Gravel Vacuuming!

Discussion in 'General Freshwater Information' started by Callahan, Mar 17, 2009.

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  1. Callahan

    Callahan Spanish Shawl Nudibranch

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    Hey everyone, So I just did my first gravel vacuum and I need some affirmation that I did it right or pointers how to do it better the next time. I bought just a basic one from petco and followed the instructions properly. Everything seemed to work well I saw all the debris suck into the vacuum. I did about 4-4.5 gallons worth which is about 20% of my 20 gallon tank. I then replaced the water and treated it with conditioner, stress coat, and ammo-lock. I also cleaned the filter cartridge. So everything seemed to be going well; I am, however, noticing there is still debris floating around. I am guessing that it was just brought up from the vacuum and the filter needs time to get to it. So it seems that I did everything ok; any thoughts to things I should have done differently?

    Also, I have a smaller like 6 or 7 gallon freshwater that I would like to do a vacuum job on in the next few weeks. Should i do anything different due to its size? Any help would be greatley appreciated!!

    Thanks guys,

    -Ben
     
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  3. {Nano}Reefer

    {Nano}Reefer Dragon Wrasse

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    Sounds good to me! Never used one myself, but make sure you clean it really good after every use, well, that is what I have heard anyways. Good luck and happy vacuuming!
     
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  4. unclejed

    unclejed Whip-Lash Squid

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    Hi Ben, you may want to consider getting a RO/DI unit if budget permits so you don't have to use all those additives. Also, the RO/DI water will be more stable and perfectly pure. A lot of us do not vacuum the sand bed as it can release noxious gasses and waste in the display tank, however, in smaller systems such as yours, it is prudent to vacuum as the smaller systems do not have the ability to "keep up" with the required filtration needs of the tank. I vacuum my 14 gal. Biocube (what I can get to) for this very reason. The aspect you want to pay close attention to is to make sure you keep the siphon tube all the way to the bottom of the sand/substrate and do not bring it up to move it until all the cloudy contaminated water is in your bucket. You can controll the water flow by pinching or crimping the tubing for a slower siphon so you can stay at your cleaning longer and cover more ground. Enjoy the ride and post a pic.
     
  5. amcarrig

    amcarrig Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I would run filter floss while you vacuum your gravel and for a few hours afterwards.
     
  6. PackLeader

    PackLeader Giant Squid

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    Depending on how coarse the gravel is, I always had better luck using the biggest vacuum possible without sucking in any gravel.
     
  7. unclejed

    unclejed Whip-Lash Squid

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    For Bens' benefit, run filter floss where?
     
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  9. ermano

    ermano Zoanthid

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    I thought it was a freshwater tank?
     
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  10. Callahan

    Callahan Spanish Shawl Nudibranch

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    yes it is freshwater ermano. This morning its pretty hazy in the tank; i hope everything is alright. Any thoughts?
     
  11. amcarrig

    amcarrig Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I assume he's got a hang on filter since he mentions a filter cartridge so I would run the floss in that hang on.
     
  12. steve wright

    steve wright Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Location:
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    where I am , we can get those squeeze to operate syphons - which have a large diameter cup at the front with a plastic mesh about 4 inches inside the cup

    that way the gravel gets sucked up into the cup rattles about , gets cleaned and only water and crud ends up in the bucket

    Steve