Come on seriously?! Keep your hands out of the tank!!

BRS

Is "keeping your hands out of the tank" as big a deal as people say?

  • Yes you should limit the amount of time..

    Votes: 345 45.8%
  • No it doesn't make a difference....

    Votes: 195 25.9%
  • Unsure but willing to read and learn...

    Votes: 214 28.4%

  • Total voters
    754

Oldsalt

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 6, 2018
Messages
347
Reaction score
439
Location
Perth Western Australia
I try to keep my mits out as much as possible but there are times when that's just not feasible. My current tank is quite deep so I make sure to remove antiperspirants from my underarms. The stuff is poison. I have long gloves that I use when I'll be in for extended periods. Now and then, when something gets knocked about, I know it'll be a quick fix after a good rinse without any soap. I have a large palythoa colony and a couple of venomous fish, but haven't been stung ever - what Murphy's law says "anything that can happen, will happen eventually" should be kept in mind when messing around in our mini reefs. My doctor almost always asks me for aquarium updates, so I show him photos and videos. He is always in awe of marine life (he's from South Africa), however, he never forgets to say "be careful in there with your hands and arms. I've seen what some marine venoms palytoxins can do to people and it's not nice".
 

WallyB

REEF Techno-Geek
View Badges
Joined
Jan 24, 2017
Messages
2,746
Reaction score
7,464
Location
GTA Toronto, CANADA
I already replied but since we are talking PUTTING PHYSICAL HANDS INTO Tank, I have an IMPORTANT POINT TO MAKE.

Yes, you should keep your contaminated hands out of your tank as much as possible to prevent any damage to tanks.

How about the other way around. Protecting yourself.

A couple years ago, I was about to do maintenance on my tank and when I touched the tip of my finger to the water I got a STRONG ELECTRICAL ZAP.

After investigation I discovered my Hungry Urchin chewed a whole inch of insulation off my Coraline Covered Heater Cord wire (one wire), so the Tank was 120 Volts.
Thank GOD that I wasn't shoulder deep into the Tank when he took the insulation breaking lethal bite.

Yes, I have Multiple GFCI outlets on my systems, but none tripped since the Heater cord is only two prong so doesn't have a ground probe. GFCI Protection will not trip if there is no Ground.

Yes, I also have TITANIUM Ground probes but it wasn't replaced when I removed it last time temporarily.

As soon as I put back my Ground probe the GFCI outlet Tripped. Now I have a ground probe on DT and SUMP, just in case there is a failure in either, and they are disconnected.

So protect your tank, and protect your Life, loved ones, and pets from your tanks.
Be it ground probes, or gloves to protect from cuts, toxins, etc.
 
Last edited:

MARK M. DAVIS

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Nov 6, 2017
Messages
203
Reaction score
134
Minimizing water contact is the best. It protects the fish and coral from contaminants brought on by "you". It alleviates inhabitant stress. It can save your life from Sepsis and other bacterial infections that arise from fish tanks or perhaps, poly toxins.
 

[email protected]

Living the Reef Life
View Badges
Joined
Nov 18, 2012
Messages
31,890
Reaction score
43,905
Location
Ontario, California
It's probably just me, but I find when I keep messing with stuff, I'm bound to screw it up. ;Hilarious ;Eggonface
 

Michigan Reefer

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Aug 11, 2019
Messages
143
Reaction score
87
I work at a lab with lots of different chemicals so i'm used to washing my hands a lot during the day. It's good practice to wash before going in the tank, but it's just as important to wash after once done messing with the tank.
 

ourcoralreef

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
May 12, 2015
Messages
1,345
Reaction score
1,805
Location
New York
I personally believe the less you mess with things the better they will do
Also a frag glued down will do much better than a frag that’s moving around
Now back to the hands i personally do put my hands in my tank i make sure they are clean i don’t necessarily wash them just make sure they are clean
 

PSXerholic

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Nov 3, 2015
Messages
1,969
Reaction score
3,082
Location
Houston
You may have heard it a time or two but there's an reefing old wives tale that says it's a good idea to keep your hands out of your tank.

Is "keeping your hands out of the tank" as big a deal as people say?

What does it even mean and how do you keep your hands out of the tank?

39-FC8569-B3-BA-409-F-9-C78-05-FD0-EF9-C77-F.jpg

amazing reef image via @PSXerholic
Love that tank, lol .......
 

Bob Lauson

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 31, 2017
Messages
421
Reaction score
738
Location
Ada, MI
When my grand kids come to visit I let them put their hands in my tank (it’s a 180 gallon open top) and I think it awesome. They are little (less than 5 years old) and are fascinated by looking down and resting their hands in it. The large volume likely minimizes any contamination issues. My goal is to get them to love it. Part of my aquarium is for me, part is to have others enjoy it however they are able to.
 

Calebb8133

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Sep 28, 2018
Messages
527
Reaction score
182
Location
Fl
My inexperienced opinion is it doesn’t matter... I remember hearing you can’t get you tank sick just like u can’t get sick from your tank. That being said I don’t use chemicals or anything on my hand s my hands r pretty clean when’s it comes to that. Honestly I don’t know how it would be possible to keep your hands out of a reef tank! Almost every time I work on my tank I get wet for something reason.
 

A_Poythress

Community Member
View Badges
Joined
Jul 6, 2017
Messages
84
Reaction score
43
Location
Georgia
I always wash my hands with a reef safe soap (thanks to BRS) before going into the tank, but I make sure to limit how much I’m doing to the tank. By that I mean I avoid changing things constantly to allow the tank to have a consistent environment free of major changes.
 

scvc620

New Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 15, 2013
Messages
20
Reaction score
10
Location
Micco, Florida
I know this thread is old, but I have a bit of input and some questions for all out there. I say use gloves and here is why.

I let life get in the way and my tank really suffered from it. I barely kept it going, did do water changes, cleaned the tank, skimmer, algae scrubber, etc. I made the decision to get the tank back to where it had been for years, loving to watch and enjoy all the living creatures we can keep in a tank. I was actually making some really good progress. One day I decided to move some rocks around to make the landscape a bit different. I had a couple of new fish and thought that would give them new places to hide. That was a BIG mistake. I did like I have for more than 25 years, no gloves. One rock I picked up nicked me and it was like an electric shock going through my hand. I pulled my hand out and looked and it was nothing more than a little bitty prick. Man alive did it hurt, that saying "done to the bone. " Well that is how it felt. After a visit to the walk in clinic the next morning, hubby took me to the ER 36 hours later. They took one look and I was immediately on IV antibiotics and being treated for Vibrio. Three days in the hospital and 10 days worth of IV antibiotics later, I didn't lose my life, hand, or thumb. USE GLOVES. And yes I have some new gloves now that go up to my armpit with elastic so water doesn't get in them.

How many of you have put your hand in the aquarium with just a little scratch, or been pricked by a piece of rock? I would venture to say the majority of us who enjoy this hobby.

Am I giving up my aquarium. No. Going to downsize from 180 to 110. I have made that decision. If you fall off a horse, get up and get back on, right?

So here is my question. Do I just throw away 70 or 80 pounds of rock? Do I bleach it? What about the few softies I have left? Dendros, candy cane, hairy mushrooms, a small piece of gorgonian, some pagoda. I really want everyone's opinion so I can digest this. I am having a hard time with the idea of just throwing it all away. No way would I let someone else touch this rock knowing the kind of infection I have been treated for. Please, let me hear from you as to how you would handle this.
 

VolatileReeFer

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Feb 26, 2021
Messages
139
Reaction score
167
Location
Valparaiso
I’ll add to this dead and buried thread. If you wash prior, you’re contaminated. Good luck getting every last molecule of soap off your skin. Then you dry with a towel that’s covered in laundry detergent or fabric softener. You put on rubber gloves and water gets in your gloves. What can get in, gets out. Contaminated. Wear the same gloves that go up to your shoulders, no better than your dirty skin.
 

MnFish1

10K Club member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 28, 2016
Messages
10,368
Reaction score
11,350
I’ll add to this dead and buried thread. If you wash prior, you’re contaminated. Good luck getting every last molecule of soap off your skin. Then you dry with a towel that’s covered in laundry detergent or fabric softener. You put on rubber gloves and water gets in your gloves. What can get in, gets out. Contaminated. Wear the same gloves that go up to your shoulders, no better than your dirty skin.
I'll add - unless you have a very small tank - this is not an issue. This is pure paranoia IMHO. What you're basically saying is 'there is no solution'. IMHO - if you're wearing total arm gloves, there is no issue. IMHO - if you spray windex on your glass there is no problem. I just had the room in my tank painted - with latex paint - no problem. There are a lot of paranoid myths (IMHO) and OCD - and your post seems to perpetuate this - with no reference or context.
 

turbo21

Fenchies and Fish Oh My
View Badges
Joined
Jul 14, 2010
Messages
3,654
Reaction score
160
Location
pittsburgh
It makes no difference
there’s some pics floating around here some where of my head in my tank (live sale fun). And another picture where I was sitting in my 150 gal Rubbermaid sump (more live sale fun). No Ill effects at all. Everything kept right on growing and living
 

MnFish1

10K Club member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 28, 2016
Messages
10,368
Reaction score
11,350
It makes no difference
there’s some pics floating around here some where of my head in my tank (live sale fun). And another picture where I was sitting in my 150 gal Rubbermaid sump (more live sale fun). No Ill effects at all. Everything kept right on growing and living
Well... IMHO - thats not prudent. lol. I was going to say something different but this is a family site.
 
BRS

BIG TANKS VERSUS SMALLER TANKS...WHICH DO YOU PREFER?

  • BIGGER

    Votes: 726 75.5%
  • smaller

    Votes: 185 19.3%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 50 5.2%

Online statistics

Members online
1,837
Guests online
4,533
Total visitors
6,370
Top