Aquarium soil Before placing in the aquarium should be prepared. Regardless of what it is and where you purchased it, it must be thoroughly washed to free it from debris and mists.
After all, even if it is clean on the surface, if it has a chemical composition safe for packaging, storage, transportation, it could easily acquire various undesirable additives: for example, chips, needles or dust, which are removed during washing.
Preparation of soil for the aquarium as follows: the material for the soil is poured into a bucket of plastic and filled with water. Chrome or enameled containers are not recommended for flushing. After all, the sharp edges in combination with a considerable weight of the ground may well damage the coating, chipping the enamel.
Soil preparation begins with its thorough rinsing. The result will be much better if the soil is washed in small portions, about three or four kilograms each. Let it take a little more time, but it will save energy and, most importantly, it will increase the quality of washing.
Washing is recommended to be done in running water, while stirring the soil with active hands (assuming, of course, that you are sure that there are no piercing and cutting chips and particles in it), although it is best to use a solid spatula made of wood for this purpose. Flushing is performed until the water flowing from the ground becomes completely transparent.
In the flush bucket, the water should be changed as often as possible. Substrate should be washed, as noted slightly above, until the water gets rid of the signs of turbidity.
After all, if the sand and stones are washed out later, the water in the aquarium will soon become muddy from dust. Dust will rise up, forms a film on the surface of the water, which will interfere with gas exchange.
And do not have vain hopes that the filter will then eliminate this problem. Part of the dust, of course, will settle, but every time it will go up when the fish want to dig the ground. The fact that the preparation of soil for the aquarium is completed, will tell better than any words a handful of soil thrown into the bucket.
If at the same time there is no water stirring up, then the work is done with high quality.
So, how to wash the soil in the aquarium, you already know. Do you know that it should also be disinfected before laying in order to destroy the organic matter that has remained accidentally in the substrate, along with all the microorganisms that could later provoke the development of various diseases in fish. Remember that the danger of infecting fish in an aquarium with parasites or any infection exists even if you take the soil for the aquarium directly from a stocked natural reservoir, and this soil always contains organic matter.
For this reason, it is not worth the risk, and if you decide so, then you need to make its full processing, that is, not only wash it thoroughly, but also harden it. It is not recommended to use the soil from the pond for the aquarium.
Soil preparation in some way presupposes its sterility so that there is no place in the reservoir either for snail eggs or other embryos of any “suits”. As a rule, disinfection is performed by calcining, boiling or chemical disinfection. Boiling with water for 15 minutes, provided that the soil is continuously stirred, is considered the easiest way to handle it.
After that, the soil must be washed with warm water.
Soil for the aquarium to disinfect it is extremely necessary to ignite in the oven or boil, how to prepare it, for example, for igniting, you ask. Lay on a baking sheet and soak in the oven for half an hour at about centigrade temperature.
Note, if the soil is plastic, such a procedure is contraindicated for it, in this case only flushing is performed. Chemical disinfection involves the use of a 10% solution of common chlorine. Soil is poured over it, and after two hours it is washed with plenty of water until there is a chlorine odor.
Then the container is once again filled with water, a dechlorinator is added (one tenth of the recommended dose), sand and stones lie in such water for 15 minutes, gradually the entire soil mix is mixed, then the water is drained, the soil is thoroughly dried.
Soil preparation for a dark-colored aquarium from a light-colored soil is carried out as follows: the starting material is placed in a supersaturated solution of potassium permanganate known to all, kept for two to four weeks, then washed well.
For a softwater aquarium, the soil, if it contains a lot of carbonates and marble, is freed from magnesium and calcium with the help of a 30% citric acid solution. Handle gravel and sand in an enamel pot, while stirring its contents with a stick, until no more gases (bubbles) are released.
Then in running water, the soil is washed for two hours. It should be noted that caution is needed when working with acids.
Acidifying the water after chemical treatment is not required.
Before using aquarium soil, always test it for suitability in a soft-water aquarium using a calcium test. If there is a purchase test for nitrates (a bottle with an inscription “contains hydrochloric ac