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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went to look and enjoy at my 110 gallon tank after setting it up a month ago. To my surprise, I notice water leaking out through the silicone bout 5 inches down from the top. Looked down and notice a puddle of water on my floor. Damm, not again. Quickly drained the water. After draining the water, I looked at the area where it was leaking and notice lots of air bubbles in the silicone from the top to half way down. I looked at all the other three corners and they seem fine. Just this corner for some reason.
So can I just cut the silicone off and reseal it from the inside. Just wondering how I would get silicone in between the glass which is only 1mm thick. Thank you in advance.
 

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Depends on the purpose of the silicone I guess. If you are just worried about the leak, then cutting out the old silicone and putting new one on on the inside is fine (make sure not to cut through the silicone you are keeping though). However if you are worried about the structural integrity of the tank then you'll have to dig out the 1mm silicone and redo it. But from the way you are describing it, I'm not sure you need to worry about the structure. How deep is the tank?

There are lots of threads on this forum on the type of silicone to use, but I think most people use the GE Silicone I. This is the one I used as well when my tank started leaking. When I did it I dug out most of the silicone, because it was in such crappy condition that i could scrape it off with a chopstick....
 

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I would suggest resealing the whole tank as opposed to a patch job I just resealed my 50 gal (http://www.bcaquaria.com/forum/tank-journals-16/my-50g-project-phase-1-resealing-3679/) recently & while researching best ways to do it, it came to be my understanding that new silicone will not bond to old silicone properly. Better safe than sorry I always say. Getting the old stuff out isn't too bad of a job really & IMO is the best route to go for assurance. Need any help or tips just holler lol And GE Silicone I is the correct stuff to use. DO NOT use GE Silicone II as it has harmful toxins that will leech into the water
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm a little bumb out right now. I don't even want to look at my tank. I just finished setting my tank up and this happens. I spent lot of time building my own stand, buying new lighting, new plants, new substrate, co2,etc. Now, I might have to take it all down. I know the proper way of doing it is to take everything down and resilicone it but if i can repair just the section it was leaking from, it would be better but there is no 100% gaurantee. The tank is bout 22 inches deep and water has gotten between the 1 mm gap from the top to 10inches down so all that silicone needs to come out. So basically, it is a 10 inch leak. Do you think I would be able to get silicone through that 1mm gap? I feel like crying.
 

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I know the feeling ,can't let it bring you down as in the long run you'll find the satisfaction you worked so hard to achieve. I did pretty much all the same with my new tank, with the exception of the CO2 equip, except I used the wrong silicone when I resealed it (lesson well learned) and pretty much killed all my fish and a few plants, that so sucked :( I just about did cry was so frustrated and disappointed in myself as I usually research the crap out of things before doing or getting them . Thought it was other things causing the deaths, and finally came to the conclusion of what it really was. Things are much better in that tank now and I find extreme patience is a virtue. Which I am still lacking lol You could try to reseal the area , but I would suggest doing about 13-14" as opposed to the 10" in question. That way you know you'll be into a safer area of the seam where it isn't so close to the original leak and in an area where the older silicone already has a good bond , cut out the bad silicone with a razor knife. A sharp tip razor knife works good to clean that 1mm area out just try not to get down into the glue,then use a flat blade to clean whats left on the flat surface, vacuum the area out (if you can) with a shop vac, use rubbing alcohol (cleans and evaporates moisture) on a cloth to clean it real good,I do not suggest glass cleaner as it most likely has Ammonia in it. Dry the area with a blow dryer or/and let it sit for a day to assure all moisture is gone, before resealing. If you use tape for a nice clean line/bead, make sure to go a couple inches farther so you can overlap the remaining silicone with new silicone for a better bond between the two of them, press it in and smooth it with your finger, that should get it into the 1mm gap as well then pull the tape off slowly right after you have done that & then let it sit for atleast 48 hours or more before filling with water. you can do a google search for " resealing an aquarium " the first couple links are great for reference & explain better how to cut out the old stuff properly and thoroughly. I'm not an "expert" lol, this is just how I'd do it if it were me, hope it helps, good luck
 

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If you're going to try to shortcut the repari process, I would also recommend that you apply a layer of silicone on the outside seam so if water still gets through, the outside layer may keep your floors from getting wet or at least slow down the seepage.

BTW, wear disposable gloves when spreading silicone and it'll save you having to clean nasty silicone off your fingers. If you want the new silicone to look neat, then completely clean and dry the seam and glass on both sides, apply painter's tape to give you straight lines, then apply the silicone and spread with gloved finger. Leave for a few minutes and peel off tape before silicone sets. Add thick layer and extra wide for added protection.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I know the feeling ,can't let it bring you down as in the long run you'll find the satisfaction you worked so hard to achieve. I did pretty much all the same with my new tank, with the exception of the CO2 equip, except I used the wrong silicone when I resealed it (lesson well learned) and pretty much killed all my fish and a few plants, that so sucked :( I just about did cry was so frustrated and disappointed in myself as I usually research the crap out of things before doing or getting them . Thought it was other things causing the deaths, and finally came to the conclusion of what it really was. Things are much better in that tank now and I find extreme patience is a virtue. Which I am still lacking lol You could try to reseal the area , but I would suggest doing about 13-14" as opposed to the 10" in question. That way you know you'll be into a safer area of the seam where it isn't so close to the original leak and in an area where the older silicone already has a good bond , cut out the bad silicone with a razor knife. A sharp tip razor knife works good to clean that 1mm area out just try not to get down into the glue,then use a flat blade to clean whats left on the flat surface, vacuum the area out (if you can) with a shop vac, use rubbing alcohol (cleans and evaporates moisture) on a cloth to clean it real good,I do not suggest glass cleaner as it most likely has Ammonia in it. Dry the area with a blow dryer or/and let it sit for a day to assure all moisture is gone, before resealing. If you use tape for a nice clean line/bead, make sure to go a couple inches farther so you can overlap the remaining silicone with new silicone for a better bond between the two of them, press it in and smooth it with your finger, that should get it into the 1mm gap as well then pull the tape off slowly right after you have done that & then let it sit for atleast 48 hours or more before filling with water. you can do a google search for " resealing an aquarium " the first couple links are great for reference & explain better how to cut out the old stuff properly and thoroughly. I'm not an "expert" lol, this is just how I'd do it if it were me, hope it helps, good luck
Thank you for your input. I know the task is not hard but I'm so fustrated that I don't even want to look at it right now. This is my second leak. My first one was in my 50gallon tank and my home made co2 diffuser leaked after one month when i moved into my newly built home.( this diffuser was used in my old home for two years and it decides to leak in my new home) So the tank went into my garage and I had to rip out my brand new hardwood floor and replace a 10x10 section. My wife was not impressed and neither was I. This was last year and now I convinced my wife to set up this tank so my two little boys can enjoy it. I've been on this forum for a while now just learning and reading. Got to meet a few nice people. I'll take a day or two and just look at my half filled tank right now. Just thought I would share cause my wife doesn't want to hear it no more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I guess I should have read the other posts so as not to repeat:eek:
No problem. But i do have another question. If I do decide to redo the whole tank, do I need to take out the one piece of glass where the seam is leaking and redo two seam edges? I did do a search but everything I've seen is just resiliconing the inside of the tank.

 

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I guess I should have read the other posts so as not to repeat:eek:
Second opinions are always welcome & a good thing lol :)

Thank you for your input. I know the task is not hard but I'm so fustrated that I don't even want to look at it right now. This is my second leak. My first one was in my 50gallon tank and my home made co2 diffuser leaked after one month when i moved into my newly built home.( this diffuser was used in my old home for two years and it decides to leak in my new home) So the tank went into my garage and I had to rip out my brand new hardwood floor and replace a 10x10 section. My wife was not impressed and neither was I. This was last year and now I convinced my wife to set up this tank so my two little boys can enjoy it. I've been on this forum for a while now just learning and reading. Got to meet a few nice people. I'll take a day or two and just look at my half filled tank right now. Just thought I would share cause my wife doesn't want to hear it no more.
I totally understand your frustration & a couple days to refocus would probably be good, been there & done that lol. As for "Just thought I would share cause my wife doesn't want to hear it no more." I totally understand that as well. My girlfriend is the same way lol I start talking aquariums , she tunes me out and tunes into her Facebook stuff lol That has it's advantages too tho. Sux to hear about the other leak too , I've been lucky and not had any leaks.... YET(said with caution) lol Luckily I install flooring for a living, if it ever happens.
 

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when I do my silicone, I use a card (used my old air miles card). I cut one of the corners to the shape I want the silicone to look like on the tank. And than I start smoothing away. Be prepared for tons of paper towel though.

As for the 1mm section, if you make sure to keep 'behind' the silicone front, you should be able to get the silicone in without any air bubbles. What i mean is: you cut the silicone tube tip so that you have a small hole, and you can push that against the 1mm gap. Then when you start pushing the silicone out of the tube, the silicone will start spreadout sideways through the crack (as well as out of the gap. Wipe this off later). Then start moving the tip sideways slowly along the gap. If you go too fast, and get head of the silicone that's being pushed through the gap , you'll end up with a bubble in the gap. (I'm sorry if this sounds confusing... but it takes some patience to push the silicone into a gap that small without getting bubbles in it).
 

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But i do have another question. If I do decide to redo the whole tank, do I need to take out the one piece of glass where the seam is leaking and redo two seam edges? I did do a search but everything I've seen is just resiliconing the inside of the tank.
I don't get what you are asking.... when you say 'redo the whole tank' are you talking about ALL the seams (8 corners in total), or just that one (the 10" thing)?

Doing the outside just makes sure that you have redundancy...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I don't get what you are asking.... when you say 'redo the whole tank' are you talking about ALL the seams (8 corners in total), or just that one (the 10" thing)?

Doing the outside just makes sure that you have redundancy...
I thought where it is leaking, i would not do only 10inches but from top to bottom.(22inches). And since it might be hard to get the silicone in the 1 mm gap, i would cut and take out the one piece of glass. Resilicone the two seams and i guess i would have to redo the bottom seam too. ( three sides to the glass i need to silicone with three... 1mm seam.) So i would be doing three seams and doing the inside where i would have to tape and make a nice bead all around. Hope that make sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, I try cleaning the seam out with a olfa blade and the gap is less than 1mm. No way to clean the seam without taking the glass right out. Another set back. Any suggestion? Where is the cheapest to buy new tanks?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
um....is the guy from munster tank still selling the underwater repair glue? that may be an option.if he isnt selling anymore maybe a member will sell you some.

http://www.bcaquaria.com/forum/muns...tank-emergency-woes-amazing-polymer-glue-554/
That seems very interesting. But I think my problem now is structural cause my seam is seperated from the top to bout 10 inches down and is a 22 inches deep tank. That's half the depth with no seam bond. With the pre ssure of water full to the top, the pressure would be pretty high wanting to push out.
I'm no expert but I think if I just resilicone the inside of the tank, that would not be enough strength to hold back all that pressure. Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thank you.
 

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I personally wouldn't remove the entire plane of glass, unless you are equipped to do so (i.e. clamps, fine positioning...etc).

Is it on the front or the back? If it's somewhere not too visible then I would suggest siliconing just the inside, and then siliconing a backing piece (plasitc angle, http://www.indelco.com/images/product/icon/0601-1000.jpg) on the outside. If you get a big enough peice (1/2" x 1/2"), and silicone the entire angle to the corner, there should be enough surface area sililconed to ensure no leaks... And also provide structural integrity if you are worried.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well, since i could not get a blade in between the seams, I went to see what else i can use. I found some old metal shims that you use for shimming up the starters in small block chevys. I found one that is 1/64. It fit nice and snug. The silicone came off nicely cause it was saturated with water. I'll take it down to where it bonds. I attached a few pictures if anyone is interested. Not sure if I did it right.

IMG_7550 copy.jpg

IMG_7557 copy.jpg

IMG_7558 copy.jpg

IMG_7559 copy.jpg
 

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Oh, but that tank has the top piece (the black thing that prevents it from sprawling)?
If that's the case then I think putting an extra thick layer of silicone on the inside, and filling the gap as much as possible from the outside would be ok from a structural perspective (don't quote me on that). I still think taking the entire glass panel is excessive and possibly a bad idea.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
You are right. I think I will just do like you says. Plus the black trim is just a trim. It is actually four pieces silicone to the top of the glass. I would even feel more comfortable if the trim was one solid piece.
 
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