Why is the water in my fish tank cloudy?

Why is the Water in My Fish Tank Cloudy?


If you have a fish tank, you may notice that it sometimes gets cloudy.

The big question I might have is this: Why is the water in my fish tank cloudy?

Why is the water in my fish tank cloudy?
Why is the water in my fish tank cloudy?

There are many reasons why you can notice cloudy water. You may also notice that the water is cloudy and of a different color.

It is not as easy as looking at the water and knowing exactly what is wrong. You have to do a research job to see what could be causing this.


Why is the water in the fish tank cloudy?

There are some basic reasons why the water in your fish tank may be cloudy. We will get to the color problems in a moment, but first, let’s look at the cloudiness.

Gravel residue

One of the reasons why the tank could be cloudy is due to gravel residues. If the gravel has changed recently, this is probably the case. You must drain the water from the tank and wash and clean the gravel again.

Dissolved constituents

Sometimes washing the gravel does not work. If it does not work for you, it could be due to dissolved constituents. These are chemicals such as heavy metals or phosphates.

You should try the water if you think this is the case. You are likely to see a high pH level. You must treat the water to solve this.

Conditioner’s special tank can help. You can also use reverse osmosis. o RO system You can usually find this at your local fish store or aquarium.

Bacterial flower

If the cloudy water does not appear suddenly, it is possible that it has a bacterial bloom. The new aquarium settings get cloudy sometimes, but if it’s weeks or months after setting it up, it’s probably blooming.

Bacterial flowering may take several weeks or months to create a cloudy aquarium. Much of the bacteria is due to excess food or decomposing plants. What is important is that you do not have to panic if this is the case.

You must start by removing any plant that looks broken. You should also remove any unconsumed food and vacuum the gravelMaking partial water changes can also help get rid of bacteria quickly.

If you notice a lot of food, cut the fish feed every two to three days. You should also make sure that any living plant looks healthy. If not, turn them off. You should clean your filter, too.

You may see that these steps do not help. If they don’t, consider using a flocculant. These are also called water clarifiersYou can find them at most local fish supply stores and aquariums. 

Why is my aquarium water green?

Green water in a fishbowl is almost always caused by only one thing: algae.

Getting rid of algae growth is not easy, but if you can find the cause, you can take steps to eliminate it. These are some of the main reasons:

Too much light

The most common cause of green fish tank water is also the easiest to solve. It is too light. If the aquarium is in direct sunlight, the algae will grow. It will also grow if the light of a tank is on too long.

To solve this, remove the tank from direct sunlight. You should also limit the amount of time the aquarium lights stay on. This should help eliminate green water.

Too many nutrients

If your tank has too many nitrates or phosphates, it could also make the water look green. The algae in the tank love these nutrients, so they grow. The first thing to stop is to change the water.

If you have too many nitrates, water change is the best way to solve this. These are caused by fish waste. Clean your filter and also make sure your fish population is not too large for your tank.

If you have too many phosphates, there are two main reasons. The source of water or decomposing matter, such as fish food, is causing the problem. Start testing the tap water. If there is a high level of phosphate, you should rely on chemicals, such as a phosphate remover.

You can also think about using reverse osmosis water or reducing the amount of food that feeds your fish.

Why is my fish tank water turning brown?

Green or cloudy water is generally not a cause for concern. However, if the water is brown or yellow, it could be a sign of problems. You must quickly discover the reason for the color change.

Overgrowth of bacteria

We already talk about bacteria that cause the water to get cloudy, but it can also make it brown or yellow. But this is a different type of bacteria. This is because the organic matter in the tank dissolves.


Organic compounds

You can also see brown or yellow water due to organic compounds. Again, this could be unconsumed food, fish waste or even a decomposing dead fish. All this dissolves in water, which changes the chemistry.

Too much of these compounds can also harm your fish. It can also make your fish tank smell, and of course, it causes the brown color of the water.


Finally, you may have brown or yellow water in your fish tank due to tannins. These usually leach from driftwood. Usually, if the color is due to this, it is not dangerous for fish.

Just keep in mind that tannins can cause the pH of the water to become more acidic. For some fish, this is good, however. For others, it may not be, so be sure to investigate the perfect environment for your fish.

Cloudy aquarium water solutions

If you notice that the water in your aquarium is cloudy, you probably feel that you have to do something.

Right? There is something wrong”. But this is not always the case. Sometimes it is better to let nature take care of it.

If the tank is newly installed, doing nothing is definitely a good idea. Let things calm down!

The bacteria in the water will eventually become extinct, just make sure nothing happens in the meantime. Changing the water can simply repopulate the bacteria.

You can also add some live plants to the water to clean the water. These plants have good microbes and bacteria in them. This helps to balance the water, too, and provide oxygen.

Live plants also help consume ammonia in water. This can make your fish sick, so plants make the environment pleasant to live.

It may be tempting to immediately change the filter if you see cloudy water. But this is not the case, especially if the tank is newly configured. It also bothers the fish and eliminates the “good” bacteria in the water.

It can also be tempting to change the water when you see that it is cloudy. But, once again, this is not the case when you just set up the tanks. Instead, let everything resolve. Then, change at least 25% of the water each month.

How to prevent the aquarium of cloudy water?

There are some things you can do to avoid cloudy water in your aquarium.

First, be sure not to overfeed your fish. Some people feed their fish too much. If you do, unconsumed food can cause cloudiness.

On top of that, overfeeding the fish is bad for your health. The chemicals in the water can also lose synchronization. Fish do not necessarily have to eat every day. They will be fine to eat every two or three days.

Also, make sure you don’t have too many fish in your tank. More fish produce more waste, which microbes like to eat. Too many fish can also increase nitrite and ammonia levels.

You should also consider adding carbon to your filter. You can do this with carbon pads or with loose carbon. This helps clean the water. It also absorbs the nutrients that cloud-causing bacteria like to eat.

Make sure you are testing your aquarium water often, too. Knowing the chemical composition of water is important. If you have nitrite or ammonia present, you should take steps to fix it. In most other cases, you shouldn’t worry much.

Finally, you can sow your aquarium. To do this, you must have access to another healthy fish tank. Take a few handfuls of gravel and add them to your tank. This transfers the good bacteria to your tank and helps clean the water.

You can also find filters and other products with good bacteria in fish supply stores. Simply add them to your tank to bring more beneficial bacteria.


If you are like most aquarium owners, you will probably panic if you see cloudy water in your tank. However, it is very common and perfectly safe to see cloudy water in a newly installed tank.

On the other hand, if your tank is established and you see cloudy water, it could mean that you have a problem that needs to be fixed. Follow the steps described above to create the perfect environment for your fish.