Removing mineral deposits on aqua glass

CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
I have some real stubborn mineral stains on the glass covers and the top of the aquarium that the original owner allowed to build up that rubbing and razor blades are not getting the job done.

What are your remedies to mineral deposit removal?
 

Dozey

Well Known
Straight vinegar has always worked very well for me.
 

Tavel

Well Known
really any acid will work, but they might etch the glass too!

white vinegar is safe to use
 

Butterfly

Fishlore Legend
Stop up the tub drain, put the glass in the tub and cover with straight white vinegar(it's cheap also). I let mine sit for about 30min. If need be you can scrub them with a plastic dish scrubber
Carol
 

na/mustang1

New Member
I have the same problem and I tried the same remedies but with little success I have some very stuborn patches on the glass covers and a few on the inside of my tank for the most part they are unseen but I know its there and it drives me crazy, I wish you the best of luck in finding a remedy if you find one that works let me know
 

wabash

New Member
I find vinegar works faster if you heat it up a bit.
 

lew2000

Active Member
I use CLR and let it sit for awhile - clears up every time.
 
OP
C

CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
Sealing up the empty aquarium with a plastic bag keeps the vinegar sprayed on the inside walls from evaporating. I'm hoping that after a week of being kept wet with vinegar they will clean up. I read that CLR and vinegar work about the same so I am reluctant to buy CLR as I think its $11 a gallon, vinegar $2 a gallon. But I don't think any of it works like they show on TV, spray on wipe off crystal clear LOL. More like rub-scrape-rub forever.
 

haedra

Well Known
There is actually a suprisingly large number of "natural remedies" for issues related to things like this.

I'm going with what everyone else said about vinegar... hey it works wonders on our coffeepot once in awhile!
 
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
Oh my the glass lids have it bad. I'm not even sure anymore if its mineral deposit or minerals that replaced the glass LOL. After literally soaking for 72 hours the 6"x48" glass top cover panels still have that scale on the ends mostly. I even took Lava soap which contains ultra fine volcanic pomus so fine that it won't scratch mirrors but remove grime and deposits on my sinks. Apparently these panels that have it so baked on from only getting splahed with hard water and remaining dry in the light may not come off completely ever without the use of a power buffing wheel, as result even though the panels after treatment look 50% better they still look bad even though no one will see them in the canopy.
This is a scary lesson about what can happen when you let visible water lines form and I'm worried now that even though the aquarium only has a few high water stains, will they come off. Here is where I might have to buy a glass polishing cleaner (already have a buffer) which supposedly makes short work of water spots I know my arm is not getting the job done even with 72 hour vinegar soaking. Maybe this stuff will work with a polisher.
 

prairielilly

Well Known
If you have hard water, the scale will only come back quite quickly. Since I do have hard water, I usually just ignore it unless it's incredibly distracting, in which case vinegar works well enough.

The hard water scale is from the dissolved minerals in the water. Vinegar works because it's a weak acid, and lowers the pH enough that the minerals go back into solution. So a stronger acid would likely do a better job at removing the scale than vinegar does...although I'd be concerned about any residue from THAT getting into my fish's water.
 

Lucy

Offical Spam Kicker
Have you looked into just replacing them? It looks pretty bad.
 
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
Well to be honest Lucy the water here is so hard that one drop leaves a white stain. But here is the thing as long as you wipe it up the following day or even week, vinegar takes it right off, probably because it remains moist. And of course my 60 I bought new never gets spots on the inside glass because I keep the waterline past the frame.

But to answer your question about my new/used 120 replacing these top panels which only purpose is to cover the aquarium, support the light fixture and let light through, I don't think I can really justify it. And of course replacing the aquarium 1/2 inch glass panels is totally out of the question literally lol, not that you mentioned it. Personally I'm not concerned what chemical polish I have to use on the inside to get it perfectly clear as I know from working in Marine Science and cleanup that "dilution is the answer to pollution" So the PPM of any chemical I happen to use can simply be resoled by rinsing to levels that are the same as those already in tap water. The Glass panels can stay but those few spots inside the tank must go, one way or the other.
Sorry if I seem a little short as this obviously is a concern, but always appreciate every bit of your help and input as it helps me look at alternative answers to the problem and certainly cheap glass cover panels are a viable solution, but its the aquarium glass top stains that have me overly concerned when I should not be.
 

Lucy

Offical Spam Kicker
I've got hard water too. As one shop said to me, you need a hard hat to take a shower. lol
Petsmart tested it, it's at 150, all I know is it leaves deposits.

Figured you were the kind of person who would tackle a problem until it's resolved.
There was another thread that suggested lemon juice. I know it's acidy, don't know it it's better than vinegar, I haven't tried it myself.
 
OP
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
I have done allot of reading myself and apparently not even muriatic acid which is so strong it can damage your lungs, but will not take off embedded water stains overnight. In the final analysis when its bad only mechanical cleaning will do the job either by hand or machine. So its off to buy a buffer wheel for my portable drill and some glass polishing compound. Hopefully thousands of RPMs (Revolutions per minute) with the drill gun will duplicate days of hand rubbing in just a few minutes..Will post the outcome.

I've got hard water too. As one shop said to me, you need a hard hat to take a shower. lol
Petsmart tested it, it's at 150, all I know is it leaves deposits.

Figured you were the kind of person who would tackle a problem until it's resolved.
There was another thread that suggested lemon juice. I know it's acidy, don't know it it's better than vinegar, I haven't tried it myself.
 

Steve420

Active Member
I have done allot of reading myself and apparently not even muriatic acid which is so strong it can damage your lungs, but will not take off embedded water stains overnight. In the final analysis when its bad only mechanical cleaning will do the job either by hand or machine. So its off to buy a buffer wheel for my portable drill and some glass polishing compound. Hopefully thousands of RPMs (Revolutions per minute) with the drill gun will duplicate days of hand rubbing in just a few minutes..Will post the outcome.

I'm curious to know how the buffer and polishing compound work for you. I spent weeks trying to clean my lids after I bought my 55 gallon used. Same situation as you...the glass is just one BIG mineral deposit. I just got tired of cleaning with no real improvement. Eventually I jsut gave up and have ignored it since.
If the buffer and compound works for ya, post what brand of compound you used
 

Tavel

Well Known
"dilution is the answer to pollution" .

That's pretty old school. I didn't think you were really in your 50's til you said that

I still fail to see how hours of manual labor with a buffer is better than letting it sit for a few days in acid...maybe that's just me, haha


another thing to keep in mind...the hard water deposits will turn transparent once wet (on the lid too), so it isn't really necessary to remove the deposits anyway. I have some groovy thick white deposits on my 70g, but they're transparent when wet so I just leave them.
 
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
Well like I said lids are one thing, just a thin pain of glass. But visible water level stains inside and below the frame down to an inch is totally unacceptable and need to come off IMHO. So I just have to keep on looking for an answer and so far I haven't been able to locate this product but in town so I may have to order it.
Here is what the manufacturer states:
ONE GRAND PASTE GLASS CLEANER cleans and polishes glass, removes hard water spots and acid rain fallout. This product is exceptional at removing hard water spots from glass, we can not overstate this fact. Customers have shared with us that they were at the point of replacing glass that was severely water spotted and they used PASTE GLASS CLEANER and cleared the glass. It is important to note that PASTE GLASS CLEANER is only intended for use on glass and is not intended for use on plastic windows, head lamp covers, lens covers, taillight covers, bug deflectors, tint film on windows or painted surfaces. If you are not sure of the composition of the surface you are dealing with or you have a product application question, please call our technical support hot line at 1 800 782-3329 and we will be happy to assist you.
 
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
Well I ordered it $22 including shipping for 24 once . From all the research I conducted not one person said it didn't work, in fact all said it was amazing. So we will see if I have been bamboozled into a snake oil product LOL. If it does work Id be willing to US mail anyone who would like to pay cost for 1 once. If we could figure out how to send it in a flat US mail envelope without gushing out LOL.
 
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CWO4GUNNER

Well Known
I don't think anyone enjoys admitting they are wrong but its always a first step to changing strategy to correct a problem. But I gave it more then a good effort. I soaked those glass panels in pure vinegar for 5 days, rubbed them by hand with Lava soap which contains pumas (works great on tubs/sinks), and finally I received and tried my $22 can of "1 Grand Glass Cleaner". Polishing away by hand I had great expectations as surly this noxious compound of white paste that looks identical to wet corn starch and smelled like bleach would work! But alas after a clean wipe down the glass was still stained with no noticeable difference. The only great news is the manufacturer credited back my credit card the same day I issued my long written complaint.
While at Lowe's improvement center I decided to try a small bottle of CLR and I picked up a $5 polishing bonnet for my drill gun, surely this time with mechanical high speed power the stains were finally mine, boo-ha-ha-ha! Once back home filled with vindictive confidence I assembled the polishing head to the power drill gun and with wings on my feet carried the loathsome pane of glass that had mocked me so long. Strapping the pain of glass to my work bench I laid upon it a mixture of CLR and cleaning compound and raise the drill above my head revving the 1/3 HP motor bringing it down upon my stubborn foe. Round and round the buffer wheel turned spinning circles of the white clay like fluid bearing down on the grind knowing full well that this time it was all over the stains and surly surly mine. With exuberance I quickly washed off the messy milky pane of glass, gently drying it so as to ensure a clear dry view as the sun spit daylight into the noon sky. Suddenly I heard a scream, yes my own, no it could not be I shrieked, upstarting "Get thee back into the tempest and thy sandy glass made shore! Leave no mineral plume as a token of that lie hath spoken! Leave my loneliness unbroken! quit the bust above my aquarium door! Take thy stained presence from out my heart, and take thy form from off my aquarium door!" Quoth the glass pane,"Nevermore."
 

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