RE-Cycling a 55G - Cloudy
Hi. I've had a crystal clear 55G tank for the last 3 years or so. I recently decided to give it a new look including changing all of the substrate. I did not clean the tank during the new substrate process to allow for much of the beneficial bacteria to remain. The ammonia spiked and I added SMART START - I lost 2 of 12 fish (both my tiger barbs) but everyone else looks ok. But the water is still quite cloudy after 7 days. What's the next step? Water change?
3 Silver Dollar
3 African Cichlids
Cloudiness can occur from different sources. A new substrate can cause cloudiness for several days depending upon the type of substrate; this would usually be a light or whitish haze. I have one type of gravel that always causes this for a couple of weeks. It is best to just let it settle out.
Ammonia can cause a cloudiness, which would be identified with an ammonia test. An immediate water change may be necessary if ammonia is high, and using a good water conditioner that detoxifies ammonia and nitrite (like Prime) is advisable in such situations.
Bacteria can cause a whitish cloudiness that should dissipate in a few days. This could occur as a result of a new substrate. Water changes will not help this but make it worse. Unless it is caused by ammonia/nitrite spikes, it is not harmful and can be left to fade away naturally. Regular weekly partial water change is sufficieint.
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