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Hard stains on fish tank, what to clean with?

Discussion in 'FreshWater Beginner Information/Questions' started by Punkrulz, Nov 9, 2008.

  1. Punkrulz

    Punkrulz Large Fish

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    Hey guys,

    Between our 2 fish tanks, there are some difficult stains to remove. They feel hard, and I know on my established tank it occurred when fish splashed water which ran down the tank, resulting in the mark that I can't remove with anything.

    If I was to assume what they were, I would say it's probably calcium. I wasn't sure what to get, I was thinking about CLR but I wanted to save the $5 on it if I didn't need it.

    Thoughts?
     


  2. FroggyFox

    FroggyFox Forum Manager
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    try vinegar :)
     
  3. Kalavek

    Kalavek Large Fish

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    My first thought is "Five bucks is nothing". But that's not the point.

    Are your tanks glass or acrylic? I've always preferred glass for durability and resistance to scratching. I can't offer much help with acrylic.

    When I first cleaned up my 25g (previously owned and filthy) it had a lot of white deposits both on the inside and the outside. The outside deposits were from water dripping or being splashed down the sides of the tank, and on the inside it was mostly around the moving waterline.

    I think I ended up removing 90% of this stuff with a couple fresh razor blades - but this won't work on acrylic. What the razor didn't remove got hit by the steel wool - use the fine stuff, not the coarse stuff - but again, this won't work on acrylic.

    Vinegar didn't work at all for me, and I think I may have tried CLR - but I don't think it worked very well either for some reason.

    Whatever you decide to try, make sure you try it in a spot you never see.

    And don't cut yourself with the razor. That would be bad.

    PS - also, the water that the previous owners used would have been either well water or bottled water... so the stuff on that tank could have been any number of mineral deposits.
     
    #3 Kalavek, Nov 9, 2008
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2008
  4. FroggyFox

    FroggyFox Forum Manager
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    hot water and elbow grease are best :) lol vinegar can help...

    I wouldn't personally put anything else near my fish...definitely not clr.
     
  5. ishar

    ishar MFT Staff

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    I used a CLR like product on a glass cover, no ill effects to report so far. I just rinsed it off really really well
     
  6. FroggyFox

    FroggyFox Forum Manager
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    Yeah? Cool :) Maybe I'm just overly cautious when it comes to that stuff. I figure anything that says on the bottle you should be wearing gloves when handling it means I don't want to get it near any of my pets.
     
  7. bunker_1

    bunker_1 Large Fish

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    I would use a razor balde. Hot water and a cloth and what remains, scrape off with the blade.
     
  8. Kalavek

    Kalavek Large Fish

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    I have mixed reactions to CLR. Yes, you should wear gloves when you use it, because that stuff is corrosive. BUT... it's advertised that you can put it through your coffee machine (for instance). I think the key with CLR is that it dilutes into water really easily - so you can just rinse it away for most purposes.

    I'd rinse it a lot.
     
  9. tom91970

    tom91970 Superstar Fish

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    I had some stains that would not come off. I bought some Lime Off and now the stains are hardly there.
     
  10. brian1973

    brian1973 Superstar Fish

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    i have had success with vinegar..or as froggy said elbow grease and hot water.
     
  11. Avalon

    Avalon Superstar Fish

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    Vinegar all the way; it's very fish safe in low doses. It's what I use to wipe down acrylic lens, light bulbs, and tanks when in need. On a saltwater tank I converted to freshwater that had major calcium deposits, I used a nifty razor blade tool I used to use when I was a state inspector (for removing old inspection stickers) and vinegar. Don't ever use a razor blade by itself...that's dangerous! Trust me, I know. ;)
     
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