sand I could use. I've seen "capping" mentioned but I don't think I've seen a fully sand-capped, soil substrate.

Thanks!

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 01:04 AM
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Yes, you should cap it. All the tank I've seen (and mine as well) have a cap. I add it before filling the tank and haven't gotten any dirt particles in the water as of yet. I used 1" cap on my tanks.

I would get a bit of small airline tubing and try to suck it out with that. That shouldn't disturb the water, as long as it's long enough you don't need to put your hands in, and it should be gentle enough for plants controlled. If the leaves are near the substrate it might suck up a little from there but it shouldn't kick it up everywhere.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply. I'll start washing some sand. Great idea on the tubing.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-23-2012, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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I capped it and it solved my problem, but I've possibly only seen one sand or gravel-capped soil substrate for planted aquarium. In every other case, you can see the soil from the surface. Here's an example:
Uncapped soil

Maybe I don't understand what capping means. What am I missing?

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