Leaky tank

  • #1
can you believe it!!! its just one problem after another!!! this weeks trauma...noticed a tiny trickle of water down the leg of the stand and the carpet was damp. I mean tiny! about an inch radius around the leg. the water level wasn't noticably low or anything. so I wiped the leg and it took ages to form another trickle. so its not a major problem.....but....still not good! so I take a closer look to figure out where the leak is assuming it from where the side and front panes of glass meet and a bit of sealant would do thetrick. oh no, that would be too simple!!!! :. what has happened is the glass on the bottom of the tank has cracked across the corner, so I guess it can't get worse as it goes right across. its about an inch away from the corner. so i've used sealant on the bits I can see, but the front bit and the side bit are sat on the frame of the stand so I can't get to them. do you think it'll be ok?
I think it happened a few days ago when I dropped the lid of the tank behind the tank which slid the tank forward slightly on the stand. nearly gave me a heart attack, but the fish seemed ok!

any ideas, help, opinions, suggestions welcome!
  • #2
That's terrible. What tank is that for? In my opinion, you should upgrade your tank. lol ;D . Is it a hexagonal tank?
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
That's terrible. What tank is that for? In my opinion, you should upgrade your tank. lol  ;D . Is it a hexagonal tank?

you're not kidding! the big tank as well! 45 gal rectangle one. its still cycling!!! imagine getting a new tank, moving everything across?! more cycling!! it doesn't bear thinking about!! i've had enough of cycling as it is!!!! : I don't want to do it again! oh and all the cloudiness again from the gravel settling, my rooted plants that are just getting established!!! oh no......please don't let it be the bin for my old tank!! I'll cry!!! :'( too much blood, sweat and tears gone into that!!!!! :
  • #4
Sorry you are having such trauma!  If you can't get the leak stopped, you can cause rot and mold where the water saturates.  About cycling a new tank.  If you use  the old gravel, filters, decorations and all, just give them the slightest rinse, your new tank won't take any time at all to cycle.  It will be just about like the one everything came out of.  The plants will be easier to move if you don't let them get any more established.  If you DO decide to get a new tank, I'm  with Tom, get a bigger tank - bigger IS better!   I love my 55 gal, but am looking for a spot to place a bigger one myself, maybe a 125 gal,  and then I AM going to build a 300 gal tank.  Have gotten some really good help on this one from several folks I have been talking to lately.  Keep us up to date on how this goes!

Fish in the Frozen North!  -10F this morning.  8)
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
thing is, this tank isn't even cycled yet!! so moving everything might just muck up what i've done so far as the cultures aren't established!
also.....I have no money left after buying 2 tanks and all the stuff that's in them over the past couple of months. plus next week my car needs service and mot too (legal requirement - can't be on road without it or the police will get cross!!), so that's more money!! . if only I was rich!!!i'd have a mansion full of tanks!! one day when i've the cash I will get a bigger tank. not sure where it would go, but i'd find somewhere!! one day we're converting the garage to an office (its attached to the house), so that certainly needs a tank in it!!!!!!!!! that's a long way off. as I said, need the spare cash first!!!!
after I smothered it with sealant, the trickle has gone. so I'll keep an eye on it. fingers and toes all crossed!!! can't believe my bad luck!! so far i've had bacterial diseased fish, fish with ich, spent a fortune on a new tank, then a week later found the 45 gal at half the price of the small tank! had weird cycling issues with both tanks, loads of water changes, then a cracked tank.........its a nightmare!!!! when does the tranquility and relaxation start?!!!! :
  • #6
Day dreaming of what it might be like some day IS where the tranquility and relaxation come from! As for the rest, I know what you mean about no place to put tanks. I really have to keep them away from outer walls, and windows....so that doesn't leave much room for what I want to do. But I love doing the planning!
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  • #7
I guess so!! I am so impatient though! I hate the process of things, I just like results!!! that applies to everything!!! when I was preg it was the longest 9 months of my life!! when moving the house the legal process seemed to take forever!! I which I didnt rush through life and just chilled out a bit more!!

good news....tank is leaking less, but still slight dampness around the break, so have used more sealant this morning. fingers crossed...
  • #8
HI everybody!!
All of a sudden my tank is leaking. After finding the origin of the dripping I tried to seal it -from the outside- with an aquarium silicone sealant (from Home Depot.) It worked partially, if I fill the tank to the top it starts leaking again. Right now I am using the tank to 75% of its capacity.
Is there any product/sealant that can be used underwater to seal the tank from the inside without having to remove all the fish? The issue here is that on average sealants take about 48 hours to cure which posts a big problem to manage my tank inhabitants for such a long period of time. My fishies are not the most sensitive species but having them on buckets for days is kind of dodgy…
  • #9
Sorry I know of nothing like that...can you maybe get a real big plastic tote for the fish and then drain the tank?? The tote you can use like a tank....put gravel heater and filtration in it to keep everything wet and happy.
  • #10
the best way and only sure way is to empty and do it from scratch..get a big plastic tote as fishie said and just put your filter and heater on it...with some tank water...most sealants need to be dry for a few days and the toxins from wet sealants would be more dangerous than the totes you will have them in..or you can check out craigslist or freecycle to find a tank asap that might help....goodluck!
  • #11
Any sealant names??
  • #12
I had the same thing happen to me this past summer... I was also unable to find any such product...ended up with a new thank.
  • #13
I got some aquarium grade silicon sealant at petco. I don't know if they have a petco where you are though.
  • #14
Thanks PFP, unfortunatly there is no Petco in Puerto Rico. But if your experience with the sealant was satisfactory I may look for it on the web. Of course, I will need the sealant brand.
  • #15
Well, I don't have it with me right now, but when I get home I can look at it.
  • #16
do you have a walmart in puerto rico? they sell it also..and you can check some hardware stores for aquirium sealant
  • #17
I got some aquarium grade silicone sealant from Home Depot the thing is that it is rated for up to 30 gallons, mine is twice that size, so I am a bit concern with volume/pressure. Who knows... may be this product will make it, but I do not want to go over the evacuation proccess twice. I am trying to go as safe as possible.

I have not look in Walmart, I will check
  • #18
Is the leak in the top 25% of the tank, or does the weight of the addional 25% of water cause the leak to occur in the lower 75%. If the leak is in the top 25%, maybe you could drain the tank down so you have access to the leaky spot, repair it, let it cure then refill.
  • #19
Try Mighty Putty! Just ask Billy Mays!!!

Just kidding - don't put that junk on your tank!
  • #20
B is correct the weight of the additional water promotes the leak. Actually, the leak is about in the middle.
Anyway, thanks for the suggestion Jdhef
  • #21
You will have to drain the water completely. Scrape all the old sealant from the entire edge it's leaking from,with a razor.The new sealant will not adhere to the old where it joins where you partially sealed it. The brand I use is from PERFECTO MANUFACTURING. it is 100% silicone rubber.It comes in a tube for a calk gun,but you may be able to find different sizes.I get the biggest tubes I can by the case,because of all the aquariums I build. It doesn't have the normal limits of 30" or X amount of gallons.It's the better of many brands I have tried.

Once the "vinegar" smell is gone,it is safe to add water.Good luck,and remember to remove ALL old sealant.I would drain it and reseal the whole aquarium.If 1 spot sprung a leak,usually it won't be long before the other areas fail too.
  • #22
Don't forget to clean the glass with rubbing alcohol to remove all traces of any grease ( from fingers ) or anything else..it will help promote a good adhesion to the glass
  • #23
the brand that I have resealed my tank with was made by Perfecto manufacturing, I believe they themselves manufacture tanks with the same sealant, aqueon products also make a black silicone sealant if you prefer that over clear. if you go to aqueon products you can find a location were the sealant is sold in your area it lists local stores and chain stores, they make clear and black sealant. hope this helps! -fishlover78
  • #24
and yes, I just checked, Puerto Rico is one of the options to locate a store in! and yeah I would just us a tote to keep the fish in, or if at all possible a 10 gallon tank is only 11.99 here so you could also just do that until its fixed.
  • #25
thanks everybody.
I will be using a 10 gal tank adn a 5 gal bucket.
Good advise Soldieroffortune, I will seal all the sides.
thank you all--
  • #26
sounds good!
  • #27
One of the 125g tanks has developed a leak at the top in a corner underneath the trim. Its not bad and only lets a few drops out per hour but I want to fix it before it gets worse.

Would it be ok to leave the fish in the tank but just drop the water level for 24hours down by 4 inches?

Or do I need to relocate the fish (have no idea where right now) and completely empty the tank?

Does anyone have any suggestions. Thanks in advance.


EDIT: can I patch the tank or will I need to re silicon the whole tank?
  • #28
If it is just dripping by pulling water under the trim and releasing it to the front then I think your idea of dropping the water level by 4-6 inches and patching it might work..it is not holding any preasure or stress so I think it is worth trying that way 1st...keep in mind that this may be a temporary thing as once the silicone fails other spots may be ready to fail to. ....good luck.
  • #29
keep in mind that this may be a temporary thing as once the silicone fails other spots may be ready to fail to. ....good luck.

That's a good point, maybe if I patch it now and then when we move in 6 months time and the tank gets upgraded to a 200 gallon I will have the time to totally re silicon it, before the new tanks mates (currently in the 90g) move in.


  • #30
I agree with fishies...dropping a few inches and letting it cure for 24-48 hours will be ok..but get the old silicone off first and be careful not to get any in the water...fishies will think its a snack!! goodluck!!
  • #31
I would for sure look into resealing the whole thing once you move, Anna.
Otherwise, you plan should work.
Be VERY careful with the sealant while working on the tank.
  • #32
Thanks everyone for your replies.

I'm wondering if I should drop the water level by 6" or so and still remove the fish for 48 hours?

I can put them in the bath tub for a while so they still have space (don't worry about any cleaner/soap residue it will be the spare bath tub and I can't remember when it got used or cleaned) 48 hours shouldn't kill the cycle, I wonder if I will be able to catch everyone to move anyway. Hmm, maybe I answered my own question not being able to catch everyone?

  • #33
HI Anna!

You should be fine leaving the fish in, but I would suggest the same the others did, as long as no silicon gets into the tank and you let it cure for 24-48 hours you should do exceptionally well.

You could even make LevI hold a dustpan or something underneath where you are siliconing, which would just add another line of defense.
  • #34
I bought an "allglass" brand 55 gallon tank in june. It recently occured to me that I bought the tank at a cheap price and, the glass is at most 3/8" thick. That seems too thin to me. I also see bubbles in the seams. Should I immediatly find a new tank?
  • #35
3/8" thick glass is plenty for a 55gal tank. iv'e seen most of them made of 1/4". its up to you...if its not a hastle I would try and return it....you can fix it though if necessary by applying aquarium silicone to the corners yourself.
  • #36
I bought an "allglass" brand 55 gallon tank in june. It recently occured to me that I bought the tank at a cheap price and, the glass is at most 3/8" thick. That seems too thin to me. I also see bubbles in the seams. Should I immediatly find a new tank?

The bubbles are in the seams, I would not worry as long as the tank holds water.
Have you filled the tank?
  • #37
I don’t know that you can get good advice on your question. I certainly would not feel comfortable suggesting you shouldn’t replace the tank and then have it split open on you. 3/8” glass is certainly thick enough for a 55 gallon tank. As for the construction of the tank only you know how you feel about it.

You’ve had the tank around 7 months now and it hasn’t broken apart but it would be absolute insanity for me to suggest that you don’t replace a tank that you have doubts about.

When in doubt go with your gut instinct.
shih-tzu mom
  • #38
Hi: I had a small, 10-gallon hospital tank and I saw a little hairline crack-so I thought I would clean it up and silicone it and and I picked it up, it split Christmas Eve and I would not advise to seal if you don't feel comfortable with it -replace it lol bella
  • #39
if you have the money I have one word for you: replace you may be able to sell it to someone on craigslist for a snake or bunny tank? just a thought.
  • #40
When I bought my 55 it had bad seams. I scraped them off with a razor blade, resealed it and voila its good as new. I've used it for a year or two.

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