Cloudy New Tank
Hi, this is my first post here. I have been keeping fish for 15 years now with a lot of different experience. This is the 1st time that I am trying to keep a real planted tank.
What I am having a problem with is my new tank that is just red flourite gravel and DI water in it has a white cloudy color and that oily protein buildup on the surface. The red flourite gravel was causing a red cloudy color at 1st, but that is now gone and I am left with this. I did a complete water change and was very careful not to disturb the gravel, but the water is still cloudy. I have been skimming the surface to remove the oil only to find that is it back within 2 hours or so.
What do you think is going on?
Unless you thoroughly wash the flourite before you put it in the tank, it will keep the water cloudy. I know even spending excessive time cleaning the flourite (45min per bag and doing no more than 2 handfuls at a time), I still had a cloudy tank for days.
What type of cloudy are you talking about? Is it the milky cloudy or something like a red or brown color. Mine is milky. Then I also have the oily surface.
Mine was milky white, but I did notice that when I was cleaning, there was a bit of filmy stuff that came off the flourite. Generally, this disappated really quickly during the rinse. Another possibility is if you used vaseline in your seal for your filter, it's possible some might have gotten into the filter.
Everything I have seen about flourite is that you will deal with it being cloudy for about 2-3 weeks. It doesn't seem to hurt the fish and not the plants but you will deal with it off and on every time you disturb it to set a plant or to vacuum the substrate. It really isn't a big deal besides asthetics and over time it should get better and only last a couple hours after being disturbed instead of a couple days.
Just remember to stir it up once in a while especially if you don't have Malaysian Trumpet Snails. Although it works well I have heard a lot of people say that it will compact over time and can choke out the roots of the finer root plants. If I ever decide to egt it I will be mixing it about 30% flourite to 70% or there about. The flourite works great to hold and provide nutrients for the plants but I don't think I would use it solely by itself in an aquarium.
I've noticed that the flourite compacts pretty quickly. Usually by the next day, the substrate will settle and it's hard to notice that I gravel vac'ed.
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