The tubes from filter have residue in them!

Discussion in 'Freshwater Tank Equipment' started by grelsner96, Jul 5, 2015.

  1. grelsner96 New Member Member


    I am switching to a larger tank that I bought used. It was used for saltwater and I am doing freshwater but it was such a good deal I went ahead and did it. The tubes that go from the filter to the tank are not clear and see-thru. I mean you can see thru in some areas, and other areas there is a film or coating of something on the inside. It would be really hard to get something long and skinny and go in and scrape it clean. Does anyone know what this may be? I don't want it to hurt my babies once I get them in there.

    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
  2. AquaticBrandon Well Known Member Member

    Could just be coralline algae or something. Can you post a picture?

    Sent from my iPhone using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum

  3. Jim Well Known Member Member

    I'll probably be critized for this but........go into the bath room and over the tub,pour bleach into the tube. You will notice when you lift the tube the bleach goes the other way. I leave mine for about 5 minutes raising and lowering both ends.and then empty it and rinse it for a good few minutes. If this does not work there is always the good old tubing brush.
    PS: take the rugs off the bathroom for before using bleach or the consequences can be severe from the lady of the house.

  4. grelsner96 New Member Member

    Yep, I added pictures to the original post if u can see it now
  5. grelsner96 New Member Member

    That sounds fine to me I can try that first. I never heard of a tubing brush. I wonder do they have them at pet shops?
    Also, I am going to the store tomorrow to get vinegar to soak the insides of my filter. I didn't have enough vinegar to fill my sink, so I have to go get a few bottles. In the meantime, I plan to fill my tank. The odds are it will probably be a few days before I get all the tubes and the filter cleaned out proper. If I let the water in the tank sit for 3 days it may get dirty, right? What if I leave the lid on? The point is I am trying to get a head start because I plan to let the water set in the tank for about 3-5 days as per the guy at the local pet shop. Is that ok to do?
  6. Dolfan Fishlore VIP Member

    I agree with Jim that you need some bleach. Another option that would work is to get 2 large 5 gallon buckets. Fill one up with a solution of 1 gallon of bleach and the other 4 gallons of water, mix it up. Then take the filter and have turn it on, and have it suck out the bleach water from the full bucket into the empty bucket. I would do this a few times back and forth, maybe even turning the filter off mid way, so the water sits inside the tube for a while. This will help kill any funky stuff.

    If what you are dealing with is more of a mineral build up, perhaps a similar process with vinegar and water will work. You can buy a gallon of white distilled vinegar for cheap, around $2-3 at most stores.

    Also, here is what I use to clean my filter tubes....

    It is a little magnetic scrub brush that you can run up and down the length of the tube to scrub everything. You may need to do this with some bleach water or vinegar water solution inside the tubing while you scrub.
  7. FishtailBraid Valued Member Member

    I can't see how it's attached, but that type of tubing can often be bought new for a reasonable price (I recently bought a length of food-safe clear tubing to run from my tap to my watering can for WCs). So if it's going to be difficult/expensive to clean, and if it can be detached, it might just be easier to replace it with brand-new tubing, if you can find it in the same diameter. Other members may be able to give advice on where best to buy fish-safe tubing.
  8. MtnTiger Well Known Member Member

    I'm a little lazy so I would just take them with me to Lowes and have new "sparkly" ones cut.
  9. FishtailBraid Valued Member Member

    Also plastic can get brittle as it ages (especially if exposed to sunlight), so if it seems really old and encrusted, replacing it could be a cheap and easy alternative to leaks and major hassles later on.
  10. Aquarist Fishlore Legend Member

    Good morning,

    If it is within your means, I would suggest new tubes also. They can be purchased at ACE Hardware for usually a much cheaper price than pet stores. Buying new may save you heartache in the long run. As mentioned above by others, over time these tubes can become brittle and more difficult to maneuver.

    What you are seeing is a build up of detritus. It happens to all of them over time.