How do you prevent your sand from 'caking' or solidifying?

Discussion in '3reef Site Polls' started by Matt Rogers, Dec 20, 2007.

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How do you prevent your sand from 'caking' or solidifying?

  1. Added detrivores.

    14 vote(s)
    38.9%
  2. Manual grooming.

    14 vote(s)
    38.9%
  3. Adjusted water parameters.

    3 vote(s)
    8.3%
  4. I don't know.

    10 vote(s)
    27.8%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. 3D-Reef

    3D-Reef Plankton

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2006
    Messages:
    16
    As I understand it,there are two ways that clump the sand.One is that the bacteria process can 'glue' the sand together,or two an imbalance of chemicals.ie low Mg and overshooting Ca.
    The way to tell the difference between the two is to take a clump and put it in clorox.If it dissolves back into sand,the cause is the bacteria.
     
    1 person likes this.
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  3. amcarrig

    amcarrig Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Messages:
    9,219
    Location:
    CT
    Great info 3D Reef. Karma to ya!
     
  4. Nemo 22

    Nemo 22 Coral Banded Shrimp

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2007
    Messages:
    371
    Location:
    Orlando,Fl.
    how abou a jawfish or a diamond goby(got one today hopefully he doesnt jump out like the other 2)lol;)
     
  5. lunatik_69

    lunatik_69 Giant Squid

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Miami, FL
    I think the best way to prevent solidified sand is to siphon the sand bed. This way, your killing two birds with one stone. You stop the solidification and do a water change.
     
  6. Camilsky

    Camilsky Montipora Capricornis

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
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    Location:
    Groningen, The Netherlands
    :-[ Gosh... Hmmm... Sorry! Growing crystals of insoluble Mg/Ca salts capture sand grains and form this fanny solidified patches in the substrate. :p
     
  7. amcarrig

    amcarrig Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
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    9,219
    Location:
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    Hey now, that I understand! :D I hope you know that we're just joking with you Camilsky!!
     
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  9. Camilsky

    Camilsky Montipora Capricornis

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
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    Heh... :mad: ;) ;D
     
  10. coral reefer

    coral reefer Giant Squid

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2006
    Messages:
    4,860
    Location:
    Wonderland
    In simplest form, the solidifying of substrate is caused by the supersaturation of precipated calcium. Basically like a hermatypic coral uses calcium and strontium to form its calcareous skeleton, too much calcium in your water column will cause sand, and even powerheads and such to freeze/harden up.
    Constant testing of your calcium and strontium level will help as well as a nice population of hermatypic corals and sessile inverts like Tridacna clams and even coralline algae will deplet levels of calcium from becomming elevated to detrimental readings, which also wrecks havoc on other parameters such as alkalinity, magnesium and pH!
     
    1 person likes this.
  11. Bruce

    Bruce Giant Squid

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2004
    Messages:
    3,531
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    Hmm, I have actually never had this problem :X