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View Full Version : Help needed with algae in 55 gallon tank



KINGMED
07-04-2010, 10:56 PM
My 55 gallon tank has been setup and cycled for more than two years now and I have not been able to get rid of the algae growth on the top of the pool filter sand. I have tried keeping the lights out for 4-5 days, cutting way back on food even to the point of not feeding them for 3-4 days every so often and the algae keeps coming back. The inhabitants at present time are 4 baby angelfish, 1 adult angelfish, 5 small yo yo loaches, 1 synodontis, 1 spotted raphael and 3 baby albino bristlenose which are doing a terrific job with the algae on the tank itself. The tank is setting up against the wall in my dining room aprox. 14 foot across from the two windows in the room which very seldom the blinds are ever opened and even then our duplex is so close to the next door house that the sun don't get to shine in the house. I just got done doing aprox.40-50% water change about 2 hours ago in the tank suctioning alot of the crusty algae from the top of the sand which kind of makes a 1/16" hard crusty top, the only thing is I take quit abit of the sand out of the tank during these times. The water perimeters are good and the fish do seem to be healthy, I guess I could cut down on the food, I always seem to think that not all of the fish will get food at feeding time but even if they don't they'll make it for the next feeding without any problems except for maybe a little hunger inbetween.
I was thinking and PLEASE let me know if I'm incorrect in my thinking, I've been thinking about suctioning out the sand little by little out of the tank in the next few water changes and then evenually replacing the sand with either new sand or gravel (king of leaning toward gravel now). I figure I could bring the water level down to about 30-40% and add the substrate to one end of the tank with the fish in the tank and then level out the substrate after adding it to the water. Any help and advise in this matter would be appreciated, I've had this problem well over a year and half and nothing seems to help, even had this problem when I had very little fish in the tank. Thanks for the help.

sheamurai
07-04-2010, 11:00 PM
The pool sand you used - would it be silica sand? I've read that silica sand is basically an algae breeding ground.
If you replace the sand (which I think I would do too, seeing as that seems to be the problem) check that you aren't replacing it with silica sand.

I would change it out entirely, as well, not bit by bit, as the chances of mixing old with the new would make it hard to remove all the old stuff.

KINGMED
07-04-2010, 11:11 PM
The pool sand you used - would it be silica sand? I've read that silica sand is basically an algae breeding ground.
If you replace the sand (which I think I would do too, seeing as that seems to be the problem) check that you aren't replacing it with silica sand.

I would change it out entirely, as well, not bit by bit, as the chances of mixing old with the new would make it hard to remove all the old stuff.
Not sure it's silica sand or not, got it from one of the hardware stores around here and the bag said it was pool filter sand. And yes I will take every thing out of the tank (sand that is) just thought it might be easier to gradually take it out little by little. I figure I'll get an aquarium sponge and scour the tank sides or just let the bristlenose have a hay day for a week or so without any substrate in the tank. I really think I want to go with gravel, but I'm not sure yet. I've always liked the natural gravel color in the tanks, I guess it's from my first 30 gallon as a kid, don't know. Thanks for the reply

sheamurai
07-04-2010, 11:16 PM
If you like the "natural look" you could try playsand. You can get it at Home Depot and the like. You'll have to rinse it for ages tho, before putting it in, its pretty cloudy stuff - and the last few rinses should be in warm water, so you don't drop the temp in your tank by adding pounds of cold sand.
Have fun rescaping your tank!

little hawaii
07-04-2010, 11:36 PM
I've mixed reg. Playbox sand with Aq. gravel to make it go further. No problems so far. Tank is cloudy for a week even after good cleaning, and the one down side with sand is you need to screen your drains to keep it from gumming up the pipes, it goes through my gravel washer like -#$ through a goose.Do you ever give your fish no food days?
Where they need to eat all the leftovers,and etra algae. I find I can control my algae by controling how much I feed. Swords and platies go a long way in the fight too if kept as dither fish.