How well should I vacuum the gravel?

  1. TheKayman Initiate Member


    Whenever I do water changes, I try my best to syphon out any detritus that fall off from plants and mosses and also from the animals. However, when I add the replacement water into the tank, detrirus that didn't get sucked up or was stuck in the mosses will suddenly appear and make the tank look really messy. I use fish net to manually filter out any visible and filterable particles out, but there are just too many smaller particles that I have no control over. I am wondering if it is okay to have these small particles in the tank as long as I do water changes. Or should I get some vacuuming device to get rid of these particles?

    After few hours from a water change, the particles seem to settle, but as soon as I agitate the water or swish gravel around, I get back the cloudy water. The parameters 0-0-5. Also, my tank is almost full with mosses that I dont even see alot of gravel to vacuum. Please advise me~
  2. iloveengl Well Known Member Member

    Hi Kayman :)

    I know my marimo balls gather crud like crazy, and I have to vacuum them extra well. So long as your params are steady, I don't think it's a problem if you maintain at least once per week substrate vacs. You may want to focus on the vacuuming part, as it will suck up water at the same time, rather than suck up water, then vacuum. When I pour clean water in, I get floaties, but the filter sucks it up within a minute; a couple hours sounds like you may need more rigorous vacs or if you really wanted, you could invest in another filter to help clear the debris faster. :)
  3. MissMTS Fishlore VIP Member

    You should be fine :) All of my tanks have tiny particles that get tossed up when I do water changes or move plants around. There is not really anything you can do to get rid of them. As long as you are vacuuming thoroughly and getting out any larger particles out with a net, you shouldn't have any problems.
  4. Aquarist Fishlore Legend Member

    Hello Kayman. I agree with both posters above. Extra filtration may help as long as your fish can handle a stronger current. As mentioned there will always be some detritus in your tank that there is just no getting rid of. Do the best that you can and keep an eye on your water chemistry and you should be fine. A "temporary" debris cloud after vacuuming is pretty common but it should clear.