Pool filter media as substate? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-11-2015, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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Pool filter media as substate?

I have seen a few pics of folks using pool filter media as substrate and I like the size and color of it not to mention its like 5-10 bucks for 50lbs. Wondering if any of you have any experience with it and if there is a type or brand that is better than others?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-11-2015, 05:08 PM
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I've used nothing but # 20 grade quartz-based silica pool filter sand for years in all my tanks, and love it - wouldn't use anything else.
I buy a no-name brand from a good local pool supply store, and I'm quite sure if you get yours from a reputable pool supply store you'll be getting the proper stuff.
Avoid buying it from any big box store, as you can't be sure you're getting real good quality, and true heavier density pool filter sand.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2015, 05:50 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks, I think I will give it a try.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2015, 06:08 AM
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I get Lane Mt. Company silica sand from Home Depot. 100 lb. bag for only $9. Used 300 lbs of it already (lots of tanks). It's extremely clean right away, I still rinse it a couple times in a 5 gallon bucket though (fill bucket 1/3rd with sand, fill with tap water, stir it up to kick up dust and then dump water, fill again, stir and dump water, then add to tank).

The sand company is based in my state (WA), but not sure how far they distribute the sand to, maybe Arizona has it as well. It's a white-ish sand (nice white-ish beige, not too bright IMO)

Haven't tried other sand as I've been perfectly fine with the sand I do use, perfect grain size, very clean, cheap, and it doesn't get sucked up easily and it does fall down quite fast so if it gets stirred up by fish it doesn't create a lingering cloud.

People have used pool filter sand, all-purpose/play sand (pool sand is cleaner) and also Black Diamond blasting sand (black sand) as other cheap alternatives.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2015, 02:41 PM
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I got two bags of the HTH brand from Ace hardware down the street. It is also #20 Silica sand. Using it for two months now.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2015, 03:12 PM
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I find that it works better for me to go in and look around the stack of bags. There is almost always some lost and it gives you a better idea of what's in the bag. Even the same brand can vary slightly in color as it may be scooped from a slightly different spot.
The pool filter guy can wonder the first time you ask as most filter sand goes in a filter where it is never seen but a small explanation usually gets past that question.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2015, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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Great! I am going to try and use it for a couple new shrimp tanks as inert substrate. I don't want super bright white sand, so if it isn't a mix of colors ill mix it with some beige substrate from petsmart or the like.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-13-2015, 01:23 AM
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How/where is the sand used?
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