Are assorted outdoor rocks safe as gravel?

riptide904

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We thought we might be able to use a bag of assorted "pea rocks" from Home Depot as gravel in my new goldfish tank. However, I don't know what kinds of rocks are in there (I know quartz is, but I think that's safe) and if it will have negative effects on the water and fish. They have a lot of clay dust on them that has been taking forever to rinse off...
 

AnthonyC4C

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Only issues I can think of is how pointy some of the stones maybe, choking sizes and of course types of rocks because it can raise your pH levels and of course the stones may contain a high silica content substrate may cause some diatom outbreaks for an unnamed amount of time. Just some things to think about.
 

Orion5

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Many of the rocks/gravel that you buy for outdoor purposes are generally safe, but should be cured before using in an aquarium to minimize the amount of dust and so on. But it's always good to ask if they have been washed with any harsh detergents or anything just to make sure.

+1 to all that Anthony said. I'd personally not have a problem using them, keeping in mind the issues that could come about.
 

Matt B

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You could always buy it, clean it, and put it in a bucket with your water and test the ph in the bucket after a number of days to get an idea if they'll mess with your ph, not a guaranteed way but I do it.
 
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riptide904

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We started sorting it out after I found limestone, keeping only smooth, river rock types and quartz. I'm boiling some now, and I'll rinse them some more afterwards.
 
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