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I have been soaking a few pieces of holey rock over night in a bucket of water with bleach. What is the best way to make sure the bleach is completely off the rocks before I add them back into the tank?
 

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I'd rinse them with fresh water and then soak them in water with a good dose of dechlorinator. Once they dry, if they don't smell of bleach, you're good to go.
 

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I agree, rinse and then let them soak in a 5 gallon bucket with dechlorinator, use double the dechlorinator amount recommnded, I would also throw an air stone in there.
 

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Would boiling rocks also be good for disinfecting? I have a lot of natural rocks in my yard and I'd like to add these to my Ciclid tank.
 

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hlh1 said:
Would boiling rocks also be good for disinfecting? I have a lot of natural rocks in my yard and I'd like to add these to my Ciclid tank.
Bleaching and dechlorinating is probably safer and definitely more practical.
 

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I soaked my rocks for 3-4 days in bleach, then I emptied their containers and ran a water hose for a few minutes in each, effectively rinsing them. Once they were full and I let them over flow for a little bit, I dosed them pretty good with prime. I let them soak for a few days this way. Then I removed the rocks and let them dry outside for a few days. Bleach oxidizes when left out. I couldn't smell bleach so I put them in my tanks. Used these rocks in 5 of my tanks without any issues.
 

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I think of the holes in rocks as shaped much the same as in a sponge. Holes and crevices on all side going down to dead end in the rock. Since water will not force air out of and overturned glass, there is no reason to think it will enter any holes on the bottom of a rock setting in boiling water. That leaves anything in that hole to potentially live through the boiling unless we boil the rock for hours long enough to actually heat the rock itself to a killing temperature. Then the remains of anything killed is still left there as an organic to pollute the tank. Bleach works chemically to react with organics. As it does it reacts and fizzes and penetrates these tiny cracks much better than simply soaking in water. It also reacts with any little bodies in the holes so that they are sterile as well. In a bleach soak with turning the rocks over and giving it plenty of time overnight to soak in, there is little space in the rock that is not sterile when done. A bleach soak just works better to sterilize things.

For the worries about the chlorine, it just takes a bit more thinking. By nature, liquids are easier to contain than gases. You can hold liquids in bottles like soda bottles that let gases escape. Ever buy an old bottle of soda and find it totally "flat" because the gas has escaped?
Combine this with the fact that chlorine is a gas by nature and you can see that if it penetrates an area as a liquid, it certainly will have no problem escaping when it becomes a gas.
Simple as soaking it long enough to penetrate, rinse it to dilute any chemical that might be left, and then let it air dry for the gas to blow away. I have no argument with adding a bit more dechlor but I don't find it needed as the chlorine will combine with air and drift away anyway. It should be noted that chloramine as used in lots of water treatment does not dissipate the way chlorine does so we use chemicals to remove it.
 

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NateDogg said:
I have been soaking a few pieces of holey rock over night in a bucket of water with bleach. What is the best way to make sure the bleach is completely off the rocks before I add them back into the tank?
Rinse, let dry.
 
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