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Old 03-25-2013, 07:13 PM   #1
OrangeAugust
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Cloudy water


My 55 gallon tank is soil-based with sand cap. I have three rocks and a large piece of driftwood. The dust from the rocks had turned the water orange the first time I filled it up. I emptied it and filled it again and the water looked like tea. I thought it was the driftwood. Then I emptied it and filled it again on Saturday and set up one of the filters. By Sunday morning the water was cloudy. I have a lily plant, some pennywort, microsword, and an Argentinean sword in it so far. The water isn't very cloudy, but it's not clear. It's not tinted any color, though, either. I know sometimes new tanks get bacteria bloom, but I don't have any living things in it yet besides the plants and one tiny snail that I saw yesterday. Anyone know what it could be? Will it clear up on its own or do I have to empty the whole thing and refill it again?
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Old 03-25-2013, 07:16 PM   #2
seuadr
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let it sit.

emptying and refilling it is just going to stir stuff back up. it will eventually yield the same results as just letting it sit and being vigilant about a few good, light vacs of the substrate to get the loose stuff.
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Old 03-26-2013, 01:53 PM   #3
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Ok, but when I filled it, it was totally clear until the next morning and it's been cloudy ever since. It's not getting better and it's the 3rd day that it's been cloudy.
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Old 03-26-2013, 01:57 PM   #4
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What color is the cloudiness? If you added red clay to the soil, and the cloud has a pinkish tinge to it, than thats clay. That should go away, as I've had the same problem with my dirted tank (though I used gravel). It vanished after 3-4 days with the filter on and partial, minor (10-15%) water changes, not major ones.

The tea-like discoloring could have come from the wood or soil. Both release tannins which the carbon in the filter will help to clear up.
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Old 03-26-2013, 01:59 PM   #5
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Cloudy as in particulate cloudy like muddy water or cloudy like someone dumped milk into it? If its the latter than its more likely the start to the magic cycle and a bacterial bloom. Be patient it will clear get the filters all going and any circulation fans you have for it. Same thing happened with my 100g clear two days strait then bam milk water and it lasted like a week or so then crystal clear water.
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:02 PM   #6
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Yeah, it's more like a milky color. There's bacteria even though I only have plants in it so far? Is it ok to get fish yet and do a fish-in cycle, or should I wait until the water clears up?
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:08 PM   #7
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Well with a dirted tank, I've heard that you might want to wait a bit and not do fish right away, due to the nitrates and ammonia spikes that the excess nutrients in the soil will cause. I've heard of waiting as long as a month, though my information is not the best.

By the way, what are the parameters of your water?
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:20 PM   #8
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Bacteria are present on the plants wood etc you already tossed in the tank and probably in your dirt for the bottom. I wouldn't put fish in I prefer fishless cycle but thats just my .02$. Plus a dirted tank tends to leech ammonia for a good amount of time. Be patient, run all your equipment your going to run and do like a 20% water change every other day so your cycle doesn't stall. When your ammonia/ nitrite levels hit zero toss in the swimmers, when your levels hit zero your water will be clear...unless your a professional algea grower like me, then it will be a nice green soup for a while too.
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