Cloudy water 1 month later. 20 Gallon Tank 

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I've had my 20 gallon set up for 1 month. I've been slowly working on getting a cycle established - as some of you know, I had 2 mollies previously in a small 2 gallon tank. One started showing signs of stress, so in the new 20 gallon they went.

Currently, there is only 1 balloon molly in the tank. I started doing 50% water changes when I had 2 fish. Now, I do not clean the tank daily as the ammonia is steadily lingering at 0ppm. When I do change the water it's about 25% about every other day (with Prime). I feed the fish 2-3 flakes 1 time per day, except on weekends, when he I do not feed him anything. He tends to pick at algae on his fake plants in between feedings. (I'm working on real plants, but this is where the question comes in)

My water has been cloudy since 24 hours after I set the tank up (without fish). I know this could signify bacterial bloom and time is the only thing that will clear the water. But I also thought that maybe I didn't rinse the carbon dust thoroughly, so after 3 weeks, I changed the carbon things in the filter (I am using the SAME filter that harbors the BB, I just put new carbon things in). One week later, the water still has not cleared.

It doesn't seem to be getting worse, but no better. I know that using clearing solutions are not a good idea, so I do not plan to use them. Are there things I can try to remedy cloudy water? Or is this something that will clear up once all the necessary BB has established in the filter?

I may be pulling this from thin air, but I feel like I heard somewhere that real plants may help this...
 
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jdhef

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Not rinsing your carbon enough shouldn't cause you water to be cloudy, and carbon will not help clear up cloudy water (as far as I know).

It does seem odd that you have had cloudy water for a month now. Is the cloudiness white (usually bacteria) or green (usually algae)?
 
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jdhef said:
Not rinsing your carbon enough shouldn't cause you water to be cloudy, and carbon will not help clear up cloudy water (as far as I know).

It does seem odd that you have had cloudy water for a month now. Is the cloudiness white (usually bacteria) or green (usually algae)?
It's a very faint milky white.

OH!, I use the same bucket to take out the old water and to add the clean water. Could this be what is perpetuating the bacterial issue?
 
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jdhef

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I wouldn't think that using the same bucket would be the cause of the problem. I guess you should just hang in until you are fully cycled, and see if it clears up.
 

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Have you added anything to your tank that could be causing this?..Maybe a big piece of driftwood that could be old or have soft areas on it? The bacteria is caused by organic things that they feed on.
If not, as mentioned above, you will just need patience....sorry but it will clear.
 

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Good morning,

I have moved your thread to the Aquarium Cloudy Water section of the forum.

Here is a link that you may find helpful:
https://www.fishlore.com/CloudyWater.htm

Too, if you would be so kind as to update your Aquarium Profile Information it will be a great help to others with their responses. You can access the Profile by clicking on MY SETTINGS in the blue bar close to the top of the screen. In the drop down box click on EDIT AQUARIUM INFORMATION.

I don't recommend chemicals that claI'm to clear your water. They aren't necessary. Time and water changes once your tank is cycled will eliminate the problem in most cases.

Hang in there
Ken
 

catsma_97504

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You mentioned 0 ammonia, but what about your other parameters? nitrite, nitrate, pH? Since this is a newer tank, these other parameters might provide a clue as to what is occurring.

Also, that carbon cartridge you replaced......was it one of those cartridges that have carbon and blue filter floss in a single unit? If so, then you may have lost some of your bacteria when you tossed the first cartridge.

Good luck with your tank.
 
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TedsTank said:
Have you added anything to your tank that could be causing this?..Maybe a big piece of driftwood that could be old or have soft areas on it? The bacteria is caused by organic things that they feed on.
If not, as mentioned above, you will just need patience....sorry but it will clear.
The only thing that wasn't in the previous tank, is a Buddha head from Petco. I don't know what material it is made out of... but every decoration in the tank was purchased at a pet store for the purpose of an aquarium. They were all rinsed for about 1 minute in water. The gravel was rinsed obsessively because of all the gravel dust that floated to the top.

catsma_97504 said:
You mentioned 0 ammonia, but what about your other parameters? nitrite, nitrate, pH? Since this is a newer tank, these other parameters might provide a clue as to what is occurring.

Also, that carbon cartridge you replaced......was it one of those cartridges that have carbon and blue filter floss in a single unit? If so, then you may have lost some of your bacteria when you tossed the first cartridge.

Good luck with your tank.
I do water changes every other day. As of June 11, 2010,pre water change, My readings are:

pH: 7.6
Ammonia: 0-.25 (the liquid just barely has a green tint to it)
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0

Just for kicks, readings post 25% water change treated w/ prime (June 11, 2010):
pH: 7.6 (although the liquid is still blue, it is much lighter than the reading I got before the water change. Would this be considered 7.5?)
Ammonia: 0ppm

Oh, and the carbon was the only thing replaced in the filter. I use the Aqueon QuietFlow filter which uses filter disposable filter cartridges. However, I was advised on this website not to throw away the entire cartridge, only to dispose of the carbon inside the frabric part. So, I am using the original filter cartridge, but I've dumped the old carbon & filled it with clean carbon from another cartridge.
 

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Since you are not measuring any nitrates, I'm thinking that your tank is still cycling.

I know that taking measurements immediately after using Prime, that it can cause invalid test results. I do not know if it can affect pH. Maybe someone who is more familiar with Prime will chime in.

Have you tested your tap water yet? It's good to know if there are ammonia, nitrites, nitrates in your water source, as well as its pH. To get a true pH measurement, you need to add water to a bucket with an air stone and wait 24-hours to test. Then, after another 24-hours test again. If the pH is not the same, then wait another 24-hours to test again.
 
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