An aquarium is a great way to bring a room to life. Not only are they great to look at, but they are also a great hit with families that have children. Unlike cats, dogs or hamsters, fish do not require too much care and are not messy to keep.
However, if you own an aquarium, you will know that some tender loving care is required for the maintenance of a fish tank, which of course keeps it looking beautiful, but also allows your fish to stay alive for a lot longer.
So how does one go about cleaning an aquarium? Well this article aims to answer this all important question. It will give you a step by step guide detailing how a fish tank should be cleaned appropriately. It also aims to provide you with a few hints and tips that you may find useful.
The first thing you need to do is clean the glass from the inside of the fish tank. This can be done by using an algae pad which is very inexpensive and can be purchased from all pet stores or aquatic centres. Do not use household sponges or cleaning products since the release of chemicals will cause a chemical imbalance in the water which can lead to the death of your fish. If you find heavy smears on the glass that cannot be removed by the algae pad, you can use a blunt blade to scrape it off.
Next you need to ensure that you remove a suitable amount of water. Regularly changing the water will keep the environment optimum for your fish. A 10%-20% water change is recommended.
Some people use a siphon to drain the water from the fish tank, which is definitely a lot easier. If you have a siphon and are unsure about how to use it, do not worry. Simply place the siphon into the fish tank and place the other end of the tube in a bucket. By digging the siphon into the gravel, you are able to clean up any fish waste and left over plant food that may have settled.
Many people who do not have a siphon manually drain the water using a beaker. This is an effective way but does not guarantee the clean up of waste that has deposited on the gravel.
Once you have drained the desired amount of water, it is time to start cleaning your ornaments, since these will also get dirty and gather algae. All ornaments should be cleaned with the tank water, so always use the water that you previously drained out. You can use an algae pad to remove stubborn bits of algae that will not come off.
Now it is time for you to clean the filter. Once again, use the drained tank water to do so. Remove the cartridges and give them a good rinsing. If your cartridge has been used for over 3 months, it is advised that you change them with new ones to maintain your filter.
Finally, it is time to top off your tank with water that contains chemicals that remove the chlorine from the water. Make sure that this water is at the correct temperature, since a drastic change in temperature can kill off your fish. You may wish to add additional chemicals such as biological bacteria which are always beneficial to your aquarium.
Now that the inside is done, you can give the outside a quick wipe using a cloth soaked in warm water and your aquarium will look as good as new.