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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello this is Jeff the guest again!
Well my 60 gallon tank is doing o.k. Cleared
the air on the noise from my CO2 tank. Needed a new regulator from JBJ. Have some Hair algae I have to contend with. I have a little wire brush from Home Depot, and I reach in to rake it out of the plant areas. Works great. I don't really know what to do to curtail the algae promlem, other than getting my CO2 levels properly set.
My reason for inquirying here is to ask. How do I vacuum the gravel properly. I have read here that many people don't have to vacuum at all. Go figure? Of course I attacked the gravel and started to vacuum just as if it were a regular non-planted tank. Reached in and dug a little, twisted and siphoned. But what happened is I sucked up the layer beneath the top layer and it now makes up the most of the top layer. I decided to use eco complete as my sublayer. With the siphoning it is now predominately black on top of my natural gravel. I don't want this to occur. What should I do to prevent this. Will I have to relayer the gravels eventually, or should I periodically add the natural soil on top of my siphoned mess?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Hello this is Jeff the guest again!
Well my 60 gallon tank is doing o.k. Cleared
the air on the noise from my CO2 tank. Needed a new regulator from JBJ. Have some Hair algae I have to contend with. I have a little wire brush from Home Depot, and I reach in to rake it out of the plant areas. Works great. I don't really know what to do to curtail the algae promlem, other than getting my CO2 levels properly set.
My reason for inquirying here is to ask. How do I vacuum the gravel properly. I have read here that many people don't have to vacuum at all. Go figure? Of course I attacked the gravel and started to vacuum just as if it were a regular non-planted tank. Reached in and dug a little, twisted and siphoned. But what happened is I sucked up the layer beneath the top layer and it now makes up the most of the top layer. I decided to use eco complete as my sublayer. With the siphoning it is now predominately black on top of my natural gravel. I don't want this to occur. What should I do to prevent this. Will I have to relayer the gravels eventually, or should I periodically add the natural soil on top of my siphoned mess?
 

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the reason i dont vaccum is because the floor of my tank is covered in plants. i would suggest just siphoning about 1/2 inch above the gravel. most of the poop and stuff will be sucked up from that distance. as for the layering, i would personally just leave it alone unless it bugs you too much.
 

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Just take the vacuum and suck the loose detritus that is loose on the surface. Supposedly the stuff that gets away and gets into the substrate will enrich it and help your plants grow without polluting the tank. You definately don't want to dig into the gravel and tear up the roots of your plants. That is much more harmful.
 

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usually I just take an old phone card and wave it around at the substrate about an inch away, which blows all the mulm out into the water column. I do that twice, letting the filter work to clean the mulm out for about 30 minutes between passes. Then I vacuum out 1/3 of the water and the remaining mulm that has settled on the plants, then I rinse the filter media in the tank water I took out.
 
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