How do you clean fish tank?Cleaning a fish tank is very easy. For this you don’t have to remove the water from the fish tank as well as fish. You must siphon 20% water from the tank carefully using a tube into a bucket.While siphoning the water it is good if you direct the tube in the corners and within the gravel by hand. This will also suck the waste materials and other solid particles through the tank into the bucket.

But one thing you must always remember is that DO NOT wash your hands with soap before you clean your tank. No matter how much you wash your hands they will still have some soap residue, which can get mixed in the tank water causing big trouble for your fishes. Many people think since they are going to dip hands in the water for cleaning, let’s wash hands with soap first. Firs this can be crucial mistake and harmful for your fish.

For refilling the 20% removed water it’s necessary that you only use de-chlorinated water as in most cities you’ll get chlorinated water. It is also advisable if the temperature of the water is close to that of aquarium water.

The reason for only replacing water partially is that it does not disturb bacterial balance.

Here is a small video on how to exactly suck out partial water using a simple tube.

Can I use dish soap to clean my fish tank?

Under any circumstances and no matter how much dirty your tank is DO NOT use dish soap or any other type of soap to wash your tank in it’s entire life.

If you have used soap to wash the tank then forget about reusing this tank. No matter how much you rinse there will be residue of soap on the internal walls of the tank and your fish will suffer and die because of this.

How and what to use to clean an empty fish tank?

A simple toilet brush can be used to scrub the internal residues in a fish tank if it is empty. However buy a new brush for this and then use it. DO NOT use a brush which you are already using to clean toilets, bathrooms or floor. Used brushes will have soap and detergent deposits on it’s bristles and these will kill your fish.

After scrubbing the internal walls you can use a sponge and water to clean the tank from inside. To clean outside of the tank you can spray some vinegar on a piece of clean cloth and clean it.

How often should I clean my fish tank?

You can follow a simple schedule for keeping your fish tank clean and healthy. All you have to do is replace 25% water using a siphoning tube every week and you’ll be safe with it.

Apart from following this schedule you must follow these simple instructions.

1) Do not overfeed your fish because the remaining food particles will settl down the tank and rot down altering the water chemistry which can be harmful for fish health.

2) Do not use too many lights above your fish tank as these will encourage algae growth and your fish tank will turn into an algae tank. Also make sure that the fish tank does not receive direct sunlight on it’s surface.

3) Use a good quality filtration system in your to encourage water movement and mixing of oxygen through water surface.

Should I use any chemical to clean my fish tank?

It’s not really necessary to use any chemical to clean your tank. Just a scrubbing brush (unused) and hot water can do the job easily. But if you insist on using a chemical then “white vinegar” will do the job of cleaning your tank. After you clean your tank with white vinegar it’s necessary to rinse the tank thoroughly with hot water because it can affect water chemistry as it is acidic in nature. Instead of using vinegar directly you can use drops of vinegar on a clean unused cloth and then wipe the fish tank walls.

Can I use vinegar to clean my fish tank if the tank already has fish in it?

No, you cannot use vinegar to clean the tank when fish are already in the tank because vinegar is acidic and it will drastically alter the PH value of fish tank water. Your fish may die because of this.

However you can use vinegar to clean outside of the tank and make it’s surface shiny.

Is it necessary to clean the tank if my fish died?

No, you don’t have to clean the tank even after your fish has died unless he was sitting there dead for a long time. When the fish died you must have noticed it in a matter of hours and by simply picking him out won’t harm your water for the other fish. Check you ammonia levels in the water using a water testing kit and see that ammonia levels are zero. If they are not then keep changing partial water till you get ammonia levels to zero.

If all your fish have died then you can simply empty the tank and start new. But before you empty the tank make sure to first remove all the accessories like filter, heater and air pump and keep it for 30 minutes and start like a new tank.

Do I have to remove fish while cleaning the tank from inside?

Never remove your fish from the fish tank even you have to replace some of the water. A simple rule to follow while cleaning your fish tank is that, replace only 25 % of water every week WITHOUT removing your fish from the tank.

You can sue a simple siphon tube to suck out water and other solid waste by directing your tube end in the gravel bed and suck out the water in a bucket. Your fish have adjusted themselves to the chemistry and the habitat for a period of time and if you remove them into another tank they will feel stressed and even die.

Apart from the weekly jobs of changing 25% water, there are some daily maintenance job which will make a big difference. Here are some of them.

1) Looking at the tank and picking up any fallen leaves, dead material, solid particles, dead fish (if any) from the tank.

2) Check each fish for any sign of illness or disease, if you find any take immediate action.

3) Observe your thermometer and check water temperature to ensure that the heater and thermostat are working properly.

4) Many times kids have a habit of tapping the tank glass to attract attention of fish inside. But this can be harmful for the fish so you must tell them about this fact.

Cleaning Your Fish Tank – FAQ

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2 thoughts on “Cleaning Your Fish Tank – FAQ

  • November 13, 2016 at 5:50 pm
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    Can an aquarium brush be used to clean the inside of the tank with fish inside?

    Reply
    • September 16, 2017 at 10:19 am
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      Yes, you can use an aquarium brush to clean the fish tank from inside. But make sure to use a dedicated brush just for this purpose. The best is the magnetic brushes with one piece inside and one outside. This will ensure that you don’t dip your hand in the fish tank water.

      Reply

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