Water Turned Red After 50% Water Change - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 02:24 AM Thread Starter
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Water Turned Red After 50% Water Change

Sunday is tank maintenance day. Did 50% water change on both my 29 in the living room and the 45P in the bedroom. As the day went on both tanks started turning red. Added carbon to the the Fluval 107 and used an extra Eheim 2011 as a media reactor for the 29. The discoloration continued to get worse. Then I decided to do another water change 75% on both. Water is still pinkish red. Leaving the carbon running on both overnight. I have never seen anything like this. Found the reference below on liveaquaria.com. Also included a picture of the 29 after the water change. The python was filling towards the right side of the aquarium and the two waters didn't mix.

On a plus side the fish seemed extra happy. Great color and very active


PROBLEM
RED OR RUST-COLORED WATER
POSSIBLE CAUSE: Discoloration due to mineral-rich source water containing iron (i.e. well water). Aquariums with high oxygen levels may experience a more pronounced discoloration (redness) due to the oxidization of dissolved iron particles. High levels of minerals, such as iron and silicate, not only discolor the water but also provide nutrients that spark aggressive algae growth. Water with high mineral content (hard water) also has a greater buffering capacity and makes pH adjustments difficult.
RECOMMENDED SOLUTION: Chemical filter media such as Poly Filter removes specific pollutants such as iron and silicate and is a good choice. Peat or similar water softening chemical media can be used to help stabilize pH to desired levels. However, if the mineral content of the source water is very high, avoid using pH decreasers to adjust pH. The minerals in the hard water will buffer the water, making it difficult to successfully lower the pH. A water purification system such as a reverse osmosis unit provides the most reliable, long-term solution for problems resulting from hard water conditions.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 05:47 PM
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Maybe your local water authority did maintenance on the lines or there was a water line break?

Did you see this same color when you took a sample of water from the tap?
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deeda View Post
Maybe your local water authority did maintenance on the liney s or there was a water line break?

Did you see this same color when you took a sample of water from the tap?

The tank was clear at first. It took about 3 hours to start to show the red tint and got darker at the day went on. It progressed like a chemical reaction. There was no maintenance completed on the city water system or main breaks. Live in a small town of 3000 but the city has it's own water treatment plant and reservoir it pulls from. They are really good about announcements even if the are just flushing lines. I also confirmed by calling them today. The water was clear all day and when I dumped the buckets from the water change into a white toilet or bath tub there was no visible tint that my eye could pick up.


I did forget to mention last night that I spot treated small spots of algae with H202 during the first water change in the morning. That was followed by a dose of Excel. That is the only difference from the normal routine but I have done that for years. Tanks still have reddish pink water this afternoon. Had a Peacock Gudgeon and one Harlequin jump out of the tank in the bedroom today while at work.


Tested parameters and all check ok. Didn't test GH or KH since PH was in normal range. Don't have an iron test.

Last edited by xjclassic; 01-13-2020 at 07:32 PM. Reason: spelling
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by xjclassic View Post

I did forget to mention last night that I spot treated small spots of algae with H202 during the first water change in the morning. That was followed by a dose of Excel.
Thats got to be it. Algae thats "killed" by hydrogen peroxide will turn red/pink. Spot treating H2O2 probably started to kill off that algae. Excel is essentially an algaecide and using the H2O2 first made it work even better!
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