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How long does manufacturer silicone last

Boxfish

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Let's say you have an aquarium brand like oceanic aquarium that has been wet for 8 years how much longer is a good assumption for remainder of life span. What clues should I look for in black silicone? Looking at used tanks. Thanks
 
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MastaMind82

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I don't have personal experience with that brand or color of silicone, but I can share my experience and we might be able to start getting some data together here. I had my Aqueon with clear silicon up and running for 12 years before I noticed the edges start "pulling up" I guess the term would be. It was a freshwater planted build. When I tore that system down and replaced the silicon I was a bit surprised how easily some it it came right out of the corners. Not sure if that helps at all.
 
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Boxfish

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Thanks, I'm just paranoid about resealing. How low will that last. ?
 

andrewkw

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Maybe another 20-50 years? This is of course just a guess, but I don't see any reason why it would go bad in such a short time frame. An aquarium is more likely to fail because it's been moved around, followed by an improper stand then old age. My tank was setup in 2006 and it was purchased as a new/used (owner never set it up) and I have moved it long distance. I'm still not even close to worrying about the silicone. One thing I have done over the years is let about half an inch of coraline grow around the seems giving me free if somewhat unsightly "armored seems".
 

MastaMind82

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How long will the resealing last? It should last just as long as when you bought the tank new. Once you have it resealed let it cure for a good 48 hours and then give it a water test. I took my tank outside and filled it left it for about 4 days or so watching for any leaks.
 

Razorp

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Maybe another 20-50 years? This is of course just a guess, but I don't see any reason why it would go bad in such a short time frame. An aquarium is more likely to fail because it's been moved around, followed by an improper stand then old age. My tank was setup in 2006 and it was purchased as a new/used (owner never set it up) and I have moved it long distance. I'm still not even close to worrying about the silicone. One thing I have done over the years is let about half an inch of coraline grow around the seems giving me free if somewhat unsightly "armored seems".

+1 on the moving thing. I had a brand new 180 gallon custom built last year. After it was built it was moved to a custom cabinet makers shop, then moved to my house. It held water for a month and a half before the seam split. Moving those big tanks is really hard on them.

The tank has since been rebuilt with four 8" euro braces.

If i end up with 180 gallons of water on the floor again my wife might shoot me.
 

MastaMind82

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+1 on the moving thing. I had a brand new 180 gallon custom built last year. After it was built it was moved to a custom cabinet makers shop, then moved to my house. It held water for a month and a half before the seam split. Moving those big tanks is really hard on them.

The tank has since been rebuilt with four 8" euro braces.

If i end up with 180 gallons of water on the floor again my wife might shoot me.
I'm pretty sure that if I ended up with 180 gal on the floor I would be sleeping outside for a while, this is of course after I cleaned it all up, apologized 1,458 times to the wife, took her shopping, and made pancakes... then I would be sleeping in a tent outside.
 

Tumey

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I have a 150g Oceanic, it’s dry now, but was wet with me for 12 years. I bought it second hand from a coworker who bought it second hand so as far as the total life I can’t say how old it is. It was moved and setup for the third time when I bought it. Aside from the glass scraper catching the silicone here and there the seams are still in great shape. With black silicone it should be fairly easy to spot any air bubbles between the panes where separation could potentially be starting.
 

ajm83

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I don't have personal experience with that brand or color of silicone, but I can share my experience and we might be able to start getting some data together here. I had my Aqueon with clear silicon up and running for 12 years before I noticed the edges start "pulling up" I guess the term would be. It was a freshwater planted build. When I tore that system down and replaced the silicon I was a bit surprised how easily some it it came right out of the corners. Not sure if that helps at all.
Did you completely remove all the structural silicone or just redo the sealing part inside the tank?
 

ca1ore

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Well cared for silicone seams will last for decades. I had a world class 180 for 20 years, and the subsequent owner has now had it for a further 10 …. still going strong. My sump is a 25 year old Oceanic 150.
 

vetteguy53081

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I know of tanks 20+ years out there with original seal.
It depends on construction of tank, use of tank, temperatures it is subjected to and type of sealant used.
 

mtfish

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I am hoping for at least 46 years. Tank is 7 years old now and I will be 100 in 39 years! The tank has not been moved since Planet Aquarium personally drove it down from Dallas and set it up on their metal stand.
 

14 foot reef

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Let's say you have an aquarium brand like oceanic aquarium that has been wet for 8 years how much longer is a good assumption for remainder of life span. What clues should I look for in black silicone? Looking at used tanks. Thanks
My Brother has an Oceanic 135 that is 35 years old and has been moved 4 times and is still 100% solid, never an issue.
 

MJ in Boise

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My 2nd tank was a 90gal oceanic that was purchased used. Guy before me had it for 15+ years. I replaced it after 5. I'd bet it's still holding water to this day.
 

Millwright

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Thanks, I'm just paranoid about resealing. How low will that last.
My honest opinion on “resealing”. If you plan on removing the silicone out of the corners and not from between the seams you are not resealing. This is just a cosmetic rejuvenation. The bead that’s wiped in the corner during assembly, not between the glass primarily functions to protect the silicone between the pains of glass from damage. Will it hurt putting a new bead in the corner? Possibly? Remember the new silicone will not bond to the old silicone. You may weaken the original silicone in the removal/cleaning process. Will it help keep the seams together, Not really. The silicone between the seams is in tension. The silicone in the corner is in a peal/shear type of load. The peal rating is 20% less the tension rating. I know there will be some who disagree with what I said above. They may even say I’ve done this and it held for 10 years. Well I had a 75 gallon tank that half for 23 years. If I “resealed” it at the 10 year mark I could say it didn’t fail or leak because I resealed it. Two people I know personally resealed there tanks. One was bought with a known Pinhole leak. It lasted just over 8 months before a vertical seam started coming apart. Known observations. The seam between the glass started pulling apart. The new resealed corners were for the most part intact and had just pulled away. The second tank was bought used and had been in service for approximately 6 years with no leaks. It was “resealed” and lasted 4 years before a vertical seam started coming apart. Same as above the “new” silicone corner was basically un damaged. It just pulled away.
The second tank I helped reseal. We completely disassembled the tank. Scraped all the edges. Scrubbed all the edges with acetone and 0000 steel wool. Tank was reassembled with SCS 1200. The later has been wet for 6 years.
 

OCDean

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Can anyone speak to leaving a tank in the garage outside for a while? Is the silicone generally okay as long as it's not exposed to the sun or other elements, or does cooler temperatures play a big factor?

I have a new tank sitting in the crate in the garage for the last year and probably for another 1 year. I'm in Canada so it gets cool in the winter but stays above freezing in the garage. As I mentioned, it's new in the crate and protected but I do wonder if the temperatures have any effect.

Fingers crossed over here!
 

andrewkw

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Can anyone speak to leaving a tank in the garage outside for a while? Is the silicone generally okay as long as it's not exposed to the sun or other elements, or does cooler temperatures play a big factor?

I have a new tank sitting in the crate in the garage for the last year and probably for another 1 year. I'm in Canada so it gets cool in the winter but stays above freezing in the garage. As I mentioned, it's new in the crate and protected but I do wonder if the temperatures have any effect.

Fingers crossed over here!
I vaguely recall miracles having sales of tanks that were left outside in years past. I never personally went but they used to post sales maybe 10 or so years ago?
 

Razorp

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I'm pretty sure that if I ended up with 180 gal on the floor I would be sleeping outside for a while, this is of course after I cleaned it all up, apologized 1,458 times to the wife, took her shopping, and made pancakes... then I would be sleeping in a tent outside.
Well, the wife gave me the tank as a Christmas gift (its honestly a dream tank to me), so she was just as sick as i was. Took 4 hours to get it broken down and moved. This of course happened in the middle of the night and i found it at 5:30am (tank and stand probably weigh 900 pounds without all the wet sand and it was on carpet). Then servpro was in and out of the house for 3 weeks cleaning and repairing the damage to the rooms affected. Took a total of 3 months for a new tank to be built AND the custom wood cabinet stand to be rebuilt. My poor african cichlids did survive in a 30 gallon plastic tote for the duration (only lost 1).

The truly unbelievable part is that my wife bought me my first salt water tank for fathers day AND it was in the middle of this nightmare. I think she just felt bad because i didn't have my big beautiful tank to look at when i got home from a hard day of work. Plus she is an amazing wife, so there is that as well lol.

The picture attached is before the nightmare. Tank is back up and running, currently still waiting for the drawers, and cabinet doors to be delivered and re installed. The décor has changed a bit, as i have added more holey rock that i gathered at our deer lease in south Texas. Eventually the fake décor will all be replaced with more holey rock, but the fish are all still small and the décor was a birthday gift so i hate to not use it at all. ( we all like natural tanks)

IMG_0946.jpg
 
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