Complete restart … pouring bleach in the tank - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
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Complete restart … pouring bleach in the tank

Hi Guys,

Well, here is the story…
I let my tank go… it has been neglected for about 4 months, co2 ran out.. the whole tank is full of green hair algae..
I have only 3 fish 2 angels and one clown.

I am thing of re stating me tank..
By restarting I mean complete restart…

I am goin to remove my fish into a 20 gal tank, pour some bleach into the tank and KILL off everything in the tank.

That way when I re start after I dry the tank out I will not have any green algae spores..

I will leave the tank filter running so that all the spores will die out in the filter as well..
i would love to just restart rather then spend 3 months fighting the alage
What do you guys think of my plan..any tips..
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 02:52 PM
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I can understand your frustration, but you don't want to kill the mulm in your gravel,
or you'll just get another algae outbreak and kill your fish while your tank recycles.

Here is what I would do;

remove all your fish and inverts, turn your filter off
carefully remove all your plants without disturbing the gravel.
remove the very top 0.5cm layer of gravel and dispose of it.
vacuum the gravel thoroughly.
rinse all filter media and shake loose and flush out hose debris
remove ALL plastic and rubber parts from inside your tank.
use an exfolianting pad to scrape the inside glass and silicon seams.
now do TWO water changes, the first with fresh declor'ed tap water
so the water oxygenation bubble help lift particles to the surface.
after an hour, do a second water change, and use UV if you have it.
1:20 1min bleach dip all plants, plastic and rubber, rinse and soak well,
then soak again in declor water for an hour, then rinse some more.
now return everything you bleach dipped to your tank.
if you have water testing kits, use them.
wait a good 12 hours before returning your fish and inverts.
you tank will still be partially cycling during the first week or two
so underfeed your fish, and reduce your lighting period that week.

the best way to prevent algae spoors from reasserting themselves in your tank is not by bleaching them to death, rather it's by being a better more consistent custodian to your tank water, filter, feeding, and lighting management.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 03:12 PM Thread Starter
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thanks.. But i forgot to mention that My gravel is covered with BBA as well...
i am not worked about the mulm too much..
as i i goin to make this tank lightly planted...
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 07:33 PM
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DON"T DO THE BLEACH!!!
You will DESTROY the silicone seals. Try Oxi-Clean instead.

Rena Filtstar #137!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 08:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tropicalfish View Post
DON"T DO THE BLEACH!!!
You will DESTROY the silicone seals. Try Oxi-Clean instead.
I've not yet had an issue with bleach and silico - and I've done this process several times. Silicon is inert,can't react with the bleach.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 08:37 PM
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I've just always used a razorblade (flat type, angled about 15 degrees from the glass) to scrape off algae and mineral deposits that didn't want to go away. I've never worked up the courage to use Bleach or other powerful cleaners on my tanks. Everywhere else though, it's a different story. /clean freak
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 08:39 PM
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I used bleach on a 30 gallon AGA tank, and the seals started peeling away from the glass.

Rena Filtstar #137!
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 08:40 PM
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Do you feel comfortable in your knowledge/experience on how to prevent all this algae outbreak from coming back?

If so, then a restart would be fine.

If not, all your efforts will be pointless as soon as ammonia spikes and algae starts blooming....you're then back to where you were

BTW, if you do restart and not plan to plant heavily, do your fish and yourself a favor by fully cycling it prior to dumping your fish in it. Planting a few stems here and there isn't going to negate the need for cycling a tank.

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-27-2007, 08:46 PM
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I would say not to go that route. Many of the veterans on the forum have indicated to me that algae is usually a result of nutrient imbalance. After a lot of frustration and finally victory over algae, I am now inclined to agree. The algae spores will find their way back into the tank whether or not you bleach them out. Most of us did not bring the algae into our tank; it just happened. Bleaching your tank and filter will kill the bacteria colony and you will have to cycle again, and it doesn't guarantee the algae won't come back.

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