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Moving--Advice Needed

2633 Views 5 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Mrs Smith
OK, it's official--I'm a home owner again which means I'll be moving my tank and I'm hoping for some opinions on some things (40g, 50/50 110 light strip, wet/dry for 55g, Prism for up to 100g, 2 jets for water movement, mostly fish w/some "easy" corals and 2 anenomes):

1. I know to save as much water as possible from the tank--how much of a re-cycle can I expect? One of the owners of my favorite LFS maintains tanks in several businesses and homes in town and I'm paying him to help me move (I also have two 20g fw tanks).

2. Of course, without saying--I need to aerate the fish and lr when moving/relocating (I'm assuming since my drive is about 20 minutes to my new location it's gonna take me at least 3 hours to re-set everything up)--how long can they stay in the "buckets" safely?

3. I'm going to take this opportunity to "clean" off my lr of some green algae (and possibly some hitchiker crabs)--is there an easy way to do this--what's the best way (I'm really aiming for those "bigger" bristleworms that are in this one rock...)?

4. I'm also taking this opportunity to switch out most of my original mixture of crushed coral/sand and replace it with some fine sand (main reason is the crushed coral has some brown algae and just makes the tank look dirty and also to ease my
population of tiny bristleworms a bit--since I returned the Arrow Crab they've increased again). My current sandbed is about 3 1/2 to 4" deep and I'm thinking 3" should be plenty?

5. Another question--what is the life expectancy of most equipment? Return pumps--is there a way to clean these (salt buildup) or is it necessary? Water jets? Skimmers ? I've had most of my equipment for about a year and all were new when purchased, just wondering when I can expect (hah!) a breakdown--or to avoid, what maintenance to perform.

6. Recommendation for replacement heater and where to place--in tank or bottom of wet/dry? I'm not really in a hurry for this--here in FL it's supposed to be 90 today--I'll more than likely be searching for ways to keep it coo!

As always, thanks for your assistance...
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Personally, having moved several times and helped others move, planning is essential. I'm an advocate of having LR buckets as well as fish coolers heated and aerated for the entire time except while driving. (Unless it's a really long distance.)

To try to vaguely answer your questions:
1. Minimal. It's not so much the water, as keeping the rock alive. Keeping water mostly just gets you out of remixing new water. (Which does make things easier!) Transport the extra water separately from rock, as the water in rock buckets tends to foul pretty quickly, IME.

2. As long as they are aerated, and kept at a constant temp, a pretty long time. Overnight isn't out of the question at all. (We've done that, mostly because sugar-sized aragonite settles slowly and it's very hard to see in the tank) And I would plan on it taking a lot longer than you think it will. It always does. We managed a 200 mile move (just the 90g reef - we'd already moved everything else) in approximately 22 hours including 6 hours of driving time back and forth. A 40 won't take as long, but I'd plan for 6 hours to be safe. Having help will cut that down somewhat.

3. Honestly, it might be better to try to do that beforehand. Same for cleaning pumps, skimmers, etc. If you do have time, the toothbrush-in-a-bucket-of-saltwater seems to work.

As hot as it sounds like it will be, I'd invest in a dedicated fish cooler if you don't have one. A cheap Rubbermaid will work - put the fish in, your inverts (we have a seperate one for corals, but that's your call - just so they don't sting each other. Or you could bag them...) and a rock for them to hide under. That way, you get some temperature insulation, can run an airline in (cheap battery-powered bubblers can be a lifesaver in an emergency, and helpful in moving), and can close the lid to keep the fish in the dark.

Sorry to ramble on - if you have any specific questions, let me know. Good luck!
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On yeah, he's right. CC beds stink. *but so do DSBs...
Pull off all the water you can before messing with it.

When we moved, we pulled out our CC plenum in favor of a DSB. Good choice for us. We went with 5-6", but 4 is fine. I personally love the way it looks, but to each his (or her) own.

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