Cloudy Water in NPT
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:01 AM   #1
ZeeZ
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Cloudy Water in NPT


When I started out with my Beverage Dispenser 3 gallon NPT, the water was clear. It's now several months mature with the plant growth taking up 2/3rds of the tank but my water has become cloudy.

I cannot figure it out. I basically have to do a 80% water change before the water becomes mostly clear but even then, there's still a bit of cloudiness left. It becomes quite apparent when I take photos of it in the light's glare.

I tested the water's parameters. 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 40 nitrates. I hadn't changed the water in between 5 days ago to a week. This started about two or three weeks ago. It is cycled and producing nitrates, so the cloudiness isn't due to the tank establishing itself.

I think it's an algae bloom. It looks white when viewed from outside but when I do water changes, the water looks green in the container and the pH/nitrates are high. The first time I tested for pH, it was a very deep blue, beyond the 7.6 pH then the second time I tested, it was a normal 7.6 pH blue color.

Any suggestions on how to kill this bloom? I have it coming on at 8 AM in the morning and turning off at 11 PM (too long, I know, but I enjoy it in the morning and at night.).

Last edited by ZeeZ; 01-09-2013 at 07:15 AM.. Reason: Added more information.
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:17 AM   #2
idleivey
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Weird I have been struggling with the exact same issue in one of my NPT bowls. I've been working on it for months and just the other week I was able to fix it, for the most part.

I pretty much took the shotgun approach and threw everything at it at once:
  • I did a deep vacuuming of the bed along with an 80% water change.
  • I added 5 or so MTS.
  • I started dosing a cap full of excel daily.
  • Added additional plants.
  • Stopped dosing any fertilizers (I would occasionally dose some trace or comp).
  • Reduce my photo-period to 8 hours.

After all that the water stayed clearer much longer than it had before. It still has some issues but I think I'll keep dosing excel and doing big water changes.

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Old 01-09-2013, 12:43 PM   #3
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Could also be a bacterial bloom. If it really is an algal bloom though, you would ideally use a UV sterilizer to clear up the tank, but I don't see that being an option on either of your tanks. You could try pouring in a water clarifier. And you should definitely reduce the lighting hours though. If it's on a timer, you can have it come on at 8AM, off at 12PM, on at 5PM, off at 11PM. I do something similar to this and I think I read several years ago that having a lighting schedule like this helps to prevent algae growth.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:39 PM   #4
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Why would the bacterial bloom be happening now? It's already cycled...

Water clarifiers don't do the trick for the long run, just the short run. But yeah, I'll reduce my lighting hours. It is on a timer, so it's no biggie. I read that having a blackout would also help but this is a high light tank. Would the high light plants be fine in a blackout for at least three to four days?

I'm expecting shrimp today for the tank. That's why I stopped dosing Excel and Comprehensive, because I didn't want to kill the shrimp. Also, the plants had reached the 2/3rds mark, so they didn't need help anymore. Though my poor little Erios could use the ferts...

That's a beautiful tank, idleivey.

Here's mine. You can see the difference from about one-two months in and recently -

Still clear -




Water change after being cloudy. Still is cloudy. -


Last edited by ZeeZ; 01-09-2013 at 03:47 PM.. Reason: Added pics.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:22 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeeZ View Post
Why would the bacterial bloom be happening now? It's already cycled...

Water clarifiers don't do the trick for the long run, just the short run. But yeah, I'll reduce my lighting hours. It is on a timer, so it's no biggie. I read that having a blackout would also help but this is a high light tank. Would the high light plants be fine in a blackout for at least three to four days?

I'm expecting shrimp today for the tank. That's why I stopped dosing Excel and Comprehensive, because I didn't want to kill the shrimp. Also, the plants had reached the 2/3rds mark, so they didn't need help anymore. Though my poor little Erios could use the ferts...

That's a beautiful tank, idleivey.

Here's mine. You can see the difference from about one-two months in and recently -

Still clear -




Water change after being cloudy. Still is cloudy. -

I have no idea about the cloudy water. But I just has to say, you have one unique tank.
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:22 PM   #6
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forgot to say that i love it!
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:39 PM   #7
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Try adding an air stone for a week or so and see if that helps. After it clears up, take it out and see if the cloudiness comes back.
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:40 PM   #8
idleivey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disher View Post
Try adding an air stone for a week or so and see if that helps. After it clears up, take it out and see if the cloudiness comes back.
That can't hurt tying but I did try the same thing on my tank for a month or so and it didn't seem to help.

Tank looks good though man, you'll get it figured out.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:51 PM   #9
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Yeah, I've changed my timer to reduce the hours but I'm going to do a complete blackout for a while to see if that helps.

I tried introducing my new OEBTs and Yellow Neos to this tank but something in the water killed them all except for one Yellow Neo I managed to save. I'm not sure what it is. Everything checks out in the parameters. The water in this comes from the sink, not my bathtub like my other tanks' water does. The water from that sink has always tasted metallic. I'm wondering if there was something in the pipes for that particular sink...

Anyway, that forced me to do probably 30 siphons to try and find the dead bodies and that ended up pretty much changing the water out 100% so it looks completely clear. We'll see if it stays that way. In the meantime, I have to try and figure out what went wrong.

Thanks for commenting!
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