Mystery of the knocking tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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Mystery of the knocking tank

I am hoping you can help me solve this mystery.

For the past couple of days, my wife has been hearing a strange knocking sound coming from our tank, like someone tapping on the glass. When she told me about it, I became concerned that the sound may be the precursor of some nightmare water disaster, so this morning I tried to hear the sound myself.

And yes, I did hear the sound. And she is correct -- it sounds just like someone tapping on the glass. I turned off the filter. The sound remained. There are no moving parts in this system except for the fish and the filter. I haven't added any new fish in months, so if it's the fish then it's new behavior.

The only thing that I have been doing differently is overdosing Excel to solve my algae problems.

But I tried to watch for the fish bumping against the glass or the heater, and I didn't see anything unusual.

The scary thing is that it sounded like the glass was starting to crack! There was a knocking sound, followed by the faint sound of cracking glass.

But there is no crack that I can see, and no water leaking.


Anyone ever had a problem like this?

Help me solve the mystery!

My fish inventory includes Bosemani Rainbows, zebra danios, neons, ottos, and an Ancistrus. I suspected the ancistrus because he's so clumsy, but I don't think he's responsible.

Methodology: Walstad Natural Style. No filter, No heater, dirt substrate with sand/gravel cap, two powerheads for water movement.
Tank: 40 Breeder
Lighting: Finnex Planted Plus
No CO2, but dosing Excel
Ludwigia (unsure what type), DHG, Hydrocoytle Tripartita, White Cloud Minnows, Blood Fin Tetras, Amano Shrimp, Nerite Snails.
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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 06:34 PM
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how big is the tank and is it acrylic or glass?
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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 06:43 PM
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how big is the tank and is it acrylic or glass
This is important info, and also how much substrate (inches) and what does it consist of?

Also, any sort of rockwork? I am suspecting that the bottom of the glass is cracking, although hoping that's not it! It might crack without causing any leaks, though.
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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 07:20 PM
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Please delete. I changed my mind about my response.
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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 07:29 PM
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Knocking sound

List of PITA sounds coming from my tanks in the past.

1. Do you have a HOB or canister filter and snails(they get caught in the impeller.)

2. Do you have loaches that are breeding (ie especialy Clown and Skunk)

3. Do you have synodontis type catfishes that are fussing over territory or breeding? (ie Upside down cats)

4. Check to see if the water level is off at the top. One side is higher that the other. The tank is large and on a settling floor. (this one is scary causing much grief.)

5 check to see if anything is leaning against side of tank inside and out. Besides obvious check wood, rock, HOB filters, elec. cords, etc. Filter may be vibrating causing sound.

Good luck...8-}...Jim
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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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I'll try to answer the questions that have been posed.

* The tank is a 46g Bowfront, Oceanic, Glass.

* Water level is not dropping
*The water line does seem to be a slight bit uneven from front to back, but just a hair. When I set the tank up I used shims under the stand to level it and it may have settled a bit. If it has (I'm not certain), it is probably due to compression of the shims and not sagging of the floor.
*The gravel is Flourite based. Substrate is between 2-3 inches. There is no rockwork, but there is a good sized piece of driftwood in the tank, partially buried. Could possibly be touching the bottom pane of glass -- I cannot know for sure.
*My livestock consists only of the fish I mentioned before
*My filter is a canister filter -- Rena Filstar XP3. Remember, I turned the filter off and the sound persisted, so it's not the filter.


Some additional information:
*The knocking sounds seem to happen only in the morning. We have never heard them at night. This makes me think that one of the fish may be causing it, but I sure didn't see anything.

What should I do? Should I tear the tank down?

Am I risking coming home to a pond in my living room?

Methodology: Walstad Natural Style. No filter, No heater, dirt substrate with sand/gravel cap, two powerheads for water movement.
Tank: 40 Breeder
Lighting: Finnex Planted Plus
No CO2, but dosing Excel
Ludwigia (unsure what type), DHG, Hydrocoytle Tripartita, White Cloud Minnows, Blood Fin Tetras, Amano Shrimp, Nerite Snails.
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 11:25 PM
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funny u said that i keep hearing a sound coming from my stand like cracking sound its on my 55 gal i looked at my stand for any king of dry rout but cant find any its been up for like 10 years
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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 11:27 PM
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Do you live in an apartment building? Many years ago I had a 100 gal tank that was about empty and every time my above neighbor ran their washer you could hear a thumping noise from the aquarium. It went away when It was filled, but still strange. (BTW I've been keeping tanks for over 40 years and have really hit some strange ones). Sound does travel but Like you I'd probably panic until I found it. Check for vibrations from another source...Jim
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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 11:36 PM Thread Starter
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Update:

I don't think the driftwood is causing it. I stuck my hand in there and rocked the driftwood back and forth, and no knocking sounds.

So even if that pleco was going nuts on the driftwood, it's not causing the sound.

Methodology: Walstad Natural Style. No filter, No heater, dirt substrate with sand/gravel cap, two powerheads for water movement.
Tank: 40 Breeder
Lighting: Finnex Planted Plus
No CO2, but dosing Excel
Ludwigia (unsure what type), DHG, Hydrocoytle Tripartita, White Cloud Minnows, Blood Fin Tetras, Amano Shrimp, Nerite Snails.
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post #10 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-11-2006, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Also, I live in a house, not an apartment.

This is all so very strange.

Methodology: Walstad Natural Style. No filter, No heater, dirt substrate with sand/gravel cap, two powerheads for water movement.
Tank: 40 Breeder
Lighting: Finnex Planted Plus
No CO2, but dosing Excel
Ludwigia (unsure what type), DHG, Hydrocoytle Tripartita, White Cloud Minnows, Blood Fin Tetras, Amano Shrimp, Nerite Snails.
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post #11 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 02:08 AM
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Hmm the only thing remotely familiar that I can think of is when my gouramis attacked my glass thermometer creating a glassy knock sound when it bounced back and hit the tank. They've done this less as I've fed them more.
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post #12 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 03:24 AM
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Wood pecker? Ok, so I have no ideas what is causing the noise, but why let that stop me????

Hoppy
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post #13 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 03:46 AM
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do you have a wood stand? It could be all the stress on the wood making the craking noise. I to sometimes hear a craking noise and I blame it on my DIY wood stand.

75 gallon, fillstar xp2 with inline reactor, 12 Lb pressurised co2, 4.2 WPG-corallife 3x96 watt PC-, fluorite/silica-sand substright.
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post #14 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 04:40 AM
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In the morning, hmmm? When the lights turn on and the canopy gets warm and expands? Maybe?


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post #15 of 41 (permalink) Old 03-12-2006, 05:04 AM
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Is it your heater turning on and off?
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