Help with white cloudy water - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-19-2011, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
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Help with white cloudy water

Hello friends, this is my first post although I've read through a good deal of the helpful posts on here. I'm looking for some help with a newly set up 55 gallon freshwater setup.

I replaced a well-established 40-gallon corner aquarium with a new 55-gallon and reused some of the existing water (3 or so gallons) and carried all my fish over. The aquarium came with a new Biowheel 350 (two cartridges and two wheels) that replaced my Biowheel 150. I reused my sand substrate and added some Flourite red. I made the mistake of not washing the Flourite and initially ended up with a muddy mess. The dirtiness settled after a day or so, but for the past 10 days I'm left with a lot of white/gray clouding. I've never experienced this before, but I understand it's common to a new setup.

Nearly everything I read says it's likely bacterial bloom and will go away, but how long should this take? Should I be adding something? Water changes don't seem to help. Any advice would be more than welcomed.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-19-2011, 11:57 PM
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Although cloudiness is not uncommon in a new tank set-up, yours sounds more like a bacterial bloom from moving the substrate over from your old tank to the new. While that substrate would no doubt contain some beneficial bacteria, if you didn't use any seeded media from your previous filter in the new one, you could also very well have an insufficient BB colony for the time being. Suggest you do regular tests of your water for ammonia & nitrites for a few days - you don't want to lose your existing fish. Do regular WCs if necessary if there is ammonia present.
As for the bacteria bloom, it should dissipate soon - although that could take a few days.
I have found the use of Purigen in the filter can help do away with cloudiness.
If it's not an algae bloom, but occasioned by the Flourite &/or the substrate detritus, Purigen in combo with filter floss should greatly clear things up. Helped out by wc's too.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 12:35 AM Thread Starter
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I'm really hoping it dissipates. I've been dealing with it for about 10 days now, I'm hoping that it doesn't take much longer. I'll pick up some Purigen as you suggested. I've never used it before so I'm just assuming you get a mesh bag, fill it up and drop it in my HOB filter?
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 01:27 AM
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Pretty much. The Purigen Gods take care of the rest. That stuff is amazing. Just make sure your filter bag is able to hold Purigen as it's pretty fine stuff.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 02:07 AM
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transferring water wont carry much beneficial bacteria... next to nothing. flourite even after being washed will cloud your water for days. just wait, it will all go away.. if u didnt wash the flourite, ur next few partial water cahnges will probably cloud the water again, it will settle and go away too. be patient, this is a slow moving hobby. if you rush it, bad things tend to happen

10 days, sounds like bacteria growing, look into seachem stability, its a great tank starter, ive used it, all my friends with non planted tanks use it now, i just use plants to cycle. it will turn ur cloudy water clear in 3 to 5 days if it is indeed bacteria growing which im assuming it is. flourite settles after 48 hours tops

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 02:32 AM Thread Starter
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I'm assuming its bacterial bloom just because its a relatively new setup. I'll give the Stability a try and I'm also interested in the Purigen. It seems a lot of people like it.

I never mentioned that the tank is planted and has driftwood, all from the previous setup. I'm assuming this doesn't change much with the other suggestions?
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 02:45 AM
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no however, plants rapidly increase ur cycle time as the roots are loaded with beneficial bacteria.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 04:43 AM
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If you get the Purigen particles in the 250 ml jar, just be sure you get a very fine mesh bag, or you'll lose the Purigen particles in your tank - they're so small & fine.
I buy mesh bags @ PetSmart, and just double them up - that way you should be ok.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
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I just picked up some Stability and I'll give that a go. My PetSmart didn't have Purigen so I got a similar product by API, however I'm not expecting much. If I dont notice improvements by the weekend I'll order Purigen. I really appreciate the help and hope to see this haze disappear.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 12:31 PM
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Use a diatom filter made by Vortex. No fish keeper should be without one!
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david meyers View Post
Use a diatom filter made by Vortex. No fish keeper should be without one!
please explain why.. i've neverhad need for one. many people dont. there are rare instances when someone Actually Needs a diatom filter. best thing for the average tank is bio filtration.

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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 03:28 PM
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I think youll like the 350. I just got one not too long ago and its kept my water sparkling clear. Plus very aerated too. Which might not be good if you run co2 lol.


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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 04:39 PM
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aeration is key if u run c02, absolutely key, even the plants need good oxygen levels

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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-20-2011, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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I've been using Flourish Excel as my carbon source. After a day of Stability it seems to be clearing slightly.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-21-2011, 02:03 AM
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Diatom filter use

Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
please explain why.. i've neverhad need for one. many people dont. there are rare instances when someone Actually Needs a diatom filter. best thing for the average tank is bio filtration.
With honesty; I can't answer your question. I just know it works for me. I kept; then bred and raised many tropicals from 1958-1987. 1400 gallons of water was eventually in use to do this. Fish raised were both retailed & wholesaled. I eventually specialized in angels, oscars & discus. I had a diatom filter running constantly; moving from one tank to the next. Rarely did I have any fish diseases & any that died did so from old age. I'm not familiar with the new filtering equipment available now. I recently set up one of my 150 gallon tanks & am using my 2 Supreme superkings, & 2 inside sponge filters. Filtering media in the outside filters is still animal bone charcoal & floss. Once a week for 12 hours; don,t forget the diatom filter. The fish & plants are doing great.
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