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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 29G tank that was used for a reptile. I want to disinfect with bleach. I know I can use vinegar, but I prefer to use bleach. The tank also has a Universal Rocks background.

2 questions...

Using the bleach, filling the tank with a 1:10 bleach/water solution, how long should I let the bleach sit in the tank? A few hours? A day?

Second, regarding the background, has anyone ever used bleach on a Universal Rocks background? Wondering if it would stain or cause any other damage.
 

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I can't advise regarding the background but I've disinfected my 180gal before. I used 1:60 bleach/water solution and ran the tank normally for 24 hours so the solution went through the sump, hoses, etc. I then emptied the tank and let it dry for two weeks. Then filled it and ran it with a strong dose of Seachem Safe. After one more complete water change it was ready for new fish.
 

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I've used bleach for a lot of aquarium cleaning, usually go with about a 20-1 ratio and will let it stay in contact for about an hour or so. Then a couple good rinses with clean water, and on the third rinse a double dose of water conditioner.

Never bleached a background like you have. You might see if you can soak a part of it not normally visible, to see what happens. Is the background removable, or is that really the issue?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
nodima said:
Never bleached a background like you have. You might see if you can soak a part of it not normally visible, to see what happens. Is the background removable, or is that really the issue?
Background is not removable. It was siliconed to the glass from the underside. I have small fake rocks made of the same Universal Rocks material, so I can actually try dosing one of those first.

Thank you for the responses.
 

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I would just get a new tank for the fish.
 

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CharlesMTF said:
Second, regarding the background, has anyone ever used bleach on a Universal Rocks background? Wondering if it would stain or cause any other damage.
Straight off of their website;

"Can I use bleach?

We do not recommend using bleach on our products, our products are porous and as a result bleach may get trapped in the pores of our items. We have done limited testing with bleach on our products and what we have found is that it hasn't "bleached" the color out of any style, AQUA, REPT or FOAM, and it does not affect the structure of the polyurea or polyurethane. ALWAYS RINSE THE BLEACH OFF THOROUGHLY! It is a toxic chemical. Universal Rocks is not responsible for any discoloration of our products due to use of bleach or for any harm bleach causes to your animals."

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I can definitely get a new tank, as a 29G is cheap enough. But, the whole point is that I already have it. I probably wouldn't intentionally buy a 29G. Again, no rush. So, I can bleach disinfect, then rinse out several times over a few days. Dechlorinate, and check, I guess. Let it sit in the sun a but too, a few days or weeks, since I won't do anything with it for now.

Thank you everyone.
 

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The problem is that it has been used by a reptile.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
DJRansome said:
The problem is that it has been used by a reptile.
Ah, ok. Didn't think there'd be any major pathogen or bacteria that would transfer from reptile to fish. And, if so, nothing that bleach can't kill.

But, no biggie. Like I said, it was just that I had the tank and wanted to do something with it rather than have it just sit lonely in the corner.
 

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CharlesMTF said:
DJRansome said:
The problem is that it has been used by a reptile.
Ah, ok. Didn't think there'd be any major pathogen or bacteria that would transfer from reptile to fish. And, if so, nothing that bleach can't kill.

But, no biggie. Like I said, it was just that I had the tank and wanted to do something with it rather than have it just sit lonely in the corner.
I looked at a 40g reptile tank and the glass was noticeably thinner than a 40g breeder.

If the reptile tank is as thick as glass for a fish tank, bleach it and use it.

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sub-Mariner said:
I looked at a 40g reptile tank and the glass was noticeably thinner than a 40g breeder.

If the reptile tank is as thick as glass for a fish tank, bleach it and use it.

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Although used for a reptile, its a fish tank, not a reptile tank. Either Marineland or Aqueon. Yea, those reptile-specific tanks might not be good, but this one is not that.
 

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You're good then.

I had a buddy that had several fish tanks and he turned them into snake tanks and back to fish again.

Just clean it with bleach, rinse and let it completely dry. If you're paranoid maybe do what someone else recommended....after the cleaning with bleach let it run with fresh water with 2-3x the recommended doseage of Prime.

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Iggy Newcastle said:
I think bleach is unnecessary. I would just hit it with a hose and scrub down the background with a brush.
You're probably right about the bleach not being necessary. I'll see. Haven't done it yet. Maybe I will maybe I won't. How about the smell? What might help take away the "reptile" smell in a tank? Its not bad, per sa, just a recognizable reptile smell.
 

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I know the 'smell' you're referring to.

I think hot water and a splash of Dawn would do the trick. I use that on a lot of reptile stuff like dishes and water bowls. I've used it on aquariums as well. Just rinse it out really well. Wait till the weather breaks by you and blast it with the hose.

If you do go the bleach route, just follow some of the advice above. The old reptile books by Advanced Vivarium Systems always said a 2 or 3% bleach solution for disinfecting enclosures and what not.
 
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