First time EI CO2/ help with root cause of milky water! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-29-2016, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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First time EI CO2/ help with root cause of milky water!

Having trouble narrowing down the cause for the milky water that I am experiencing, before and 12 hours after weekly water change. As the title suggests this is my first time with high tech and EI dosing so every bit of help is greatly appreciated. I will start with the specs and parameters of my tank to give you an idea of what I have going on here. FYI there is no livestock yet so I have room for fluctuations while tweaking without gassing the little buggers out.
Tank:
This is a 12"w x 12"l x 10"h diy aquarium, so 6.2 gallon.
Filtration:
Finnex PX-360 (seeded with a good amount of bio media from pre-existing tank.
Subtrate:
Azoo Plant Grower Bed with a very fine layer of crushed diy root tabs as bottom layer (red clay and CSM+B)
Depth: 2" in lowest areas and about 3.5"- 4" in highest area
Lighting:
This is ugly and temporary, but I have a 24w 6500k T5 HO(with decent reflector) 12" above the rim and a 13w 6500k T8 sitting right on top of tank. These are currently running from 11am-5:30pm until I find some balance. I will be switching to a 6 x 3w Cree LED DIY fixture with no lenses in the next week or so.
CO2:
20 oz Paintball tank with a basic regulator and no solenoid yet. Running at 2 BPS avg. Still tweaking to find the right levels.

EI (Dry) Dosing Regiment: (as per rotalabutterfly nutrient calc.)
K2SO4--1/16 + 1/64 tsp (3 x per week)
KNO3--1/32 +1/64 tsp (3 x per week)
KH2PO4--slightly <1/64 tsp (3x per week)
CSM+B--1/32 tsp (3 x per week on alternate days)
Equilibrium-- 1/32 tsp (after 60 % water change)
1 Rest day before water change.

Water source and parameters:
Using water from a refill station outside my local grocery store(cheaper than distilled) that I tested out to 0 ppm TDS, 0 nitrates, 0 phosphates. Been using this for hydroponics as well with no troubles.
Current tank parameters:
PH: 6.5 (3pm)
7.0 (3am, no light no CO2)
Phosphates: 0.5 ppm
Nitrate: about 50 ppm
Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
KH: 5dkh
TDS: 320 ppm
*waiting on iron test kit
Plant mass:
DHG (dry started for a few months)
Pogostemon Helferi
Rotala Rotundifolia or Indica (not sure just yet which one)
Staurogyne Repens (melted pretty bad but seeing new growth)

So back to the question. What are some ideas as to why I am experiencing the cloudiness seemingly for a month straight now. Do you think this could be attributed to the fact that I used the diy root ferts beneath the substrate and am dosing micros on top of it? Definately need help with this whole balancing act, so I am grateful for any comments.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-30-2016, 11:59 PM
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Hhmmm I'm not entirely sure on this one. Usually that is present when you just set up a tank or a bacteria bloom. Might be the root tabs that you mentioned. But if you smashed them up and depending on how much water flow you get into the substrate the tabs are probably already gone if you set this up a month ago.

You said this happens 12hrs before and after a water change? What's the tds when it's cloudy?
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-31-2016, 01:02 AM
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Just a shot, but are you sure the tank actually cycled? I had this happen before where there were nitrates present, so I assumed the ammonia was processed, long story short I had zero biological filter built. That lovely white water I'm all too familiar with and every time it's a cycle issue or tds problem. I can only say one product that helped in a similar situation for me was tetra safe start. Went from that nice gray to clear in 12 hours . At least if you took that off the list it would narrow down your culprits. Plus I'd maybe lay off dosing for a few days or until I saw effects.... Just to see if it was a toxicity situation.

Also, just noticed in the pics, is that limestone in there?

Last edited by Darkblade48; 03-31-2016 at 11:04 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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