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water getting very dirty?

This is a discussion on water getting very dirty? within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> I completely understand long shifts. The prime will definitely help. If I remember correctly prime will work for 3 days in converting the ammonia ...

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water getting very dirty?
Old 03-17-2012, 09:19 AM   #11
 
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I completely understand long shifts. The prime will definitely help. If I remember correctly prime will work for 3 days in converting the ammonia to ammonium, hopefully simone else who uses it will be able to confirm that. After 3 days I would test the water again testing before that can give you a false reading since the test kit can't tell the difference between ammonia and ammonium. When you test if you get a reading of ammonia again I would do another water change and dose with prime again. Repeat the process until you are getting 0 reading on both ammonia and nitrites. Once that happens I would just test your water parameters before you do your weekly water changes unless something is not right in the tank.
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:11 AM   #12
 
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This is probably a dumb question, but have you checked your filter to see if it has too much gunk in it ? You can do a gentle rinse of the media without upsetting the cycle. It's easy to get a big buildup of waste in the filter with big waste producing fish. Just a thought.
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:12 AM   #13
 
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By the way, the cold ones are my favorite part of the hobby.
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:27 AM   #14
 
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Just a quick note if you do rinse off your filter do so in old aquarium water and not under tap water
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:49 AM   #15
 
I should have probobly have mentioned this first off, but when I did my water change last week I took the filter inserts out and rinsed the sponge out the old tank water that was in my water change pail.
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Old 03-17-2012, 10:56 AM   #16
 
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did you rinse them out in the pail of the old tank water? Or under tap water?
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Old 03-17-2012, 11:07 AM   #17
 
I rinsed it out in the old tank water, I'am new to this hobby but not that new.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:17 PM   #18
 
There's some mis-information in this thread...

I don't have a planted tank, but if you do, you should not gravel vac around plants. This may disturb/damage roots and removes valuable organic fertilizer. In a heavily planted tank, you don't need to gravel vacuum at all - merely remove surface material if it bothers you (but a layer of mulm is a healthy thing!

According to Seachem, Prime detoxifies ammonia, nitrites and nitrates for 24 - 48 hours. This can allow a fully functioning bio-filter to process any ammonia/nitrites in the supply water. I would not use it routinely during a cycle - you'll need water changes if/when there are any spikes.

As to the dirty water, I suspect the filter media. Open cell sponge is really not fine enough to filter out fine particulate matter. In addition to sponge, I use a filter pad and filter floss (spun polyester) to filter fine particles and polish the water. For a neglected tank or filter, or a tank with high fish waste, there may be a lot of dissolved organics in the water making it 'muddy' (a lot of waste can quickly turn into a lot of manure tea!). The only cure is water changes and/or products like activated carbon or Seachem Purigen.
A tip is to guard against over feeding...even if there is not excess food that decomposes, the more fish eat, the more waste they will produce. Yes, like us, fish can over eat...and because in nature, at times, food can be scarce, fish are programmed to eat whenever food is available. It is better for the fish and the water if you are somewhat conservative about feeding.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:35 PM   #19
 
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I hesitated about the charcoal, but it definitely crossed my mind. In an emergency situation, I would use it.
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Old 03-17-2012, 12:45 PM   #20
 
This is where I may have go wrong, see most of my plants are Java ferns or Anubias and Java moss. And none of those plants are in the subsrate they are attached to either rocks or drift wood. I only have 3 plants that are rooted in the subsrate, I guess I got mixed up a little. I was told a while back on this site not to vacuum the gavel in a planted tank so I stopped! I guess I have alot to learn before I tackle my next project, I plan on setting up a 55 gallon fully planted tank by next fall.
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