I have had my Aquarium now for over 16 months and I love it now every much as I did then. I am fascinated by fish and spend many hours simply watching them as they weave their way around the tank. Inside my aquarium which is now considered to be well and truly established, I have a host of tropical fish - Dalmatian Mollies, Red Tetra Fish, Leopard Fish, Loaches and a few Albino fish which have bright orange fins. Added to that we also have red crabs who are quite comical but live quite happily alongside the fish already in the tank and my beloved Plecco. Then, alongside some glow in the dark bright orange gravel, living plants and a few ornaments there is a lot going on in there and whilst I am strict about the cleaning of the tank and stick to the rules there are always other things you need to consider and one of them is algae.
Algae grows in the water of your fish tank, most people recognise it because it turns everything green and leaves leave looking stains on your ornaments. However, algae is not just green it can also be black, brown and red. Keeping the algae at bay is one thing you need to ensure whenever you have fish in a tank that you keep it under control and you can do this in so many ways starting with changing the water regularly, restricting the amount of light that goes into your tank, buying algae eating fish and so on. As well as that, you also need to be away that algae does also grow on the glass or plastic of your tank and this is when you can see green dots appearing, usually in corners of your tank where you might not immediately spot it, at the foot of your tank which you might also not notice due to your gravel or stones, but as soon as you do spot it, you need to do everything you can to get rid of it and keep it under control because as well as being harmful to your fish, it also looks pretty nasty.
To combat Algae in my aquarium I have what is called a 'Mag-float Magi-Clean Floating Algae Magnet' which comes in two parts and the magnets on each section work together to control the algae. However, that alone isn't perfect, it does keep your glass clean and it does remove stains and algae from living on your glass but every so often there are those stains which need a little more of a nudge and a budge to remove them. So at my local marine centre, I ask them to recommend a product to me that they use to keep their aquariums algae free and the product that was suggested is the "Tetratec GS 45" which to you and I is simply an Aquarium Glass Scraper.
The box this product is sold in quite clearly displays the Tetratec logo on the top and is itself quite a big box at approximately 45 cm in length and about 8cm wide. On the box is a picture of the Glass Scraper, which you will find inside along with two blades. Taking out the glass scraper you find that it is already put together. It has a black handle which again has the words 'Tetratec' written in white and green writing and at the top of the handle is a small hole which allows you to hand the item on the wall. The handle is circular in design and made of a shiny black plastic and should you drop it into your tank (which happens) it simply floats. Then there is the bright green stick which is about as thick as a normal pencil you would use and it is made of fibre glass making it appear much stronger than it looks. Then at the bottom is the actual scraper part, designed again in black plastic and there are two white buttons on this part which you use to attach and remove the blade. Once you squeeze both white buttons together, it releases a white coloured hard plastic rectangle shaped block which prevents the joints of your aquarium from being damaged during cleaning, simply attaching the blade to this black and then clipping it back into place on the scraper, the blade itself curves slightly making it easier to clean your glass. I would however at this stage highlight how important it is to handle the blades because they are so sharp that I managed to cut my finger open so badly it needed stitches, so this is definitely an object that needs to be kept out of reach of children and pets, which is why I would never store it anywhere on a wall, because it is so sharp and potentially dangerous. Instead mine is wrapped two layers of bubble wrap which has elastic bands around it so prevent any harm when picking it up, which again is something to do with caution if you choose to store it in its box, make a note of which way up you store it and open the box and look you are grabbing the right end and not the bladed end to use it.
So, once you have managed to put the blade on correctly you are ready to begin using it. Keeping the scraper part flat against the glass, you simply run the blade up and down the glass in a vertical motion, scrubbing the glass clean and you can see the blade remove the algae from the glass and then the white plastic block to which it is attached then also comes into action by adding a little extra pressure on algae that is a little more difficult to remove by loosening it. All the while you are doing this, you need to ensure that your fish are nowhere near you because one flick of the blade could have horrid consequences; naturally fish are nosey creatures so they will initially swim towards the scraper to see what it is. As you move the scraper around the glass, you should see how quick and effective it is at removing the algae and cleaning your tank should only take a few minutes if you clean it on a regular basis, if you are using the scraper for the first time then it might take a good deal longer, again depending on how much algae you have on your tank and how dirty it is.
I use this scraper at least once a week, more for my own piece of mind and I use it as part of my aquarium cleaning and I also ensure that I have some fresh water to hand, which is tested using testing strips, ready to go into my tank, sticking to exchanging a third of the water every 10 or so days.
This glass scraper retails at around £6.99 which is what I paid for it and it did come with two extra blades. In order to get the best job our of your glass cleaner and scraper, you need to ensure that you are using a sharp blade every time, so I change my blade after every 3-4 times of using and if I am not happy with the cleaning it is doing, then I change it. The blades can be bought separately and cost around £2.99 for a pack of two.
It is an effective piece of kit, it does remove algae from your glass with minimum effort, especially in those hard to reach places or most popular places in your tank, perhaps where your fish tend to congregate the most and it is easy to use. But again you need to take extra care with the blade because they are sharp and think about storing the item especially if you have young children. On the whole I am really happy with it and will continue to use it as I have been doing.
To clean aquarium glass. With replacement blades