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Freshwater Aquarium/deep clean fish tank


hello, I have a 40 gallon fish tank with a grave base substrate and river rocks on top and a couple of plants and fish. My question is a great idea to deep clean my fish tank by removing everything and replacing some of my substrate with new ones, or should I just continue to cycle of 20% of my water, if so will removing everything harm my plants, and how many times should i deep clean. If you could give me some inputs/advice that will help keep my fish tank clean.   
         Thank you

Hi Juan

You should never do a deep clean of your fish tank by removing everything. Doing so will do more harm than good to your fish and plants as it will kill all the beneficial bacteria and cause your tank to start cycling again. You should do 25% water changes every week. Use a gravel vac to remove the water and siphon waste out of the gravel.

Below are a couple of links to better help you with properly cleaning your fish tank..

Hope this helps you, good luck!


Freshwater Aquarium

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Richard Hight


I own and maintain several freshwater aquariums from 2 to 180 gallon. I can answer most questions about freshwater aquariums, including setup, cycling, maintenance, compatible tank mates, feeding. Moving? I've moved fish both across town and across the country and can help you get your little aquatic friends to their new home safely. I know and have experience with most freshwater community fish, South American Cichlids and African Cichlids. I don't answer questions about Goldfish or keeping Goldfish with Tropical Fish. I also don't answer questions about keeping crustaceans (shrimp, snails, crabs etc) with Tropical Fish, nor questions about saltwater fish or aquariums. I'm not available to answer questions on weekends, this is when I do maintenance on my own tanks.


Many years of personal experience with community tank fish, semi-aggressive fish (Barbs, Tetras, etc), Angels, South American Cichlids and African Cichlids.

HSG 2010-2011 prof

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