tank cleaning after disease

Manicivy

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Hi! I have a 20 gallon tank that housed 3 gouramis happily for many years. Over time they gradually died out and when the last one went I bought 2 headstanders and 4 honey gouramis to restock the tank. Well the place I got them from apparently didnt take good care of them, within 2-4 days half had ick and the rest just died. I did acclimate them slowly to my tank, pouring in small amounts of my water into their bag and treated them rasing the temp and adding salt but it did not help in time. So my question is after this incident, should I thoroughly clean my tank before I add new fish? Do you recommend completely stripping it down and restarting (going through cycling the tank again)? I've had the tank going fine for about 7 years and I've never had fish get sick so I don't know what do now. thanks!
--Gretchen
 

0morrokh

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Your fish that weren't sick probably died because you added quite a few fish at once and got an ammonia spike. I would recommend tearing it down, cleaning or replacing everything, and restarting. You don't want new fish to get sick. :-\
When you re-cycle it, please consider fishliss cycling if you don't already know about it. Basically you feed the tank with flakes or pure ammonia every day so the tank cycles before you get the fish, preventing them from experiencing high toxin levels and also reducing cycling time.
 
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Manicivy

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thanks for the advice. I've read up about cycling on this site so I'll be sure to follow through!
 
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Manicivy

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one quick question...whats the best way to clean? is bleach ok for the tank? I will throw all decorations and gravel out.
 

0morrokh

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Yeah you can bleach stuff. I'd also get a new heater and filter. Soak the tank with anything you are keeping in it in a water and bleach solution with a ratio of 1:20, 1 being bleach. Soak for about a day. Then soak it in water with tons of dechlorinator for a day or two. Then let everything sit out in the sun for a few days. If it still smells like bleach at that point repeat the dechlorinator thing. Oh, and you can also add rock salt to the dechlorinated water, apparently it is good for drawing out bleach.

That is what I did with a tank of mine.
 

ncje

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Changing the heater is a good idea.... but I think your filter should be ok. You will probably want to change the medium in it.... give the unit a thorough clean and let it completely dry sitting in the sun for a few hours.
 

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