New fish tank smells bad

butterfly angel avatar
3 years ago #1
butterfly angel
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This fish tank i bought was used once before, i cleaned it filled it up, took it down cleaned it again and now its smells really bad again WHY whats wrong with it. NO FISH!!!

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guppylover21 avatar
3 years ago #2
guppylover21
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What does it smell like?

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Shocker avatar
3 years ago #3
Shocker
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At one point my newer tank was smelling like a dirty lake.. you know that smell of a place where diapers go to die LOL
(cracked myself up on that one) So I realized my syphon wasn't getting enough of the bad stuff from the gravel and swished my filter pad in the dirty water a little. After I refilled the tank the smell was gone. I only cleaned 1/3 of the gravel. Even though it was technically cycling I did it anyway along with a 50% pwc. Up to you to try that though b/c it could stall your cycle or at least make it take longer so proceed with caution.

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FishDaddy avatar
3 years ago #4
FishDaddy
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How big is the tank? Do you know what was in it prior to you getting it?

You may have to reclean it with a little bit of clorox...just be sure to rinse out the clorox until the tank no longer has that smell.

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butterfly angel avatar
3 years ago #5
butterfly angel
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Its a 20 gallon & no i have no clue. When i first put water in it its fine for a week or so then it starts smelling bad again.

Lol agree stinky lake water. The 2ed time around i used rocks out of my 60 gallon. Ill try what you did cause wow its horrible.

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johnarthur avatar
3 years ago #6
johnarthur
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Probably your best option is to empty the aquarium then disinfect it by filling it with freshwater and a small amount of chlorine bleach. Let it sit for 48 hours, then empty and thoroughly rinse the tank and fill it with freshwater.

If you can still smell chlorine after another soak and rinse, use a double dose of tap water conditioner when you refill the aquarium for the final time.

Thoroughly rinse the substrate and decorations, then let them dry in the sun. Before putting them back into the aquarium, put them in some water; if they still stink you may want to consider replacing all of it.

After the aquarium is set up, run all the accessories just as you will when it has fish again, and add some Tetra safe start or a similar formulation containing live bacteria. Feed the growing bacteria a small pinch of fish food every other day, and wait.

When ammonia and nitrite concentrations stay at zero and nitrate is well below 40 ppm, the cycle is working. At that time, add a few fish, and start changing 25 percent of the water every week. The aquarium may smell a bit like fish, but it will not stink if you feed no more than the fish eat in a couple of minutes and avoid overcrowding.

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butterfly angel avatar
3 years ago #7
butterfly angel
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Thanx, I think im going to leave it alone for a few weeks and see what happens. Cause the day after i posted this the water stopped smelling, but the next day it smelling bad again, but not as bad. Not sure whats going on, but we will see in a few weeks, if no better ill try cleaning it like you said. Thank you all :-

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GarryJ avatar
3 years ago #8
GarryJ
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Hi Butterfly Angel

After you added water, what else did you add to tank?

Did you add a Ammonia source to get the cycle happening?

Cheers

Gaz

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 avatar
2 years ago #9
cat of jade
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Hi I got a used fish tank recently and it smelled pretty bad, I wiped the inside down with white vinegar, straight, no water added, and then rinsed well. At first the odor got MUCH worse and then it gradually went away, and by the next day it was dry and smelled like...nothing! which was GREAT!! So, I hope this helps!!

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