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Old 06-24-2010, 11:38 PM
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Default enough hydroton?

Hey,

I finally found hydroton!!! I sweared I looked so many places before finally finding it. I bought 3 bags which I found later was 30L.

My tank is a 150gal and its the same footprint as a standard 125 gal. It looks to be about 2 inch's deep with the 30L in there. Should I buy 2 or 3 more bags or is that enough?

thanks,Matt
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Old 06-25-2010, 12:18 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

If there is no false bottom I usually go about 3 to 4 inches as the substrate seems to sink into the hydroton over time, even on plastic canvas. 2 inches doesn't give you a lot of depth if water builds up in the bottom.
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Old 06-25-2010, 01:36 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

economically, I'd keep the hydroton you have and create a false bottom. It'll be cheaper up front and in the long run. If you have about 2" of hydroton and the ground inside is "level" you could make the false bottom, slap some screen over it, silicone the edges of the screen to the tank, add the hydroton, then the substrate material "soil". That way you'll have more than adequate drainage for plants and if you create a siphon tube you can do water changes quite easily if you feel the need. I always liked the false bottoms, I feel that all the extra water at the bottom helps keep the temps more stable. Good luck and if you wanna shell out the cash for hydroton, instead of the false bottom, go for it. I just like spending my loot on frogs, not material. But that's just my opinion.
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Old 06-26-2010, 11:14 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

It depends on how much you water and how often you need to siphon out the tank. LECA does tend to wick up standing water and can make the substrate damp. IMO, this would be a good reason to add a couple more inches. If you want to make a pond, you can pull back some of the LECA and use landscape cloth to hold it in place.
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Old 06-26-2010, 08:29 PM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Ok well my tank is predrilled. I took a summersible pump and placed it at the bottom of the tank in the hydroton. I basically can pump water out whenever I want.

I really would prefer to stay away from the false bottom. I will probably get another 20-30l of hydroton if its needed......

I do not plan to have a water feature in this tank or any large ponds.

Also I'm trying to understand how hydroton works...Basically it absorbs water from the soil so the soil does not become swampy right? My other question, the more hydroton I have the faster it pulls water from the soil? If I can pump access water out do I still need a lot more hydroton?

thanks,Matt
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Old 06-27-2010, 12:24 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

C'mon I need to be educated on this
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Old 06-28-2010, 12:44 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

please......
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Old 06-28-2010, 02:29 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Ok ok..

Hydroton is porous, so it does absorb water. I don't think it is porous enough to draw moisture from the substrate. It does pull water up from the bottom, so that the substrate stays moist. So when using hydroton, you want to make certain that the water level is below the substrate, or it will be soaked from the water wicking up from the hydroton.

The water in the bottom of the tank comes from running through the substrate when you mist, not from the hydroton sucking it down.

I used hydroton in all but one of my tanks. For me, it's easier. I also mix a bit in with my substrate to keep it, um, airy for microfauna.
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Old 06-28-2010, 04:06 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

I have a pump that I can use at any time. I can drain everyday.
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Old 06-28-2010, 06:47 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by liveforthis View Post
Ok well my tank is predrilled. I took a summersible pump and placed it at the bottom of the tank in the hydroton. I basically can pump water out whenever I want.

I really would prefer to stay away from the false bottom. I will probably get another 20-30l of hydroton if its needed......

I do not plan to have a water feature in this tank or any large ponds.

Also I'm trying to understand how hydroton works...Basically it absorbs water from the soil so the soil does not become swampy right? My other question, the more hydroton I have the faster it pulls water from the soil? If I can pump access water out do I still need a lot more hydroton?

thanks,Matt
A hydroton drainage layer serves the same purpose as an egg crate false bottom. It's used to raise your substrate off the bottom of the tank to keep it out of any standing water that may accumulate. A drainage layer (whether it's hydroton, gravel, or whatever else) works not by absorbing water from the substrate, but by creating space for the water to seep down into.

2 inches of hydroton is plenty in your case since you don't have a pond/water feature. There's no point in going much more IMO, you'll only be wasting tank space.
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Old 06-29-2010, 02:21 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

If hydroton is nothing more than drainage how come people don't just use gravel???
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Old 06-29-2010, 02:29 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by liveforthis View Post
If hydroton is nothing more than drainage how come people don't just use gravel???
because gravel is HEAVY! If you ever need to move the tank the use of hydroton will save a lot of weight. Gravel is fine to use otherwise.
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Old 06-29-2010, 02:35 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

damn.....I used to have 250lbs of live rock in there so I'm getting gravel lol.


Thanks for the help everyone. Time to start on ventilation....I'm sure I'll have more questions for that.
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Old 06-29-2010, 02:36 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JL-Exotics View Post
because gravel is HEAVY! If you ever need to move the tank the use of hydroton will save a lot of weight. Gravel is fine to use otherwise.
With a vivarium his size weight is going to be a given, especially if it is a glass tank. I highly doubt that he will be able to move it when it is full. And seeing as it used to be a reef tank if Im not mistaken, then I'm sure that weight isn't that much of an issue. Wouldn't you agree?
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Old 06-29-2010, 02:37 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

He posted right as I was typing lol.
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Old 06-29-2010, 03:11 AM
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Default Re: enough hydroton?

Yea its glass, 1/2" thick....It weighs like 500lbs without anything in it. I will never move it again God willing.....
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