The Planted Tank Forum banner

Water Discolored from Driftwood Leach of Tannis

18565 Views 15 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  legomaniac89
I bought 2 pieces of Natural Mopani Wood for my 30G. I soaked both pieces for a few days changing the water several times per day. I thought they were clear from leaching Tannis (brown stain) so I added them to my tank. Well, day 3 and they are leaching brown stain into the water, looks like Tea. The directions on the tag says to add extra Carbon to my filter. I have a Marineland Penguin 200 Filter, how would I do that? If I can't add carbon to the filter, what can I do? Any comments, suggestions would be great. Thanks
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
I as well have a piece of Mopani that seemingly has infinite tannins. I stick with Malaysian now, no problems there.
If I recall correctly, there are two filter slots in the filter? You can add an extra filter pad (they have carbon inside them, though not that much).

You could also put a bag of carbon into the extra space instead.

Regardless, I would suspect you are better off removing the wood to continue leaching it outside of your tank. And perform a large water change to get a jump on the tannins already in there.
WC, get some pantyhose and throw the carbon in it and drop anywhere in your filter you can
I am running two filter packs in my filter now. I'm only in the first week of cycling this new tank so doing a large water change would be a major set back. I'm asuming the leaching will stop sooner or later and my tank will then clear up. I don't want to remove the wood as my fish have grown acustom to it. But, if by keeping the wood in the tank won't stop this tea color stain in the water, I guess I'll have to remove it and continue leaching in the bath tub or pail. I think I'll try some extra carbon. What does WC stand for? Thanks for the info.
WC = water change

well your wood could leach tannins for several months... or a couple weeks or stop tomorrow... if you really hate the tea color your cheapest and most effective method would be to just soak it somewhere else until its safe...
From my experience there is no way to clear your water from a leaching piece of driftwood. Yes, your filter will slowly remove the color but not at the same rate of the leaching. I once boiled my mopani wood for an hour every day for 2 weeks. After the boiling I soaked it until the next day to boil again. I put the driftwood in the tank after thinking it had no chance of leaching. The next day the water was yellow and the only thing in the tank at the time was the driftwood.

I'm pretty sure the only cure is keeping up with your water changes. I do 50% weekly water changes on my planted tanks so I havent seen discoloration in a very long time. If you're worried about the effect of the excess tanins you should know that they actually give a beneficial effect that mimics natural blackwater. It's not harming your fish at all but it for sure is ugly!
Thanks for the replies to my dilemma. I think I'll get some extra carbon & add it to my filter & give it another week or so. I can live with it if it's really not harming my fish or affecting my cycling. I'll be adding another bag of flourite substrate to my scape this coming week so the water will be a little cloudy from that as well.

My filter is a Marineland Penguin 200 with bio wheel. Does anyone replace the filters or just wash them out? And what about the bio wheel, I've read never wash it. True?

Try to avoid washing out your filter. The purpose of the wheel is to grow beneficial bacteria to provide filtration that man made filter media cant. You should change out your carbon in your filters because it "deactivates" after a month or so and can no longer be used for filtration.
Thanks for the info sampster. I'll keep an eye on my the filter packs & change them monthly. Although, I did read a few post that some people don't change them, they just rinse them out & put them back in. Yes, they were using the same filter. I may make my own at some point out of that white filter fiber & charcoal carbon.
I had the same problem. What I did is put the driftwood in the sink then boiled a pot of water (enough to cover the drift wood), dumped it in the sink then covered it. I left mine until the water was cold. I did that process once every day for about 2 weeks.
Elliot - That sounds like an aweful lot to have to go through. Some suggested adding charcoal to my filter, I think I'll give that a shot first. I decided to remove one piece of driftwood & see if the staining subsides. I plan to add another charcoal cartridge to my filter & see what that does. Thanks for your suggestions.
Had that tinted situation when I first started aquascaping. Due to lack of knowledge, I thought it was the plants and not the drift wood but figured it out later. Filter didn't do anything to hinder or reduce tinting. After a near full water change, the tint was gone but came back with in a few days. Liked the drift wood so I kept it and got use to the tint. In fact, I even liked it. Haven't noticed staining on the glass, though.

I read carbon is counter productive for planted aquariums as it takes nutrients out of the water that plants need.
Thanks Tequariumlerro.......... Well, I read the tag on the wood when I bought it & it warned of leaching of Tannis but the instructions read to soak it a few times & the problem would subside... Well, I've soaked it a dozen times & it's still leaching. I didn't add any carbon to the filter, I figured it will go away sooner or later. Well, it's been 3 weeks & the water is still a light tea color, acutally looks natural to some of the ponds & streams here in Massachusetts. I'll just have to live with it until it clears out someday.
I've had Mopani for almost 3 years now and it's still leaching tannins :). As long as you don't mind the color, it's not gonna hurt anything.
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.