General Help

Discussion in 'General Planted Tank Discussions' started by tennis4you, 16 Oct 2008.

  1. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    I have a 125 gallon tank, 1.2 watts per gallon. CO2 tank and dosing with PMDD and Phosphates daily.

    I have only been dosing for about 3 months now but it has made a huge difference!!!

    I did a 20% water change 5 days ago and it seems like since 3 or 4 days now the water has white specs in it. The water seems a little bit cloudy and at the top of the water is looks almost dusty. You can see a break in the dustiness near the water filter outlet.

    Also, now that the plants have nearly doubled their size in 3 months, the broad leaf stuff looks like it might be seeing some bba on it.

    All in all though the plants look healthy and the fish seem to be doing OK. I probably need to fine tune my dosing and CO2, who knows. Anyone know what that white stuff is in the tank?

    Image of tank below:
    04.jpg
     
  2. Thomas McMillan

    Thomas McMillan Member

    Messages:
    1,127
    What plants do you have? It might be an idea to prune them if they are too overgrown etc and remove any leaves with loads of algae.

    I would say first get your dosing right, but I can't really help with that.

    Your water is probably/cloudy/dirty and has surface scum becaus eyou don't have enough flow, especially surface turbulance. What filter do you have and what is its flow rating?
     
  3. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Flow rate not even close to great. Eheim canister pumping 1 gallon per hour and a power head doing the same.
     
  4. Thomas McMillan

    Thomas McMillan Member

    Messages:
    1,127
    That'll most likely be the cause of the cloudiness and surface scum then - not enough flow and surface turbulance.
     
  5. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Ugh. I do not want to hear that. That canister filter I have cost a chunk of dough. I cannot afford another one...
     
  6. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,952
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi,
    If your plants have doubled in size then this means you now have twice the nutritional requirements that you had 3 months ago. This means the plants will consume twice as much nutrient/CO2. To further complicate matters, there is twice as much blockage of flow therefore the plants now have twice as much difficulty having nutrients delivered to them and have twice as much difficulty getting rid of their waste products.

    As stated by Thomas, serious pruning of the plants will alleviate some of this difficulty. I find it unbelievable that your filter flow rate is only 1GPH (4LPH). No Eheim external cannister has such a puny girly man rating. You must have missed a decimal place somewhere. The general 10X rule of thumb requires 1250 GPH so if your filter rating is 1GPH this would mean that you are 1250X underfiltered, so something is fishy here.

    In any case the scum/debris and BBA are indications of poor delivery of nutrients which should be addressed via any combination of:
    1) flow increase
    2) pruning
    3) dosing increase
    4) CO2 injection rate increase.

    Of course, the more pruning is performed the less magnitude of the other adjustments are needed.

    Cheers,
     
  7. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Yeah, that's my bad. I meant to say that it was basically turning over the tank once per hour. It does 165 gallons per hour, I have a 125 gallon tank. But I am still way low. I would say the power head does 125 gallons per hour if I had to guess, that puts me at just less than 2.5 turn overs per hour.

    I keep a netting under the power head and clear off the extra plants every other day, I figured that should help some.

    The plants doubled in size, but they were smaller to begin with and I have no clue what I based my initial dosing on. I know, bad..
     
  8. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,952
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    OK, yes that sounds more reasonable. So essentially your combined turnover is a little over 2X per hour - which is still a bit too low to maintain the same growth rate as the tank becomes clogged up with plant mass. You may also wish to consider repositioning the plants to get better flow. Trim and move the taller, higher mass plants (like the swords) further aft against the back wall or better yet, the aft corners. It looks like you have smaller, slower growing plants on the far left side so move those more towards the center front. This makes more efficient use of whatever flow you do have and helps the scape as well.

    Check ebay for good prices on something like a used FX5 filter and add it when you can afford it. This will help your flow tremendously in that sized tank. ;)

    Cheers,
     
  9. tennis4you

    tennis4you Member

    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    USA
    Thanks as always!

    Any ideas what would be causing the bba at this point in time? Too much nutrients by chance?
     
  10. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Might be worth talking to Garuf. Last I heard he had at least one spare FX5, though he might of sold it by now...
     
  11. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,952
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    BBA is typically CO2 related. Either improving flow and/or injection rate should resolve this.

    Cheers,
     
  12. SuperColey1

    SuperColey1 Member

    Messages:
    2,668
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    As already said the filter is a concern but allied with the powerhead will have to suffice until you can buy an upgrade.

    Also as said in previous posts I think the reason that you have seen the improvement over the last 3 months is due to the plants growth meaning they need more nutrient.

    What I would do is keep pruning to maintain the plants at the level they were, they will stay lush and green and once you have upgraded the filtration/circulation then you can stop pruning and double the dosing you are doing to let the plants grow more.

    When I set up a tank its great the flow is lovely and moved the water nicely but once the plants grow and 'diffuse' the flow, I find I have to reposition the filter out/ins and or powerhead to find a new best position.

    Good to hear that things have improved though.

    AC
     

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