Cyclic Tasks: Cleaning the Glass

This article is part of the “Cyclic tasks” series, intended for beginner aquarists who are looking for the basics of running a saltwater aquarium, or for those who are considering setting up a tank and want to understand the amount of work involved.

In the article What work on the aquarium should be done periodically you’ll find a complete list of tasks, along with links to articles that expand on individual topics.

The topic of regular glass cleaning may seem trivial, but it’s worth explaining a few small things that will allow you to enjoy your marine aquarium longer. Improper cleaning of the glass can cause a number of scratches on the glass and other problems.


How often you need to clean the glass depends on how dirty it is, which in turn depends on the biological and chemical factors in the aquarium. If there are more minerals in the system or we feed the animals more abundantly, cleaning the glass will be necessary on a daily basis. In a well-maintained, stable tank, this will be done every few days.


To clean the glass, we use: magnetic cleaners, scrapers, and less often sponges or brushes.

We should clean the windows so that sand does not get under the cleaner, because sand will scratch the glass. There are cleaners on the market that minimize this risk by reducing the contact area of the cleaner to three points: two points on the cleaner and one on the knife.

The second important thing is to guide the cleaner or scraper so as not to damage the silicone of the aquarium. Places near silicone, especially transparent ones, should be cleaned with a brush. You can use a regular toothbrush.

After finishing the work, I suggest taking the magnetic cleaner out of the water, washing everything, wiping and putting it away in one place. During subsequent works, we should make sure that nothing rusts. Do not use rusting tools.


A seemingly simple topic, but see how many details we should pay attention to? Even glass cleaning in a marine aquarium is a process that needs to be learned to be done properly. 

About the author

Picture of Marek Protasewicz

Marek Protasewicz

Reefkeeping has been my passion for over 10 years now. I love learning. The hobby has taught me many valuable lessons, patience being the best example.
Combining work and passion is my path. I run Crazy Coral, a marine aquarium shop, for a number of years. Building this business from the scratch I learnt from my own mistakes at a heavy cost.
Later I managed a project aimed at development of methods for quick growth of Corals in non-natural conditions. The project was carried out by Get Sales, Poland.
Presently, I am responsible for distribution strategy at Reef Factory, of which I am a
co-founder. The company produces smart devices for marine aquaristics.
The last projects I have been involved in are Social Reef and ReefPedia.

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