I'm having a major algae bloom in my 10 gallon tank. Here is a picture of what my tank looks like before it has progressively gotten worse.
Nitrate: (?) Need to buy the test kit
KH: 2-3 degrees
GH: 2-3 degrees
I have multiple types of algae in the tank.
1) On my glass I have bad cases of green dust algae which my oto is munching away on (not sure if he's making much progress). I've painfully tried to resist scrubbing it away since I hear it comes right back unless you wait 3 weeks.
2) I also have lots of hair and thread algae on my cabombas near the top. Some brown or dark green stuff has showed up on my bacopa and wisteria in the back I believe near the edges of the leaves.
3) Not exactly sure what type of algae is on the driftwood but it's brown and I'm thinking it's diatoms (there was some red on it at some point!) There is also a mixture of green as well.
4) All over my glosso and my crypts in the front of the tank, my anubias, and my java ferns, and the red cabombas I have what I think is GBA or cyanobacteria. It's so bad that I thought my red cabombas turned green but are actually covered in GBA.
I am running a 36W T5HO light directly over the water surface from about 8:30 AM to maybe 9 or 10PM at night (basically go to work and come back and enjoy the tank for a few more hours). I'm thinking I need to raise the light over the tank about two inches to lower the intensity of the lighting. Also, I am running DIY CO2 which I think I need to remix again. The diffuser has been a bit gunky lately, so maybe that's lowering the CO2 levels, although PH is consistently around 6.4-6.6 and my tap water is at 8.4.
Fert dosing schedule is the complete Seachem line. I dose comprehensive, N, K, P, and Fe at approximately the dosing amounts listed on each of the bottles on Wed and Sunday. I also use twice the usual dosage for Excel daily, in addition to CO2 injection.
I'm not sure if it's preemptive to be worrying about algae since I know my tank is quite new. The tank has been up and running for a little over 3 months now. Until about 1 month ago, I did a lot of rescaping here and there and moved things around a lot (coupled with excessive feeding) and I've collected a lot of mulm in the tank. Unfortunately Eco-complete is incredibly hard to vacuum without picking up the substrate! So, I'm thinking there is just so much excessive waste in the tank and not sure how to remove it other than a complete rescape and rinsing the substrate out.
I've also read that circulation of nutrients is a must in a heavily planted tank, so I have two HOB filters (one on the left and one behind the cabombas) and an airstone, which I lightly use during the day and heavily at night, to create circulation. One drawback is that I have a betta which prefers calmer water. Therefore, I needed to use a filter baffle on the filter in the middle to spread the water to the sides. The circulation is better in some areas than others, but it's interesting that the side with more current (left) has more algae...
I know this is a lot to digest and it sounds like a world of problems which would probably cause you to pull your hair out reading it, but I would greatly appreciate any advice on how to "properly" run a planted tank based on your experiences. Thanks to everyone for their input in advance!