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  1. #1
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    Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    My three bp's are kept in glass tanks with artificial grass as a substrate. They have hides and vines to climb on.
    It's time to clean and disinfect their homes and I am uncertain as to what is the safest cleaning material to use.
    Please remember I am in South Africa and not all cleaning products used overseas is available.
    Please advise what is recommended and should I include the vines in the cleaning process?

  2. #2
    BPnet Senior Member Zincubus's Avatar
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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Nel View Post
    My three bp's are kept in glass tanks with artificial grass as a substrate. They have hides and vines to climb on.
    It's time to clean and disinfect their homes and I am uncertain as to what is the safest cleaning material to use.
    Please remember I am in South Africa and not all cleaning products used overseas is available.
    Please advise what is recommended and should I include the vines in the cleaning process?
    Have a look for some F10 online ..
    It's used and recommended by vets .


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro




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  4. #3
    Registered User craigafrechette's Avatar
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    Absolutely everything inside the enclosure, including the enclosure and kid, should be cleaned when you do your through cleanings.

    Zincubus suggested F10, but if you can't get that where you're located a mild bleach solution works well. Use a ratio of 10% bleach and 90% water. Wash thoroughly and then dry. You can then wash again with just water. You want to make sure there is no trace of bleach odor left before putting your snake back in.
    White vinegar in the same ratio works too. Again, make sure there's no smell before putting the snake back in.
    ...life is beautiful...

    "Every man dies, not every man really lives"
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    "If I can't be my own, I'd feel better dead"
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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Thanks very much. Unfortunately F10 is not available here but mild bleach certainly is. Time to get cleaning. My wife will have to understand her hair dryer will be used to remove any smell.

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    craigafrechette (08-09-2018)

  8. #5
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    In addition to the bleach/vinegar solution, drying out the decor pieces including branches out in the sun is a good way to bake and dry out.

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    craigafrechette (08-09-2018)

  10. #6
    Registered User craigafrechette's Avatar
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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Nel View Post
    Thanks very much. Unfortunately F10 is not available here but mild bleach certainly is. Time to get cleaning. My wife will have to understand her hair dryer will be used to remove any smell.
    Hahaha, sounds good. A fan would do the trick as well if you don't want to use the hairdryer.
    ...life is beautiful...

    "Every man dies, not every man really lives"
    - Braveheart

    "If I can't be my own, I'd feel better dead"
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  11. #7
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    Do NOT use bleach on anything porous...never on wood, and the vines & cage carpet will be better off soaked with pure white vinegar. It's also perfect
    for not only cleaning but dissolving hard water stains in water bowls. Bleach smell is very hard (impossible) to remove from porous objects & will make them
    unusable for your snakes...their sense of smell is far more acute than ours, and think of them being stuck in a cage with the toxic fumes. I rarely use bleach-
    it has the most germ-killing power but it's over-kill unless you have a serious & contagious situation, or are disinfecting a used cage from another source (as in,
    "who knows what the cage's previous occupant died of?"). F10 is excellent for large operations (vet clinics, breeders of animals) but perhaps excessive if you
    only have a few pets. Another good product for routine use is chlorhexidine (brand name Nolvasan is way more expensive) and like F10, a little dilutes to a lot
    of product to spray & wipe cages. Neither F10 or chlorhexidine (when properly diluted for use) needs to be rinsed off, only wiped dry....you will waste a LOT
    more water trying to rinse bleach. And none of these products are harmless in the environment, let me add.

    So for me, least toxic + effective is white vinegar (you can use full strength, but must always be rinsed). I've tried F10 & Nolvasan, but I prefer chlorhexidine.
    I rarely need to use bleach, and remember, it will only rinse off glass...not so well off plastics, and not completely off wood or textured items.

    I used to live in desert southwest, and sun drying in hot sun is also helpful for cage decor. The main thing is to remove fecal material by simple washing with
    dish soap (mild detergent) first. Otherwise, it's an uphill battle killing germs with whatever product you use. Just like doctors doing surgery, it's all about
    hand-washing with regular soap, NOT anti-bacterial products, but the physical removal of dirt & debris.

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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Do NOT use bleach on anything porous...never on wood, and the vines & cage carpet will be better off soaked with pure white vinegar.
    Very good point. Thanks for covering my behind on that one.
    ...life is beautiful...

    "Every man dies, not every man really lives"
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    "If I can't be my own, I'd feel better dead"
    - Layne Staley, Alice In Chains

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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Nel View Post
    ...Please advise what is recommended and should I include the vines in the cleaning process?
    By the way, what is meant by "vines"? In my answer above I was picturing the fake (plastic) ones, but if you're talking about natural dried plant material, there's
    little you can do besides spray lightly with diluted chlorhexidine or F10, & let dry (preferably in hot sun), and replace when too dirty to clean.

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    Re: Safest way to disinfect my tanks

    Thanks very much for your incredibly informative reply. I am very glad I held back on cleaning yesterday due to severe cold. I would have washed everything in bleach including the vines.
    It's vinegar for this job as there is no health issues that require drastic attention.

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