Tropical Fish Keeping banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello! Thank you for letting me join your community. I was really into the hobby many years ago until life circumstances changed and the tanks had to go. Life has stabilized and I am ready to start up again. I got my 29 gal tank out of the shed and have dusted it off, and am looking for suggestions for putting an older tank back into use. I don't want to miss anything. I will be checking for leaks before I add fish!

I haven't used any cleansers on the tank, obviously, but is wet paper towels the only thing I can use to clean it up? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,201 Posts
Welcome to the forum. I'm glad you passed the entrance exam :)

Wet paper towel is all I've ever used.
 
  • Like
Reactions: earthgirl

·
Banned
Joined
·
766 Posts
In the past when I needed to really clean a used tank I used Apple Vinegar. It did wonders on getting rid of old scum build up and doesn't really leave anything that can hurt your fish.

It's worth it if you can take it outside and hose it down with a garden hose.

EDIT: If you have old gravel in your tank I suggest removing it, throwing it away, and then getting new gravel. I've heard/come across several reports from people who pulled out used tanks, used the existing gravel and ended up with high ammonia/nitrates. Not sure what is going on causing it. It may be there is still stuff left over in the rocks that dried out and as you add water it can soften/decompose putting stuff out into your tank.
 
  • Like
Reactions: earthgirl

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Great question! Previously I did no live plants but I'm kinda considering it this time. What do you think? What considerations do I have when making that decision?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,010 Posts
Great question! Previously I did no live plants but I'm kinda considering it this time. What do you think? What considerations do I have when making that decision?
Welcome to the forum!

Plants provide so many benefits, the largest initially being that they suck up ammonia immediately, no need for a classic cycle setup as they circumvent the nitrogen cycle. The more plants the better. Add substrate (sand is a good choice) water, plants and fish (in small groups a few weeks apart).

Considerations, lighting and fertilization. If you have an old light hood you can probably get replacement bulbs that are in the 6,000kelvin to 7,000kelvin range (plant friendly lights) and something like seachem's flourish comprehensive (full range fertilizer) for a weekly dosing.

Jeff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Excellent information, thank you! I'm excited!

So I was planning on seeding my tank with used media from a co-worker, are you saying that is unnecessary if I introduce plants and fish at the same time?

P.S. I am aware of bioloads with fish - does having plants change that at all, i.e., could I eventually support more fish due to having plants? Thank you again, I am so happy to be getting help!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,010 Posts
Excellent information, thank you! I'm excited!

So I was planning on seeding my tank with used media from a co-worker, are you saying that is unnecessary if I introduce plants and fish at the same time?

P.S. I am aware of bioloads with fish - does having plants change that at all, i.e., could I eventually support more fish due to having plants? Thank you again, I am so happy to be getting help!
No need to seed, no need to cycle.

The bioload will be something that you will have to work out for your specific setup but I would agree that it COULD let you go more overload. Once you start adding fish the key is to add them in small groups a few weeks apart to let things balance out. Too many fish too fast will likely result in a nitrite spike. I just added more plants each time I added more fish and only ended up with one case of nitrite spiking for a couple of days.

Jeff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,557 Posts
Welcome to Tropical Fish Keeping forum.

I concur with what has been posted. Next question is, what fish are you planning? The choice of substrate and filter should take the intended fish into account. Also, what are your source water (presumably tap, but could be well) parameters? GH is important for many fish, and pH is related to GH and KH. It is wise to know these for your sourced water, in case they may limit fish choices.

Byron.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,265 Posts
Also, just to be clear, JDM means heavily planted initially, with lot's of fast growing stem plants. Floating plants also help tremendously (water sprite, water lettuce, frogbit, even duckweed).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,010 Posts
Also, just to be clear, JDM means heavily planted initially, with lot's of fast growing stem plants. Floating plants also help tremendously (water sprite, water lettuce, frogbit, even duckweed).
The quantity of plants tends to be a rather subjective thing. Here are two shots of my 37 gallon tallish tank, the first near startup, the second a week ago. I used a bunch of dwarf hygrophila stems initially that grew like bad weeds a variety of other plant species. Most of the DH I moved to another tank to start it.

I started out with a betta and 12 cherry barbs with the fist plants but I have kept adding plants and added emerald catfish since, upped the barbs to 16, added shrimp... plants have been interesting as I have tried about 30 different varieties over the last few months.

Jeff.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
My thoughts were a school of tetras, something "pretty" (maybe a betta or gourami) and some cory cats. I have my old test kit - it's an API Master Test Kit but it's probably 6 years old. Think it's ok to use?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,010 Posts
Thanks, it's always changing a bit here and there.

I wouldn't suggest a Betta, I have one with some cherry barbs that appear to be OK together. time will tell. But tetras have teeth and those flowing Betta fins are a prime nipping target for them to use those teeth.

Check the expiry on the bottles. I expect that some might be OK and some not but I would recommend replacing it anyway.

Jeff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,557 Posts
My thoughts were a school of tetras, something "pretty" (maybe a betta or gourami) and some cory cats. I have my old test kit - it's an API Master Test Kit but it's probably 6 years old. Think it's ok to use?
The test kit is likely past the "expected" expiry dates, but sometimes they do continue to give reliable results. But for the minimal cost, a new API Master Combo would be a good investment, it has pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate.

You still need to know the GH and KH, and this you can ascertain from the municipal water folks; they probably have a website. IF you find it and can't figure out the data numbers, post the link and one of us can take a look. GH is rather important.

Aside from that, I would not include a Betta in a community tank. As Jeff has since posted, it can work--but the inherent nature of the fish says it won't work, and it is safer to assume the "norm" rather than the maybe. Gourami is fine, depending upon species. Check our profiles, most of the available ones are included, and some are best in a harem, some need more space, etc. Small fish with gourami is tricky; they can't be fast swimmers (which lets out barbs and Danio), or aggressive (many will readily fin nip a gourami). The profiles will help you narrow things down. Corys are fine with almost anything that won't eat them.:lol:

Byron.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top