Bricks in an aquarium?

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
I bought a 40 gallon breeder tank for Jacques' upgrade.
The filter, a Fluval 206 says never to let the water level fall more than 7 inches down from the rim. Well, from the rim to the tank bottom is 16.5 inches. I WAS only going to keep 4-5 inches of water in it, since Jacques is such a poor swimmer (and has had a near drowning already). But in order to use this filter, I'll have to keep her in water AT LEAST 9 inches deep for the filter to work. :(

I'm planning on a LOT of "furniture" and mid-water platforms for her, but could I add say, 8 bricks to the bottom of the tank and not risk breaking it?
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
54,485
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
If you set them in carefully it won't break. Water weighs about as much as a brick, so the tank should be strong enough to hold it. A layer of sand of fine gravel under it can also help disperse the weight if you are worried.

Due to the help of the siphoning action, I'll bet your canister will work just fine at whatever water depth you want, as long as the canister is lower than the tank.
 

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
89,049
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
The only worry I would have would be whatever compounds leech out of the brick.
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
The only worry I would have would be whatever compounds leech out of the brick.

Yeah, me too: they’re old bricks, some with the mortar remnants attached.
So I might buy new ones, if I decide to try them
 

Markw84

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
4,425
Location (City and/or State)
Sacramento, CA (Central Valley)
I'll give my two cents worth...

Bricks weigh roughly 2.5 X what water weighs. However, that should not be a strength issue for an aquarium if it is not moved with everything in place.

The Fluval filters can have a problem priming if they have to raise water more than about 7" on the suction side. Once running they will do OK, but if any air gets into the suction, or it looses prime somehow, it will run dry and cannot maintain suction.

The bricks would also create lost of areas for debris to get trapped. It could give you problems with high nitrates eventually like you had with the sand.

The bricks, if concrete bricks, will also leach out and increase your water hardness and Ph substantially. If clay bricks, then you will not have that issue. You would have that with mortar, though.

You can get a hole cut in the side of the aquarium, and overcome the height issue.
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
I'll give my two cents worth...

Bricks weigh roughly 2.5 X what water weighs. However, that should not be a strength issue for an aquarium if it is not moved with everything in place.

The Fluval filters can have a problem priming if they have to raise water more than about 7" on the suction side. Once running they will do OK, but if any air gets into the suction, or it looses prime somehow, it will run dry and cannot maintain suction.

The bricks would also create lost of areas for debris to get trapped. It could give you problems with high nitrates eventually like you had with the sand.

The bricks, if concrete bricks, will also leach out and increase your water hardness and Ph substantially. If clay bricks, then you will not have that issue. You would have that with mortar, though.

You can get a hole cut in the side of the aquarium, and overcome the height issue.

WAIT: CUT A HOLE IN THE AQUARIUM??!?!?!
Do you mean so the intake hose can go through it at a lower level????[emoji54]
 

Markw84

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
4,425
Location (City and/or State)
Sacramento, CA (Central Valley)
WAIT: CUT A HOLE IN THE AQUARIUM??!?!?!
Do you mean so the intake hose can go through it at a lower level????[emoji54]
Yes Just need a diamond hole saw. I have some, but its easy to have a glass shop do it if you have one close by that does it's own work. Some glass shops don't do work themselves, just have it done by a larger wholesale shop.
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
Yes Just need a diamond hole saw. I have some, but its easy to have a glass shop do it if you have one close by that does it's own work. Some glass shops don't do work themselves, just have it done by a larger wholesale shop.

Our neighbor works at a glass shop!!!
This may be my answer!!!!![emoji2][emoji2][emoji2][emoji2]
THANKS!!!!
 

DE42

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
1,705
I like the drilled out idea but I'll submit another option because I've used this before and liked it.
This canister has the motor in the tank so it can work at a much lower level and you don't have to have the tank drilled.
Screenshot_20180331-141842.jpg
It is a cheeper filter but I've never had issues with mine.
 

mark1

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2015
Messages
1,371
Location (City and/or State)
ohio
all some good ideas ....... I use clay bricks under the bottom gravel plates in the aquariums for the hatchlings after they've outgrown the Tupperware containers ....... I believe 10-12 bricks , it raises the bottom about 8 inches under the plate which gives an added 40 gallons of water , and I can still keep the water depth above the bottom at 4-5 inches which gives me about 64 gallons versus 24 gallons ..... I find it easier to maintain larger volumes of water than smaller ........ the tanks are 48x24x24 , the bottom area 48x 24 holds 10-12 bricks , at least 50lbs gravel along with another 30-40lbs of sandstone , they've been up for decades , they have never leaked ..... I never really thought about it , but seems aquarium bottoms can support a lot of weight , I guess if one ever broke on me i'd have given it more thought ........

 

wellington

Well-Known Member
Moderator
10 Year Member!
Tortoise Club
Joined
Sep 6, 2011
Messages
40,488
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
One of the main things to consider when having an aquarium is the stand. A good stand that supports the whole bottom is less likely to break down due to weight and leak or break.
As for bricks, I have used them for cichlid fish with no problems.
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
Thanks EVERYONE for LOTS of great ideas![emoji2][emoji173]️
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
I like the drilled out idea but I'll submit another option because I've used this before and liked it.
This canister has the motor in the tank so it can work at a much lower level and you don't have to have the tank drilled.
View attachment 234801
It is a cheeper filter but I've never had issues with mine.

That's pretty cool!
Since I already bought my filter a while back, I'm going to try the drilled idea.
I've emailed Aqueon (makers of the tank) to ask if the whole tank is tempered glass or just the bottom. If the whole thing is tempered, I won't be able to get it drilled.
If that's the case, I'll look at this in-tank canister!!!!
Thanks bunches!!!! :):<3:
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
Well, looks like a slight change of plans.
Aqueon replied to my question and said the back wall of the aquarium might or might not be tempered glass- it all just depends on which glass was most available when it was being assembled. They can't guarantee either way. Good to know!

My neighbor who has worked for a glass company for years, says the thing they use for drilling holes is large and would probably end up damaging the aquarium, even if the glass wasn't tempered.

SO: I'm pondering on a SUBMERSIBLE filter like DE42 suggested. Any other experience or opinions on submersible filters?
The tank is 36" long, 18" wide and the water will be less than 6" deep, so the TOTAL water volume moving is 2.25 cubic feet.
It'll be for a mud turtle, probably some guppies and some ghost shrimp.
@Markw84 @mark1 @cdmay @Tom @wellington and anybody else with experience?:)
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
If you set them in carefully it won't break. Water weighs about as much as a brick, so the tank should be strong enough to hold it. A layer of sand of fine gravel under it can also help disperse the weight if you are worried.

Due to the help of the siphoning action, I'll bet your canister will work just fine at whatever water depth you want, as long as the canister is lower than the tank.
Tom: If I fill the tank HIGH when I clean it, start the filter up and let it run a bit, then siphon it down to the level I need- do you think that would work out ok? I'm worried about straining my pump if I don't follow the maker's instructions.
 

wellington

Well-Known Member
Moderator
10 Year Member!
Tortoise Club
Joined
Sep 6, 2011
Messages
40,488
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
IMG_3092.PNG IMG_3093.PNG IMG_3094.PNG I have only used pond submersible filters, the box style.
Have you searched for an actual turtle tank? One side is cut out shorter for hanging filters because of having smaller depths of water. Not sure how big they make them though.
If they don't make them big enough, you could probably special order it through an aquarium/fish specialty store.
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
54,485
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Tom: If I fill the tank HIGH when I clean it, start the filter up and let it run a bit, then siphon it down to the level I need- do you think that would work out ok? I'm worried about straining my pump if I don't follow the maker's instructions.
Yes I do think it would work. You could also start a siphon the old fashioned way, by mouth. I sometimes use a powerhead to shoot water into the intake hose of the canister and get it running that way. Once you get a siphon going, it should run just fine.
 

wellington

Well-Known Member
Moderator
10 Year Member!
Tortoise Club
Joined
Sep 6, 2011
Messages
40,488
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Tom: If I fill the tank HIGH when I clean it, start the filter up and let it run a bit, then siphon it down to the level I need- do you think that would work out ok? I'm worried about straining my pump if I don't follow the maker's instructions.
The problem with that. If anything interrupts the siphon, it will not start up again. Fine if your always home to catch it.
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
54,485
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
The problem with that. If anything interrupts the siphon, it will not start up again. Fine if your always home to catch it.
True, but that is the case with any canister filter in any usage situation. Don't see how its any different for this application.
 

Moozillion

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Messages
10,541
Location (City and/or State)
Louisiana, USA
Yes I do think it would work. You could also start a siphon the old fashioned way, by mouth. I sometimes use a powerhead to shoot water into the intake hose of the canister and get it running that way. Once you get a siphon going, it should run just fine.
Thanks, Tom!:)
 
Top