A Q U A R I U M    M A I N T E N A N C E

Water quality is the most important aspect of a healthy aquarium. No matter what type of filtration you have you will need to regularly clean your aquarium. Even in a balanced, stable aquarium, the "good" bacteria will not be able to keep up with accumulation of uneaten food or fish waste and the ammonia will quickly reach a dangerous level.

Note: Do NOT replace only the water that has evaporated from your aquarium. The reason for this is that nitrate and many other minerals buildup over time and will NOT be removed by evaporation. For a healthy aquarium, do small water changes (25-30%), instead of just topping it off, on at least a monthly basis.

Our suggested steps to proper aquarium maintenance:

  1. Unplug all equipment and wait 15 minutes for your heater to cool down before starting to siphon any water out.

  2. During this time you can clean any algae off the glass so it will be siphoned out. Always use aquarium-approved products when scraping algae. Many other products will scratch the glass or could introduce harmful chemicals into the tank.

  3. Using a gravel cleaner, siphon about 25-33% of the water out of the tank. Never change more than 50% of the water at one time. If you must change more, take out 50% every 2-3 days instead of more in one day. Never siphon water off the surface of the aquarium because waste accumulates at the bottom of the aquarium.  By using a gravel siphon you will be able to lift up the gravel and get rid of the waste without removing any of the gravel or the fish.  If you need to see a demonstration of how to use a gravel-cleaner, feel free to stop in to our store and ask for a demonstration.

  4. Siphon the water into a bucket that is only used for the aquarium to prevent any type of accidental contamination.

  5. Before dumping the water out of the bucket, you can clean your filter in the dirty water. This way you will not harm the beneficial bacteria growing on the filter. Carbon should be replaced once a month. We do not recommend replacing your filter and doing a water change on the same day this may remove too much of your "good" bacteria.

  6. Refilling the tank. Fill one bucket at a time with tap water. Try to get the temperature close to the aquarium temperature. Add a water conditioner, such as Aqua Plus, and aquarium salt to the bucket.  Gently pour the water into the aquarium. Repeat, until the tank is filled.

  7. Wait about 10 minutes and plug your equipment back in. If your filter doesn't start back up, make sure it is filled with water and the impeller is clean of grime.

  8. Wipe off the outside glass with a damp towel. Never use soap or any house cleaners on the inside or outside of the tank.

Next: Algae Problems >

 

 

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