Grrrrrr! surface scum - help please!

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by myboyshay, 3 Nov 2009.

  1. myboyshay

    myboyshay Member

    Messages:
    187
    Location:
    South Shields, Tyne and Wear
    Hi everyone,

    I'm having a real problem with surface scum (White/greyish).

    It's a 60cm Iwagumi (Serenity Peak Journal) planted with hairgrass, Tetratec EX700 & Hydor Koreli nano 900lph for filtration/flow, I dose daily with 3ml Easycarbo(I've got a feeling this is the problem) - no CO2 injection, 4ml Brighty step 1 and 3ml Brighty K. I raise the lily pipe every night and it comes straight back (frothy, scummy surface :twisted: ) I perform a 50% water change every week.

    I know it won't do any real harm but I hate the look of it, can anyone out there help or will it always be like this.

    Thanks in advance

    Mark
     
  2. Stu Worrall

    Stu Worrall Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    1,987
    Location:
    Flintshire, North Wales
    id bet on it being the carbo too. When I stopped using it on my nano the scum dissapeared straight away. Aside from more frequent water changes or going over to gas im not sure how youd get over it? maybe someone on here has had luck with seeing it off on their tank
     
  3. john starkey

    john starkey Member

    Messages:
    1,593
    Location:
    worcester
    Hi shay,
    i personally would be surprised if it was your easycarbo,i dose 15ml a day and have been for 18mths and i dont have surface scum,now i used to feed my fish every day and i had surface scum,for the last 12mths or so i have fed them every other day and the surface is scum free and water clarity is great,so try cutting down on the amount of food you feed or go alternate days,

    regards john.
     
  4. Superman

    Superman Member

    Messages:
    1,804
    Location:
    Cheltenham
    Thinking of it, that happend on mine too. Didn't think it was the EC just improved plant conditions as I believed the surface scum is some organic output from the plants.
    There was another thread all about me trying to get rid on my bigger tank: viewtopic.php?f=21&t=2389
     
  5. YzemaN

    YzemaN Member

    Messages:
    183
    Location:
    Copenhagen
    Try adding Nitrogen and Phosphorous. None of the products you are using contain these so your plants are disintegrating, hence the surface scum. If you just add the amount of EC it says on the bottle you should be OK for carbon. It also depends on your lighting level. If you have a lot of light your will need to add CO2.
     
  6. chilled84

    chilled84 Member

    Messages:
    1,458
    Location:
    Newcastle
    Its a sign of mall nutrition in the plants. sort that and you will sort the scum. I did.
     
  7. SunnyP

    SunnyP Member

    Messages:
    130
    I've been following this post as I am having similar problems. I get an oily, hydrophobic layer build up. I understand its most likely from plants releasing lipids and carbs as I reduced my EC dosage by half and noticed an increase build up of this oily layer.
    Did a water change on Sunday and removed majority of the oily layer by using a cup and surface tension to draw the oily layer off. Works really well but rather not spend time doing it. With the new water, I added an extra 25% of macro Potassium, Phosphorus (NO3 is 20ppm from tap so don't add any extra Nitrates) and small traces.

    Monday morning I noticed small amounts of the oily layer aggregating in the corner. Its still building up which it will for a while but seems to be better with news plantlets forming. Resumed EC dosing at the normal doasge.

    Hopefully increase EI dosing will fix it. Will give an update next week.
     
  8. myboyshay

    myboyshay Member

    Messages:
    187
    Location:
    South Shields, Tyne and Wear
    Thanks all, I've cut down on the food (only a very small amount twice daily)

    I cleaned the filter and I'll do the 50% water changes twice a week, I've also ponted the Korali more towards the surface causing a nice ripple. So far it's looking good, not completely gone but getting better.

    Cheers Yzeman, I hope not...I spent a small fortune on the complete ADA substrate system, I'm only dosing these products because I'm following the ADA step series and my set up is only 7 weeks old.

    Cheers

    Mark
     
  9. SunnyP

    SunnyP Member

    Messages:
    130
    I have had a great decrease in the amount of surface scum in my tank since upping the macronutrients. Mine was plant related and not food related.

    What do people feed their fish to get this scum on the tank? I use tetra pro colour and when I feed the fish the oily surface film contracts away from where I added the food. ( Don't know if I've said it right)
     
  10. AndyOx

    AndyOx Member

    Messages:
    87
    Location:
    South Oxfordshire
    It is easy to remove any scum with someting absorbent like newspaper laid on the surface and then drawn off, this doesn't deal with the cause though. A degree of surface movement will definately help. In the lifespan of a previous tank I had persistant BGA which was a right pain in the a** and used to grow on the surface like a scum. Might be worth checking you have a reasonable nitrate reading in your water. Most people tend to go for 10 -20 mg/l the upper end being most favoured.

    Hope this helps
     

Share This Page

Facebook Page
Twitter Page
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice