Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: archive: Cleaning up hard water spots?
August 12, 2001 - 12:55 pm
just curious to see if anyone knows of a better way to get rid
of the crusty mineral build-up. I loaned my 40 tall to my uncle
and he didn't clean it for ayear and I took it back yesterday
and gave him my 10 to let him destroy it instead of my 400 dollar
show tank...now I need to clean it back up. I use a single edge
razor blade to clean the glass on all my tanks (30, 40, and
55 gal)but on the plastic rim I don't want to use the
blade cuz I'm afraid of cutting into the plastic.
What can I use to take the crust off that is safe for the fish?
just a wet cloth doesn't take it all off and I don't think
limeaway or any other cleaning agent will be good for the fish..
I'm way open for suggestions, I hate this messy stuff it just
makes my tank look like cr*p and it just doesn't fly with
the other 2 tanks that are perfectly clean right beside it..
August 13, 2001 - 08:36 am
Razor blades are fine for the glass, but they will scratch anything
that is plastic if you are not real careful. Do you have this
tank back up and running at this moment? If it is empty and you
are trying to clean to get ready to get it up and going again,
there are a couple of products that you can use. Both are made
by Jungle. The names are Seri-clean and Lime-off. However, both
of these products are caustic to the fish. They are fine for the
hood and filter where you can rinse them real good and then replace
on the tank. But since you are talking about the "rim"
of the tank, if there are fish and water in it, I don't think
I would try to use them. If the tank is set up, you might try
a scotch-brite pad used for teflon cookware. Just make sure it
is a new one and that it has been rinsed real good with plain
water before you use it.
August 14, 2001 - 12:24 am
Thanks for the idea, I didn't even think about a scotch-brite
pad..Yeah, the tank is up and running, needed a place for my piranha
in a hurry as my oscars were about to kill them..
This particular tank is a 40 tall (30"x12"x23")
any ideas about which canister filter would be the best to use
on it that I could attach with a bio-wheel, I like marineland
as I use 2 of the emporer 400s on my 55 cichlid tank and it stays
clean even tho all the fish in it are really messy and it's
August 14, 2001 - 10:05 am
I can't help you with the canister filter.....sorry. I don't
have any of them. I just use the emperor 280's and 400's
and get along fine. The canisters have always appeared to be too
much work for me and not really necessary on any of my tanks.
Keep checking back as I am sure some of the others do use the
canisters and can help you decide which one would be best.
August 14, 2001 - 11:59 am
The Magnum 350 is one of those that you either Love it or you
Hate it. I hate those. I had one for 8 months and it imploded
on it's self. It never did work right after I had had it for
3 or so months anyway.
On the other hand I now have a Filstar XP2 (Rena/Aquarium
Pharm.) I love it. There are many, many things that you can
do with this guy. It's one of the new canister filters out
there. Let me know if you want any info on it. I'd give it
to you now but I have a kid I need to get up. Rose
August 14, 2001 - 03:14 pm
Thanks for the filtration info Rose...I was thinking about them
as a future possiblity. I think I'll stick with using Emperor
biowheels for my future large tanks or check out the Filstar.
August 14, 2001 - 04:59 pm
The Rena Filstar and the Eheim canister filters are the best in
the market. They're actually a lot less maintainance than
other filters, once you get them going. You can go as far as 3
months in between filter cleanings with these babies... given
you set it up right of course ;) I'm sure Rose can enlighten
us all on how easy her canister is.
August 14, 2001 - 07:20 pm
So Iboy and Rose and Kick what would you use in a 75gal African
tank that needs about recommended 6x filtration? Just opinions
no debates okay? Thanks much for any input.
August 14, 2001 - 09:04 pm
From what I know, a Rena Filstar XP3 will do great for a tank
When I mentioned going 3 months in between cleaning the filter,
I also indicated that the set up must be done correctly. First
of all, a low fish load always reduces the filter load. Second
of all, use of more media than what the filter comes with also
works well. The Rena Filstars don't come with the BioMax media,
but you can use the Fluval BioMax in the Filstar for added biological
filtration. You can also purchase Fluval Prefilters, which look
like ceramic hollow cylinders, to extend filter life. The Rena
also doesn't come with Zeolite, an ammonia remover, but it
is nice to have it in there.
August 14, 2001 - 09:27 pm
I'm looking at getting a canister for the purpose of providing
a current for my 3 4"red belly piranha to swim in, they're
in a 40 tall and it only has UGF with 2 regent 170gph powerheads,
it's clear so far...I would just use the powerheads for the
current and put an emporer on it, but the center brace is in the
way for a 400 and I've had 2 of the 280s and have had problems
with the impellers not priming and not moving near the amount
of water that it's supposed to do, so I don't like the
smaller ones, I was thinking about a hot magnum with a bio-pro
attached for biological purpose. I need something with a high
volume of water flow to turn the water as it is a deeper than
average tank and the fish in it are somewhat large and are messy
when fed live food. I use 2 emporer 400s on my 55 because it is
overstocked (2-9" oscars, 2-4"jack dempseys, 3-12"plecos,
a 4" pictus cat, 6" lima shovelnose cat, 4 5" black-fin
sharks 1 2" firemouth anda 4"striped raphael cat..)
I change 40% of the water every 3 days until I can get my new
tank finished I know all these fish are more than likely not compatible
from water conditions, but they all get along well and are healthy
and will be in a better arrangement when I get my 400 gal cichlid
tank finished..then also how many of the hot's will I need
for the 400 gal? I think about 3 should do, but I might go with
4 cuz the oscars are so messy...sorry it's so long:>(
just wanted to get it all in..
August 15, 2001 - 01:32 am
I'll get the info on the Filstars on here some time tomorrow.
I'm heading off to bed...been a real long day and I'm
August 15, 2001 - 07:28 am
Fishead you can take the powerheads and add 'quick filters'
to them if you are interested in current.This filter bypasses
the UGF and just attaches to the powerhead. I bought an aquaclear
quick at my LFS, but petwarehouse.com sells some generic ones.
Also Petwarehouse has I think Rio submersible powerheads which
you can put near the bottom of your tank for added water flow.
At one time I had the quick filter running in my 29gal African,
but decide I had a little to much current with 2 other filters
August 15, 2001 - 08:31 pm
Hey, all this sounds familiar on the hard water subject, but I
have a slight twist.......I moved to a new home where the water
is very hard. I was cycling up my tank, lowering the ph, when
over a short period of time(1/2 a day) a white powdery
substance (I'm guessing calcium carbonate) precipitated
out of the water covering the entire inside of the tank with a
white dust.......some of it hardened as a film on the walls of
the tank, but most just settled as a thick white layer on plants/gravel.
How do I rid my self of this, and in the future, how do I prevent
this from happening? I have never seen this before.
August 16, 2001 - 03:53 pm
Here's the info on the Filstar that I promised I would get
out to you yesterday.
For some basic info on it go to
I have this canister filter on one of my tanks so if you have
any questions on this filter let me know.
Just a couple of notes...I have found this filter to be easier
to operate than the Ehims. From the time I unhook it from the
tank and put it back on it takes me 5 minutes. Add the hoses to
that and it takes me a total of 10-12 minutes to have it compleatly
assembled and operational again. I will make a note of one thing
for you, once you have the Filstar hooked back up and the hoses
full of water again you MUST let the filter sit for 2 minutes
before you plug it back in to operate it again. (That's
only when you take the canister and the hoses off the tank. If
you just take the canister off and clean it but leave the hoses
you can plug it back in immediatly after hooking the canister
up to the hoses.)
I think that's all for now. Sorry it took me so long to get
this up. It's been one of those weeks. Rose
August 16, 2001 - 04:31 pm
rose..I have recently just heard of this filter..sounds good..but,can
you use your own media and stuff or are you forced to use their
products?..looks kinda pricey?..any comments?
August 16, 2001 - 09:34 pm
Thanks much Rose...still looking for Jeff's answers too. Hi
Jeff glad you didn't get zapped by the computer virus!
August 17, 2001 - 08:25 am
Russel, well you have thrown a new one at us. I will direct your
post to Jeff as maybe he has a clue as what has caused this. You
did mention something that I would like to question. Something
was said about "lowering the pH". Is there a possibility
that whatever you used to lower this did not dissolve correctly?
Also I would like to mention that if your water is hard, there
is no buffering capacity to allow it to be lowered in the first
place and any water changes that are performed will just make
it bounce back up.
I am assuming that this is a tank that had been set up previously
in your former home and was moved to the new location. Could it
be that particles of some kind entered the tank from the move,
and the residue was not cleaned out before the resetting of the
tank? Could there have been any remodeling dust that has settled
in the tank?
If this is, indeed, something in your water causing the white
powder you have about 2 choices. I would imagine that an R/O unit
would work to rid the water of any elements or you will have to
use water from another source. I will make Jeff aware of your
post as he might have missed it, and hopefully if none of the
above have caused the problem, he will have some sort of answer
August 17, 2001 - 10:53 am
humm.. russel sounds like a possible silica deposit along with
calcuim carb from your water source..causing a reaction between
the hard water and glass(calcuim and silica)..getting
rid of it might be a problem short of breaking down your tank...if
you do have a large deposit you may start seeing diatoms appear..you
might try vacuming the stuff up off the bottom..but the glass
is either going to have to be scrubbed or the tank totally broke
down and cleaned with muriatic acid and rinsed with bicarb...
August 17, 2001 - 04:21 pm
More Flistar info...
Jeff to answer your questions, I got my Filstar for $50 bucks
back in January. I got it at www.bigalsonline.com Someone is always
having a sale on these. You just gotta keep an eye out for it.
As for the media, I mix, match and make my own. I do have the
Filstar sponges( the ones that go on the bottom basket).
I have Ehim stars and rings, my own carbon bags stuffed with Black
Dimond carbon, and I think my own micron filter. At any time I
want I can add more of one thing or add something differnt to
the mix. The only thing that will hold you back with possiblilities
is lack of immagination. It has more than enough places to put
things and stuff or nothing at all.
If I get another canister filter it WILL be another Filstar. I
have no complaints about it at all. Rose
August 17, 2001 - 04:55 pm
wow sound good..thanks rose