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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I ordered one bag each of Eco-Complete Black and Fluorite Black Sand so that I could compare them. I'm painting the back of my tank today and will be setting hardscape into substrate tomorrow.

I prefer the look of the Fluorite but I've heard that there are some issues with water cloudiness if you don't wash the Fluorite first. I.. I don't really want to wash substrate. I was hoping that since I am doing the dry start method I could skip the washing step provided I flood my tank using a paper plate or a bowl to reduce substrate agitation.

Would this work? I'm going to be doing a fishless cycle, so I would have quite some time to wait for any cloudiness to settle, but I also don't want to deal with continued cloudiness because I didn't wash the substrate first. If that would be the case, I'll just use the Eco-Complete and save the Fluorite for a future nano.

Thanks!
 

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I didn't wash flourite the first time I used and just dumped the water in (full blast garden hose filling a 55 gallon). Water was super cloudy for about 12 hours. I changed filter floss after a day. By end of day 2 it was almost completely clear. There weren't any real ongoing issues (Few hours of cloudiness and "dust" on driftwood, rocks and leaves after big replants).

That being said I have always washed it since:)

But definitely not the end of the world.
 

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I'm using a mix of eco complete and flourite black sand in my tank, and I must say I really wish I washed the sand first. Water was SUPER cloudy for the first few days, and every time I kicked up the substrate little poofs of dust would pop up too. I've had the tank for a while now so a lot of that has been removed by the filter, but I still have to deal with sandy poofs more than I'd like. Washing substrate is a PITA, but I'm going to do it from now on.
 

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I placed Flourite in my 75 gallon scape and didnt wash it either. I dont see the point in paying for the good stuff inside the bag, only to wash it down the drain. http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=192040
There was a small haze for about 1-2 days but now its all clear and i know every last goodness is still in the water :)
 

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I'd recommend at least a moderate rinse; not necessary to have it run clear but definitely worth knocking the worst of the dust off.

First time I used it I didn't rinse and, as it cleared up in a couple days, I didn't understand why folks worried about rinsing it. Sure, it kicked up some clouding when I moved big plants around, but it settled, so I dealt with it.

Last month I decided to pull about 1/5 of the fluorite out of my main tank in order to put in sandy areas. NOTHING compared to moving a few plants and driftwood. Mud city. Daily filter cleaning, having to toss filter pads that should have lasted months as they got worn out being rinsed every day, big water changes, totally not worth saving a couple hours on set up by skipping rinsing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for sharing your experiences; I think I'll use Eco-Complete this time and save the Fluorite for when I can rinse it outdoors. I live in an apartment, so mass rinsing isn't really possible and I just know I would resent hours of rinsing little plastic tubs in a shallow sink that doesn't have a sprayer. At my parent's house I could use a garden hose and a bunch of big aluminum pans or the like.
 
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