Aquascaping and Gravel Vacuuming

trinity28

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I’m new to planted tanks and I’m wondering how all of you deal with tank maintenance and your aquascaping. Do you gravel vac at all or do you just leave things how they are? I just find that my substrate gets so yucky and full of poop. How do you clean this up without disturbing all of your aquascaping and bumping things around?
 

californiascape

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What's your substrate type?

I use aquasoil in my scaped tanks, which isn't supposed to be deeply disturbed. Usually I just wave the siphon over it or use a small pipette to disturb the surface and release the gunk.
 
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trinity28

trinity28

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I have sand in some tanks and gravel in others. The sand tanks are the ones I’m struggling with. Just full of poop laying on top of the sand. I guess it’s much harder to see on the gravel. And I’m almost certainly oberfeeding - I struggle with that :oops:
 

californiascape

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Yep, I have a sand portion in one of my tanks and it kinda sucks keeping it clean haha. You just siphon the poop right of the surface, that's one good thing about sand, since the gunk sits on top it's easy to clean without disturbing the surface. If you're worried about gunk in the plants and stuff like that, like I said before, a pipette works wonders at disrupting it into the water column so that it's sucked out with the water change water.

Gravel, assuming you have the hard kind, you should just vacuum in the spots that you can weekly.

Overall, remove as much as possible, but it's okay if you leave some that you can't reach! Tanks don't have to be spotless to be very healthy :)
 

StarGirl

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You can get a turkey baster for moving around mulm in the corners to suck up with the vacuum.....right
 
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trinity28

trinity28

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californiascape said:
Yep, I have a sand portion in one of my tanks and it kinda sucks keeping it clean haha. You just siphon the poop right of the surface, that's one good thing about sand, since the gunk sits on top it's easy to clean without disturbing the surface. If you're worried about gunk in the plants and stuff like that, like I said before, a pipette works wonders at disrupting it into the water column so that it's sucked out with the water change water.

Gravel, assuming you have the hard kind, you should just vacuum in the spots that you can weekly.

Overall, remove as much as possible, but it's okay if you leave some that you can't reach! Tanks don't have to be spotless to be very healthy :)
Thank you so much! This is great information.
 

kallililly1973

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StarGirl15 said:
You can get a turkey baster for moving around mulm in the corners to suck up with the vacuum.....right
How did miss a thread that i could suggest using a turkey baster in a fish tank :eek:
 

GlennO

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I have a sand substrate and I never vacuum it. Fish waste doesn’t penetrate it and I rarely see any on the surface. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because I have Malaysian Trumpet Snails. They come out at night like an army of vacuum cleaners.
 

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