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Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. Default 120 Gal Freshwater Tropical - In Purchased home

    0 Not allowed!
    tank wide.jpg


    I recently purchased a house that has a pretty large tank (120 gallon) 6 Ft Tanks in a finished basement bar area. It came with a Pleco and a Damino

    I have since added some Gourami's a couple of Balas and unfortunately some tiger barbs (although they are behaving)

    Basically the community is

    1 Pleco
    3 Tiger Barbs
    4 Mollies
    2 Bala Sharks
    1 Striped Danios
    4 Gourami's

    Everyone seems to be getting along ok and its been about a month.

    My question is to the tank.

    Essentially it has been set up without a "filter" and its designed to circulate.

    Water circulates through an open air basin under the tank. I need to get some more detailed photos of the setup but basically water gets pulled from this basin by the pump which then gets circulated by some plumbing left to right and keeps the current pretty constant in the tank.

    Fresh water is introduced by a reverse osmosis system that has its own holding tank. When you see the water get cloudy you fill up the holding tank with filtered water. You open a valve on the circulation sustem of the tank which then drains "some" of the returing water. As the open air basin level lowers the filtered water holding tank has a sensor which then introduces filtered wanter to the basin and introduces this water to the tank.

    I have noticed since I added more fish and feed them more that the water gets cloudy more and I need to have it tested to see what the results are. I also havent done any gravel vaccuming.

    I just wondered if anyone here is familiar with a setup like this and has any tips.


  2. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Congrats on the house!

    As for the tank I don't have specific experience with this setup. It's interesting that there is an RO system.

    "Reverse osmosis removes virtually everything from tap water, including essential minerals your aquarium inhabitants need to flourish. Depending on the type of aquarium the RO water is being used for, it may be necessary to add these essential minerals back into the purified water. Most marine salt mixes already contain these minerals and the use of RO conditioners is not necessary. However, freshwater aquariums require re-mineralization to achieve the desired pH."

    "Often cloudy water doesn't appear the instant an aquarium is set up. Instead it appears days, weeks, or even months later. In these cases the cause is usually due to bacterial bloom. As the new aquarium goes through the initial break in cycle, it is not unusual for the water to become cloudy, or at least a little hazy. It will take several weeks to several months to establish bacterial colonies that are able to clear wastes from the water. Over time that cloudiness will resolve itself."

    There could also be too much light causing algae to grow.

    Are you over feeding your fish?

    You should pick up an API test kit asap and check those water parameters.
    110 Gallon New World Cichlid Tank
    Tiger Oscar, Large Common Pleco, Blood Red Parrot, A lot of Black Convicts.

  3. #3

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    Vancouver, BC, Canada

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    0 Not allowed!
    Agree, you need the API liquid test kit (or another comparable kit) for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH. In your case, with RO system, I would also get a GH/KH test kit.

    I don't know anything about how this tank is set up filter-wise, but waiting for cloudy water to do something is not advisable. There should be stable water quality, with weekly partial water changes. Perhaps the tests will clue us in to something.

    The mix of fish is going to be problematic too, on a couple of fronts. First, mollies must have moderately hard to hard water or they will not last. RO is producing very soft water.

    Second, sopme of these fish must have groups, they are shoaling fish. Please read these entries:
    Bala Shark
    Tiger Barb
    Not sure what species the danio is, but they are shoaling fish too requiring a group.

    Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
    Vancouver, BC, Canada

    Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]

  4. #4


    0 Not allowed!
    I agree in the water tests. Both in the tank as well as tap. This was probably setup as a marine tank with an auto top off in place, hence the RO. If you can provide pictures, that would be helpful.

    Usually, marine sumps and filtration setup aren't suited for freshwater and it'll have to be tweaked for freshwater.

    A lot of variables and unknown at the moment so more information will help us understand this set up better. Pictures will help.

  5. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    With that size tank you can do some really cool things. My recommendation would be to not throw fish in there willy nilly, but really do some planning ahead of time regarding which direction you want to go. You could do a planted community, a semi-aggressive community, a mbuna (African Cichlid) tank, etc.

    Just because your tank came with fish doesn't mean you necessarily have to build around them unless you want to. Some LFS take fish in on "trade" and give you store credit to purchase new fish. CL can be a good place to rehome fish, as well.

    What kind of gourami do you have? Gourami can be picky about male/male combinations, so that can be an issue considering there's not a lot of plant cover and/or hidey holes. You're going to want to up those tiger barb numbers to avoid issues, but like others have said, you'll need to check the water parameters first.
    "The Dumpster Tank" 26g flat back hex - Bolivian rams, Checker barbs, Harlequin and porkchop rasbora, neon tetra, SAE, otocinclus

    "Mini Mbuna" 20g long - 1 M. pulpican, 1 M. joanjohnsonae

    "Electric Blue Acara Tank" 75g - Giant danio, tiger barb, Bristlenose pleco

  6. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Can you post a close up of the sump area? There will need to be an area where water flows over/through different filter media, eg sponge or floss and biological (high surface area).

  7. Default

    0 Not allowed!

    Thanks for all the responses. I will try to get some pics up tonight or tomorrow night.
    I did have the water tested at Petsmart and it was really good. I think I was a bit paranoid on the cloudiness because I tend to look the long way down the aquarium so I can really see. I will probably get my own water test kit so I know whats going on more regularly, also I need a gravel vacuum and get busy in there. The gouramis are 3 Dwarfs and Two Flame Dwarfs. I have been adding plastic plants and many places for them to hide and claim. They dont seem to butt heads at all, there is one that is obviously king. Again thanks for the responses and I will get some pics up tonight or tomorrow.


  8. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    I would caution you against using the gravel vacuum until we can ensure that the sump is providing adequate biological filtration. While the gravel can be a storehouse of waste, it can also provide a home to beneficial bacteria. If the filter is not doing so adequately, disrupting the gravel (especially vacuuming all or most of it at once) could cause a build up of harmful nitrogenous wastes in the water column.

    Can you describe what is currently in the sump system? Even without pics, I'm not currently sure whether there is any media in there, or if so what type it is. If you see sort of round plastic balls or little ceramic "noodles" this is biological media, while filter floss is basically pillow stuffing. Once we can be confident that the sump is supporting the biological filtration needs of the tank, vac away!

  9. #9

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    0 Not allowed!
    All good advice, all new homes should come with a tank that size, LOL.
    Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.
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