The frequency in which one should clean their fish tank is largely dependent on the type of aquarium and the fish inside it. There are really no hardcore rules about how often you should clean your fish tank. As an owner, have an ideal of all the factors that went in to building the tank in the first place, and that will give you a scope of how often you should clean your tank whether its weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or even longer.
Even though cleaning your fish tank may seem like a daunting task, it’s actually quite simple and easy to do. Here are some general guidelines for how often you should clean your tank that will help you create a cleaning schedule that meets your needs. First, you don’t have to have to clean your tank daily unless it’s truly necessary or something dies causing toxic waste. If you wish to clean your tank every day go right ahead, but it’s not necessary. Also don’t worry about over cleaning the tank unless you have sea critters that thrive off the waste of other fish. Occasionally drastic changes in water do take place, so be sure to make daily observations of your tank to make sure partial water change is not required. If your fish look stressed or sluggish, you may need to clean your tank right away. If you have a large, well established tank you should clean your tank on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. A water change should be done to the keep the tank clean and the fish happy. Depending on the type of filter you use for the tank, you may be able to get away with cleaning the tank once per month.
Water changes are important when you are cleaning your tank because it controls the levels of toxins that are present in the water. When a fish’s waste rots, it releases ammonia into the water which can cause a variety of health problems for your fish. The ammonia also becomes a nitrate as bacteria break it down which creates a pH imbalance and is also one of the reasons why the water needs changing. Cleaning your tank and changing your water is important because it cleans everything you can’t see that can be harmful to your fish. At least once a month you should use an aquarium vacuum to clean the gravel and a sponge or scraper to remove excess algae from the sides of the tank. In addition, you should also test the ammonia, nitrate, and pH levels and keep a log to make sure they are steady from month to month. Double-check all filters and pumps to make sure they are in good working condition and do not require cleaning or maintenance. Finally, once or twice a year you should unplug and remove all equipment to inspect and clean it as necessary. This includes light fixtures, pumps, filters and anything else you use to keep your tank going.
Try to avoid any deep cleaning as it disrupts the equilibrium of the tank. The only time a deep cleaning should take place is if a disease outbreaks and cannot be controlled by any means. A regular cleaning schedule and water changes will prevent you from having to do this. Cleaning your fish tank may not be the ideal chore, but it’s something we all must do as fish owners. Your fish deserve to live in an environment that is clean and healthy just like you. With the right equipment and a regular cleaning schedule, your tank will remain clean and your fish will be happy.