Tank Leaking, what to do? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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Tank Leaking, what to do?

Well, it appears that my 20 long is leaking. And it's not even a year old. So I'm going to have to set up a new tank, but a few questions first.

1. I'd like to use AquaSoil in the tank. I've heard it leeches ammonia, but will my plant mass and biology from the filters be able to handle it? Should I let it soak before adding fish?
2. I need a sort a barrier between the tank and stand so that it will protect from leaks, at least until I can notice it. The plastic I used didn't really work. What could I use?
3. How should I add the fish to the "new" tank? I have 9 rummy nose, 3 honeycomb catfish, 2 otos and 2 amanos.

Thanks.


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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 02:20 PM
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1) Get a plastic storage bin to temporarily hold the fish (about a month) and everything else until the aquasoil has matured.
2) Set up the new tank, aquasoil, driftwood, rocks, plants... add water.
Monitor the ammonia, and do lots of water changes. When the ammonia is gone (it really isn't gone, just the production is a lot lower and the nitrifying bacteria have caught up) you can move the fish back.

3) Optional: Once you get the new set up going you can try repairing the old tank, or return it if there is any warranty. If you can repair it you could probably get the fish out of their temporary plastic home a bit sooner. (Then you have another tank!)

I have no idea what you might use to watch that the tank is not leaking. If it is not a display tank then a large, shallow storage container might work. Be sure it has good support right where the tank needs it, at the rims (glass tank) or all over (Acrylic). Don't use a ribbed storage container, it will partially crush under the weight of the tank and water, making the support uneven.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 02:29 PM
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1. Evacuate the tank, Move whatever water there is into large rubbermaid tubs or the equivalent. plants out first, then net livestock, then recover the substate
2. keep the substrate and filter media wet. Ideally if you can keep keep the filter running in the fish tub, even better.

As soon as you get a replacement tank, you can backtrace your steps to restore the former contents and inhabitants. Due to timing, you are better off getting a replacement than doing a repair first. try to return the leaking tank if possible.


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 03:44 PM Thread Starter
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So if I were to use Aquasoil, I'd have to cycle the tank again, even if I used half tank water and original filters?

I don't really want to keep the substrate, as it's eco-complete, and very dirty. I'd like to start clean, and avoid bringing up whatever waste and bad stuff up.

The leak is actually very slow, so I think I can keep the tank for a bit, but it needs to be replaced.


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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 03:48 PM
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Start soaking the Amazonia now. It will leach ammonia. You will have a mini-cycle either way. If you don't pre-soak the Amazonia and leach out some of the ammonia, you will have a bigger one.


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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 04:13 PM
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Using the old filter will seed your new tank and should decrease the time of the cycle, but you will have a cycle. Using old tank water won't help since the bacteria is attached to surfaces, not free floating.


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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 05:17 PM
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If your lucky, you can drain half or majority of the water until the leak stops. My 55g sprung a leak earlier this year and it actually stopped once I reduced water pressure that was put on the leak. It can give you a little bit of time to make swaps without having everything go dry.

This barrier you speak of, is it to be a permanent one for your new tank. A tray or some sort would be the best to actually hold the water but two points to mention. 1) it will be an eye sore more than likely unless built into a custom stand and 2) it will protrude out more than desired if not built into a custom stand. I am planning something in the ball park that I have mentioned. I will construct a waterproof recessed pit for my tank to sit in and install a couple of drains on the backside of the tank. This drain will tie into my emergency overflow on my sump that exits out into my yard.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 07:44 PM
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The nitrogen cycle is not the issue.
The ammonia release from the new substrate is the problem. You can go ahead and start pre-soaking it, and do LOTS AND LOTS of water changes. The first few weeks it will probably emit way too much ammonia for the fish to be safe.

Adding some cycled filter media to the container of soil might help a bit. It will not stop the soil from producing ammonia, but it will remove some ammonia from the water. It will sure grow a big bacteria population! Toward the end of the soil's ammonia production the bacteria may be populous enough to remove the remaining ammonia from the water. That way even though the soil is still producing a low level of ammonia, the aquarium is safe for the fish.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 08:02 PM
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Maybe in this scenario using aqua soil isn't good because of the wait time. Akadma, Eco complete or flourite or other soils people might recommend could be a better option since time is a factor
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2012, 10:43 PM
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fusion is right, unless you have at least a few weeks the ammonia leech from the aquasoil will probably kill to fish. Mine spiked to more than 8ppm when starting it, even with a few 90% water changes and a lot of 50% ones it was still staying at 4 or more ppm for a few weeks
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