Message Forums

faq | etiquette | register | my account | search | mailbox
# Message Forums
L# General
 L# Aquascaping
  L# Substrate Change
 Post Reply  New Topic
SubscribeSubstrate Change
Posts: 70
Kudos: 46
Votes: 2
Registered: 10-Jan-2008
male usa
well long story short im changing my substrate. what steps should i take so everything goes well.

i like feesh
Post InfoPosted 05-Apr-2008 03:36Profile AIM PM Edit Report 
Big Fish
Member MTS Anonymous
Posts: 348
Kudos: 208
Votes: 186
Registered: 09-Jan-2007
male usa
Well the easist way is if you have another tank to move the fish into for a bit. If not go slowly, change about 25% of the substrata at a time, that way the new stuff can build up a colony of bacteria. if you do go all at once do a very through gravel vac of all of it as this will help reduce detritus building up in the water when you remove the old stuff. but take a bunch of the old gravel and place it in a mesh bag and lay that on the gravel to help transfer the bacteria. Good luck.

mts.gif" border="0"> I vote do you?
My Tanks at Photobucket
Post InfoPosted 05-Apr-2008 03:50Profile Yahoo PM Edit Delete Report 
*Ultimate Fish Guru*
Posts: 6371
Kudos: 6918
Votes: 1542
Registered: 26-Apr-2003
male australia au-victoria
It can be done all at once but requires a few things to be done as well.
Certainly the new substrate must be washed until it is completely clean and free of any dirt and dust.

All the fish and every thing in the tank must be placed into containers/tank and your filter kept running this will keep your bacteria in a healthy state.

Fish feeding 50% less and at least 12hrs before hand. This also helps in reducing stress at change over time.

Once you have removed all the old substrate and cleaned the tank you can start adding the new substrate (what I have done is pour very hot water over the substrate before it goes into the tank). This will help in reheating the tank water.

When you start replacing the water pour it over a upturned plate so that you do not disturb the substrate too much.

As soon as you have enough water in the tank reconnect the heaters BUT do "NOT" turn them on as the sudden change of the running temperature can cause them to break.

Now replace the filter and get it running plus any air stones.
It is here I would add a double dose of Seachem Stability this will help in boosting the Bacteria (as there is none in the substrate) also add a dose of Melafix this will help reduce any stress.

The plants can be added, more water and the fish.

NOW turn the heaters on. Because you heated up the substrate there "should" be little heat loss if there is add a spare heater. and a spare air stone.

I would not be too fussy with any aquascape just get it up and running for several weeks, then I would think about serious/minor aquascape changes.

For the first 24 hrs no lights this also helps in reducing stress and certainly no food for at least 12 hrs and then at a 50% less rate every second day (remember you do not have a full bacteria system running)

For the next week I would keep up the Stability as recommended.

All this can be done It is exactly what I had to do when I had to replace a cracked tank I also had to replace about 50% of the water one reason I could not store all of the old tank plus they were in a smaller 3ft tank.

A week later I did the normal weekly water change and a month later I cleaned the filter.

The most important thing was I never lost a fish or even loked like having a sick fish.

Have a look in [link=My Profile][/link] for my tank info

Look here for my
Betta 11Gal Desktop & Placidity 5ft Community Tank Photos


Near enough is not good enough, therefore good enough is not near enough, and only your best will do.
Post InfoPosted 05-Apr-2008 07:28Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
Big Fish
Rough but Honest [img]htt
Posts: 366
Kudos: 309
Votes: 45
Registered: 29-Jan-2007
male usa
I had to move my tanks for house tenting. Thats were they put a big tent over the house to fumigate. So, I'll tell you what I do. I run my filer until it dirty, good and dirty..... than I get out the buckets that have lids, check with you LFS store see if they rent them for big tanks. In you case lids are not and issue. Than I drain the water out of the tank and into the buckets. I place the fish inside the the bucket with a air pump (I use battery pumps so I can attach them to the bucket)put the lid on. Also any plants and DW go into the buckets as will. Now you have an empty tank with the gravel. I scope it all out with a clean dust pan and put it in a bucket, I put enough water to just cover the gravel completely. (you don't need to do this) than I clean the tank up, pack up all the equipment fish and such in my van and drive to awaiting tank. put it all in the tanks and I move the fish water and gravel.

The reason I telling you this is if you can save the water and keep a dirty filter running, you will be able to replace the gravel and than add the old water and plants and fish. without doing a complete recycle. You will be able to colonies the tank very quickly with little stress. I would fatten up my fish and not feed them for 2 or 3 days. and then feed them to let the tank get balanced again. You can add Bio additive, I don't want to recommend one product over the other but i use cycle with no problems. I hope that you can get something usfull out of this

"So Long, and Thanks For All The Fish" Douglas Adams
Post InfoPosted 08-Apr-2008 20:38Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
Post Reply  New Topic
Jump to: 

The views expressed on this page are the implied opinions of their respective authors.
Under no circumstances do the comments on this page represent the opinions of the staff of Forums, version 11.0
Mazeguy Smilies