Turtles are one of the best animals you can have as a pet. They have distinct demeanors that make them entertaining to watch and care for. While most turtle species are low-maintenance pets, they can live for a long time, making them a lifelong commitment. While caring for them, it is best to provide a clean and suitable environment for your pet turtle to thrive and grow old in.
If you’re thinking about getting a pet turtle, this is the article for you! This article will teach you the best way to clean a turtle tank.
Best way to clean a turtle tank
The best way to clean a turtle tank is to remove your turtle, remove decorative pieces, drain tank, use solution, and return your turtle.
Step 1. Remove your turtle
Place your turtle in a small temporary tank after removing it from the tank you are about to clean. Simply fill the small, temporary tank with water and place a small rock in it for your turtle to bask in while its home is being cleaned.
Step 2. Remove any decorative pieces
If your turtle tank has any decorations, make sure you remove them so that you can thoroughly clean the tank. These decorations will also include any rocks and pebbles you may have, as well as any plants you may have. All of these items can be placed on a table that is out of reach to any other pets you may have around.
If you have large decorations, you may also want to give additional spot cleaning to them with a rag that is slightly damp.
Step 3. Drain the tank
Take the tank to a location that can be easily drained, such as a bathtub or a yard. Drain all existing water and refill it to about a quarter tank full to clean the tank. Pour the water again and repeat the process five times, or until the water is much cleaner than when you started.
If you need help on setting up your tank, check out my article on how much water should be in turtle tank.
Step 4. Use a cleaning solution
You can use a cleaning solution to clean your tank thoroughly. You can make your own by combining 0.1 L of chlorine bleach and 3.8L of water, or 0.1L of distilled white vinegar and 3.8L of water.
When cleaning in your backyard, be cautious because these cleaning solutions may harm the grass or other plant life. You can get a plant-friendly cleaning solution from any pet store if you want. Cleaning the tank with a very dilute warm water bleach solution can aid in the elimination of bacteria.
Scrub the tank thoroughly with a rough rag. Clean all of the corners and any gaps. Scrub the bottom of the tub as well. Allow the tank to sit for ten minutes before rinsing it with water and allowing it to dry for a few hours. Pour vinegar on the affected glass to cover any hard water stains in your tank.
Allow it to sit for 10 to 20 minutes before scrubbing with a cloth. If you can’t remove it with a cloth, try gently scraping the scale away from only the glass panels with a razor blade or algae scraper.
After cleaning the tank, begin cleaning the decors, filters, and heaters as well. Rinse everything thoroughly and make sure there is no lingering odor. Allow the filters, heater, and decorations to dry while you dry the tank’s exterior with a towel.
If your tank has excessive algae growth or mold, check out my article on what to do if you find mold in your turtle tank.
You can also explore some of the best algae eaters that can live with turtles.
Step 5. Refill the tank
After your tank has been thoroughly cleaned, the next step is to refill it. Remember that warm water is preferable to cold water for turtles. Replace the filters and heaters and return the container to its original location.
Place all of the decorations and try to replicate the original arrangement. Not doing this may cause your turtle’s mind to become disoriented. Fill the tank with water and dechlorinate to ensure no chlorine is in the water that could harm the turtle.
Check the water temperature once more before putting your turtle back in the tank. The temperature should be between 21 and 26 degrees Celsius. The water should also be tested for chemical substances. Purchase a testing kit from your local pet store or from Amazon to test for chemical substances. If you use tap water, make sure to condition it. This can help prevent brown algae on your aquarium glass.
You can also mix in some salt to keep the bacteria at bay to add even more protection. For one gallon of water, use one teaspoon of non-iodized salt.
Put your turtle back in its tank once it has been thoroughly cleaned and returned to its original state, and reward it with some tasty worms for its patience!
After placing your turtle back in the tank, monitor it very closely for the first 5 minutes. You want to make sure that they are comfortable and that nothing looks out of sorts!
The frequency of your cleaning depends on a few factors. To learn more, check out my article on how often to clean a turtle tank.