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Pool sand is a breeze to clean compared to play sand. The major drawback with pool filter sand is that bright, blindingly white totally unnatural look.
 

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Might not be cleaned enough then. I've used both, the pool sand in a 40B and the play sand in a 10. The pool filter sand never got cloudy and barely took a cleaning. I spent hours on the play sand and eventually got it to the point where with just some care I could prevent cloudiness even in the short tank. Both work, I just really hate that white color.
 

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Honestly I'd bypass both of them and go for black sand. I have a white sand tank and a black sand tank. The black sand just looks so much more natural. AND most black sands are made for aquariums so there is minimal cleaning needed. I washed my black sand... once. I washed my white sand for 4 hours and was still unbearably cloudy when I put it in the tank. I have the Estes Marine Reef sand. It's made for both saltwater and freshwater, so it doesn't have yucky saltwater stuff in it.
 

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I have never used pool filter sand before so have no input on it other then from pics it looks sooo white!

Playsand or even multi purpose sand that looks natural is my choice. I really don't know how it takes y'all hours to clean it?? *scratches head* the longest I have spent cleaning it was an hour maybe and that was enough for 3" in my 55gallon. 20 gallon tote filled half way with the stuff rinsing it with the water hose outside with good pressure only takes like 30mins to do it. Maybe its just that I have done it soo much that I have it down to an art??
 

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I seriously just take a 20gallon tote pour in half the bag of sand into it. Then turn the water hose on a little more then half way. Then I stick it into the sand. While its filling up the tote I use the hose to stir the sand. I don't let the tote fill up with water through. I usually watch the lvl of water and it gets about half way up I tilt up one end of the tote to dump the water out while still stirring the sand. Usually I will also just leave it tilted and continue to rinse/stir till the water is clear. Usually doesn't take long. I have put a whole bag in there like that too. Once the water is clear while you are stirring you can put it in your tank and it should not cloud up on you. I have never had to cloud up on me doing this process.
 

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I have play sand in my 36 gallon tank and it never clouds during a water change. I cleaned it basically the same way as Boredomb.
 

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I bought pool filter sand from "club piscine" and the colour is black, brown and light, the grade is a bit bigger than sand, but looks very natural and works very well as a cap on soil for plants too. There was still a considerable amount of rinsing to do though, imo
 

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i have both and ill have to say the pool filter sand is wonderful. the light color of mine i really like. downside is i can see every tiny lil piece of poo. now the play sand i have isnt as fine as the pool filter sand. it also hides more poo and looks more natural. i like it alot. and i was like 2.50 for a 50 pound bag. either one is nice. and works the same.
 

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Wow - my play sand looks nothing like that. It's very smooth and light tan, pretty even in color with none of those bigger pieces. I guess it depends where you buy it or maybe the brand.
 
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It does have a lot to do with location because I have bought that same brand of playsand and it looks nothing like yours. Its more yellowish and smooth KPainter said.

To get sand that looks close to that I have to buy multi purpose sand from Sakrete at Lowes.
 

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Pool sand is a breeze to clean compared to play sand. The major drawback with pool filter sand is that bright, blindingly white totally unnatural look.
I have a couple of different pool filter sands and neither are anywhere near white. They are a very natural tan color. Brand probably plays a large role, but it is not fair to say that pool filter sand is white since many of the pool filter sands out there are not white. I've not seen white PFS, personally.

As for the color of lighter sands, how it looks in the bag dry and how it looks in the tank wet are two different things, in my experience.

As for not needing to wash black sand - try that with Tahitian moon sand.... :)
 

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Here's a pic of the pool filter sand in my 90g before I added water, it looks even more brown after a while. So there are a multitude of colours out there, I just called around at pool and spa stores and asked what the colour of their pool filter sand was. They told me a mix of black/white and tan. There is black pool filter sand out there too.

Be careful not to get silica sand, this will cause a lot of diatoms (brown algae) in the future.
 

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