Just tried using muriatic acid

skunkmere

New member
I just finish cleaning my k4's with 10% muriatic acid. i used 2 gallons of tap and 700ml of muriatic acid. I was wearing gloves and saftey goggles. When i poured the acid into the water (always add acid to water) it started fizzing up and there was all this steam or vapor. after about 45 min i pulled it and had another bucket with tap to dunk the pump into so i lessen the acid on the pumps from burning me. the algea just wiped off. i had to do a second soak and run in the acid to get them spotless. How much rinsing should i do on the pumps?
 

klepto

New member
Good question, I don't have your answer.
I do know that multiple rinses are more effective than simply one large volume rinse.
I'm guessing that three or four rinses would be enough to remove most of the acid. There may be something you can use to neutralize the m. acid with too. Following up with a final RODI rinse may be advisable depending on your tap water quality.
 

Matt_Wandell

New member
IME you don't have to rinse it much. Just hold it under a faucet for 15 seconds or so. Remember that any toxic effect from muriatic acid would be a result of lowering your pH, and that would take quite a bit. If small amounts of it get into your tank it won't harm a thing. Some people actually add HCl to freshwater tanks to keep the pH down.

I used to rinse my plastic backdrops in bleach to clean them, which required a follow up neutralization with sodium thiosulfate. If ANY bleach gets into your tank, big time problems. What a pain. Now I rinse them in 10% HCl every week and spray them off for 10 seconds or so with a hose. No problems...
 

klepto

New member
Good to know. Thanks Matt.

I have experienced vinegar encouraging algae growth even after thorough rinsing. I know of people that use baking soda to neutralize the vinegar residue left after washing. I deduced that HCl, being a strong acid may warrant neutralization even more than the weak acid (vinegar). But, that is pure speculation seeing as I'm not very familiar with HCl use in aquaria.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

Reef Chemist
Premium Member
FWIW, after I treat in diluted muriatic acid I often drop my pumps and pump parts into some fresh water with baking soda in it after a rinse just to be sure. :)

I'm not sure how residual traces of vinegar could encourage algae growth (I add lots of vinegar to my tank every day to reduce nutrients by encouraging bacterial growth), but muriatic acid won't have any similar effects. In any case, mixing vinegar with baking soda won't alter any aspect of vinegar effects on the aquarium except pH. Any acetate and the effects it may cause are still present.
 

tmz

ReefKeeping Mag staff
Premium Member
I'd check those Korillias by running them in a bucket of water before putting them back on line. IME, two have shorted out after a vinegar soak,probably due to a seal issue.They were a few years old though .
 

zigzag1

New member
Stronger acids (those stronger than vinegar) are also known to damage the epoxies used in pump drive units.
 

klepto

New member
I'm not sure how residual traces of vinegar could encourage algae growth.
Neither am I. Maybe the vinegar soak is unrelated to the algae growth. By 'algae growth' I was referring only to growth on the powerhead- not throughout my tank. I have had certain algae 'bounce back' with a fury following a vinegar bath. Maybe the powerhead wasn't scrubbed thoroughly or left in the bath long enough. A friend of mine shared similar experiences, and recommended the baking soda rinse... It seemed to work for him. I don't bother with the baking soda, instead just rinse multiple times after using vinegar with tap and then a final DI rinse out of habit.
 

Matt_Wandell

New member
Neither am I. Maybe the vinegar soak is unrelated to the algae growth. By 'algae growth' I was referring only to growth on the powerhead- not throughout my tank. I have had certain algae 'bounce back' with a fury following a vinegar bath. Maybe the powerhead wasn't scrubbed thoroughly or left in the bath long enough. A friend of mine shared similar experiences, and recommended the baking soda rinse... It seemed to work for him. I don't bother with the baking soda, instead just rinse multiple times after using vinegar with tap and then a final DI rinse out of habit.

It could just be that you are seeing the same thing that happens with any virgin surface when it's added to a reef aquarium--colonizing algae are the first to recruit for the first few weeks until calcareous algae take over. Are they diatoms and/or green algae?
 

tmz

ReefKeeping Mag staff
Premium Member
If it wasn't thoroughly scrubbed,dead algae or other decaying material could fuel the algae.
 
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