View Full Version : Sand Again

02-05-2003, 09:37 AM
Will sand raisies your PH . If Not What kind of sand can and should be used?

02-05-2003, 10:47 AM
As far as I know it does not change ph. If you plan on using sand, Home Depot sells sterilized sand used in sandboxed that is safe to use. You can also try local sandblasting shops for even cheaper sand.

02-05-2003, 11:13 AM

Before you put any sand in your aquarium put a few drops of vinegar on it. If it fizzles even slightly it contains elements which will raise your pH. Also, beware of Play Sand like you get at Home Depot, it's usually too fine for use in the aquarium and will compact quickly causing all sorts of harmful reactions in the areas which aren't receiving oxygen.

Your safest bet would be to try your local pool store and get some Silica Filter Sand. Make sure it's not the fine grained stuff here as well. I used that and had huge anaerobic patches in the lower levels where the plants started rotting. It caused no end of trouble for me. I've used 2-3 mm size filter sand in aquariums before with great success. Silica is good, but in this case sized DOES matter. If you're going with a biotope, this is the way to go.

Last, but certainly not least, check out your local masonry/landscaping supply store. They've usually got tons of very fine to very coarse sand/pebble/rock for sale by the pound at very good prices. You can also get it in mixed sizes there for a natural look.

02-05-2003, 11:49 AM
There you have it! Thanks Bio! I didnt know about the compacting and causing problems! Good thing too as I always wanted to try sand and even have the Home Depot sandbox stuff that was recommend by others. Thanks again (I just love the internet)! ;D

02-05-2003, 09:44 PM
The biggest complaint I've always heard about sand is the mess during vacuuming, sand gets sucked up and some of the mulm doesn't. Like Phil said, if you get the right size sand granules, it's not a problem. I push the vacuum tip all the way to the bottom glass (3/4" of sand) and the sand bubbles around and returns to the bottom but completely clean. Plant anchoring is still an issue (I don't have many plants in this tank). Others just vacuum across the top of the sand getting the solid wastes without disturbing the sand at all.
Sand is not for everyone but it is a realistic option.