Trying To Re-seal 44 Gal Tank - Sprung Leak - Help!

Discussion in 'DIY - Do It Yourself' started by Restlssgypsy, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. Restlssgypsy

    RestlssgypsyNew MemberMember

    Hi everyone!

    I received a 44 gallon pentagon shaped tank with stand from my neighbor for free. This tank was to replace the 10 gallon tank that I had where my Platys kept reproducing and had outgrown. It looked like it hadn't been used in about 20 years. It also looked like it was resealed before by someone that had absolutely no idea how to use a caulk gun. The beads were about 1/2 inch thick and were never smoothed out and just bubbled and looked terrible. It also worried me a little wondering if the tank was stable in the first place since it was resealed but I thought maybe it was just a horrible quick diy job which my neighbor is known to do.

    When I got the tank I had read that it's best to clean out used tanks really well and to reseal the silicon due to unknown uses and chemicals in the tank. I thought this was a great idea since it looked horrible anyway and even though I was a novice at caulking myself, my OCD doesn't allow me to do thinks halfway so I thought I would give it a try.

    So I found a really good DIY article on how to do this and followed the directions. When I removed the old silicon I noticed the one bottom corner had a slight crack in it. This was the right front corner. It was less than a 1/4 in length and was under the outside frame and I could not feel the crack from the inside of the tank so I thought it would be fine and I made sure to put extra silicone in that bottom corner.

    I let it cure for a little over a week and was filling the tank this weekend to test it. I got about 3/4 of the way full when the front corner started to drip. The leak however is not where the crack I found was, it was about an inch to 1 1/2 inches above that crack though and just seems to be due to a bubble or something in the inside of the silicon which I'm gathering the pressure of the water caused the tank to flex and pulled the silicon to allow the drip. I think it just happens to be on the same side as the crack I found but it is still making me nervous.

    My questions are these - Could the crack I found be the cause of the drip even though it's not in the exact same spot as the air bubble in the silicon? Do I need to take off the all silicon in that corner now and start over or can I just silicon the outside seal? Or should I do both, take off the silicon in the inside, redo the inside and then run a line of silicon on the outside of tank as well?

    I don't want to have to redo the entire tank again even though I could but none of the other corners are leaking. I can't afford to replace the entire tank nor do I want to attempt to replace the panel with the crack in it as that may be a little too much for my DIY skills.

    Any advice would be welcome! Thanks!!!!

    Here is a picture of what the dimensions of the tank are (I found a similar one on Marineland's website)
  2. TexasDomer

    TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    I would reseal both the inner and outer seams. I have this same tank, and the edges on the outside of the tank are siliconed as well. Leak test after that to see if the crack is a problem.

    Personally, I wouldn't use the tank with the crack. See if you could sell it as a reptile tank and use that money to get another one.

    I'd also rehome your female platies so you're not overrun with fry and continually having this problem.
  3. OP

    RestlssgypsyNew MemberMember

    Thanks TexasDomer,

    Would you reseal the entire tank in and out or just that edge?
  4. TexasDomer

    TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    Probably just that edge if I had to, but like I said, I wouldn't risk it at all.
  5. OP

    RestlssgypsyNew MemberMember

    Just wanted to give everyone an update - I resealed the tank on the inside corner that sprung a leak - it looks like it was an errant air bubble that caused it. I also sealed the outside corner. The tank has been filled and I am slowly stocking it for about 4 weeks now. Currently it has 2 otos, 2 bristlenose plecos, 2 pepper catfish, 3 platys and about 12 tiny ramshorn snails and 2 tiger nerite snails. Everything seems so tiny in this tank lol

    Thanks everyone for your help!!!
  6. TexasDomer

    TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    Sounds like you have a few stocking issues. Let us know if you want to discuss them :) We can help you come up with an appropriate plan :)
  7. Chompers mom

    Chompers momNew MemberMember

    It took over a week to clean my 10 gallon tank up and remove the old silicone before I found a small crack in it. I patched the crack then resealed the tank dreading the wait (to see if it leaks anymore) After this ordeal I don't know if I'll ever reseal another one .Unless it was a lot bigger tank than one I own then I doubt it.Walmart sells empty tanks all day long for 15 bucks and they're worth every dime! If this tank still leaks in a couple of days I'll turn it into a greenhouse.One way or another I'll get my moneys worth.