My problem is green water. And, it ain’t pretty. Reduce nitrate and phosphate. But if you have only one alga in your tank you probably don’t have much of a problem, and you wouldn't be reading this! Growing natural plants in your tank can go a long way when it comes to limiting algae growth. Still green water forms in 2 days after change. The water is local, untreated groundwater. Good luck! Algae is a natural part of a tank ecosystem, but rapid overgrowth of algae may occur when the water is dirty or inappropriately filtered. You may need to remove algae yourself. I fall into the camp that prefers to avoid adding chemicals to water where possible. I've been keeping fish for over 30 years and currently have 4 different aquariums – it's an addiction. They don’t cost much and will turn the lights on and off automatically, without any effort from you. Another common mistake is using a light that is too strong for your aquarium. Why is it growing so fast and how can I at least prolong the cleanliness of my tank once I've cleaned it? Wouldn’t it be great if someone else could get rid of your green aquarium water for you? Used 10 gals of distilled water (.89 per gal) used water conditioner and salt prior putting water into tank Have you tested the water? To properly fight green hair algae, you need to fight the war on two fronts–you need to remove the algae itself and find the underlying cause of the problem. My filter stopped working and I didn’t notice because of my castle bubbler. Another cause of hair algae can be light, especially when the light in your tank is too bright then hair algae will spread even faster. I dont really have anywhere dark to put them . My only concern with repeating this would be the dyes and other chemicals that these can contain leaching into the aquarium, particularly in tanks containing sensitive fish. Green aquarium water is not considered dangerous to fish. If you have a pleco I hope you have a big tank! Magnetic algae scrubbers are an easy way to keep your tank clean without getting your hands wet. Groundwater can contain all sorts of different minerals and nutrients that algae uses to eat. Eric Dockett (author) from USA on January 28, 2017: @ Whodoo: I would not use any type of chemical solution to clean algae. Seriously, I have seen grow-lights installed on tanks with fake plants! Gravel and sand residue is perhaps the easiest cause of cloudy water to fix. They don't get rid of it on glass but they're very good at picking it out of cracks and crevices on ornaments and fake plants. Will a brief dip in alcohol+water and then peroxide+water kill any algae attached to the plants and other surfaces (not doing anything to the fish) and allow the plants to survive? If you are not getting the basics right, like maintenance, then narrowing down the cause of your green aquarium water is going to be nearly impossible. I have a 2.5 gallon Fluval brand tank for one betta fish, one snail and a live plant. Generally speaking, no. My favourites are the horned guys. Thanks for support, If it’s exceptionally bad, I would perform daily or bi-daily 50% water changes alongside continuous UV treatment. It doesn’t like to float through your water. Glad to be helpful. Did you know that some aquarium owners actually want green water? It seems like your tank conditions are promoting extremely fast growth. Phytoplankton are small. I think this is may be a viable option for those who do not have affordable polishing pads available. You make a good point. By Wednesday it was almost completely green again. If it states how fine it is on the packaging, you ideally want 50 micron although 100 micron will do, as these trap the finest pieces of debris and algae. Serve the algae up for dinner In freshwater aquariums, the addition of certain types of fish are a win-win strategy. I did a 50% water change and fixed the filter. I had it in my garden pond, and it feeds perfectly my fry, my shrimps and my snails. Hi there Ian. I don't over feed my betta. I prefer the Mag-Float. We have a new (approx 2 mo old 20 gal tank) that we think is still cycling. The problem is that what I keep in my tank will be very different to what you keep in yours. This will determine if there is an obvious imbalance that needs to be fixed – for instance, your tank might need to be cycled again. Why Your Fish Tank Smells Like Mold. I’m going to leave it in for a few days to see if it continues to filter or if will be chocked up by algae. Are your water parameters normal? Does the UV filter work? Content found on is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional veterinarian advice. Of course, fish need a day/night cycle to be healthy, just like people do. On the UV question, beneficial bacteria isn’t free-floating, it clings to surfaces. The algae in green aquarium water, prefers to float through your water, without settling on any surfaces. I have moved the tank away from the window. Not much difference, right? Sometimes cleaning too often or too thoroughly can cause an algae bloom. As you might have guessed, this makes a polishing pad the perfect tool for removing that green tint from your aquarium water. Bettas create bubble nests and it can sometimes look like a film on top of the water. It’s hard to say. Swimming, eating and acting just like her self. The phytoplankton that turn your water green are so small that your filter is unable to trap them. Eric Dockett (author) from USA on October 13, 2019: @Anon - Your tank is overstocked, and the waste produced by your goldfish is likely contributing to the algae outbreaks. The filter works fine and I change it when I clean the tank. They couldn’t eat that many algae in a million years. How did you get rid of the green water in your aquarium? You have done a great job writing this article. This would be a useful read for any tank owner/user, but it is so well done that children who are being introduced to this hobby would greatly benefit from reading or having it read to them. They clean surprisingly little algae. Its placed in a dark corner in a chilly room 15-16°celcius and I keep the light on for eight hours/day. In just a few days, the phytoplankton responsible for your green aquarium water will start to die off. Remove excess amounts of algae by hand, siphoning or filtration. In the case of blue-green algae: 8 to a maximum of 15 ml of the 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide per 50 liters of water. I also used acurel and no help at all what would you recommend doing? tank? I was told that my tank itself should be replaced I thought this was kind of strange. I would recommend buying a test kit (you should already be using one for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate) for GH and KH. With the state of your tank, you’ll have to take extreme measures. Dump any poor plants, clean the windows. She seems fine. Hello, I really appreciate your comments. The rest of this article covers each of those steps in-depth. Some people say it looks like pea soup, but to me, it looks more like Mountain Dew. If green dust algae is left to grow, then the two look nearly identical…. How do you use a uv sterilizer as part of a healthy tank with an established biological filter? I tried using rainwater too, and the same happens, tho in about a week. The water you are using will likely have more of an impact than the algae. If you need a coarse medium for scrubbing you can use some aquarium salt, but make sure you rinse everything thoroughly before putting it back in the tank. I have added a scrubbing pad as you recommended to the filter area. It looked better then if he had just changed the water and filters in it! I’d say about 90% of tank problems can be linked back to poor water quality. A good routine to get into is performing a weekly water change of about 30% and a more thorough cleaning monthly. Algae is a broad term used to classify a wide range of plant-like organisms. Rest assured, it’s the same stuff – green aquarium water. I had two emperor four hundreds and a marine land 220 canister. Good luck! Only goldfish but great! Would the UV filter you recommend be appropriate to use in my tiny tank? 3. I got the snail to help with the algae dust (the kind that sticks on surfaces and he does a good job with it). You’ve got some work ahead of you, but the good news is that, once you take a few steps in the right direction, controlling algae gets easy. Hi, I have an outdoor fish tank with glass to the front and open to the top. A little algae can make aquarium decorations look more realistic, but when it gets out of control you need to find a way to rid your fish tank of this green menace. 3. Good luck! Additionally, uneaten food and other waste can get trapped in decorations where scavenger fish can’t reach it. I can’t wait to teach you about the hobby! Nothing working. Do you mean an algae scrubber? They are also sometimes referred to as filter floss. This tiny creature will happily eat the phytoplankton that is turning your water green. In the morning it gets recovered. Eric Dockett (author) from USA on January 24, 2020: @Jade - Most of my advice has been covered in this article. What size UV would I need for a 20 gal. I am watching the Plecostamus with interest! Obviously, the best solution to getting rid of green water is prevention, which I outlined earlier in this guide. Your comment will appear after it is approved by our staff. My husband has a 400l tank and this is the first time the green monster has popped in for an unwelcome visit .My hubby was at wits end and your advice and guidance has given him new hope. I'd be thinking more like 55 gallons. They reproduce rapidly and can become a serious issue, so knowing how to face them can be a lifesaver. Thank you for a brilliant Hub! Remember that algae create their own food via photosynthesis. 5. In my opinion they are the best and easiest way. It is important to get rid of this junk, so it does not pollute the water. An option is to use automatic feeders. Will my fish eat the Daphnia right away, or will they stick around to do their job? I have a biological filter that keeps all the N levels where they should be. Hi, I have an 80l tank with 6 WCMM, it has a Fluval u3 filter and sits at 24/25 degrees. However, if you are just starting the cycle, then it can slow it down. I like fish very much and enjoy watching them swimming about, I found it very relaxing. Eventually, they realize the fish aren’t getting the job done, but it’s not because they are lazy or on a diet. What do you recomend? I have 150 gallon African cichlid tank I have never had a green algae bloom before the only thing I changed was my filtration. The first step some aquarium owners take when they realize they have an algae issue is to go out and purchase algae-eating fish. Rainwater is not recommended as it is incredibly soft and can interfere with fishes ability to osmoregulate, which can stress and kill fish. This means they need light to thrive, just like a plant. This can be done with a regular over the counter … Just want to appreciate for your guidance. I have tried tetra algae control with no success at all. I’m unsure if this would work, but it’s an option. Hello. Once again, thanks so much for sharing! Remove waste from the tank with an aquarium siphon. It entirely depends on how well fed and the type of fish you have. It’s been 5 days and the water is still crystal clear! Get an algae eater. Planted aquariums still need maintenance, but when done right they can be perfect little ecosystems that meet the needs of fish and plants alike. Have you tested your water with an aquarium test kit first? It’s pretty fool proof. Invest in a socket timer to make sure the lights aren’t left on for too long. Tsunamicarlos [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. I have found that mollies make excellent algae cleaners. My 30 gal tank is not directly in the sunlight but close to a window. Makes sense, right? Either or, it won’t harm your tank. These products reduce and prevent algae blooms by coloring the aquarium water blue. I have a large water pump too with a filter sending even more air bubbles cascading. Put my filter care in and clean water treatment and its started to go cloudy and the green is settling again in the glass and filters .I dont have plants in mine as someone said it could be those causing it. Testing can reveal clues here. This was so helpful I bought algae eating fish and my algae is gone! Bottom line: Algae eaters eat algae but, like you and I, they only eat what they want, when they want. First off, if you’ve had an algae bloom something has gone awry with the control methods listed above. How often do you clean the tank? Common aquarium plants will out-compete algae for food sources. When I clean my fish tank I always put in water conditioning and water clarifier. Hair algae are considered an invasive tank species for a reason. Dosing a planted tank is a balancing act. Therefore, the same circumstances that help a plant to grow help algae grow. Some say certain plants give off natural substances that prevent algae growth. As a new aquarium owner its hard to learn all the ins and outs of fish and aquarium care. Instead, I used an old thick terry cloth wash cloth and cut it up in squares and placed it between the foam insert and charcoal insert in my aquaclear. This article focuses on natural means of getting rid of algae, but there are products out there that may help to keep you water parameters in check. After a few days the tank had a very slight cloudy appearance. For algae, I just do what I've done since I had tanks as a child - when changing the water I take ornaments out and scrub them with a brush in a bucket of tank water. Eric Dockett (author) from USA on October 16, 2017: @Jeez. I have a betta with an attitude and doesn't like to have the water changed. To view individual phytoplankton, you need a microscope…. You might not need to buy a UV sterilizer if you can fix it manually – UV sterilizers are not exactly cheap. What are the results of your aquarium test kit for Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH? A magnetic glass cleaner is just an alternative for dipping a hand inside the tank and wiping it yourself. I also wash my hands before I have to get into my Tank. There is no substitute for this work, and it is vital for making sure you have a clean, healthy tank, that is as algae-free as possible. It lets you see your pretty fish, and that’s nice, but when nobody is home you can keep the light off in the tank and algae won’t have a chance to thrive. I’ve been freshwater fish keeping for about 56 years & recently got a horrible GREEN ALGAE BLOOM I never use chemicals but I did manage to cure it after weeks of frustration , I blocked all light to my tank for 3 weeks it is now crystal clear…what caused it was, I’d accidentally replaced my fluorescent tube with a marine tube which was giving to much light.mick. "post facto", by contaminating the water even after rinsed off. Usually, it’s because of a sudden spike of waste chemicals in the water. Any advice is appreciated. When it’s used this way, it’s referred to as infusoria. Thank you! As long as your tank is not being hit with sunlight, near a window is fine. If you have a freshwater aquarium and non-aggressive fish, an algae eater can be an attractive, practical and chemical-free solution to overgrowth of orange algae. 2. Fill another bucket with tap water and add five times the usual tank dosage of dechlorinater.