It is easy to get excited when you establish your first fish aquarium. You may assume it is an easy task and that it will probably take just a few hours to set it up.
You may feel it is quite an easy task to clean the new tank just simply by rinsing it with tap water, fill it with
gravel and sand, top it up with water, put some live plants, fix the lighting and install the filter.
Believe it or not, sooner or later the aquarium will start to look grubby due to building up of algae and debris particles and that is when the real work begins. Any sort of task involving cleaning and caring of your pet fish is usually last on the to-do list. If your aquarium looks unsightly and dirty, you will need to clean it.
Your fish will fall sick or even die if you do not make it a point to maintain it on a regular basis. If you are busy then a self-cleaning fish tank can help you to save time.
Unless your tank is in extremely bad condition, it is not necessary for you to dismantle it completely and to start all over again. Total re-hauling of the fish tank will diminish all the aquatic beneficial bacterial colonies that break down the waste produced in your aquarium.
Clean your aquarium in the order of sequence as follow namely the inside glass follow by decorations such as rocks and plants, gravel, outside glass and fixture and finally the filter.
One important mistake that you must avoid is cleaning the filter too soon after you have done with everything else in the tank. You should wait for at least two weeks before doing so.
Though the earlier major cleanings will have upset the bacterial colonies in the aquarium, the ecological system remains in balance because a significant number of the beneficial bacteria still reside within the media filter.
Cleaning the filter too soon after everything else will cause an ammonia spike due to insufficient beneficial bacteria to eliminate toxins that are harmful to the fish.
Use a filter brush to clear out the sludge that builds up in the small crevices of filter parts such as the tubing. Change the filter media every three weeks if it contains carbon ammonia absorbers or ion-exchange resins. You can leave some of the old filter media behind to repopulate the bacterial colonies.