Help me get rid of the algae!

Discussion in 'General Reef Discussion' started by KJoFan, Oct 4, 2017.

  1. KJoFan

    KJoFan Senior Member
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    Ok, I’ve been battling hair algae, cyano, and green slime algae in my IM40 for long enough now and I’m at a loss.

    I scraped and removed as much of the hair algae as I could over a week ago. I couldn’t get it all but got a lot that was on the back wall.

    But the cyano and green slime have taken over the sandbed. The glass is always a murky brown/green that comes back within the day of cleaning it off.

    Anyway, I finally tested nitrates and PO4.

    Nitrate is 1
    PO4 is .12

    I’m sure nitrates are slightly masked by the algae but still so low and I don’t know why really. I’m never very good at low nutrient tanks.

    I’ve siphoned as much of the sand as I can get to in the past month. Some areas more than once.

    I’m doing weekly 10% water change.

    Where do I go from here? If I bring down PO4 will that be enough?

    Corals are mostly soft and lps and look great. Except those being encroached on by the cyano.


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  2. csb123

    csb123 Senior Member
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    I'm sure bringing the phosphate down will help a lot. Couple of good options are lanathum and GFO.
    Once it is down then use a product such a Vibrant. It worked well for me. I would let the nitrate rise a bit.
     
  3. Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    I wonder if you have some kind of source of silicates? Are you using RODI water? Are you testing your water for total desolved solids? I would make sure that your water has zero TDS before mixing with salt first. Then GFO reactor to get phosphates in the .03 range next. Once silicates and phosphates are under control a good bacteria suppliment to make sure your culture is good and diverse along with a Robust clean up crew is what I would try. Fight it from all angles.
     
  4. OP
    KJoFan

    KJoFan Senior Member
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    RO/DI is good, in fact DI just changed. I can't say I've checked the TDS but my other tank isn't struggling so I am going to assume that's ok. Well, let me re-phrase that, inline TDS reads 0. I haven't hand tested it once produced. Maybe a carbon block change is in order just for good measure.

    I've used gfo and lanthanum previously but always seem to end up bottoming out PO4 even with running something like 1/3 recommended amount of gfo and a few drops of lanthanum in the ato. Which tends to anger the corals. But, I can easily add a couple drops to the ATO to nudge it down a bit.

    As for Vibrant...maybe. I've used it in the past without too much issue, but don't find it to be a miracle cure.

    Just seems like I've tried all these things to drop overall nutrients and ended up out of balance, which I think is actually what got me in this mess in the first place, which is why I've been hesitant to use all these chemicals to manipulate nutrients.

    But, water changes alone don't seem to be cutting it. Right now I'm oscillating between pulling everything living, except the rock because that has some algae too, and starting over and the desire to nip this in the bud and keep the tank going.

    I'm not trying to discount anyone's advice, just offering my experience on each.
     
  5. SuperJay

    SuperJay Junior Member
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    I had killer algae a few years ago, and it was making me feel like giving up. :(
    I beat mine with Vodka dosing :D
    Been doing it ever since
     
  6. OP
    KJoFan

    KJoFan Senior Member
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    Maybe I'll just drink the vodka, that should help right?

    In my 10, almost 11 years in the hobby, I think this is the worst I've ever encountered. :(
     
  7. Ben Nicholls

    Ben Nicholls TCMAS Old Timer
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    I tried a lot to get rid of hair algae in my tank. The thing that finally worked was changing my skimmer for an ATS. Instead of trying to get it not to grow, give it a better place to grow then your tank.
     
  8. YiNYaNg

    YiNYaNg Senior Member
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  9. YiNYaNg

    YiNYaNg Senior Member
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  10. asifiqbal2

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    I recently started dosing NO2PO4X with a BRS doser... results are amazing
    You will drop nitrates and phosphates in no time
     
  11. LoganLaBonne

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    Where did you get the rock from? I'm curious if its leaching nutrients into your tank. Are you only getting growth on the sand?

    My biggest rookie mistake was not properly curing live rock before putting it into my tank. Nutrients always tested low but rock was covered in hair algae. After months of battling it, just pulled it from the tank and cured it in a bucket for a couple months.
     

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