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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I need to lay some conjecture to rest (which may only be done by going ahead with my plan and relaying the experience) about GE silicone. I was at lowes searching for sealant to reseal my 29g. I found the GE Silicone section and started browsing. Well at this time all I had read about sealants indicated only that I need look for 100% silicone. I found two choices GE silicone I, and II. Well by looking at the adhesion chart for both it showed that II on a 1-10 scale rated 10 for glass adhesion and I rated a 7. Given the information I had I ass-u-me 'd it would be better. I proceeded to reseal the seams on my tank. Well after noticing the label which read 100% silicone had also a tag for bio-seal (mysterious mildew inhibitor) I began to wonder. 100% silicone plus X% mystery substance =??. Needless to say I've read through many, many forums on the subject and I can't find concrete evidence that I shouldn't proceed with filling and stocking the tank. On one hand there is conjecture because in some years past GE used arsenic (allegedly) in this type of silicone (or that its another mildewcide) It will leach and kill the fish, on the other hand I've also found many accounts of people using it with no ill effects. GE silicone I is recommended by many because its supposedly the same sealant repackaged that AGA sells and uses on their tanks, so in turn thats what everyone recommends. Well those who point against GE II provide some conjecture on the substances that might harm fish in it but no experience/official company word/scientific proof/reasoning for this. There are those using it with success, this whole leaching business sounds a little who-ee to me. So I'm sure some of you out there may or have run into this, I think it'll be fine, we'll sure know after my tank is running. Your comments are appreciated.
 

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I have done mad research on this and from what I understand, it is recommended to use 100% Silicone I w/Rubber,

How long has your tank been up?
 

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Are you sure that you aren't mixing up the differences between Silicone I and Silicone II with the differences between different varieties of Silicone II that you can buy?

At my local Lowes and Home Depot you can buy two types of GE Silicone II - 'for door and window' and 'for bath and kitchen'. The bath and kitchen variety contains mildew inhibitor, the door and window variety doesn't. Otherwise they are exactly the same stuff, that is they would rate the same on the adhesion scale. Now, the tricky part is that these types of silicone are not typically sitting side by side on the shelf for an easy comparison, but are in the door and window and bath and kitchen sections of the store, respectively.

AFAIK GE Silicone II for door and window (ie without mildew inhibitor) is what everybody recommends for aquarium use, and also the same stuff as what is sold under the Allglass brand name. My personal experiences with GE Silicone II for door and window are excellent. I used about 12 cartridges of the stuff to attach a rock background to the backwall of my 240G with no ill effects, the tank has been running for more than 2 years now (for details click here. I have a 29G with a similar background using the same silicone that has been running for more than 3 years, also with no ill effects.

A scientific mind might wonder whether or not the toxins that kill mildew in the bath and kitchen variety of GE Silicone II could potentially harm fish. Well, I have no scientific data to prove they would, but since I can buy the same silicone at the same price without mildew inhibitor and play it safe, I don't see myself ever using my expensive Tang cichlids as guinea pigs for the long term effects of low doses of arsenic on fish.

Until I read you post I had never heard or thought about the use of Silicone I in the aquarium, but if it's lower on the adhesion scale as you say, maybe that explains why it's not used.

Frank
 

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In my local Home Depot and Lowes, both the silicone I and II contain the bio stuff.

After doing alot of research myself, as well as reading scolley's post and his research in silicone, I now only use GE RTV108.

Your braver than I to actually try the stuff. Let us know how things go for you.
 

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I built my rock wall for my 55g with GE's "Kitchen and Bath" Silicone II 2 years ago. Yes the one with Bioseal; mold and mildew product protection. At the time I wasn't aware of the "warnings" about using such a product. I still have that rock wall in my tank and no problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Are you sure that you aren't mixing up the differences between Silicone I and Silicone II with the differences between different varieties of Silicone II that you can buy?
I know what your pointing at and no I've not confused them. The type II I am using is for windows and doors and has the bioseal label on it. Yours I suspect also contains the mildewcide as I've not seen II label without it. Could be wrong.

Thanks Color Me Blue, that is the type of anecdotal evidence I want to use to prove this wrong, along with hopefully soon some scientific basis for it really not being toxic to fish as long as it is properly cured.
 

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I know that GE Silicone II was available with and without the mold inhibitor a few months ago, but it appears they are changing their formula. I used the non mold inhibitor on my SW sump and it is perfectly safe. I have no experience with the "bio-seal" formula.

I've read a few discussions on this subject on RC

http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1069934

In the end it's your choice if you want risk using the tank with the bio-seal formula. It really comes to a single question. If you do find it has an adverse impact on fish/shirimp/plants do you want to tear the whole tank apart and start over?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I know that GE Silicone II was available with and without the mold inhibitor a few months ago, but it appears they are changing their formula. I used the non mold inhibitor on my SW sump and it is perfectly safe. I have no experience with the "bio-seal" formula.

I've read a few discussions on this subject on RC

http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/sh...readid=1069934

In the end it's your choice if you want risk using the tank with the bio-seal formula. It really comes to a single question. If you do find it has an adverse impact on fish/shirimp/plants do you want to tear the whole tank apart and start over?
There again I read the the thread you linked to and there was someone in there on the second to last post who states they used II w/BIOSEAL with no ill effects. I have some more suspicions, first, alot of the people who've had bad experiences went through major tank overhauls i.e. that could have more been the cause than sealant, second, I've noticed that equally as many have not waited more than two-three days for sealant to cure all the way through. I wish we could get someone from GE to unnofficially chime in here, it would be nice to clear this up. Also the thread you linked to mentioned that it may be/already is used in all their products,...seems it would be good to know whats in this stuff and how it works. Leaching I still have doubts about, I'm still not convinced, but I've got probably another month before I'm up and running. We'll see.
 

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You should PM Scolley. He has the low down on the type of silicon commercial aquaria builders use. Its in his Death of Big Kuhuna thread, I'm almost certain. Because he explained why the back panel blew out. He didn't use the commercial stuff on that one section.
 

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BIOSEAL = BAD in my experiences

I can tell you that I used GE w/Bioseal in two tanks
to hold plants to rocks - in both instances within a day
or two my fish was ill -

The only shared variable between the two tanks
was the new plastic plant rock combo.

I did this without having thought about bioseal being
any additive but just a marketing thing.

I removed both fish - established entirely new aguariums -
because I was afraid the bioseal may have contaminated the
tanks.

Both fish recovered AND I re-attached plants to rocks with
GE silicone and NO bioseal. = Everybody happy.

Your mileage may vary

Tim
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
O.k. I've got some good replies on this subject, but...would those of you who have used II/w bioseal please relate how long you waited for the sealant to cure, and whether or not you did any major maintenance/setup when you were applying sealant.

Management thanks you for you cooperation :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
O.K. heres a recent update. I resealed my tank at the beginning of april, I let it cure for two weeks before filling with water. Tank was fully planted by mid may, and fish (15 brilliant rasboras, 1 ancistrus) were added at the end of may. Fish have been in the tank about 2 1/2 weeks, no deaths, no issues. The key to this I believe may either be cure time or that other experiences people have had with fish death can be attributed to, a major tank overhaul disrupting / or initial tank overstocking, resulting in a weak or non existent bio-filter, just my 2 cents, in my mind mythbusted!! but to be safe I would let GEII cure for at least a week and a half before adding fish, I waited a month and a half and planted first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Still good to go a year later

Just getting back into the forum after a years absence, but my tank has been up and running with the GE II for a full year, and not a single fish death the whole way through, the tank is thriving and the seals are holding very good, so I'm your test subject and if I was to estimate I probably used a good 2 1/2 cups worth of sealant. Also its good to be back, thinking about a big build and anxious to see whats new. From looking at the AGA contest this year I'm thoroughly excited.
 

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Old thread, but just for the record -

Years ago (when the internet was just a bunch of geeks in universities trading email and naughty pictures) I sealed a tank with "Bath and Kitchen" silicone. Took me a long time to figure out what the problem was (a year?) but I couldn't keep anything alive in that tank. I was starting to think the tank was cursed by the time I found out about mildewcide in sealants. Removed and replaced the sealant, end of problem.

Toxicity will depend on what the manufacturers use, and back then they might have been using much more toxic substances. Never the less I'm very careful now about mildewcides.
 

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Silicone I - sold expressly for aquarium use - is easy to get from all the on line pet supply chains. Even our local PetSmart stocks the 10 oz caulking tube size. Silly since they want $5.00 for the 3 oz tube. If you can't find Dow Silicone I, look for GE RTV (series 1200)

For those of you saying the mildew resistant product is fine, I can understand your experimenting with your fish, but why would you encourage others to risk their fish? Silicone I has been used in aquarium construction and repair for several decades. Silicone II with XXX-cide has not and usually says 'not safe for aquarium use', on the tube.

Here are three aquarium supply links, Home Depot, and Lowe's.

$6.99 http://www.bigalsonline.com/StoreCa..._oz_clear?&query=sealant&queryType=0&offset=0

$5.99 http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2754549

$8.99 http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=3963

$4.47 http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs...langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=100091111

$4.28 http://www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=47209-72643-GE012A&lpage=none
 

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Hello everyone..I'm new here but I have a few personal experiences to share. I've used silicone II "bath/ kitchen/ Plumbing (The hand squeeze kind) I used nearly half the tube
on a DYI internal power filter in a 10 gal. then transferred to a 20 gal long. I had no problems. The fish were fine for a long time. More then a half a year later my fish died. Though I don't think it was the silicone. I realized my DYI filter was just not functioning properly. The water was yellowish. A drastic design flaw on my part. And added that it was difficult changing the media. The media was also non aquarium kind too. (Store bought sponges) and the Goldfish were overstocked.



Currently I unknowing (Forgotten) use a little bit of the silicone left to fix a crack on a aqua clear 70. It currently operating in a 20 gal long with a Ranchu. If I were to scrap the silicone out it'll damage my filter case further, so after some thought I decided not to.

It's been four days and the ranchu seems fine. It's swimming with grace. No flashing/ gasping.

I'll provide daily update.

note: it's labeled 3hr shower ready. 5 yr mold free product protection. But I can't seem to find the "contain bioseal" anywhere.
Or the word bioseal for the matter.
 

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I used GE Silicone for a tank to install a background (cured 24 hours) and it was fine for several years. Got a new tank and bought the same GE Silicone. Did not realize they had changed the formula and added bio-seal. Cured 24 hours and filled the tank. Within a couple days fish started to die.

I tore down the whole thing and removed the silicone. Reinstalled with All-Glass aquarium silicone. Cured 24 hours. All is fine.

I have done two more backgrounds (four in all) since then with All-Glass aquarium silicone (cured 24 hours) and I only had a problem with the bio-seal formula. FWIW.
 
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