Easy way to disinfect tank w/o emptying, etc...? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-07-2011, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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Easy way to disinfect tank w/o emptying, etc...?

I'm trying my hand at discus keeping. One wasn't eating right out of the gate and has been separated. The others are in a 29g grow out tank. I am cycling a 120g for African cichlids but I'm thinking about either making that my discus tank, or at least using it as a bigger grow out tank and once they grow out, transferring them to the 72g tank that was/is their original destination tank.

My problem is that I'm not 100% sure I will be a good discus keeper and even if I am, I'm not sure if the extra work will will turn me off of them over time. Either way, if I decide to pull them from the 120g, is there a way to kill any possible nasties out of the tank without tearing the tank and filters down and disinfecting with bleach or peroxide?

If I need to recycle, that's fine. I would just want to be sure any possible parasites or other nasties all get nuked before using the tank for other fish. The thought of gutting the tank and filters to disinfect raises the labor factor substantially.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Well, considering the lack of a response, should I assume this isn't possible?

One thing I considered is draining the tank, wiping down the walls and refilling with a 5-10% bleach water solution an letting that flow through the filters for 8-12 hrs, then drain and refill again using a large dose of prime. I would wait a few weeks before adding fish and likely do another water change too.

Should that work? How would the filter sponges hold up to a 10% bleach solution?
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 02:59 PM
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what remains in the tank you're concerned with?
any plants, critters of any kind?


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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 03:07 PM Thread Starter
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It would depend on at what point I would be making the change. There would be nothing with regard to plants, fish, etc... I would pull all that stuff.

There would likely be driftwood, a few rocks and an ac110 and eheim 2262 full of sponges and biomedia. There MIGHT be sand on the bottom. I could churn the sand to make sure it gets exposed well enough.

My concerns revolve around making sure it really gets completely disinfected, doesn't degrade the sponges and biomedia and also that I get all the bleach out of the filters, wood, etc...
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 03:36 PM
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losing the cycle is guaranteed using chemicals

nearly all parasite threats to fish (I don't know of 1 that doesn't) require a host to survive.
while bugs may be within the fish for months or years without the host showing symptoms the parasites with die within days without a host / food source.

have you considered maintaining the cycle bacteria with ammonia and simply starving any suspected bugs?


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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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I'm doing a fishless cycle on the subject tank right now so I'm familiar with the process. It would be the easiest for sure. I guess there are parasites, fungus spores and bacteria to consider. Maybe other diseases?

That just seems too easy. Everyone makes a big deal out of disinfecting hospital tanks before taking them down. If you are going to store a hospital tank, why even disinfect?
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-08-2011, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerry1 View Post
I'm doing a fishless cycle on the subject tank right now so I'm familiar with the process. It would be the easiest for sure. I guess there are parasites, fungus spores and bacteria to consider. Maybe other diseases?

That just seems too easy. Everyone makes a big deal out of disinfecting hospital tanks before taking them down. If you are going to store a hospital tank, why even disinfect?
haha yeah the fear of the unknown sucks that's for sure.
I clean a tank when emptied for storage just to remove deposits from the glass but then again I can't seem to keep tanks empty LOL. Isolating the filter system by shutting it down then H2O2 bombing the tank at 10ml/g you can burn the cell wall killing algae, fungus, bacteria. Killing anything with a thin cell wall exposed to it by oxidation. Do a water change then restart the filter and continue with the cycle. Greatly reduce any risk but not eliminate all doubt. Using UV with the proper dwell rate works for water born threats too. I've done that and called it a day.

Having a persistent fungus problem I've taken a tank full of substrate draining the water down and dumped a whole bottle or two of 3% in it and left it stand for several days stirring the sand and gravel a couple times a day. Flooded it a couple times stirring things up again and draining it. Filled, planted and stocked it again without doing the filter and the problem was solved without figuring out exactly what it was.

HTH


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