Repairing Cracked Tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Repairing Cracked Tank

Recently cracked the side of my fluval edge. So I decided to remove the top and see if it is easy to do. Tried removing the silicone around the top with a stragith edge and was getting no where. The most effective way that i found is to take a hammer to the top glass and just slightly crack the glass. Just keep tapping the broken pieces until they fall into the tank. The pieces should only be hanging by the silicone at that point you can carefully pull the glass or take a tool to scrap the silicone off. Looks like a pretty good rimless tank. So on to the crack, its about a 1/4 of the tank from top to bottom, i can feel the crack for the inside but not that outside. No leaks, its been filled with water for two days now (sitting outside of course). Is it possible for this to be repaired? I seen some videos on the tube where they silicone a piece of scrap glass onto the crack. Also, is replacing the glass pane expensive? I didn't want to go spend another 50 bucks to get a new rimless tank, thought maybe I can salvage this one. Also, maybe I can just fill the water up to the crack, but that kinda only makes it a 4? gallon tank. Forgot how many gallons an edge is. Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 05:02 PM
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If I were you I would 1st go to a glass shop with the tank so they can give you an estimate for the custom cut glass. Over in my neihborhood (Miami,Fl.) 1 pane of that size cut would be around $8-12 for 1/8 glass add $5-8 more for 1/4. On youtube u can find info on how to "patch" glass on a crack. I have used 1/10 4x6 glass I bought @ HD for less than $2 to fix a 5.5 gallon tank with a slight crack I bought @ petco for half off reatail. Its much easier to patch glass, but if you can replace the pane then that's even more worthwile

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 05:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Joe. Just called a glass place in CA and they said its about 18 dollars, not bad I guess. Also, wondering how is the patch holding up? How long has the tank been patched for? Thanks
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 05:48 PM
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Thanks Joe. Just called a glass place in CA and they said its about 18 dollars, not bad I guess. Also, wondering how is the patch holding up? How long has the tank been patched for? Thanks
Hey, philosophy if there are 2 or more glass shops in about equal distance from your home/work, then you should shop around. ? Was that quote for 1/4 thick glass, I belive the edge uses 1/8 glass but I'm not 100% on this.

On the 5.5gallon patched RCS tank, like I mentioned I used 1/10 glass I purchased @ HD for less than $2 and patched a small web crack on top "rear" corner that had crackes running @ most 1.5 inches. The patch has been a success now for 6 months. This same technique has been applied to much bigger/taller tanks that as we know have more pressure with no trouble.

You can even go to a goodwill/salvation army and purchase non-tapered glass or for a small tank use a 1/10 glass from a picture frame for less than $1.

The patch on the 5.5G is on the back and behind allot of L. Repens so you can't even see it from the front.

If you do decide to patch go to youtube, there is a father and son petshop youtube account with a great video on this patchwork and they have allot of great info. I forgot the name of the youtube accnt. I will check later for you

Cheers
Joe

Last edited by JoeGREEEN; 06-20-2012 at 10:22 PM. Reason: moer typ0z
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 05:58 PM
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Oh and philosophy,

If you decide to buy the pane, then make sure to take the tank with you so they can cut to size. I remember I miscalculated a piece of glass I was using for a 20 diy sump and I had to take it back to the glass shop so they could re-size it down lukily. Also bringin it will make the shop more accountalbe for the precision on the sizing.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 06:04 PM
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And... 1 more thing don't use the silicone glass shops sell as they typicaly anti-mold agents that will kill your fuana. That's it for now I think.LOL

Last edited by JoeGREEEN; 06-20-2012 at 10:23 PM.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info Joe. Do you think its safer to patch the tank then to reseal it. I'm sure the obvious answer is to get it resealed, but I'm just worried about the difficulty. I havent resealed an aquarium before. I would think it would be easier to put a patch on.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 06:24 PM
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I cracked my 55 gallon in 2000 or 2001 - the crack is about 4-5" long at one of the bottom corners of the tank. I gooped a ton of silicone on it (looks pretty messy) but I've been using it for almost 12 years with no problems.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 06:28 PM
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Philosophy while patching can be done with a small tube of all-glass aquarium silicone, resealing takes more silicone to fix. Also a patch job takes a handful of minutes, replacing a pane is allot more time consuming due to having to remove the old silicone with a razor and acetone and if you had a plastic rim (which you don't) that too takes some time to remove. Then you got to place tape along each side of the silicone beads (this for me is the trickyest) with both fixes you have to performe a water test to ensure there is no leaks.

Really its all comes down to time and asthetics (purchasing a cut pane for a small tank is inexpensive), you can watch a ton of different youtube videos on how to perform either fixes.

Luckily you have a small rimless tank to work with so it would make replacing pane much easier.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 07:25 PM
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Originally Posted by doinkmobb View Post
I cracked my 55 gallon in 2000 or 2001 - the crack is about 4-5" long at one of the bottom corners of the tank. I gooped a ton of silicone on it (looks pretty messy) but I've been using it for almost 12 years with no problems.
WOW I'm glad that fix is still holding up. The good thing when using a glass patch a small bit of silicone is used and the patch forms a more rigid support for the water column. I think its importand to use a glass patch that is at least 50% begger than the crack area affected. ( In other words a 2 inch crack have at least a 3x3 inch glass patch on it, of course a bigger patch is much better for support) that siad how long did it take for the big glopped silicone to dry? Assuming you gooped it all at onceof course
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-20-2012, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Picking up some Silicone today. Thinking about just patching it up and putting a filter over it. Wondering which side of the glass do you put the patch. I originally thought the inside where the water will be. But not that I really thing about it, I would think it would be the outside since the patch would prevent it from bowing outwards. Please let me know.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-21-2012, 12:44 AM
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Every patch job I have seen has been on the inside of tank. That's how I did my 5.5G.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-21-2012, 12:49 AM
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The water column will push the inside patch so the patch bares the pressure directly instead of the crack if u patched it outside
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-21-2012, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by JoeGREEEN View Post
WOW I'm glad that fix is still holding up. The good thing when using a glass patch a small bit of silicone is used and the patch forms a more rigid support for the water column. I think its importand to use a glass patch that is at least 50% begger than the crack area affected. ( In other words a 2 inch crack have at least a 3x3 inch glass patch on it, of course a bigger patch is much better for support) that siad how long did it take for the big glopped silicone to dry? Assuming you gooped it all at onceof course
It was so long ago, I don't remember. I siliconed it on the inside and outside. The first time I filled it up, it leaked a tiny bit - like a few minutes of droplets coming out. It looks horrible, but it's on the side of the tank which you can't see at all where the tank is positioned.
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