Safe Rocks for Aquarium - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-19-2017, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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Safe Rocks for Aquarium

Are these rocks safe for freshwater aquarium use?
https://images.craigslist.org/00C0C_...aD_600x450.jpg
https://newyork.craigslist.org/wch/f...420622118.html
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-19-2017, 11:20 PM
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Those are a wide variety of rocks that have most likely been in a river somewhere to get the round shape. That often means they will have lost most of the soft parts so that they will not change the PH, GH and KH of most water. But we never know what may have happened to them since leaving the river so I always like to sterilize anything that goes in the tank. While there may not be anything on them, I feel better if I know my plate has just been washed and I feel the same about my tank stuff. So I would fill a container with enough water to cover the rocks and then add something like a tablespoon of cheap bleach that has no color or scent added. The chlorine in bleach is a chemical that reacts very easily with most any organic and that will clear almost anything just as it does in our tap water. The only difference in a bleach soak and tap water is the amount of water diluting the chlorine so once done soaking, I rinse it off and let any remaining chlorine gas off as it dries.
At that point, you have good hard rocks that you know are clean so good to use.
Those who fear bleach the most are those who did not get to watch their mother wash their diapers in bleach water!
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2017, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Should I also do a PH test or something else to see if the rocks won't change the water's Ph, GH, or KH just so that I am sure nothing will be changed?
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2017, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GustavoMoura View Post
Thanks! Should I also do a PH test or something else to see if the rocks won't change the water's Ph, GH, or KH just so that I am sure nothing will be changed?
Use muriatic acid. If it reacts with the rock, it will leach into the water. If there's no bubbling, it's good to go.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2017, 07:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-28-2017, 03:02 PM
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I wish I knew about the acid trick years ago. I used some "stone" from my yard and it was some type of molded concrete and my fish didn't die fortunately but it wreaked havoc on the tank and I had to break it down and it was a long while before I found the cause.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-28-2017, 03:36 PM
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Don't accept the muriatic acid test without some understanding as it can be pretty bad stuff and may also rule out some really nice rocks that would be fine to use.
Muriatic is a form of hydrochloric acid and not something everybody should play with without some reading on the hazards involved.
This is cut and copy info:
Muriatic acid is highly corrosive and can cause severe problems if it comes in contact with skin or is inhaled, so it is very important to take adequate precautions and wear protective equipment when you handle this substance.
Be aware!
As a strong acid it will react with many rocks which your water may not. That means that an acid at extreme low PH may fizz while you may be putting the rocks in a tank with a PH that is alkaline like 7.4 or more. So lots of things that will react with acid will not react in your tank! I find this to be a good test IF you are putting the rocks in acidic water but not terribly helpful for folks who have alkaline water. Nature has a way of adjusting things so that they fit and work together. So if you pick a limestone rocks out of a local creek and also have local water that runs in limestone, adding a limestone rock to the tank will not change the water much. Adding concrete? That's not a natural act and will likely change the water!
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-28-2017, 03:42 PM
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You can use more commonly found vinegar or lemon juice as well, both have pH's of less than 3. Just remember to never ever boil rocks to sterilize them. I have found that you can get away with pouring hot water on them (above 160 degrees F) on them and letting sit for a while, but even that that's pretty dangerous.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-30-2017, 04:49 AM
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+1 on vinegar if you dont want to use bleach. muric acid is some intense stuff def. not for everyone READ up on it if you go that way and do it OUTSIDE and were respirator.
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