Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Andyandsue 01-23-2007 02:50 PM

How to clean a small tank?

Can anyone recommend a routine to clean a 3 gallon Eclipse tank? I've been thinking about the first cleaning and I'm not sure how to go about it. I have a small siphon/cleaner and everything else we'll need (bucket, water conditioner, etc) but since this is such a small tank, if I try to use the siphon, all the water will be gone in a few minutes!

This is a tank with a bio-wheel and a carbon filter, gravel, 2 artificial plants, 2 small real plants, a fake rock, and 4 danios.

Also, how often should I be cleaning this? I was planning on once a month. Should I track the Nitrates, and if so how high before a water change is done? (Right now they are less than 5 with 0 ammonia/0 Nitrites) Should I be cleaning and water changing at the same interval?

Thank you for your advice! I'm very confused about this one.

Melissa 01-23-2007 04:42 PM

I have a 2.5 gallon tank with a betta in it. i just change a little of the water every week. But if you want to use your siphen hore, do it real quick, you wont be able to get everything because it is a small tank. but just get what you can real quick.

musho3210 01-23-2007 04:53 PM

you should use a spare piece of airline tubing, it cant clean the gravel but you can get a perfect amount of water out.

Andyandsue 01-26-2007 10:54 AM

Yesterday I manually (but gently) scopped up some of the gravel and rinsed it with dechlorinated water in a large clean plastic bowl, and put it back in using the fish net so it would be gently. It worked. Each time I used the siphon I got too much water and not enough gunk out of the gravel.

I'm getting a bigger tank. I'm done with the 3 gallon. I'll give it to my son and let him get the beta he's been bugging me for.

FDStation152 01-26-2007 05:29 PM

i have one of those little eclipse systems (not bad for an emergency tank) and always just used my main siphon...the key is to just do it fast. IMO once a month isnt nearly often enough for cleaning on any tank...even more so in a small tank in which the water parameters will change far quicker. Personally I do small water changes (about 10%) almost daily on my tanks but thats more than is actually required and know very few people that put that amount of work into it.

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