Lots of questions....pics included

sheria

Premium Member
Hi everyone,
I just want to firstly say thanks for even taking the time to read this -hugs-. I have a 75 gallon aquarium in my parents home that I started years ago. I moved for 2 years, and they havent done anything with it.

The skimmer has never been dumped, and the water topped off with tap water. My mother was using a solution called "Chlorasorb", which claims that it gets everything bad out of the water - which Im guessing isnt true. The only thing in the tank currently (besides the live rock of course), is snails, crabs, and quite a few green polyps, that have gotten quite large. There is no fish whatsoever.

Sooo needless to say I have moved back, and am ready to get it how it used to be. Currently, I am using a Euro-reef CS6-2 skimmer, and its been running, and they never empty the cup. I pulled it out from under the cabinet and have been pressure washing it...inside the sump and all over the skimmer are these little white - worms they look like. They are hard like shells...what could they be?
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They are even inside the skimmer itself...are these really bad? they are so hard to clean off and they really gross me out (I hate worms). What do I do? Do I need to replace that pump? It was still working just fine as far as I know.

Also, here is a picture of the sump. (its dirty i know) You can see the white things on the base of it. Its a My Reef Creations sump, with a built in refugium. I never started the refugium...and wanted to know what type of pump to use for it, what type of substrate, and what type of lighting?
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Also, the aquarium is overun with algea...as you can see....
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The tank is basically 100% tap water. Above the tank there is 2x 250w metal halide (i think 10k), and I have hookups for 4x 96w PC but there is no bulbs in them at the moment. Since nothing in the tank needs the halides im thinking of just putting in some PC's to help with the algea...what do you all think?

I purchased the nicest RO/DI unit from purelyh2o.com - 7 stage I believe. It comes in tomorrow. My other question was, should I just do a 90% water change? Or just half? Or better yet...how would you all go about this overwhelming project? lol Thankyou all so much for taking the time to help. -hugs-
 

mattleycrue

New member
I would take out the rock, rinse it, dump and replace ALL of the sand, then put it back together. That way the cycleing process shouldn"t be too bad. Oh and while you're at it 100% waterchange if you have the means to makup that much water.
 

sheria

Premium Member
What are the white stringy things? Is there absolutely no other options? If i have to start over I'm just going to get rid of the whole thing...
 

sk8rreefgeek

New member
are there a ton of feather dusters in there? they kinda look like feather duster casings.

How much do want for the Ro unit? jk

Don't give up yet, your post has only been up for about an hour...
 

Macimage

Active member
I'd move the the live rock and live sand to buckets, manually remove the algae, clean the tank and then refill with RO/DI saltwater. I'd rinse the sand out very well with the old saltwater before putting it back.

Then I'd clean the sump and all the equipment really well too. It sounds like your skimmer is not working very well if the collection cup hasn't needed to be emptied for 2 years. I'd either upgrade skimmers or check RC to see if there is a good modification for that model skimmer.

Joyce
 

sheria

Premium Member
Are they going to hurt anything? I dont see them in the main tank, mainly just in the sump, attached to everything.

Im guessing if the tank is saturated with phosphate, that a water change alone isnt going to help. If I have to get rid of the sand, and move the rocks I am going to definately give up. Its just far too overwhelming :(

But thanks so much I will definately wait to see what everyone says.
 

Macimage

Active member
Don't give up!! Those look like calcerous worms and they are not bad.

It really easier to take it apart than do a bunch of large water changes. Just start on a Saturday morning and by the afternoon you'll be thrilled with how nice and clean the tank and rocks look. You can spread out the cleaning a bit by cleaning the skimmer on a different day:).

Joyce
 

Jefe12234

New member
I don't see why you need to start over. The rock looks pretty clean from what I can see in the one pic. If you start using RO/DI from now on, do regular water changes, and get your skimmer working better, it should be in good shape before long. The tube worms are filter feeders and they can be removed from equipment by soaking it in an acid like vinegar or diluted muriatic acid from a hardware store. I'm assuming the tank wasn't fed all this time and that is probably what kept the tank from turning into a swamp. Make sure the tank and filtration are in good shape before adding any fish or feeding the tank.
 

sheria

Premium Member
So I guess you're right...I think I can do it. So, I might just get a rubbermaid garbage, filled with fresh RO water, and let the liverocks circulate in that for a few days. Would that be sufficient to clean them?

Also about the sand...each bag was about $40 and I must have atleast 7 or 8 bags in there, probably more. It seems that washing it off will be a disaster...but I dont want to buy more. Should I just take a blow to the wallet and buy new sand, or just try to clean it? Also, how do you go about cleaning sand?
 

sheria

Premium Member
The tank itself really isnt bad at all, its just covered in coralline algea...everwhere - but thats a good thing I guess. I will definately try the vinegar thing, cause they are hard to scrape even with a brittle sponge.
 

Macimage

Active member
I'd soak the live rock in saltwater as RO water will cause it to be dead rock.

When my 225 tank back started to separate and I had to empty it, I took out all the live rock and animals and then cleaned the sand with the old water that was left in the tank before I siphoned the water out. Then I added a few inches of new saltwater and few times until my test kits were all at 0 and siphoned that out to really clean up the sand, because I didn't want to buy new sand, but needed to get rid of all the junk in it.

You can either remove the sand so that you can really soak and clean the tank or your can clean the tank with the old water still in it and then siphon the old water out.

Yes, you don't have to start over, but it really is easier than messing around with water changes and trying to clean your tank with everything still in it. Your tank will look so new, clean and pretty:).

Joyce
 
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phreak312

New member
I agree with Jefe, it looks like your rocks are pretty clean and the green mushrooms look pretty good. The algae on your glass can be scraped off with a razor blade (glass tank only) or credit card (acrylic tank). Plus the fact that coralline algae is the one growing is actually a pretty good indication that the water isn't as bad as you think. I don't think there is any need to start over. Then I would just do weekly water changes and test. And clean up the sump and skimmer as Jefe says with vinegar.

If you run the liverock in RO water only, you will kill basically everything on it and then have to start from scratch.
 

cpl40475

Just hanging out
Premium Member
Keep about half of a milk jug full of the old sand and rinse the rest of it. That way you are not out the money for all new sand use the old to RE-seed the sand. Id do as the others said also and soak the parts in vinegar and water to help clean them. Im betting the skimmer is clogged up pretty bad
 

sk8rreefgeek

New member
I've HEARD you can buy 'playsand' from home depot. you could use a little live sand to 'seed' the cheap playsand...
 

rkelman

New member
I wouldn't start over either. I don't see anything other than needing a good cleaning.. The white worms are featherdusters. No worries.
 
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