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Very cloudy, very green, gross water!!

Vignette

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I started having an issue about 6 weeks ago with cloudy water. I keep up with my weekly water changes and make sure to rinse the filters in used aquarium water when they get funky. A couple weeks ago, I noticed that my water started getting green. Now it's so bad that I can't see the fish unless they're swimming right against the glass or up at the top. I did a 50% water change last week and a 3 gal pwc today. I have a 20 gal long tank, bubbler, and a hob filter with fluval sponge, and that blue scrubby stuff, along with the small oval bead things for bio media. I vacuum the gravel every time i do a pwc. I feed them every morning and that's it. And I try not to over feed. I have 3 tetras, 4 mollies, 1 mini loach, and 2 cory cats. They've always done fine and this just came on and now won't go away. I even had to get a new tank because the other one was leaking. This was about 3 weeks ago. I used the same gravel, decor, hob filter , filter media and 50% of the old aquarium water. I did a test with API kit yesterday and my parameters are : Nitrate/Nitrite 0, Ammonia .25ppm, 7.6 ph, 72F. I'm so frustrated and it seems like it's getting worse. I don't want to over clean or over change the water and hurt the fish. It's near a window, but there's an opaque curtain covering. I use chemicals when i change water, but only then, and I use api quick start, seachem prime, and i started using this water clarifier which isn't working. The room light is on quite a bit because i use that room, and I'd say the tank led light is on 10-12 hrs / day. Would very much appreciate any help!! :thanks:
 

Colin_T

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Stop adding chemicals.

Algae is caused by too much light or too many nutrients, or not enough plants to use the light and nutrients.

Do you have any live plants in the tank?
If not, algae will grow instead because there are no plants to use the light and nutrients.

Reduce the lighting period to 8 hours and see how it goes over the next week. If it's still bad, reduce it another hour.

Do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate everyday for a week.
Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it's added to the tank.

Add some floating plants like Water Sprite (Ceratopteris thalictroides/ cornuta). These will reduce the light and nutrients.
 

Metalhead88

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Reduce the light to 8 hours per day. Do you have plants?

Stop using chemicals except for water conditioner. This should only be used in tandem with water changes.

You may not realize this, but above all that ammonia reading is your biggest issue and should be addressed immediately.

When you water change, take out 75% of water, vacuum gravel, and scrub all walls and surfaces. This will remove a vast majority of the unwanted "things"

What light do you have?
 
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Vignette

Vignette

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ok, i won't add any more water clarifier or algae gone. but i have to add the chemicals to decholrinate etc to make the water safe from the tap. no live plants. I'm trying to find a place to buy some. There's only 1 pet shop in my city and they don't sell aquarium plants. I did a 50% water change about 4 days ago, and my fish had a very bad effect from it...my cories got very bloated and were swimming upside down, and the rest were hiding. Luckily they recovered but it makes me nervous to do a 75% wc every day? I mean, is that safe?
 
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Vignette

Vignette

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Reduce the light to 8 hours per day. Do you have plants?

Stop using chemicals except for water conditioner. This should only be used in tandem with water changes.

You may not realize this, but above all that ammonia reading is your biggest issue and should be addressed immediately.

When you water change, take out 75% of water, vacuum gravel, and scrub all walls and surfaces. This will remove a vast majority of the unwanted "things"

What light do you have?
It's just the light that came with the kit, an led in the lid. I only use chemicals when i do water changes. What's wrong w/ my ammonia? 0.25ppm is smallest reading aside from zero, on the test chart. Won't the huge water change kill the good bacteria? Like I mentioned above, I did an extra water change last week to combat the algae , I did a fifty percent and my fish didn't react well. My 2 cory cats were bloated and floating upside down for about 24hrs and the rest hid. I was afraid I was going to lose them all. So this makes me very nervous to do a 75% wc every day.
 

Metalhead88

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It's just the light that came with the kit, an led in the lid. I only use chemicals when i do water changes. What's wrong w/ my ammonia? 0.25ppm is smallest reading aside from zero, on the test chart. Won't the huge water change kill the good bacteria? Like I mentioned above, I did an extra water change last week to combat the algae , I did a fifty percent and my fish didn't react well. My 2 cory cats were bloated and floating upside down for about 24hrs and the rest hid. I was afraid I was going to lose them all. So this makes me very nervous to do a 75% wc every day.
It appears that there's another issue with your tank. Anything more than zero ammonia shows a tank that is not cycled or issues with your source water. How long has this tank been set up for?

Huge water changes will not affect good bacteria. Bacteria lives on surfaces such as filter media, gravel, and decor. Only small amounts live in the water.

Something is also weird with the reaction your fish had to the last water change. This is not normal.
 

Colin_T

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If you don't have live plants, just have the lights on for a few hours in the evening.

Stress from tank lights coming on when the room is dark can be an issue. Fish don't have eyelids and don't tolerate going from complete dark to bright light (or vice versa) instantly.

In the morning open the curtains or turn the room light on at least 30 minutes (or more) before turning the tank light on. This will reduce the stress on the fish and they won't go from a dark tank to a bright tank instantly.

At night turn the room light on and then turn the tank light off. Wait at least 30 minutes (or more) before turning the room light out. This allows the fish to settle down for the night instead of going from a brightly lit tank to complete darkness instantly.

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When you do a water change, make sure you use a clean bucket that is only used for the fish. Fill the bucket with tap water and add the dechlorinator. Aerate the water for at least 5 (preferably 30) minutes before adding that water to the tank. This will give the dechlorinator time to come into contact with, and neutralise all the chlorine/ chloramine in the water. And the aeration will help get the dissolved gasses back to their normal levels.

If you are concerned about doing a 75% water change, just do a 50% water change.

Your main issue is the light and no live plants. Reducing the lighting will fix this.
 
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