Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
Fish Tank Maintenance : Clearing Up Cloudy Water in Fish Tanks

Fish Tank Maintenance : Clearing Up Cloudy Water in Fish Tanks


OK, we can get our tank set up and then frequently
what happens is, seem to be doing everything right and then all of a sudden you wake up
and you have cloudy water. No reason to panic. This is a frequent thing that happens and
it really has to do with natural causes. What frequently causes cloudy water is or chemical
imbalances is that naturally occur. Remember we talked about that imbalance of bacteria,
the negative bad kind of bacteria overcoming the beneficial bacteria that takes a while
to build up in a naturally occurring system such that it’ll cause cloudy water. The other
thing that can happen is you can inadvertently overfeed fish and the water will not be able
to take on and naturally purify it as it will later on when the aquarium’s established.
It’ll cause a bloom and cloudiness. The other thing that can happen is if you have too much
light, too much photosynthesis, too much biology going on here and it causes algae to bloom
and you can get an effect like this. Not to panic, there are solutions to every aquarium
situation that comes up. The importance of the frequent water changes will really help.
The other thing, instant answers in the form of products that will clear your water. This
is our favorite one here. This is called Acurel, we love this product. Follow the directions
on the bottle, it’s very simple. This will not disturb the biological beneficial bacteria
that’s occurs in your tank. They made it with that in mind. Simply, OK three drops per gallon.
So we’re going to add, this is a larger tank here. We’re just simply going to drop the
drops in and count. One, two, three, four, five. OK, this will take a while to take effect
and in a couple hours we’re going to come back here and this presently cloudy tank is
going to be pretty much crystal clear. And then, it’s your job to from then on continue
to practice good aquarium maintenance procedures as far as not overfeeding, making sure the
lights not on, doing your frequent water changes. And on we go to enjoy our clean, healthy,
sparkling clear aquarium.

100 comments on “Fish Tank Maintenance : Clearing Up Cloudy Water in Fish Tanks

  1. No disrespect, but I highly doubt keeping a silver arowana with the potential to get over 3' in a mere 4' tank is "doing everything right"

  2. @SamsXO when you change the water are you taking it right out of the tap? take a 2-3 gallon bucket then fill it up with water about a day before, add water conditioner in the bucket, and dont cover the bucket after, this will let any harsh chemicals evaporate before that is in your water supply. Cut down on how much your feeding them or only feed once every 2 days instead. Only do water changes every 1 1/2-2 weeks, let the good bacteria flourish, and keep your filtre clean and running smoothly!

  3. Why the heck does he have such a large fish in such a small tank. That is a living creature! Not fair. Poor arrowana

  4. that arowana is just in a sales tank. it wont be in that small tank for long till some dufus purchases it and takes it home to put it into yet a smaller tank. i see that often.

  5. I counted 24 'umm' and 5 studders in only 3 minutes of talking….seriously ??

    also, its a pet shop people, of course big fish are in small tanks…umm duh lol

  6. No disrespect but the Arowana is not full grown and I'm sure he plans to move it when it outgrows the tank. The fish is in fact fine in there at its current size.

  7. Whats wrong with you, These guys always spew out wrong information that can kill fish. Using Chemicals to mask a cloudy tank is WRONG husbandry. You need to know WHY its getting cloudy and fix it from the source. Not add chemicals to clear up the tank, which incase you didnt know causes oxygen deprivation to the fish.

  8. I watched this video. While I do need help clearing my daughter's 10 gallon fish tank from cloudy water. What I did learn is there is a lot fish tank experts. Quick to ridicule and throw this guy up against the wall. Who cares about his hair..seriously. BANTA7678 cannot even spell…great!!! Kory G is a great speller too..ha ha. Intelligence is a short matter with fish owners..I guess. I will keep looking how to clear up my tank. Oh yeah and I'm sure I will enjoy the comments too!!!

  9. Wal-Mart will love you guys. Buying all those little bottles of chemicals because you don't understand what is going on or how it works.
    Look up wet/dry filter systems. Understand how/why they work. Install one. Then leave your tank alone and never mess with it again. They help nature do what it does naturally in streams, lake, ocean more efficiently. Work with nature not against it. Problem solved.
    By the way, cloudy water is a nitrate build up. Plants LOVE nitrates. Get the picture?

  10. 1.I want to see the effect, how clear the water is after add in med.
    2.The silver arowana is drop-eye. Tune the light, and change the diet

  11. yea exactly, people are so stupid. i put my 2 inch goldfish into a 30 gallon tank and people tell me i need a 200 gallon tank cuz the fish will grow really big. but it will fukin take 10 years

  12. Expert? Tell that pee'd off Arrowana that! Crystal clear water doesn't mean healthy water. Good tank maintenance brings on excellent water and crystal clear water WITHOUT chemicals. Jeez.. American 'experts' strike again!

  13. American "Chemical Johnny". Bad enough they eat the crap, like painted cheese and green peaches, junk food and using cooking recipes with prepared food from the supermarket, but not even know how to keep a aquarium in a good biological balance without chemicals is sad…

  14. What a giant load of crap, these "experts" give horrible advice. He talks about cloudy water like it's something normal that happens to everyone and is to be expected. This doesn't ever happen to me, except when I siphon the sand and stuff gets stirred up. This shouldn't be happening if your tank is cycled, you have good filtration and do water changes. But if it does don't just buy anti-cloudy-water shit and throw it in the tank. Figure out what's wrong. If it's a new tank then there will undoubtedly be some cloudiness. But if it's not, check your water parameters and you should probably do a water change. A water change is almost always the first thing I do when I encounter problems in my tank.

  15. As a Pet store owner, I some times can not believe the amount of BS on youtube.
    He starts off saying good bacteria vs bad bacteria.  There is no such thing as bad bacteria.  Bacteria is what breaks down the organic waste the fish produces.  How is that bad?  Then he says in balance in bacteria again wrong.  Its in balance of water chemistry.  "too much photosynthesis, too much biology"  How do you have too much photosynthesis?  photosynthesis is the way plants take in sunlight and produce food.  Too much Biology, that one takes the cake.  Not a clue what that means.. "Acurel-F that is our favorite here at the shop"  of course it is when you don't have a clue what you are talking about. Just read the label and add the product.

    Lets start off with the basics.  You have a Large Silver Arowana in a small tank with a sponge filter that is barely working. First mistake.  That shows your customers that its ok to buy a small tank for a large fish. 2nd The amount of food that fish consumes, your sponge filter will never be able to catch up biologically hence cloudy water. 3rd Acurel F works great but will not work in this situation.  What Acurel F does is bond the suspended organic matter so it becomes big enough that your filter can capture it, resulting in crystal clear water.  If your filter can not handle the biological load from the start, what makes you think it can handle it with Acurel-F?    Your sponge filter that is barely working (moving maybe 20 gallons an hour, if you are lucky), is way too small for the amount of organic waste your fish is producing.  Why not just fix the problem from the beginning.  Add a filter that is moving 200-300 gallons an hour due to the size of the fish and the load producing and do weekly water changes,  instead of masking the problem with some chemicals.  That you don't even know how they work.

    On another note, there are many reasons for a cloudy tank and Acurel_F will not work in all situations. So before you go and spend money on a product because you saw some video of an idiot giving you wrong information.  Make sure you do your research before you go and add chemicals to a tank.  For the person that made this video, what do you do if you have an Algae bloom?   I would love to see that video.
    Pedro

  16. I bought this Acurel f as for the last 5 weeks my tank is just no end to cloudiness I used the Acurel f with in 1 hr it was crystal clear but as night time fell it just started clouding up again , now I have had cold water fish tank on and off for about 35 years and never up till now have I had cloudy water and I don't see the point in using this stuff every day to keep it clear I have been to 3 different aquarists and not 1 of them can come up with the to why it's cloudy , I've checked everything in the tank I have a really good filter but I just don't know what else I can do there most be some one out there that can help solve the problem .

  17. I've never had cloudy water even when my tank was cycling. If you don't over feed your fish and don't over stock your tank and have good filtration. EHEIM FILTRATION you will never encounter cloudy water. This guy is on prozac.

  18. Its not normal for tanks to just cloud up. If they do its due to an algae bloom, poor water quality, bad filtration,etc. Adding chemicals is only a temporary mask and will not usually cure the overall issue. Plus adding any chemicals to your aquarium is just a bad idea. So find out why your tank is cloudy and deal with the problem.

    Proper filtration,weekly water changes and simple maintenance will yield you a crystal clear tank for decades.

  19. Here's something for you. I set my tank up with filter, heater and bubbler. Crystal clear water for 2 days then after that the water got cloudy. I hadn't even bought any fish yet! I am dumbfounded.

  20. Having worked in an aquarium with 1000 tanks and having kept 200 at my house for many years and managing many others at leased locations, as well as being trained as a veterinarian in aquatics (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute had a great veterinary survey course) I'd like to add my two cents worth.  Not everyone gets cloudy water, but it can be an issue in some situations and is by no means an aberration. There is  no need for the pompous and rude comments here, as if it is a rare occurrence.  Just because it did not happen to you does not mean it is not common.  

    Cloudy water does mean something is out of balance.  To understand the cure, I like to look at the causes.

    Some circumstances and environments are more prone to this event. For instance, big eaters (and poopers), like arowanas and large goldfish can occasionally throw things off balance.  Changes in lighting or diet can change the balance in aquariums. For example, breeding set-ups where diet is varied and more frequent can be easier to upset. If someone else is feeding the fish (that substitute receptionist) or where the ambient light varies seasonally, cloudy water can occur.  Introduction of, or gradual breakdown of, improperly seasoned or aging wood decor may trigger this as well. Aquariums are, after all, small, closed systems subject to more variables than we sometimes realize.  

    Yes, adequate filtration can help prevent cloudy water, but not always.  (Don't forget that some filtration mechanisms that are supposedly adequate for the physical set-up (raw tank size) can be overkill for the species in the tank, putting undue stress on them because the water is moving like a toilet flushing.  I always feel sorry for the poor fish in those environments.)  For fish and aquatic environments that need less energetic filtration-less current- or balanced, natural tanks with no filtration, a regular water change schedule is essential.  But let's face it, fishkeepers are only human.  We get sick, go on vacation, have life events that make us less diligent, make a mistake in feeding. 

    Whatever the cause, chemicals are usually not the answer. The urge is to want to fix it instantaneously–and for some settings, the aesthetic requirement is critical, such as in doctor's offices or restaurants. But for most, as the commenters above said, careful, measured, daily water changes will ameliorate the situation over time.  Running an external filter with an adequate filtration substrate for a short time can clear things up a lot.  We used to run an external diatomaceous earth filter for an hour or so in public display tanks, which usually took care of the  problem immediately.  (I'm not sure if they are still commercially available.)  

    There is a lot of stress on quick, chemical fixes in the retail fish industry–for pH adjustment, elimination of chlorine, cloudy water, etc.  We avoided all of these. That includes in the 1000 aquarium wholesaler, our 200-tank breeding and hobby room, and in the leased and rented aquariums (and for veterinary patients, although I did use the "artificial slime" during and after surgery).  But I won't rule quick-fix chemicals out completely, since they work for some people.  Similarly, massive and costly maintenance filters are not the answer either.  Instead, making sure the total mass of fish is appropriate for the the actual volume of water right from the start–pro-rated to allow for the size of specimen and type of diet –and regular, partial water changes are the best medicine.

  21. hello all. im new to the tropical fish keeping lark.. i have put R/O water in my tank(330L) this week and my water is all cloudy and im not sure what to do.. 
    so far i have washed the gravel..put that inside tank.put the R/O water inside tank.. put my fake//plastic plants inside tank..
    i took the filter filters out and washed those.. now all is up n running all seems ok appart from the cloudy water.. now im not sure weather i need brand new filters for my filter or are my lights on for to long.. they currently running about 12 hrs on 12 off .. so i not sure.. i have a aqua mants 1500u filter with a uv light on it . do  leave that on all the time or ?? i not sure..
    im an animal lover and love fish..   so no fish will be inside until im sure that they will be ok inside there new home…
    any advise will be much appreciated here.. one last thought is it possible that all is ok as it is and it just needs to do its first cycle etc i was told to expect this but i keep hearing all diffrent reports from diffrent ppl.. on y/tube and at the aquarium centre.. so i all confused out…oh and the water has been inside tank for 3 days now.

  22. I was wondering if I am overfeeding my fish. I have a 40 gallon tank and about 15 fish in it of different species. They eat all the food quickly, never seem to quit, whenever I put falkes in there. If some sinks to the bottom the bottom feeders get it. So there's no wasted food that could get sucked into the filter, or if it is, very little. Thing is, even if they are eating it all , is that over feeding?

  23. I had cloudy water for months and being new to keeping fish was sort of a novice and I tried everything.. Water treatments, uv sterilisers, activated carbon, different substrate but all were temporary if no fix at all.. Here's what the problem was, not enough filtration.. I doubled up on filter pumps and also fitted them with micro fibre wool, do max 25% water changes every 1-2 week and keep your feeding small, fish can go a week without food so you cant really starve them.. 80% of water quality problems are because people don't have enough filtration FACT.. I battled this for months and nearly gave up altogether but now my water is crystal clear

  24. I HAVE A 5 GALLON TANK…AND MY NEON TETRAS KEEP DYING I TEST THE WATER EVEN TOOK A SAMPLE TO THE STORE AND EVERYTHING WAS FINE..SO DON'T KNOW WHAT COULD KEEP CAUSING MY FISH TO DIE ANY SUGGESTIONS

  25. help I spilled milk in my fish tank and have done a haf water change. but it still is very cloudy what should I do.

  26. While the video was informative, but hate video with half ass done. Where's the other part of the video he stated after two hours and it will be cleared?

  27. I don't know why there's so many dislikes. This video had a great description of the chemical reasons for the clouding.

  28. this video is super old and people still bust on the guy. I screened shot his face once and made it my screen saver. lol

  29. My tank has been set up since since Jan and it is still little cloudy it cleared up for a while until I changed my rocks out and has been cloudy ever since, I washed the rocks out well but they were so dusty its possible I didn't do a good enough job and that could be why my tank isn't crystal clear. Maybe if I do a 50 % water change it will help but for now I'm going to leave it for a week or two to see if it clears up on it's own..

  30. Please help I have a small fish tank with two small goldfish and I clean my tank every two weeks. I have an anti bacteria liquid I put in once a week and this fish salt to prevent diseases. I don’t have a filter. My tank still gets cloudy and stinks. What should I do?

  31. I came across  a new one my water turned blue   I thought it was the light I  was doing  water change  and got a bucket full of blue water  is this a algae

  32. For those saying the tank small for the fish..you a stupid and hypocrite… If you dont want fish to live in small tank.. Why u keep fish in a big tank while fish like to go freely in their habitat.. I tell u a secret.. You are not fishkeeper.. You just kinapping fish from their habitat where freely swimming.. You just tortured the fish in the tank..it doest matter small or big tank.. You just kill the fish happines.. Also stupid think to say fish happy in big tank..do the fish can talk to you..!? Morron

  33. My arowana 4yr old …now it didnt eat anything ..and arowana is very tired cant swim ..still standing a corner …what can i do pls help

  34. The reason your aquarium is cloudy is becuz there's water in the tank…and that Arowana needs a smaller tank so that it can really suffer.

  35. I have a 5 gallon fish tank and after changing the water it gets cloudy I bought those drops and it does not work what am I doing wrong

  36. I have a 60gal and one big fish how much gal should I remove to do a water change? Btw you look like the younger version the doc from back to the future lol

  37. If you have a cloudy tank for months My tank had been set up for a year no water changes just added a bit when low and after introducing live plants to my tank and getting snails with the plants unwated it got supper cloudy I slowed my feeding then a fish died so i looked up vids saying freakwent water changes then to do nothing such as adding chems like i did trying to clear it up but no luck for 2 months I had another fish get sick and die so today I got some ick gaurd added 2 and a 1/2 tablets to my 55 gallon bcuz I have scaless fish so half dose then I also added full dose to my tank of easy balance plus from tetra with in 5 hours my tank is crystal clear and before I added these i bought another 70 gallon filter and 2 water jets and wating 2 weeks doing nothing but 50% water change 1s a week didnt change anything xsept a slite less cloudy. Hope this helps

  38. That arowana needs at least 100 some gallons. That tank is way too tiny. I have a giant plakat Betta in a 20 gallon planted tank.

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