Undergravel return flow and other lesser known stuff

  1. F

    Florian Pellet Well Known Member Member

    Hi everyone,

    I'm a restless perfectionist. I started with a 2.5gal low-tech 2 month ago, upgraded to a 16gal 2 weeks later, and now I'm redoing everything in a 30gal. This time, I would like to get everything right. I would like not to stumble onto something really cool and doable with great advantages in 2 weeks and regret not having done it from the start! (I know this isn't possible, but I'm trying to go for minimal amount of regret :))

    So for example, I found this video:

    The guy talks about having spray bars well distributed under your gravel, supposedly to "aerate" it and so that it doesn't become a nitrate mine in the future. What do you think of this? Is that a good idea for sand / gravel ?

    The substrate I use is Dennerle's Substrat Scapers Soil which you aren't supposed to rince before use, and as a result, as soon as it's disturbed, the water gets really murky. But since it's soil and not gravel, I'm thinking having water flow through it might actually be a pretty bad idea: would it lose all its pH reducing capacity and release all its nutrients?

    If I were to set this up, I'd like to have decided to do so before the tank is scaped, filled and stocked! Afterwards it might be much much harder to do. Are there any other such things that could be cool to have on a 30 gallon freshwater tank (assume money is no object) and that it would be better to know about before setting the tank up?

  2. Silister Trench

    Silister Trench Well Known Member Member

    It's funny that I saw this! I was just looking at this video, and the idea of an under gravel jet system to help keep gravel cleaner with the possibility of reduced waste collection in gravel seemed top cool.

    I'd think with your soil, or even sand, this wouldn't be a good idea. In gravel that wouldn't blow around it sounds like a plus, but in a planted tank with soils or the like it would most likely be a bad idea.

    Edit: I was actually planning this in a tank with black lava rock about the size of gravel as the substrate.