Top 10 Solutions for Dirty Saltwater Aquarium Glass
1. Decide what a win looks like
Choose a reasonable goal in terms of the frequency you clean the tank's walls. If you are forced to clean it daily, something is wrong. If you're only cleaning it every other week, you are likely suffering through periods of green glass and should pick up the frequency.
2. Stop using dissolved or powdered foods
Fine particle foods are easily lost to filtration and are not always easily consumed by animals in the tank. The food waste will then directly fuel algae growth and it breaks down incredibly fast. Feed your corals responsibly and at the optimal time to help reduce waste.
3. Don't make it harder than it needs to be
Choose the right solution to make algae cleaning easy. Combining two algae magnet cleaners together may prove to give you the best solution.
- Strong magnet
- Wide blade
- Sharp blade
4. Try bacteria
Bacteria solutions like Vibrant and Dr. Tim's Aquatics can help reduce algae growth on the glass.
5. Reconsider Lighting
Algae is photosynthetic which means lighting plays a big role in how fast it grows. Lowering the light output will slow down the algae growth and if you can afford it, turn down your lights!
6. Adjust lighting mounting height
Light spill that hits the walls of your aquarium will cause faster algae growth. Lowering your mounting height can focus the light towards the center of the tank, away from the walls, and help to reduce algae growth.
7. Forget snails as a solution
Snails do eat algae but will never keep the glass walls clean and clear. They simply leave a little trail on the glass.
8. Perfect your feeding
Food is the primary source of nutrients in your aquarium and finding the right balance of food going into your tank is of utmost importance to help reduce algae growth. Less food = less nutrients = less algae. Find the perfect balance for your particular bioload where the fish remain healthy and your not causing a constant rise in nitrate.
9. Perfect the 3-stage filter
Optimize your filtration by ensuring you tackle all three stages of filtration.
- Mechanical: Physically remove particulate waste with a filter sock, filter pad, or filter rollers.
- Chemical: Carbon, GFO, and your protein skimmer!
- Biological: Bacteria, macroalgae, and turf scrubbers
If you find your tank is lacking in any one area, consider boosting that particular area of filtration to improve your overall filtration capacity.
10. Consider UV sterilization
A UV sterilizer won't eliminate algae but will drastically reduce the spread and overall growth rate of algae in your tank.
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