Changing Substrate Gravel To Sand

believefate7

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Sorry for so many questions! I'm trying my best to research on my own but I'm finding it difficult. I want to switch my tacky looking gravel to sand. I understand the different types and how to clean them from reading lots on here but I have other questions. I have plants, so do I need to use some gravel at the bottom? Or is sand all I need? Also I don't know the specific terminology but I have a filter that has the tube that goes to the bottom of the tank would I have to use a different kind of filter or would that be Ok? Thanks so much! I've got some great information from some of you already and I really appreciate it
 

DoubleDutch

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Your plants can be planted in sand. Don't leave gravel in it, cause it will mix with the sand.

You don't have to change the filter. Maybe an extra prefilter / sponge over the inlet.
Or, in worst case scenario, shorten the inletpipe a bit.
 

RSababady

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I have a filter that has the tube that goes to the bottom of the tank
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would I have to use a different kind of filter or would that be Ok?
Is the filter underneath the gravel or is the pipe you refer to taking water up to the filter. If it is the later, then @DoubleDutch 's recommendation to put a sponge prefilter on the end of the inlet pipe is good!

If however the pipe is the outlet from the undergravel filter, (has bubbles coming out of it with water), then you will need to change your filter to some sort of sponge filter or better still HOB. How big is your tank and how many fish do you have in it?
 

DoubleDutch

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Is the filter underneath the gravel or is the pipe you refer to taking water up to the filter. If it is the later, then @DoubleDutch 's recommendation to put a sponge prefilter on the end of the inlet pipe is good!

If however the pipe is the outlet from the undergravel filter, (has bubbles coming out of it with water), then you will need to change your filter to some sort of sponge filter or better still HOB. How big is your tank and how many fish do you have in it?
True, but think we aren't speaking about an undergravelfilter (which we don't use overhere).

If an undergravel it should me swapped indeed when going to use sand.
 

jdhef

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No need to apologize for asking a lot of questions. That's what the forum is here for.
 

Eric360

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From personal experience, make sure you get ALLLLLLLLL of the gravel out. When I first switched to sand I didn't end uo taking all the gravel out. I forget why, maybe wanted to have both gravel and sand maybe just got frustrated with how long it was taking...
I covered up the remaining gravel with sand and especially with my digging mbuna the gravel just makes its way to the top of the sand and looks terrible.
If that happens, it is incrediblyyyy hard to get the gravel out of the sand. I finally did, but I had to scoop up the sand/gravel mixture scoop by scoop, into a strainer and sift it in water to dump the gravel.
Just definitely make sure you get every little piece of gravel out while there's no sand it will be so much easier.

I have a canister filter with sand, and the intake is down low. If you have fish that kick the water around hard and make the sand fly around, the filter may suck a little bit in. Mine doesn't suck in much sand. If you can modify the intake so that it is a couple inches off the sand (if it currently is directly on it) that should be fine. You could get a sponge cover for the intake though if your filter seems to be taking in a lot of sand.
 
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believefate7

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Your plants can be planted in sand. Don't leave gravel in it, cause it will mix with the sand.

You don't have to change the filter. Maybe an extra prefilter / sponge over the inlet.
Or, in worst case scenario, shorten the inletpipe a bit.
Is the filter underneath the gravel or is the pipe you refer to taking water up to the filter. If it is the later, then @DoubleDutch 's recommendation to put a sponge prefilter on the end of the inlet pipe is good!

If however the pipe is the outlet from the undergravel filter, (has bubbles coming out of it with water), then you will need to change your filter to some sort of sponge filter or better still HOB. How big is your tank and how many fish do you have in it?
From personal experience, make sure you get ALLLLLLLLL of the gravel out. When I first switched to sand I didn't end uo taking all the gravel out. I forget why, maybe wanted to have both gravel and sand maybe just got frustrated with how long it was taking...
I covered up the remaining gravel with sand and especially with my digging mbuna the gravel just makes its way to the top of the sand and looks terrible.
If that happens, it is incrediblyyyy hard to get the gravel out of the sand. I finally did, but I had to scoop up the sand/gravel mixture scoop by scoop, into a strainer and sift it in water to dump the gravel.
Just definitely make sure you get every little piece of gravel out while there's no sand it will be so much easier.

I have a canister filter with sand, and the intake is down low. If you have fish that kick the water around hard and make the sand fly around, the filter may suck a little bit in. Mine doesn't suck in much sand. If you can modify the intake so that it is a couple inches off the sand (if it currently is directly on it) that should be fine. You could get a sponge cover for the intake though if your filter seems to be taking in a lot of sand.
Thank you all for your input very much. The pipe is clear and goes all the way to the bottom and inserts into a shorter tube. I assume this is probably the wrong kind for sand. I guess I'll leave the gravel in this one but now I'll know to get a different filter in the near future when I get my bigger set-up! I'm just so excited and eager lol but I know patience is a must when it comes to tanks and fish lol (if my kids haven't been enough to teach me patience, this hobby certainly is)! I'm happy to have waited on the bigger tank until I had/have more knowledge of what I'm doing. I had no idea there was so much behind keeping a tank. This literally started with a science fair project for my oldest son. We were testing the theory of if goldfish can freeze. We ended up leaving the first one in the freezer too long and we felt horrible, so the project stopped but we had two more goldfish lol so naturally we had to buy a 5 gallon tank right?! Now we have a 29 and I'm moving up to a 60/65 next woohoo

No need to apologize for asking a lot of questions. That's what the forum is here for.
Thank you! I needed to hear that! I always feel like a bother lol
 
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