So the old time ma and pa store are old fashioned and fatalists. They never heard of using ammonia in a fish tank to cycle it. And from what I have read I should just throw everything out and start over. The fish place said I’m doomed. And the fact I used sand is even worse so I’m told.
So I’m pretty disgusted today. Any suggestions other than the ones I was already given? Even if I remove all the water, won’t the bad stuff of the ammonia be embedded in filter media and sand? I’m regretting this whole new tank. And yes, I’m definitely feeling sorry for myself!
Since I can’t find anything definitive on how to remove surfactants, and, without throwing away all this brand new filter media, I’m going to boil it and hope that a quick boil annihilates the surfactant. The sand, however, is the biggest issue. Thinking of boiling that too.
These compounds have one end which dissolves in wate,r while the othjer dissolves in fat. What happens is, the fat dissolving part will enter the fat, leaving the water dissolvable part on the outside. With enough of these molecules the fat sil lbe surrounded, and able to enter the water.
For now the main thing is, this kinds of compounds do dissolve in water.
If I were you, I would drain the water from the tank, all of it. Then, with a hose, anabling to have a jet of water, I would rinse the sides of the tank, and any wood or stone.
This will leave a few centimeters of water, whiuch I would drain again, and I would repat this once
Then, I would just will the tank again and start cycling again.
The filter media are rather easy to rinse - put the hase into the canister and the one coming from it into a bucket with claen water and let it flow for a few minutes. Than stop it, and replace the water a few times. Alternatively, you could also let 5 ties the content of the canister flow through the canister
I would, most certainly, not boil anything.
I wish I could get a jet of water into the tank but I’m on a second floor condo and no access to outdoor hoses and the faucets we have cannot unscrew to attach a hose. The best I can do it let the python water which I fill from a bucket with a water pump run along the sides and over plants and decorations.
I should also stir up the sand that’s in there too, shouldn’t I? It’s pool filter sand, 20 grade. I also figured I’d refill the tank and pack the canister with carbon and drain again after a couple days. I figured if I cover all the plants and decoration with fresh water eventually the contaminant would filter through the carbon. After this couple days I’d empty one last time and refill.
Then, as what was suggested to me the first time, take the whole HOB filter with me, ugly as it is and it has to hang on the front of the tank and get the fish from home in there so I can be done with it OR, get two dozen tetras and dump another thing of bacteria with it. I can’t say now if the Tetra Safestart was a dud or not because I had the wrong ammonia in it. I don’t know if two dozen tetras are going to make near enough ammonia. I should also squeeze all the filter media from my established filter into a bucket and pour that into the new tank.......
When you refill I would also add whatever pumps, powerheads or other equipment that will keep the water moving as much as possible.
Carbon is a very good way to help remove the surfactants. Change out the carbon a couple of times.
When you refill the tank you can use ammonia that does not foam. If you see more foaming in the tank while ammonia is present that does not mean that there are still surfactants present. Aquarium water with ammonia will foam a bit.
I agree with Bas, no need to boil anything.
Happy fish keeping!
I’m going to pass on the ammonia and take the filter media from other tank. Is there some product, even a household item to use in place of Matrix that should be as effective? I’ve seen on YouTube people using plastic dish-washing sponges.
Thank you, Diana. I didn’t know the ammonia contained a surfactant. I didn’t shake first.
Apparently this is not the case. However, do remember, waterdoes not flow mucht through sand, so I would assume most of the sand did not come into contact with the surfactant.
That is, most of the sand will have remained clean.
Thank you again. And right, no real plants, no fertilizer.
You can get beyond this, Fran, don't panic! This is fixable...although this is 1 mistake (surfactants) I haven't made (yet, lol)...there's still time for both of us to move on from a near disaster. I have several times, you can too!! But it's going to take some work...
I’ve been running clear water through filter comprised only of carbon packets. Going to drain another half of the tank then begin getting it ready for fish (with no fishless cycling).
I’m going to change more water and run fresh carbon. I think I should be ok. I may take the contents of the smaller HOB and put it in the canister. Then I’d like to get a couple dozen tetras and see how they fare for a couple weeks.
I´ve read about people starting with a few guppies. Obviously, this few became more and more, and a long story short, they had to take out every last bit of decoration in order of netting all the guppies.
My mother would like the old tank out of the house now. She is being patient. Lol
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