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View Full Version : Do's and don't moving tank!


Jblank44
08/03/2013, 02:50 PM
Hello all,

I am moving my tank next Saturday. I've had a lot of advice but would like for your input as well! My plan is to leave at 6-7am on Saturday, August 10th. I am moving from Columbus, Ohio to Knoxville, Tennessee. It is a 14 gallon biocube with a few corals, banded coral shrimp and some snails. Most of my corals are putty or glued to rock, or have attached. I will also be replacing my course substrate with reef sand. When should I pack the tank up? What should I pack it in? I am only putting enough sand to cover the bottom glass. Is there anything I should worry about doing that could cause anything, lets say an algae outbreak? Any advice is great. I have a pretty good plan already laid out. Columbus to Knoxville is roughly 5 1/2 hours.

http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/08/04/puzaqunu.jpg

http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/08/04/yrydyjer.jpg

YoungREEFA
08/03/2013, 06:49 PM
Usually you want to use certain tupaware that wont leach anything into the water column, but that shouldnt matter as your only going to be using them for roughly 6-8 hours. You could possibly bag some of the corals on the rocks as the rocks should be smaller. But smaller tupaware will work also. Look into reef safe plastic containers, should find good information there.

milesmiles902
08/04/2013, 12:29 AM
I have moved my fish tank twice in my life. Since you are only dealing with 14 gallons, I don't think it will be too much of an issue. Some stuff I have learned :


Save the aquarium water, there is a reason you cycle an aquarium. If you can grab a bucket to save most of the water. I generally save 80% of the original water, then add 20% of fresh saltwater. Essentially a large water change.
Since it is a 14 gallon, I would use two buckets or so. I transfer the coral in the same buckets with the saltwater. I had a couple anemones, so I put them seperately. If there is a coral that would sting another arrange it so that there isn't any issues.
Replace the sand bed. You said you are going to do it, but there are so many pollutants in the sand.
I have never had a transfer last longer than 3 hours. The coral will survive without light for a quite a bit of time, while temperature fluctuations can cause problems. If you can run an inverter in the vehicle to run a heater, that would be best. Maybe put all the coral in one bucket if you can and just keep that warm.
When you do the transfer try to limit the time delay as much as possible. If you know where you are going to put it, have the stand ready to setup.

You'll be fine.

Tbred
08/04/2013, 08:46 AM
I am also preparing to move my reef. My plan so far is is bucket livestock separately, pack live rock like it was to be shipped (wrapped in wet paper), and replace the sand bed. Personally, I don't think you need to take all of the tank water. 99% of your biologicial filter lives in the sand and live rock. As long as your live rock isn't exposed to air for too long you should be fine. You could always go out and buy a large rubbermad tub with a lid and transfer your whole tank into it for transportation and keep the water.

Jblank44
08/04/2013, 02:11 PM
Awesome! Great info here! It makes me more confident! I know it will be fine! It's just a lot of work!

milesmiles902
08/04/2013, 04:10 PM
I am also preparing to move my reef. My plan so far is is bucket livestock separately, pack live rock like it was to be shipped (wrapped in wet paper), and replace the sand bed. Personally, I don't think you need to take all of the tank water. 99% of your biologicial filter lives in the sand and live rock. As long as your live rock isn't exposed to air for too long you should be fine. You could always go out and buy a large rubbermad tub with a lid and transfer your whole tank into it for transportation and keep the water.

He is replacing the sand first off. So that is part of the biological filtering. There are many people with no DSB, that probably just transfer the rock. I think you would have to ask them about that. Never had a DSB. Has anyone who doesn't have a DSB done a tank transfer and not saved the majority of the water?

Personally, I just feel that it is best for the coral and other aquatic life. Especially with a nano, it is a lot easier to transfer the water. Jblank44 would only need two buckets.

Jblank44
08/04/2013, 04:49 PM
He is replacing the sand first off. So that is part of the biological filtering. There are many people with no DSB, that probably just transfer the rock. I think you would have to ask them about that. Never had a DSB. Has anyone who doesn't have a DSB done a tank transfer and not saved the majority of the water?

Personally, I just feel that it is best for the coral and other aquatic life. Especially with a nano, it is a lot easier to transfer the water. Jblank44 would only need two buckets.

I agree with that and will take the majority of the water that I can. And basically it will be like doing a very long 20-30% water change :) ... With new sand

buckeyereefer1
08/04/2013, 06:33 PM
nothing wrong with saving majority of water. kinda helps keep parameters somewere close to original setup. I think you have a good plan already. BUT I would certainly count on a cycle even a small one. you are doing away with a sand bed.

Jblank44
08/04/2013, 07:58 PM
nothing wrong with saving majority of water. kinda helps keep parameters somewere close to original setup. I think you have a good plan already. BUT I would certainly count on a cycle even a small one. you are doing away with a sand bed.

Really? What if i have some crazy algae outbreak? How do I prevent something like that. But you also have to realize that i am only putting enough sand to just cover the glass. less than half an inch.

milesmiles902
08/04/2013, 08:29 PM
nothing wrong with saving majority of water. kinda helps keep parameters somewere close to original setup. I think you have a good plan already. BUT I would certainly count on a cycle even a small one. you are doing away with a sand bed.

If he had time to do a cycle I imagine that he would, but he is using the same tank with the same livestock.

Really? What if i have some crazy algae outbreak? How do I prevent something like that. But you also have to realize that i am only putting enough sand to just cover the glass. less than half an inch.

I have never heard of a crazy algae outbreak from a water change. Maybe if it was someone else's water.....maybe? Anyone heard of this?

Jblank44
08/04/2013, 08:44 PM
If he had time to do a cycle I imagine that he would, but he is using the same tank with the same livestock.



I have never heard of a crazy algae outbreak from a water change. Maybe if it was someone else's water.....maybe? Anyone heard of this?

Okay, yeah i dont expect anything like that since i will be using 80 percent of my current water, all my filtration media and live rock. The only thing that is changing is sand. And its changing from course substrate (crushed coral) to reef sand.

REEForBANG
08/05/2013, 10:56 PM
You should place your corals in individual bags in a cooler or styro box as if you were shipping them maybe use a ice/heat pack depending on weather as for the fish keep them in a large container if possible with a battery operated bubbler or if not possible then do the same method as the corals but make sure you add oxygen after bagging them individually
Should be smooth transfer just make sure you get everything you can possibly need for the "just in case" situation.

Jblank44
08/05/2013, 11:43 PM
You should place your corals in individual bags in a cooler or styro box as if you were shipping them maybe use a ice/heat pack depending on weather as for the fish keep them in a large container if possible with a battery operated bubbler or if not possible then do the same method as the corals but make sure you add oxygen after bagging them individually
Should be smooth transfer just make sure you get everything you can possibly need for the "just in case" situation.

Exact same idea I had! Only a few difficulties... Most corals are attached to rock and I have no fish which is actually a plus lol

Shaun v
08/06/2013, 08:52 AM
I did a move that took 3 days a couple of months ago. It is a 17 gallon tank. I used 4 buckets. One bucket of premixed saltwater to do water changes and 3 buckets with original tank water and live stock divided amongst them. I got a power inverter for my truck to run heaters to the 3 buckets that had livestock and I put a battery powered air pump in each of the 3 tanks too. I washed the old sand and am saving for a tank upgrade. I bought new live sand for when I set the tank back up. When I got to the new house, I set up the tank and put in the new sand with some old water and some water change water. I had a 10 gallon tank that I put all the livestock and old tank water in with a small water change while my 17 gallon settled out (~week). Then I added all my livestock to the 17gallon with old tank water and did another water change. No losses. Here is a link to my moving thread.
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2270133

Jblank44
08/06/2013, 10:58 AM
I did a move that took 3 days a couple of months ago. It is a 17 gallon tank. I used 4 buckets. One bucket of premixed saltwater to do water changes and 3 buckets with original tank water and live stock divided amongst them. I got a power inverter for my truck to run heaters to the 3 buckets that had livestock and I put a battery powered air pump in each of the 3 tanks too. I washed the old sand and am saving for a tank upgrade. I bought new live sand for when I set the tank back up. When I got to the new house, I set up the tank and put in the new sand with some old water and some water change water. I had a 10 gallon tank that I put all the livestock and old tank water in with a small water change while my 17 gallon settled out (~week). Then I added all my livestock to the 17gallon with old tank water and did another water change. No losses. Here is a link to my moving thread.
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2270133

Well I hope that I will be fine, it shouldn't cause any problems, I will be replacing my gravel with a little bit of reef sand... I'm talking less than half inch, just enough to cover the bottom glass... Is there anything I can do to make sure I don't cause a mini cycle? Also, when I get there I will be putting the tank together as of it never was taken apart.... I really hope I don't have any problems. And most of my corals have attached themself to my rock

Shaun v
08/06/2013, 01:46 PM
I had a mini cycle happen because I replaced all of my sand. No ammonia that I detected but a big spike in nitrates. I added Bactiv8 NPX by Two Little Fishies and that seemed to help a lot.

Jblank44
08/06/2013, 02:38 PM
I had a mini cycle happen because I replaced all of my sand. No ammonia that I detected but a big spike in nitrates. I added Bactiv8 NPX by Two Little Fishies and that seemed to help a lot.

Okay, I've been told it just goes away after a week... just involves lots of water changes.

Shaun v
08/07/2013, 09:03 AM
Ya, it will go away with big water changes. I just did normal water changes while adding the beneficial bacteria.

Jblank44
08/08/2013, 01:52 PM
Ya, it will go away with big water changes. I just did normal water changes while adding the beneficial bacteria.

When I move the tank in the buckets should I keep holes in the top or no? Wouldn't that cause more evap? I was thinking ill keep it completely sealed. Keep in mind I only have corals and a shrimp

Shaun v
08/12/2013, 09:28 AM
I put holes in mine and fed the air pump chord through the hole.

Jblank44
08/12/2013, 11:09 AM
I put holes in mine and fed the air pump chord through the hole.

Made the move! Went well and looks much better than before with the new sand!

Before
http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/08/13/5a8yge4u.jpg

After
http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/08/13/dezyze6a.jpg

SloppyWhenWet
08/12/2013, 02:33 PM
With new sand comes cycle. Most reefers forget when you change rocks/sand/water a cycle can happen. That is what causes most people problems. Coral will last a day no problem. Ive seen frag bags left in car and still made it days later.

Dapg8gt
08/12/2013, 02:45 PM
I highly suggest keeping all your rock fully submerged.. That's your bio and wet paper IMO will cause major die off inside the rock.. That will assure you that your rock is still alive.. The longer it's out of water the worse it is. .

trzabka
08/12/2013, 08:37 PM
i have had to doo a few moved on y 55 gallon Not usually two far but i own a ton of 5 gallon buckets and just put all the rock fish and coral into buckes and fill with the tank water except for the water that is stired up at the bottom of the tank from the sand. then when i get it set up i put heaters in the buckets that have the fish in them and corals and put the rock and water back into the tank and turn the heaters up and get them aclamated to the same temp and if it takes a while i throw a bubbler in the fish buckets

tommyphones
08/13/2013, 05:13 PM
As long as everything is kept warm enough and you have enough old water it should be fine.

Jblank44
08/13/2013, 07:05 PM
Thank you everyone for the help! The tank was a successful move on Saturday into my house! Looks really good with the new sand