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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
bros,

i seem to have a problem with my water condition.i cant seem to get my water to be crystal clear like some bros do.

it looks like this : when the lights are off, the i can clearly see through the tank and it looks perfectly clear.however, when the lights are turned on, it's is obviously visible that there are minute particles floating around in the water.except for some which i notice to be tiny bubbles coming out of my reactor, plants bubbling like soda water and some white crawlies moving about the glass panels. besides that, it's those "i dont know what" particles which look white in colour to me visible to the naked eye(only when lights are turned on).

i've been doing some thinking and searching yet i couldnt come out with an explanation to it.

could it be the water hardness??? as i do have some coral chips in my canister since the last time i had calcium deficiency.

or could it be due to overdosing on NPK or micros???

well, i think i could fill out the need help template as well..

Beginners Info Sheet
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Tank Dimensions (LxWxH): 24"x12"x15" (90%full)

Tank Volume (litres or gallons): ~66L

Lighting Intensity(No of Watts) : 60w (3wpg)

Type of Lighting (FL/PL/MH) : 1x20wFL + 1x40wPL

No. of Hours your light is on : 10 hrs daily

CO2 Injection Rate (bps) : ~1.5bps

Type of CO2 (DIY/Liquid/Tank) : 2.5L cylinder

Method of Injection (e.g. Diffusor/Reactor): reactor

Substrate Used : river sand ~1-2mm dia.

How Thick is your base fert : ~2cm

How thick is your gravel : ~4-6cm

Liquid Fertilizers Used : PMDD

Frequency of fertilization : daily

Tank Temperature : 25-27 C

Type of Filter (overhead/internal/canister) : eheim 2213

Filter media used : biohome sintered glass

How long has your tank been set up : 1 month +

Other equipment : surface skimmer

Chemical Properties (Fill what you can)
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Carbonate Hardness (KH): 9 dkH
Total Hardness (gH): dont know (value too high > 20 dkH)
pH : 7.2
NH4 (ppm):
NO2 (ppm):
NO3 (ppm): 40-80 ppm
PO4 (ppm):
Fe (ppm):

Chemical ferts dosing : per week

50% water change
3x5ppm NO3
3x0.5ppm PO4
4x3ppm K
estimate calculation of 4x0.22 Fe


Bioload (Your Fish and Plants)
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5 amano shrimps

Plants :

micranthemum unbrosum (growing well but old leaves turning brown)
h.micranthemoides (growing well but slight BBA on some that didnt recover from Ca deficiency)
glossostigma (growing well)
blyxa japonica (growing very well)
e.tenellus (growing and spreading fast)
rotala indica/rotudifolia
(see some orange tinge and growing well)
rotala walichii (not so well but looks like recovering - alot of side shoots)
1 unknown (not too bad)

oh yeah, i forgot to add, for the past few days, i see some thread algae on the glass and i'm still battling minor spot algae on some glosso leaves and the glass panels which convinced me to invest on some test kits.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
i've checked the fine filter wool making sure that there's no passage way for the water to flow right through....and hence, the condition improved by 70%...and i'm still having minute particles in the water column.

i shall try doubling the amoung of fine filter wool tonight

however, could it be due to the design of my canister?? eheim 2213....could the water flow be too strong for a 24"x12"x15"????

i've never had the problem with my 2028....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
bros..

i just found out my KH, pH and NO3 readings today..

KH = 9dkH <---is it too hard??
pH = 7.2 <--- i still get a good reading of CO2 from the calculator
NO3 = 40-80 ppm <---*phew* :!: ...and my amano shrimps are fine

so could it be the KH ?? i'll lower it from 9 dKH to around 5 dKH by removing my coral chips in my canister and use Sodium Bicarbonate instead...(which i suppose what most bros have) and i dont think i need to buffer gH as my tap reading is more than 20 dKH which i guess is fine..am i right???

*my nitrate reading really gives me a shock. i guess my stock solution isnt that accurate after all since i did not use distilled water. however, water change is tomorrow, so i'll bear with it. Luckily my amano shrimps survived. in fact, my tap reading is already at ~10 ppm. so i guess i wont be needing to dose much of NO3 if i feed well.
 

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How old is this tank?

You may want to lower the amount of nitrates in your tap water. Otherwise, I don't think any of the "problems" you are pointing at are causing the cloudy water. Does the water have a white haze to it?

If you are a real clear water fanatic, you may want to invest in a diatom filter which polishes water to the point that the fish seem suspended in air.

If your tap water is 20dKH, then why in the world are you using coral chips. Ditch them. I would be trying to _lower_ your KH, personally, to something between 3-8 degrees.

Carlos
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
tsunami said:
How old is this tank?

You may want to lower the amount of nitrates in your tap water. Otherwise, I don't think any of the "problems" you are pointing at are causing the cloudy water. Does the water have a white haze to it?

If you are a real clear water fanatic, you may want to invest in a diatom filter which polishes water to the point that the fish seem suspended in air.

If your tap water is 20dKH, then why in the world are you using coral chips. Ditch them. I would be trying to _lower_ your KH, personally, to something between 3-8 degrees.

Carlos
this tank is close to 2 months old....

infact, it's due to my stupidity and curiosity that the tank has too much nitrate. my tap water only reads 10ppm of nitrate.

well,like i said, the water is clear, not cloudy, hazy, or milky...it's clear...but the problem is that it has minute particles visible to the naked eye when the lights are turned on. i'm not really a clear water fanatic but as far as i can see from fish stores in my neighbourhood, their water seem to be very clear without minute particles in the water column which lead me to think that there's something wrong with my water quality.

and finally, it's also due to my curiosity that the coral chips are in my canister. i never had test kits before this and as a newbie, i read somewhere that says that a lack of calcium or magnesium will lead to distorted and curled leaves which was exactly what it looks like in the tank. so i added almost 400g of coral chips into the canister. i'll do a water change and lower it to around 3-5 as my tap water reads 2 degrees

btw, thanks for the advice

shawn
 

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Shawn,

I had the exact same frustrating problem about a year ago. At that time I had extremely high PO4 in the tank - I estimate at least 40 ppm. I do believe that excess nutrients cause this opalescence. My best bet is chemical reactions that don't happen in weak soluitions but do happen when the concentration of the chemicals exceeds certain level - in particular Calcium and Mg. Your GH is way high (high Ca or Mg) so that may be the problem;

From what I understand one should not mix KNO3, KH2PO4, and K2SO4 with Ca and Mg in one concentrated soluition because they react and form insoluble molecules. In your tank you have very high NO3 (from the KNO3 that you dose) and high GH (Ca or Mg) and these chemicals probably react with each other.

A diatom filter will fix the clouding problem, but as soon as you remove it the problem will probably return.

To me the best approach is to try to clear the water from all high concentrations of chemicals. Do a very big water change - 90% or so - or bettr yet do several small ones in the course of a few days. Don't add any extra fertilizers, just do water changes. Your tank is small and you can easily use a few jugs of distilled water from the grocery store to bring the nutrients down faster.

You will eventually get the water to clear, but that will not really tell you why you had the opalescence. If you are dying to find the reason then after you have the water clear you can start dosing again, but don't dose 2 nutrients at the same time. Add Fe/Traces one day and see if it clouds the water. Add PO4 the next day and check again. You get the idea.

That is a logical approach on paper but in reality you may see cloudiness appear 2-3 days after you have added everyting separately with no problems. Id' guess that if you end up with the same high concentration of nutrients you will see your water get cloudy again. :D

The bottom line of all this is - clear your water by water changes and later make sure that none of your nutrients is in excess. Your test kits may be off, double check them to make sure they show what they are supposed to. Double check the way you are dosing and the chemicals you are using to see if the concentrations make sense.

--Nikolay
 
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