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Old 02-22-2014, 12:45 PM   #1
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Water problem?

Any idea why there looks like there's an oil slick on the top surface of the water?
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Old 02-22-2014, 04:20 PM   #2
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Did you put your hand or arm into the tank recently, maybe to clean the glass or move stuff around? Possibly some kind of residue (oil or remnants of soap) from that body part that could've gotten into the water.
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Old 02-22-2014, 04:22 PM   #3
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Pics? How new is your tank? Most of the time its a protien build up. A water change can help remove it
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:15 PM   #4
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Not sure if you can tell. Tank is a little over 2 months running. I do weekly water changes and it goes away but it comes back. Must be the food? API cichlid pellets & shrimp pellets for catfish.
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:24 PM   #5
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Water problem?

It's because there isn't enough surface agitation, it's basically a build up of proteins.

Move your output up and aim it length wise across the top of the aquarium or add a power head to break the surface.
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:25 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdaddy2 View Post
Not sure if you can tell. Tank is a little over 2 months running. I do weekly water changes and it goes away but it comes back. Must be the food? API cichlid pellets & shrimp pellets for catfish.
Do you have any surface agitation? That will remove it permanently
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:28 PM   #7
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Ok I'll try moving the output up, thanks. Been thinking of using a powerhead too though, how big would I use for a 55
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:30 PM   #8
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Wouldn't need a very large one it only has to break the surface. I use a 250 gph on-top of a sponge filter in my 40B
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Old 02-22-2014, 06:38 PM   #9
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They make surface skimmer devices that fit onto the intake of the filter (assuming it is for canister filters only) which should remove the surface film. I do like increasing the surface agitation.

A quick fix (not permanent) is to place a paper towel sheet on the surface and quickly remove it. The surface proteins should stick to it. It may take several sheets to remove the film or at least enough of it so that the surface agitation can take care of the rest.
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:52 PM   #10
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Took whole tank apart, cleaned and rearranged every rock, and adjusted output to go across the water. So far so good with the "oil slick". Thanks for the recommendations! Think I still need a powerhead for the corner the output doesn't hit?
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:55 PM   #11
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Let me try that again
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:07 PM   #12
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Took whole tank apart, cleaned and rearranged every rock, and adjusted output to go across the water. So far so good with the "oil slick". Thanks for the recommendations! Think I still need a powerhead for the corner the output doesn't hit?
And what are you going to do when you get that oil slick again? Almost every tank I've seen has some oily stuff on top, could be from the food, protein build up etc. I wouldn't worry much about it.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:08 PM   #13
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If the output of the pump gives enough turnover for your tank and provides adequate filtration for your stock you can use air stones in the dead zones. Much cheaper and very effective.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:24 PM   #14
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Well if it comes back, I'll try some of the other suggestions, or change food. To me the amount I had didn't seem healthy for my tank. If it were a little I don't think I'd be too concerned.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:42 PM   #15
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I have a 40g with some rainbows in it and for some reason it started to build up a real nasty oily layer, I became so obsessed that I used to skim the water from the tank on a daily basis, did daily water changes and next day still had the film. Eventually I gave up and just made sure there was lots of surface moment, with time the film just went away.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:53 PM   #16
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Ya I didn't have any surface agitation going on before, I feel pretty confident after the output adjustment.
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