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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
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sand substrate

Is just PLAY SAND a reasonable substrate?

I will be running co2 and an XP3 with 2-4 T5HO (54w 10,000k) in a 90G.

Mainly just community fish, amano shirmps, and lots of plants..Vals, swords, anubias.. + +

Is POOL FILTER SAND better?

Please don't hold back, all thoughts are helpful.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 03:02 PM
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Neither of them have any nutrients but Pool Filter sand is a lot cleaner to start with and much easier to rinse to put into the tank. We have both sands in two different tanks. The play sand was a pain to clean and took a long time to rinse, still clouded the aquarium when we filled it, but it doesn't show as much gunk on the bottom between water changes because it's darker. The pool filter sand was a breeze to rinse, didn't cloud as much on first fill, doesn't cloud when we replant/rescape but unfortunately you can really see any kind of dirt/poo etc if it collects anywhere. Whichever you decide between the two I would definitely recommend putting some fert tabs in the sand for your swords.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Neither of them have any nutrients but Pool Filter sand is a lot cleaner to start with and much easier to rinse to put into the tank. We have both sands in two different tanks. The play sand was a pain to clean and took a long time to rinse, still clouded the aquarium when we filled it, but it doesn't show as much gunk on the bottom between water changes because it's darker. The pool filter sand was a breeze to rinse, didn't cloud as much on first fill, doesn't cloud when we replant/rescape but unfortunately you can really see any kind of dirt/poo etc if it collects anywhere. Whichever you decide between the two I would definitely recommend putting some fert tabs in the sand for your swords.
I'll definitely use fert tabs and I'm going to be dosing too probably EI methods but still reading on it. right now its all in med gravel stones in a 45G long and I'm using flourish.

Could I put the gravel over the sand?
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 05:47 PM Thread Starter
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anyone else?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 07:04 PM
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i just set up my sons yellow belly slider tank with play sand and slightly planted it so far s good
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 07:13 PM
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I've used playsand in all of my tanks, doesn't bother me to do the extra rinsing as I like the color better than pool sand. I grow lots of plants in these tanks and they do rather well. Like you were told earlier in above post, use some fert tabs and shouldn't be any problems.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 07:17 PM
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Could I put the gravel over the sand?
Sure you can, the sand will fall to the bottom anyway since the smaller grains tend to do that. Let us know how it works out for you


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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 07:26 PM
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I too have pool filter sand, I don't care about the color or poo since my plan is to have a nice carpet of green!!! I just set mine up, so I don't know how well it should do, I did put fert tabs in the ground...

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75g - Eheim 2213 - Magnum 350 - Pool Sand - Root Tabs -2.5 wpg - 10lb Pressurized CO2


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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 08:35 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all these replies, thats great.

Rinse it all well to avoid cloudiness and use fert tabs...

Is there anything else I should be concerned about in this process?
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-28-2008, 11:26 PM
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Thanks for all these replies, thats great.

Rinse it all well to avoid cloudiness and use fert tabs...

Is there anything else I should be concerned about in this process?
I know this reply may be a little late for you, but FWIW, some people who use HOB filters claim to have more problems with play sand than pool filter sand. This is because pool filter sand is heavier and does not remain in suspension as long as play sand if stirred up by bottom feeders. This means play sand grains are more likely to get sucked up through the filter inlet and wreak havoc with your filter impeller. Basically play sand could dramatically reduce the life expectancy of your HOB filter, but then again, impellers do not cost an arm and a leg, so this may not be a huge issue. To be safe it would not be a bad idea to cover the inlet with a sponge. The sponge will capture free floating play sand granules and at the same time keep small shrimp like cherry shrimp and baby shrimp from being sucked through the inlet.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 12:05 AM Thread Starter
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As mentioned in the original posting I'm using a Rena XP3 canister filter. Aren't 'HOB' filters Hang On Back filters? like bio wheels and stuff?
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 04:02 AM
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As mentioned in the original posting I'm using a Rena XP3 canister filter. Aren't 'HOB' filters Hang On Back filters? like bio wheels and stuff?
My apologies for not carefully reading your post Yes, you are right HOB are Hang On The Back Filters, so you would not have anything to worry about.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 04:58 AM
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i use play sand in all my tanks.
to me, it looks very natural. i have laterite mixed in the bottom layer and i use fluorish tabs.

5 dollars for 50 pounds?? can not beat that. i think playsand is awesome as substrate.

rinse it very well. use a bucket. fill with water, then mix it up with your hands. then dump out the water. then repeat.

i rinse it about 6 times. then it will not cloud your water. if you would rather not rinse intensely it is okay as long as you dont mind cloudy water for a day or so.





-with HOB filters... the sand is perfectly compatable as long as you are careful while filling or replanting. example if you had your filter plugged in and were filling your tank with the hose, blasting the substrate everywhere, some of it is bound to end up getting sucked in the filter intake and jamming the impeller.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 05:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Homer_Simpson View Post
I know this reply may be a little late for you, but FWIW, some people who use HOB filters claim to have more problems with play sand than pool filter sand. This is because pool filter sand is heavier and does not remain in suspension as long as play sand if stirred up by bottom feeders. This means play sand grains are more likely to get sucked up through the filter inlet and wreak havoc with your filter impeller. Basically play sand could dramatically reduce the life expectancy of your HOB filter, but then again, impellers do not cost an arm and a leg, so this may not be a huge issue. To be safe it would not be a bad idea to cover the inlet with a sponge. The sponge will capture free floating play sand granules and at the same time keep small shrimp like cherry shrimp and baby shrimp from being sucked through the inlet.
Not trying to hijack a thread, but I was searching for this very subject. I'm about to add some sand to my tank.... sort of like a beach looking area.. not the whole tank. Are you saying to just use some sort of sponge (like that of a sponge filter) and fit it over the intake of a HOB filter? I want to make sure I do it right and not mess anything up. I'm using pool sand by the way. Also wouldn't that restrict the water flow?


(Sorry again for invading in your post.)

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-29-2008, 07:01 AM
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-with HOB filters... the sand is perfectly compatable as long as you are careful while filling or replanting. example if you had your filter plugged in and were filling your tank with the hose, blasting the substrate everywhere, some of it is bound to end up getting sucked in the filter intake and jamming the impeller.
i have 4 tanks with sand, each with HOB filters.
i you will not have any problems as long as you are careful while filling the tank so as not to end up with lots of sand going everywhere.

if you are worried about it and want a foolproof method:
you could make some sort of prefilter from sponge, or steal some nylon stockings and cut a piece to fit over the filter intake and secure with rubber band or similar.

any time you add any sort of material to your filter you are making the water travel through more material and thus more restriction to some degree, however adding a small prefilter to your intake tube is very negligable in terms of flow restriction. it will not be noticeable unless the sponge gets clogged. an upside is that you will not need to clean the internal foam filter pads quite as often because your prefilter will be screening out all of the bigger particles before they enter your filter. to every up there is a down: you will be cleaning your pre filter very often.
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