How to keep a clean aquarium
Those who are fascinated by fish and aquatic life in general, enjoy having an aquarium in which they can recreate a small ecosystem tailored to their needs. However, it is a responsibility that requires an investment of time and money, since an artificial environment of this type can make the life of the fish that live there become more vulnerable if you do not know how to provide the required maintenance.
If you want to know how to keep a clean aquarium, follow these tips we have in order to obtain a professional result without risking the life of your fish.
Before knowing how to maintain a clean aquarium, it is necessary that you have at hand what is necessary, both to clean the tank regularly, and to ensure the minimum health of the water and fish daily.
The first thing is to have a filter . There are several types (mechanical, biological and chemical), however, it is advisable to have at least one biological filter . When we incorporate fish into the fish tank, they already carry bacteria that secrete ammonia into their bodies, and a biological filter helps to decompose that substance into other less harmful ones, such as nitrate, which helps us to create and maintain optimal conditions for life . the fish that live there.
It is also important to have a bucket or plastic container of reasonable size to transport the water that you are going to take out or put in the tank. It is very important that this bucket be purchased and used exclusively to clean the aquarium. If used for other cleaning purposes, the chemicals in the detergents can stick to the walls of the bucket, and then move to the water that will clean or fill the aquarium, and this can kill the species that live in the tank.
The water that you use both to maintain the aquarium and to clean it must be water of excellent quality . Tap water may contain substances that may be compatible with human consumption in minimal doses but can be harmful to the species in the tank, so if this is the water you are going to use, it is best to use a water conditioner, a product that neutralizes the toxic agents and allows it to be suitable for use in fish tanks.
Other people choose to use bottled spring water . And while this would be the ideal option since it is a safe water for fish, the reality is that it can be very expensive to do it regularly.
On the other hand, sponges, cleaning cloths and other tools that you use to clean the aquarium should be used only for that purpose. In addition, the products and utensils you use must be special for this task, as this will ensure that its components will not harm the fish.
The first thing to do to proceed with the cleaning of the aquarium is to disconnect everything (filter, heater, etc). This means that the cleaning process must be done as quickly as possible. And contrary to belief, it is best not to remove the fish there, since the change of environment and conditions can generate stress.
Nor do we have to change the water of the entire aquarium. The amount to be extracted will depend on the frequency with which it is cleaned. If you wash frequently (weekly or biweekly) you can extract between 10 and 20% of the water . If the periods last longer, or if there are diseased fish inside the fish tank then you have to extract up to 50% of the water .
If there is the possibility of having a siphon, the task will not only be faster and with less effort, but will also allow cleaning the gravel of the aquarium . In case of not having siphon, a hose can serve. In this case, one end of the hose will sink into the gravel, while the other end will be covered with the thumb pointing to the bucket. Removing the thumb slowly will generate the vacuum effect needed to clean the gravel.
If the gravel is very thin, then do not sink the end of the hose but rather leave it on the surface.
Remove the filter and clean only with water both the container and the parts that compose it. If the filter has a sponge, you should check its condition to see if it needs to be replaced. If you have activated carbon you have to replace it with a new recharge.
The decoration of the aquarium should also be cleaned regularly. In this case, you have to remove it from the aquarium and remove the dirt with a sponge. If the parts are very small you can use a toothbrush that is only used for that purpose. Then they can boil in water for 10 minutes, let them dry naturally and incorporate them into the fish tank once everything is clean.
Use the sponge to clean both the exterior and the interior of the aquarium. It will only be necessary to rub to remove the dirt; However, if there are residues that do not come off easily, it will be necessary to use a blade to scrape the surface. If the aquarium is acrylic the blade can scratch the surface, so try to use a plastic one.
In specialized stores you will find suitable cleaning products that are not harmful to fish.
Before introducing the clean water, make sure it is at the same temperature as the water in the tank, which is achieved with a thermometer. The water should be replaced slowly and very carefully so as not to disturb the fish.
It is important not to fill the entire aquarium; instead, the most healthy thing for the fish is to leave a space between the lid or top of the tank and the water, since it allows them to have better conditions for their breathing by promoting an efficient exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide.