Another cloudy water thread - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 02:09 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 53
Another cloudy water thread

Little background on my tank. Its 3 months old. About 2 weeks ago it began getting cloudy. It gets pretty milky if i don't do any kind of water change.
My water parameters are.
Ammonia 0
Nitrate 0
Nitrite 0
GH 150
Chlorine 0
KH 180
PH 6.8-7.2

Corkscrew Val
unknow plant in the back left.
unknown floating plant

4 guppies
1 Baby Betta
pond snails

These readings were taken with the Tetra easy strips. I also use API Leaf zone once a week and i have DIY co2. I have since stopped dosing API Leaf Zone and cut back on feeding and have done a few 50% water changes.

Any help is much appreciated. thank you.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 02:38 AM
Algae Grower
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Sarasota, FL
Posts: 52
The test strips for aquarium water testing are horribly inaccurate. Pick up a freshwater Master test kit by API. They are available on Amazon, usually under $20. The readings from your test strips are odd, it indicates your tank has not cycled. If that is the case, cloudy water is common on newly setup tanks, it's a bacterial bloom. Be careful not to over feed, some foods will also contribute to fouling water. It's best to test your water frequently when setting up a new tank, and do a partial water change weekly at least 25 % An aquarium that has completed or cycled will usually have a nitrate reading, some say 20 ppm, if your dosing plant ferts, it will often be at least double.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-03-2012, 03:08 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 53
Thanks I will purchase the API version and see what it says.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 53
Ok I just got my New test kit and my readings are
PH 6.6-6.8 color was real close
Ammonia 0-.25 leaning more towards the 0
Nitrite(NO2) 0
Nitrate(NO3) 0

My water is still cloudy. I have reduced feeding to basically nothing (but not starving my fish) Cut back the photo period to 7 hours from 8. Again any advice would be helpful.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 01:28 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Newbury Park, CA
Posts: 4,182
Nice hairgrass!

What lights are over the tank? Pretty bright if they grew that nice lawn in 3 months.

You need nitrate, it feeds the plants. My first massive couldn't see an inch into the water green water siege was cured in a couple days by adding the nitrate my plants needed.

Use the fertilizers you have as directed or even increase the dosing, it doesn't grow algae it grows strong plants. Look into getting nitrate, phosphate into the tank as well, you might buy the dry fertilizer salts used in Estimative Index dosing and try dosing as directed in the sticky in the fertilizer forum.

If you are seeing some ammonia then the biological filter isn't working as well as it should. Between it and the plants there shouldn't be any ammonia detectable.

My second siege of GW lasted for a couple years. It would clear up then return whenever I messed around in the tank. Since I put in really nice biological filtration a year ago I haven't seen GW. Still cross my fingers and toes when I mess around big time but so far so good. So check that, be sure the filter is running well.

The GW cleared up between episodes when I allowed the floaters to build up over the surface. You could place a layer or two of window screen between the top of the tank and lights instead.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 53
The water is not green thought. I took a few glasses full of it out to inspect and its not green in the Least just cloudy. My lights are 2x 6500k cfl's. I have ben using ferts but i stopped because of this. Thank you for the kind words The hair grass is growing like mad. I just wish the cloudyness would go away so i could enjoy it.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-07-2012, 02:39 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 53

It appears that my tank has come back to normal. I don't know if its the safe start i added 3 days ago to help get the beneficial bacteria going again or if it was something else but its back to normal! My guppies seem way happier now.
So weird too..i went to work at 6:30am tank was still pretty cloudy. Came home and bam my tank was crystal clear.
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