Play sand subtrate question - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 8 Old 03-05-2011, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
GwenInNM's Avatar
Play sand subtrate question

When I first started my 25 gal tank, I got talked out of sand (mucks up filter operation etc).

Just reading a thread about washing sand, I want to reconsider using sand in the next 6 months, when I upgrade to a bigger tank (this is my plan).

I really want sand. Is it true that it is that difficult to maintain? Does anyone have any feedback about using playsand - I like that option because it is the least expensive of the sands.

I do have many live plants and would want to continue that. It would seem that plants would do well in sand, as it seems most like the natural environment.

Thanks for any feedback.


Just because animals can't talk, does not mean they should not be heard
GwenInNM is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 8 Old 03-05-2011, 09:52 PM
New Member
not sure how easy it would be to have a sand substrate but I do know that play sand is perfectly safe for the aquarium
gingerael is offline  
post #3 of 8 Old 03-05-2011, 10:17 PM
Gold Member
aunt kymmie's Avatar
All my tanks have sand, all my tanks are planted. I can't imagine have anything but sand! One tank has the typical play sand you are talking about. It's white and I don't like it as much as I like my black sand tanks. I find the maintenance is so much easier. You just hover the gravel vac just above the sand and all the gunk and fish poop comes right up, as compared to gravel, where it gets in, around and underneath, and you have to shove the gravel vac into the gravel. I use a liquid fert weekly (Flourish Comprehensive) and have root tabs under my heavy root feeders. I've had no problem growing plants.

If you don't stand up for something you'll fall for anything...
aunt kymmie is offline  
post #4 of 8 Old 03-05-2011, 10:30 PM
stevenjohn21's Avatar
Only a few months back i changed from Gravel to Sand, i was a little nervous at 1st because like you i had people putting me off. "They" said it would mess my. filter up and cause huge cloudy mess in the tank. . . . . well after 3 months of having sand i can honestly say ive never had any of those problems. Like Aunt Kymmie states above, you just hover the vac and the poop has gone, Its that simple !

I bought sand blasting sand from Northern Tool supply which im pretty sure is a nationwide company. The black sand came in a 50lb bag and cost $7 , its already pre washed and looks great in the tank.

Here is a link to a similar question asked, the picture of the sand is the 3rd post down. . . .

You wont regret it i promise ! good luck
stevenjohn21 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to stevenjohn21 For This Useful Post:
GwenInNM (03-06-2011)
post #5 of 8 Old 03-06-2011, 07:53 AM
New Member
CoffeeMan's Avatar
I have Quickrete brand play sand in all of my tanks, and like Kymmie said, I couldn't imagine having anything else. I also have live plants in all the tanks. I also keep Trumpet Snails in my tanks to help keep the sand aerated. Sand is much easier to maintain than gravel. Just make sure you wash it good before it goes into the tank. The first time I used sand I didn't wash it good enough, and it took a bunch of water changed before the water cleared up.

29 Gallon Tank
7 Zebra Danios (1 is actually a red glofish)
7 Serpae Tetras
7 Emerald Green Corydoras

20 Gallon Tank
2 Albino African Clawed Frogs
Anywhere between 0 and 8 feeder guppies

15 Gallon Tank
Lots of Trumpet Snails.
1 Assassin Snail
2 Female Guppies
1 Male Guppies

Pics coming soon in tank profiles.
CoffeeMan is offline  
post #6 of 8 Old 03-06-2011, 09:04 AM
New Member
I got sand from a pool supply place. It has been excellent. Like others say, you just have to hover above the sand to clean. If you get to close and suck up sand, just close the valve, stopping the suction, and the sand falls down. I was surprised how little of it stays in suspension. It is a non-issue,

55 Gallon, planted

Cherry Barbs 5
CPD's 6
Porkchop Rasboras 7
German Blue Rams 4
Boesemani Rainbow 2
Siamese Algae Eaters 4
3 Lined: 1
Elegans: 3
Pandas: 4

I think I am pushing it, but water quality is holding up fine, and all the fishys seem pretty happy.
jcinnb is offline  
post #7 of 8 Old 03-06-2011, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
GwenInNM's Avatar
Sand subtrate

Thanks all for the fantastic information!

You were all so helpful. Now I can't wait to get sand in my tank. So, now I have to decide should I just wait and do it in a new tank, (I'll keep my existing tank as a QT) or should I change out the gravel I have now? . .seems like a big chore.

Sand is so much prettier to me, and I wish I wouldn't have listened to fish store people.


Just because animals can't talk, does not mean they should not be heard
GwenInNM is offline  
post #8 of 8 Old 03-06-2011, 09:06 PM
I actually have sand on top of gravel, best of both worlds! The sand is easy to maintain and the gravel benefits my plants because the roots can grow very easily in the gravel.


PRichs87 is offline  

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help with play sand please JD3P Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 2 12-17-2010 09:58 PM
play sand bigrift Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 7 09-01-2010 12:52 AM
Removing gas pocket in sand subtrate JohnnyD44 Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 10 03-05-2009 02:04 PM
Switching Subtrate: Gravel to Sand JohnnyD44 Beginner Freshwater Aquarium 16 01-23-2009 09:42 AM

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome