55 Gallon Tank Help! Can't seem to get the water clear

Discussion in 'Aquarium Water' started by buck0808, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. buck0808New MemberMember

    :( I most likely have to many fish (31). Water test ok! From the front of the tank it looks ok. but if you look from the end the long way it looks hazey.All the fish seem fine. It was setup for 3-months. Any ideas?

  2. kinezumi89Fishlore VIPMember

    Welcome to FishLore!

    1. When you say the water tests okay, how do you know that? Do you have a test kit? If so, what kind? The liquid types such as the API Master Test Kit are much more accurate than the strip tests.
    2. What matters more than the number of fish is the type, size, bioload produced, etc. Can you list what kinds and how many of each? For example, 31 tetras wouldn't be a problem, but 31 goldfish would be a nightmare!
    3. I've read recently a similar thread; a member had a cycled tank with good water parameters but had cloudy water. Someone recommended a type of pad you can put in the filter housing that removes fine particulate from the water. Perhaps you can look into that? Hopefully someone else will reply who knows what I'm talking about.

  3. buck0808New MemberMember

  4. ryanrModeratorModerator Member

    Fine filter floss will help to polish the water, and possibly activated carbon could help.

    I think your bigger concern is the stocking of the tank and the bio-load being produced, that, IMO is too much, which is causing the cloudiness.

    The bala is likely to outgrow a 55, and does better in schools, a 125 or 180 is a better home for balas.

    Your profile lists your filtration as "Outside" - what does this mean, is it a canister or a Hang-on back? Do you know what it's rated at (GPH), you may have a case of too little filtration (even though nitrates are at 20) to cope with the particles in the water.
  5. buck0808New MemberMember

  6. DonnerjayWell Known MemberMember

    Hello and :sign0016: to FishLore!

    Hmm, you might be having a bacteria bloom. Could you list your readings for ammonia and nitrite in your profile? That will help us a lot as we help you.

    Again, welcome to the forum.
  7. pirahnah3Fishlore VIPMember

    Welcome to the forum,

    If the cloud is greenish, its an algae and its a slight pain to get rid of, if its more of a milk color then its a bacterial bloom and it will go away in time, nothing you can really do but let it run its course. If its a tan color if could be from a fresh piece of drift wood if you have added one recently.
  8. Wendy LubianetskyWell Known MemberMember

    One of the ways I keep my water crystal, crystal clear is to put an underwater self-contained filter (Duetto) in each tank packed with floss and activated carbon. I change it every 30 days like clock work. It is not my main filtration, it is there basically to polish the water. The Duetto pumps 100 gallons per hour, which isn't a lot, but like I said this is not for the filtration or for the bacterial colony. It is not involved in the cycling process. I also hook up an air tube to it to pump oxygen in the tank. I also do a lot of water changes. More like 25-50% every 3rd day or so.

    This of course only applies if this is not some sort of bacterial bloom or tannin in the water as mentioned above.
  9. cameronpalteValued MemberMember

    I am not 100% sure on this, so someone tell me if I'm right or not, but I think your tank is too small for your redtail shark, and bala shark, and that bala sharks are schooling fish that should be kept in groups of 6? I am not sure about your other fish... best of luck!
  10. yusufm52Valued MemberMember

    Hi, and welcome to fishlore, as mentioned by others your tank is small for the bala sharks and the red tail sharks.. as for the cloudy water, if your tests are at the required levels its not much of a problem, filter wool should probably solve your problem.. :)
  11. kinezumi89Fishlore VIPMember

    I think your tank may be a wee bit overstocked as well. I'm not sure what genders your dwarf gourami are, but they are best kept singly (definitely not more than one male). Angelfish actually get pretty big, and tall too, so depending on how tall your tank is (recommendation is usually at least 18"), they will probably outgrow the tank as well. Barbs are very nippy and should. It be kept with finned fish such as angels. Also, once the angels get bigger, they may see the tetras as a tasty snack... :)

    I'm guessing that's the API test kit. What are your parameters?

    Edit: if by charcoal you mean carbon, many members don't actually keep carbon in their filters unless trying to remove medication (possibly other reasons I'm not familiar with), so you probably don't have to replace it if you don't want to :) HOWEVER when you go to remove it, discard ONLY the carbon; if you throw away the actual filter you'll lose your beneficial bacteria! Important stuff :)
  12. bowcrazyWell Known MemberMember

    As others have stated, your stocking list is a bit high with a few fish that really need a larger tank due to the size they grow to and some are schooling fish and do best when kept in larger schools. I think they have all covered that very well so I am going to move on to other topics that I see might be a problem.

    There can many causes for cloudy water and they range from too many waste producing fish to over feeding. Each one has its own cure and most are very simple to accomplish and don’t cost too much. The only real good way to tell how your tank water is doing is by testing with a liquid test kit. If you have tested your water lately please post the results and if you haven’t please do, even if you have to take some of the water to a LFS and have them test it for you.

    Over feeding is one common cause of cloudy water and can be cured by doing water changes and cutting back on how much you feed. Only feed an amount that your fish will consume in a few minutes and remove any uneaten food after 5 minutes. This will help cut down on how much food is decaying in the tank. Doing water changes with a good vacuum of the substrate will also help.

    Pour filtration is another cause of cloudy water. If you filter becomes slightly clogged it will not filter as well as it had been and the water will slowly cloud up. Best thing to do here is to clean the filter using the old tank water, but don’t over clean it, just give it a good rinsing. I personally run two double filters on my larger tanks to help with filtration and I only clean one of them at a time.

    Too many fish or too many large waste producers in one tank is another big cause of cloudy water and the best solution here is to cut back on the number of fish by finding another home for some of them.

    By the way let me take time to welcome you to FishLore!
  13. ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    Great advice from members and Welcome to Fishlore!!

    :;f I have moved your post out of the Welcome section and into the Aquarium Water Section :)
  14. buck0808New MemberMember

    Thanks for all your imput! I understand I have to many fish and fish that should not be together. But they are getting along fine. For right now the angels are smalle than most os the fish. I am trying the wool but so far not any better. Amonia and nitrite is 0. I haven't lost a fish in two month. When i was in the hobby Twenty wait thirty years ago(that showing my age WOW!) I always had a nack of putting the wrong fish together and it always seemed to work.
  15. danhammondNew MemberMember

    Something else I do, you can keep red tail sharks when they are small up to maybe 5 or 6 inches in a 55 gallon tank. After they reach that size I take my shark back to the pet store and trade it in for another small one. Most pet stores do buy back fish from you but not all. You can do the same with the bala shark. These fish behaviors do change with the fish size, as they grow they tend to get more aggresive toward other fish. When small they make better community tank companions.

    I bet you have a bacteria bloom going on that will clear up in about a week or so. Adding plants or fish or changing filter media can cause this to happen. Even water changes can cause this if your source water is not very stable from week to week. A hang on the back filter type with a bio wheel does far more bio filtering than a canister ever will and faster too. I have both in my 55 gallon tank.

    Also as your fish grow larger the bio load will increase and it sounds like your tank is near its limit if not over right now. It will only get worse as the fish grow.
    Try to limit your tank to about 50 total inches of fish. As they grow take some out and sell them back to the fish store for fish food and other supplies.

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