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Brown water


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I'm cycling a tank with a clay substrate, UGF, and HOB. No plants, leaves or drift wood. 

Why has my water gotten brown? 

This happened when I first set it up, and I thought it was from my substrate settling in. I removed it with a carbon/floss filter. 

My theory is that the UGF is pulling small debris through the 3" of substrate and it finally got to the surface. 

But is there any other possible cause? 

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It's pretty much verified.  I disturbed the substrate and so much dust came up. I had a bag of rinsed crushed coral in there. I moved that around and so much came out.  My intake sponge was covered in it.  Rinsed that in the tank and same thing.    

Now it's a cloudy aquarium. 

It has to be coming back up through the UGF. Because I only started cycling after I was able to disturb the surface and get nothing kick up. 

I took out the filter media and left it in the tank. Stuffed the HOB with polyfill, and disconnected my UGF to plug in a DIY box filter stuffed with polyfill. 

Hopefully the cycling is still doing its thing. 

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My last ditch effort. 

An old folgers coffee container, drilled some holes, stuffed it with polyfill, connected a power head to it. But instead of water being sucked through the filter, I'm pushing water through it. 

The power head is too powerful for this tank, but I'll leave it running for a few more hours.  Occasionally I'll find craters in the substrate from all the water movement. 


On 10/1/2021 at 8:55 AM, Colu said:

you could replace the substrate

I really don't want to do that. I'm just hoping a 90% water change will get rid of it.  No fish so I can do that. 

Edited by Gideyon
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