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Re: Bleach Solution

Blair Innes <binnes at wpog_childhosp.bc.ca> wrote:
> I'm setting up a 15 G plant tank and I'm trying to keep out the algae. I was
> told to dip the plant's in a 19:1 bleach solution. Since I don't have time to
> bleach all the plants at once, I was planning to do a couple every time I
> have a few extra minutes. So my question is this:

I hope that you are only putting sterile (bleached) plants into the new
tank. Otherwise, the algae on the other plants (even what you cannot
see) will only re-infect. Bleaching plants is pointless IMHO unless you
are setting up a clean tank. That also means bleaching the tank,
filters, ornaments and all. And using new soil and aquarium gravel. You
can bleach gravel but it took me months to get the bleach smell out of
it enough to re-use.

> How long can a 19:1 bleach solution be kept before the effectiveness is
> diminished? ie: does the bleach vent off after 24 hrs like the chlorine in
> the tap water does?

I keep my old solutions in a 2 litre pop bottle and use them again. Of
course, for a new tank, it's worth preparing a new mixture. 2 litres
should be enough to clean enough plants to fill a 50 gal tank or so. I
usually mix up a gallon at a time and then discard the excess and save 2
litres for odd jobs like cleaning nets. An open container of bleach
solution is a disaster waiting to happen. Wear your worst jeans and an
old T shirt you won't mind having spots on. The odd splash happens
pretty easy. When not in use, the 2 litre bottle is tightly capped.

Steve P also in wet Vancouver