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Tearing Out an Aquarium Overflow Box – Part 2


Continuing on from a previous post, here is the rest of the story.

Taking out the bulk heads was not as bad as I thought. I ended up turning them in place which broke the silicone free. I used a large set of adjustable pliers to turn the bulk head nuts while holding on to the center portion of the bulk head. Then I scraped off the old silicone with a razor blade and some alcohol and applied the new silicone/glass patch.

Cleaning out a fish tank

I probably look kind of funny on a 6 foot ladder halfway in a fish tank. The vacuum has come in really handy to pull out all kinds of stuff in the tank. 🙂

Top side of the bulkhead before removal

Top side of the bulkhead before removal. Scraping all of the silicone off wasn’t fun.

Bottom side of the bulkhead before removal

Bottom side of the bulkhead before removal

2 inch aquarium bulk head

2″ Bulkhead

2 inch and 3/4 inch bulk heads removed

2″ and 3/4″ bulkheads removed, oh joy!

Cleaning up the glass, removing silicone

Cleaning up the glass, removing silicone

Covering the holes in the fish tank

I had a piece of the old glass cut to cover the two bulkhead holes.

Silicone around the aquarium holes

Silicone around the holes

Adding a bit of silicone around the edge of the glass cover

Adding a bit of silicone around the edge of the glass cover

Gluing down the tank patch

Gluing down the patch with silicone

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Tearing Out an Aquarium Overflow Box


After moving the tank and having one of the bulk head fitting break on me, I decided to remove one of my aquarium’s overflow boxes. This was not a fun process and took me a couple days of contorting into strange positions on a ladder. My hands and fingers were not happy!

Armed with 100 razor blades, a box cutter, and a few other razor blade type instruments I started in. Here are a few photos as progress was made.

Taking Out an Overflow 1

First I removed the front piece of glass as it was the easiest to get to.

Taking Out an Aquarium Overflow 2

The bio-balls were packed in there pretty tight. After a year or so of having the tank up I tried to get them out but I couldn’t reach to the bottom.

Taking Out an Aquarium Overflow 3

Bio-balls removed and now to cut the PVC with the saws-all.

Taking Out an Aquarium Overflow 4 - Razor Blade

The skinnier blade of the two razor knives I had worked the best when cutting between the two pieces of glass, but it broke more often.

Taking Out a Fish Tank Overflow with Razor Blade Box Cutter

It was a tight fit!

Taking Out a Glass Overflow Box 6

Left side off.

Taking Out an Saltwater Overflow Box 7

Same process on the right side.

Taking Out an Aquarium Overflow 8

Overflow box removed. Now I just need to pull the bulk heads out and glue a piece of glass over the holes.

Taking Out an Overflow 9

Should have a nice(r) view from the exposed right side of the tank.

Skimmer Collection Cup Overflowing Because of Filter Pads


Last week a strange thing happened when I was changing my filter pads.  My Reef Octopus Skimmer’s collection cup began to overflow after I changed out the filter pads.  This week I thought I would film the process to see if it happened again… it did.  I use Marine Depot’s Emperor Aquatics Super Filter Felt 50 micron pads for small particles and Lifegard Aquatics Bonded (blue) Filter Pads for large particles. I think that one, or both, of the pads actually increase the water’s surface tension temporarily when added to the system.  The increased surface tension would keep the skimmer’s bubbles from popping. When it happened last week I turned the recirculating skimmer pumps off to see if the water level was running high, but it was normal. Must be the pads.

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