Nasty Rock from Yard

Sorg67
  • #1
I found a nasty looking rock in the yard. Covered in moss with things growing out of it. It has lots of knooks and cranies and I am thinking if might make a good aquarium rock.

But I am also thinking there could be stuff on it that I do not want in my aquarium. And I know some rocks can affect water chemistry. So I am wondering; 1) How do I clean it to make sure it is safe to put in the aquarium and 2) How do I determine whether it is going to adversely impact my water chemistry.
 
mattgirl
  • #2
Lots of elbow grease, a scrub brush and super hot water should clean it up. Care to share a photo of it?
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Soaking in a bucket now. Have not learned how to post pictures yet. But I will. I want to share my tank evolution.
 
tfreema
  • #4
Clean it up really good with good ole elbow grease and a pressure washer can help. Before you go to all that trouble, you may want to perform the vinegar test. If it bubbles, don't use it. There is another product, muratic acid, you can use that is even more sensitive to bubbling if there are unsafe components in the rock. It is used for cleaning boats so you can find it with those type supplies. My husband had some when I found cool rocks and it worked great.

If it tests out good and you get it all cleaned up, then boil it for a while to kill any living organisms and remove any residual chemicals such as pesticides that may have seeped into some of those nooks or crannies.
 
kallililly1973
  • #5
I've used a bunch of smaller size rocks from my yard when my 29 was outside. I gave them a quick rinse in some scolding water and plopped them in. I would be careful with boiling as i've heard the rocks could explode. Never witnessed it and don't want to. Even after once it's nice and clean you can do the vinegar test and if it passes that you should be good to go. As far as pics go i've found it much easier to load pics from my phone rather than your laptop/pc/ipad. Good luck. Looking forward to seeing your tank!!
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
Thanks for the great comments. I will proceed as advised. Pictures to follow. Right now the tank is a murky mess. Hoping considerably clearer by tomorrow. Planning plants tomorrow or the next day. Hopefully fish in three weeks if my seeding material and fishless cycling goes well.
 
DoraCory
  • #7
Don't boil rocks, they could explode.
 
tfreema
  • #8
Don't boil rocks, they could explode.

Wow! I have boiled many rocks with no issues. I guess I have been lucky. I have not boiled on high, but just enough for a good scalding.
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Here is my rock. Have hit is a few times with scalding water. Gonna dry it out and then do vinegar test.
 
tfreema
  • #10
Nice! I hope it tests put good.
 
DoubleDutch
  • #11
Looks like lava rock.
 
DoraCory
  • #12
It's a neat looking rock.
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Drying now. Will do sandstone test with Vinegar tomorrow. If it fails, I wonder if I could put it in anyway. Monitor ph while I am doing my cycle. If it goes up, take it out and do a water change.
 
DoubleDutch
  • #14
Drying now. Will do sandstone test with Vinegar tomorrow. If it fails, I wonder if I could put it in anyway. Monitor ph while I am doing my cycle. If it goes up, take it out and do a water change.
This rock doesn't look like of sedimental (sandstone) but of vulcanic origen to me.
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #15
I am not a geologist, but yes I agree it looks more volcanic to me too. But it is not as porous as I think of with volcanic rock.
 
tfreema
  • #16
I would not use it if it fails the vinegar test. That is not just for chemical compounds that change ph levels. There could be harmful components of the rock that will leech into your tank and build up over time.
 
Sorg67
  • Thread Starter
  • #17
Noted, thanks!
 

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