Up and running tank still having issues - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Up and running tank still having issues

My tank has been running now for at least 2 months and I'm still having a major problem with surface scum. I have a 72 gallon tank with two powerheads and a Sunsun filter rated at 265gph running on the tank. The powerheads are creating ripples on the surface but it just seems to push the scum and condense in in a corner where there in little surface movement. Is the scum because I don't have any fish in the tank yet? I'm also EI dosing and doing a 25-50% WC every week. Durning the WC I suck off as much as possible but it all comes back after two or three days. It's very thick, to the point where if plants are pearling the surface tension is so great that the bubbles will just hang out under the scum, they will never break the surface and pop. Is there something I should be doing since I don't have fish in the tank, ie. adding ammonia everyday. Are there any products on the market today that will reinreoduce it into the water and let the filter take it away? I'm staying away from surface skimmers because they off gas my CO2, so any other options are open for discussion.


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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 07:53 PM
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I have had this problem on a number of my tanks - in fact my current tank has a bunch of tetras and currently has this problem. To fix it I just buy a Mollie - they are cheap, and they eat the scum

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the suggestion Whiskey. However, I don't really have the option to get mollies to take care of the problem. The only fish in the tank are going to be the angels and around 10 otos. I was told that it will eventually go away but I've been sitting on this statement and it has not come true for 2 months.

The filter was fully seeded on a 20 gallon that was up and running for 2 months so it shouldn't be a beneficial bacterium/ cycling problem.


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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 09:23 PM
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Well,.. It's not much help, but it hasn't gone away on mine either,.. I think that tank is around 6 months old now? Something like that,.. I do weekly water changes of around 50% or so,.. have a Fluval 201 on a 25G, and UV, and CO2 and all that stuff.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 09:25 PM
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What is this scum and knock on wood so I never get it!! I've been doing tanks for two years and seriously into planted tanks for one year. Did you guys do real plants?
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 09:35 PM Thread Starter
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I do believe it's protein but I'm not certain


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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-12-2010, 09:43 PM
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That's what I've heard too.

Oh yeah,.. my tank is full of plants,.. it's not that big of a deal to me I suppose,.. not even a big enough deal to buy a 99 cent fish lol.

As a side note,.. I've never had it on a tank with an HOB filter,.. they seem to mix it back in with the water very efficiently.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 12:55 AM
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Yeah.. just had this problem two weeks ago

https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/fe...hite-film.html


Basically my problem was too little co2 and too much light... Mainly direct sunlight hitting my tank from sunrise to sunset...

And stay persistent...keep syphoning it off. I had it for a month, one day i had it thick, syphoned, gone.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 02:23 AM
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Add a power head with air venturi which throws a lot of bubbles; and place it just below the surface, at one of the corners facing the far corner along the long side; it will make the water move in a circular motion on the surface. Use this all night (from lights off to lights/CO2 on period) and you will get rid of the surface scum.

It does take a lot of time for the bacteria flora which acts on surface scum to build up. Aeration at night seems to help the bacterial flora. The action of the bubbles and flow created by the power head gives immediate relief in breaking up the scum and making it disappear in couple of days. After a couple of week you could dispense off the power head and never find scum building up.

If you have a choice, you have a problem, till you elect your choice. No choice, no problem, only consequences, learn to live with them.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 02:43 AM
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What are you feeding the fish?

IME it's the cheap, wheat and corn-based foods that tend to trigger this more than anything else.





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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 05:06 AM
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Well,.. I think I fall under that category. I'm using Tetra Min which I think is Wheat based.

After posting in this thread I did decide to go get a molly on the way home from work though

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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I'm not feeding anything, I don't have any fish yet.


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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 02:29 PM
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Ah- I missed somehow that you're still cycling the tank LOL

Personally I wouldn't worry about it till after your cycle is over and you're fully stocked.

Lots of time these issues resolve themselves once the tank is fully established.

If not, then a surface skimmer is probably what I'd do.





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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-13-2010, 02:35 PM
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The only tanks I have seen this scum is when the filtration slows down as the filter plugs with debris. In this case the scum is gone within 24 hours of cleaning the filter. I read above where you do have some ripples going on and I have no idea what scum might survive the ripples.
I would remove everything from the tank, one piece at a time (driftwood, rocks, ceramic merpeople, even a couple of handfuls of substrate) and set them up in a bowl of water or a separate tank, if you have one. Even a plastic storage bin. Perhaps whatever is causing the scum is coming from one of the things in the tank, and it is producing so fast that the water movement and filtration cannot remove it fast enough.
Whatever you remove from the tank give it a quick rinse to remove whatever scum got on it as you lifted it through the surface, but do not try to wash it totally clean. You want whatever has been going on to keep on happening so you can see which item might be responsible.
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