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Murky Water


Guest MindyLuz05

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Guest MindyLuz05

My mom recently set up an 80 gallon aquarium and bought an Eheim canister filter for it. She just set it up two days ago. We washed everything and rinsed the filter media very very well. But a day after set up the water became cloudy and a film developed on the surface of the water. So yesterday we emptied the tank out and tore down the filter and rinsed it all again and even rinsed the gravel again. We set it all back up and it looked fine. But now today again the water is cloudy and the filmy stuff is at the surface again? Is it the filter that is causing the problem and how do we fix it? Will it be harmful to the fish? Thanks for any help.

- Mindy

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Mindy, your discription of your tank actually sounds pretty normal to me, especially if you have a number of fish in it? How many are there, btw?

The thing is, during the cycling process excess ammonia builds and can't be converted into nitrites and ultimately nitrates yet, since the beneficial bacteria needs a few weeks to properly build up in your filter. During that time a lot of tanks experience the same thing than yours - cloudy water and slime on the glass.

Unfortunately, completely cleaning the tank doesn't do any good at all - it actually slows down the process of cycling, since you most likely have washed away whatever small amount of beneficial bacteria was in the gravel and the filter.

The cloudyness doesn't do any harm to the fish, but what you can do to make sure your fish are okay is daily water testing (sometimes even twice a day), especially to have a picture on where in the cycling process you are. Ammonia, nitrites and nitrates are the most important components in that scenario.

Here is a little info on the cycling process.... :)

http://www.kokosgoldfish.com/cycle.html

That gives you a bit cleare picture on what exactly is going on in your tank right now....

For any questions, please just ask away! :)

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Guest MindyLuz05

Well the first time this happened there weren't even any fish in the tank. It happened just after we started the filter. So we cleaned everything, then we added a couple of baby Endler's in there. It's been less than a day and the problem has started up again. I've set up other tanks before and have seen the cloudyness problem but this is different. It's not the fish.

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Hm, I wonder if you washed the gravel thoroughly enough...

I remember dumping a whole 3 inch layer of gravel into my planted 55 gl tank when I got it new, and forgot to wash it. For solid 5 days I so nothing but cloudy.... :rolleyes: Thats the only thing I could think off - the endlers aren't big enough to cause a bacteria bloom like that, unless you have dozens of them in the tank.... :)

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Guest MindyLuz05

Well, the gravel was used (came with the tank) but my mom washed it pretty well. And the gravel was in there with water for several days before we installed the filter. The cloudyness only came once the filter started up. And yeah, there's probably about thirty Endler's but they are only tiny little fry, so I really don't think it's from them. My guess is it's from those balls in the filter (the ones that look like cocoa puffs) that are supposed to be for biological filtration. Ugh so frustrating. Setting up a new aquarium is the worst!

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:( I know that I got some cloudiness like that when I started up my 75gal. I also have the bio-balls in my filter's,and although I rinsed them,I still think that some of the cloudiness came from them also. After a few days though it slowly went away.Just my experience though. :)
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Guest MindyLuz05

Ok, thanks for the help guys. My mom I guess bought some of that stuff from the pet store that is supposed to help cloudy water by making the stuff clump up. I guess this morning it looks a little better. Hopefully it will clear up with a little time.

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I just got over the same (sounding) issue, my tank is fully cycled though. To clear the water up I took out the filter pads, put them in a bucket with tank water and shook the crud outta them, literally! The water turned (I'm not kidding) a dark brown, darker than chocolate milk. Put the pads back in back and poof! Cloudiness gone.

That's for a cycled tank though, so I'm not sure, but it's worth a try.

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