Weird film at the top of my water?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by KyleMarie, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. KyleMarieValued MemberMember

    I've noticed that over the past few weeks my tanks have gotten this weird oily looking film at the top of the water. I usually just scoop it out, but I was just wondering what the cause is?

    Is it because of the filter cartridges in the filters getting dirty? Or is it because the water at the top of the tank is really still? Some people have said that it could be from the plants, but it had been happening since before the plants so I don't think thats the issue. If its because the water is still, what should I do, because I thought Bettas don't like water that is constantly moving.

  2. peregrineValued MemberMember

    It's called Biofilm it is basically the uneaten food and fish waste breaking down and floating to the surface. It won't hurt the fish as long as you skim it off before it totally covers the cop. Its not hat your filter is dirty, just with very little surface agitation, once it gets up there it won't go down to get sucked up.

  3. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    Protein film? I believe it's caused by a combination of not enough surface disturbance and organic waste.

    What kind of filters do you use? Is there any way you could aim the output tube at the surface to create a current up there without too much moving water?

  4. KyleMarieValued MemberMember

    Well, I'm using the filters that came with the tanks. They are the whisper filters that use the medium sized cartridges. So, there isn't really a way to point an output anywhere. I didn't get a new filter because I figured that since the surface wasn't getting agitated too much it would be good for my Bettas.

    Should I add a small airstone in a corner of the tanks to try to get some water movement? I have an airpump in a different tank and I saw somewhere else say that I can get a gang valve to split the air flow.
  5. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    You could try it, bubbles are pretty gentle and the betta probably won't mind.
  6. KyleMarieValued MemberMember

    Do you have any experience with a gang valve? I'm not entirely sure how they work or which would be the best brand to get.
  7. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    Unfortunately not, I imagine they work something like check valves though. I think they attach on to the tubing. As long as it does the job, I'm pretty sure there's no one "best brand" :)
  8. KyleMarieValued MemberMember

    Okay, thank you so much! :)
  9. AsterWell Known MemberMember

    No problem at all! :)
  10. peregrineValued MemberMember

    Gang valves are basically ball valves. Except usually have one input and multiple outputs. You just turn the handle for whichever output tube you want to use and how much air you want to let through
  11. KyleMarieValued MemberMember

    So, I just attach it to the airline tubing like usual? And where should I put my check valve? Do I put it between the air pump and the gang valve or between each of the gang valve's outputs and the airstones?
  12. SabrinaBrookWell Known MemberMember

    The check valve must be closest to the pump. I assume a gang valve is what turns the air flow from the pump up and down. If so, the gang valve should be in-between the check valve and the tank. That's how mine are set up for my air stones anyway.
  13. tokiodreamyWell Known MemberMember

    I use a T splitter in my airlines then give each split its own adjustment flow knob. I believe each are about $1 at petco.

    I always add a bubbler to any dead areas in my tank. Helps out greatly!
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2016

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