90 Gallon Changing Substrate

  1. dbabyg Initiate Member

    My 90 gal tank has tan color gravel, not appealing, drab look or maybe, it's time for a change. This tank is set up for African Cichlids and I usually have a couple live bearers. My water is hard, PH 7.8, GH 150, KH 180, and no problems with Nitrate, Nitrite or Ammonia spikes. Regular maintenance schedule.

    I'm thinking of change the appearance to a white sand, maybe fine gravel, I have used Oolite and Afriican Cichlid Mix and I like the added benefits of CaribSea substrates that buffer, reduce water chemicals, retain PH.. The substrates that I have researched are; (mostly CaribSea)

    - Crystal River White Gravel
    - Nature's Own Aragonite Sand
    - Aragonite Selct Sand
    - Select Grade Reef Sand

    Any suggestions and comments appreciated.
     
  2. Marie1 Well Known Member Member

    I use aragonite sand in a African tank with shellies. They are doing just fine with it and seem to enjoy digging in it looking for food. I believe it is Caribisea brand. It looks good too.
     

  3. Junne Fishlore Legend Member

    I'm not familiar with the types you listed but I can tell you about the color. I used white sand in my 6.6 gallon and after 6 months or so, it was an ugly brown color. Every speck of debris showed up including diatoms I ended up changing it to black Tahitian moon sand and never looked back. Just my experience.
     
  4. Marie1 Well Known Member Member

    I don't leave the lights in my white sand tank on much. It does seem to reflect the light and grow algae easier than tanks with dark substrate. And debris does show up very well on it too. So if these are things that you don't want, you may reconsider. I have also used it in a low light planted tank. Although debris was still visible, the algae was not as bad. So the plants may have been helping with algae control in that tank. .
     

  5. dbabyg Initiate Member

    The light color might look nice at first and I agree with your advice. I am a little bit concerned with going to a white color (changing) and keeping the debris free. Plus, its a large tank to just change back and forth. I also plan to keep it as a African Cichlid tank, Cichlid caves and probably no live plants. I try to avoid using plastic plants.
     
  6. dbabyg Initiate Member

    I have used CaribSea substrates and Aragonite. It's one of my top choices. Changing to a while color would definitely be brighter than the beige-brown gravel that I now have. I guess, it's just time for a change in appearance. Thanks for the input.