Do you stir your sand bed or vac?

How do you maintain your sand bed?

  • Stir

    Votes: 31 15.9%
  • Vacuum

    Votes: 67 34.4%
  • Stir most the time, with an rare vac to clean things out

    Votes: 36 18.5%
  • I just leave the sand alone!

    Votes: 61 31.3%

  • Total voters
    195
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brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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They really do work agreed.

about 6 mos ago in another thread we were reviewing natural vs manual bed cleaning efficiency and I proposed to a gent that his fish wont clean it all that well, we should run a drop test (disturb bed on video, see if its clear)

and the rascal was clear, deep grains were still cleaned. fish worked harder than Id guessed ha nice. busy creatures

I cant think of any animals that eject detritus up into suspension better than they do/fish in general

starfish add to whole pellet waste, they don't reduce it to invisible status. same for snails, crabs and pods. but fish--> up and gone into a catch sock somewhere, all day long
 

Aheinz

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in terms of me vac'ing my sand its very lightly to get the top layer of detritus/ whats building up i dont do deep vacs
 

Backreefing

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I have corse gravel agronite . But I deep vacuum the gravel with every water change .
I prefer larger corse gravel because it doesn’t blow around. I have fast water ( sps tank )
 

NanoDJS

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I dont touch my sand , except to blow it off corals , my two spot goby is a union champ , hes on the job everyday all day, whats funnier is he has all my fish cleaning sand lol , they are infatuated with him and he couldn't be bothered, nas snails and thats it , im running some fiji pink sand really soft fluffy and fine about 2 -3 " sandbed. when I look at the sand from underneath the tank its pristine , the natural system takes a few years but wow is it pretty . ( and ugly for a looooong time ) patience pays off in reefing.
 

Harrison Gordon

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My sand bed ranges from 3-6 in deep, I have vacuumed it like four times in the last two years. It is such fine sand, there is no telling it from the debris as it fills up the filter socks (that's where I have the other end of the tube drain to)

Every few weeks a dusting of algae covers it, sometimes cyan and sometimes light green stuff, and I overturn it with my glass scraper

Didn't think id be in the minority with this, you guys are either really good about getting in there or really bad! For me I almost never stick my hands in the tank anyways thanks to my auto water change.
 
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SkiCatTX

Sustainable Reefkeeping
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For years I have used a turkey baster to blow off the rocks at regular intervals, but recently I started sand vacuuming occasionally at water change time after seeing extra algae growth on the sandbed. I have a rather thin sandbed, maybe 1-2" on average, so I don't believe there is much anaerobic bacteria in my case (which might be part of the cause of some experiencing die off after vacuuming). Additionally, I have noticed large NO3 and PO4 spikes in the days following a good vacuuming, even though I discard the dirty water, significant detritus is left in the tank and settles on the bottom afterward.

I have only done this a few times so far, and the tank is 12 years old, so I don't yet know if the dirtiness and nutrient spike is a temporary thing, but in the future I will probably try sand sifting fish and animals more as opposed to vacuuming and see how that does...
 

Pmauro55

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I let the CUC clean and stir up the bed, sand sifting star wrasses etc. other than that I don’t mess with it unless I find a really bad spot
 

jkcoon

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I typically put a fine micron sock in the sump and hook a hose to the manifold and blow everything with a water jet - sand and rock.... let sock do its magic for 20 minutes or so and then proceed with waterchange... been wondering if its a good process or not
 
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RichReef

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I stir it like crazy over and over an entire day while running a canister filter. Blowing off rocks. Blowing the sand under the rocks. Really, really aggressive over and over.

The next day I remove the canister and do my WC.
 

sfin52

So many bugs so little time
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With San sleeping wrasse and snail under the sand bed I don't vacuum it. I will stir it with my hand when my wrasse is not sleeping. I do this very gently as not to crush anything
 
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The first time I vacuumed my sand bed I woke up the next day to a display totally overrun by dinos. It took 4 months to get rid of them.
I haven't touched my sand bed since.
Funny you should say that. My nitrates were high because I slacked off on my water changes so I was thinking it would be smart to try and remove some extra detritus while I’m at it to reduce the nitrate load. Well everywhere I did the deep clean I have brown dinos....bahh humbug...don’t mess with the sand.
 

ScottB

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I typically put a fine micron sock in the sump and hook a hose to the manifold and blow everything with a water jet - sand and rock.... let sock do its magic for 20 minutes or so and then proceed with waterchange... been wondering if its a good process or not
A similar process works for me. I clamp a Maxjet 1200 to the glass at each WC and blast ALL of the sand first with an attached silicone hose. This breaks off half a dozen or so acro frags to be collected after. It gets so cloudy in there it is hard to see. I then remove 35 cloudy gallons from the display straight to my septic waste line.

Once I refill, I use the same hose/pump to blast all rock and sticks and let the socks capture the rest.

It works for my DT because I have always done this. Also, my base rock "floats" on the sand bed via 1/2 inch acrylic rods so nothing can fall over.

There are no hidden time bombs in my sand bed. And while my SPS slime up a little each time, they are healthy and growing.

IMG-3834.JPG
 
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