White Mold And Purple Slime On Filter?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Zeyla, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    I have no idea what this is. 10 gallon tank with overgrown live plants, bristlenose pleco, 3 white skirts tetras and a few baby baby platys. Probably in need of a water change but I’ve never seen this before just want to know what’s it is.
     

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  2. fjh

    fjhWell Known MemberMember

    The "white mold" doesn't look good, but the "purple slime" is just a buildup of algae and bacteria. I have it in some of my tanks in the filters and my shrimp and snails love eating it.

    Based on what I see, I think your tank needs a bit of maintenance. What is your WC schedule and when was the last time you cleaned the filter?
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    I like to do a water change once a month but I have definitely been slacking. I’m wondering if the white stuff has anything to do with my dust monster parrot Being in the same room. The filter was replaced about 3 weeks ago. Last time I did maybe a 30% water change and my fish did not respond very well to it. I need to get my tap water tested cause I was told I could be over treating my tap water?
     

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  4. Drav

    DravValued MemberMember

    yeah you arent cleaning your filter out enough, the mold is from buildup and the slime is safe, my filter has that. I would take out the bio media and set it in the aquarium, then take the filter and give it a good cleaning with hot tap water, dont use soap, if you want to use a cleaner use vinegar or bleach and rinse thoroughly, the just put it all back together and your problem should be resolved. you should be cleaning out your filter around once a month or so.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    I’m really curious how bleach is actually usable? I thought cleaning with just water was enough?
     
  6. Drav

    DravValued MemberMember

    Its pretty safe, its just a chlorine based cleaner, when it evaporates it only leaves salt behind, it doesnt have any toxic residues like dish soap. Just make sure you rinse thoroughly if you use it. And you dont need to use cleaner, its just if you want to sterilize it, hot tap water should be plenty fine
     
  7. OP
    OP
    Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    Thanks!
     
  8. fjh

    fjhWell Known MemberMember

    Woah hold on here...

    Okay first I would recommend weekly water changes if possible. Every other week if your water quality is good. I don't think this is the issue though...

    You should never completely replace your filter media. Do you know about the nitrogen cycle and the role your filter plays in it? Short version: your fish poop and excess food break down into ammonia (very toxic to your fish). one type of bacteria eats this ammonia and turns it into nitrite (also toxic to your fish). another type of bacteria eats the nitrite and turns it into nitrate (non-toxic except in very high quantities). Both of these bacteria types live in your filter.
    This is why you should never toss your filter cartridge unless it is literally falling apart (for the same reason, do not use bleach, soap, or anything else that might kill off this bacteria, including tap water because that has chlorine in it). Even if it is literally falling apart, you should cut off as much of the media as you can and place it on top of the new cartridge.
    Instead, just take out the cartridge and just scrub it a bit (or if it is a sponge then squeeze it a few times) in old tank water (like the water you get from your water changes). This is probably why your fish reacted so badly last time you replaced the filter media - you just removed all the beneficial bacteria and they had to deal with elevated levels of ammonia and nitrite while the new media cycles.
    I would recommend taking a toothbrush and removing as much of the gunk as you can manually next time you do a water change. In the future, just do some simple maintenance on the filter every time you have a bucket of fish water sitting there and this should prevent a buildup like this. It will also prevent you from buying so many replacement cartridges for your filter.

    Hope this helps a bit and please ask any questions you have!
     
  9. OP
    OP
    Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    Thanks! The filter was definitely falling apart but it was the filter replacement that effected my fish it was the actual water change. I usually test the water and if all the levels look good the less water I change.. I hope that’s okay.
     
  10. fjh

    fjhWell Known MemberMember

    There are 2 main reasons to do a water change: 1) to make improve the water quality, and 2) to replace trace elements in the water.
    For water quality, you want 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and <20 nitrate. So if you have lets say 0/0/30 for your parameters, then you should probably replace about 50% of the water.
    Now one might say "I don't need to do a WC because my parameters are 0/0/5!" but you should still do one (even a small one) because your fish and plants need those trace elements as well.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    Zeyla

    ZeylaNew MemberMember

    So it is okay that I change less water based off good levels?
     
  12. fjh

    fjhWell Known MemberMember

    Yes, that is fine :)
     
  13. FishLeGeNd

    FishLeGeNdValued MemberMember

    Slime is just bacteria and algae. The white mold is just a problem with the filter. You should get a new filter for your tank
     
  14. kallililly1973

    kallililly1973Fishlore VIPMember

    Weekly 50% WC's and when you clean your filter just swish it around in a bucket of tank water never clean it in the tap water you use to refill your tank and always treat the new water your adding back into your tank with a water conditioner preferrably Prime. Good luck!!
     
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