Pro/Forums (
-   General Liquid/Water Cooling Discussion (
-   -   Sick Algae Buildup (

satanicoo 04-28-2003 04:15 PM

i have an aquarium that gets algae many times. i have used all kind of products, but sooner or later, they appear.

but to kill everithing and to make sure it takes ALOT of time to them apear again, make this:

put the tubing, pump, filters and all of the water system in a hot dry air ambient during a week.

it works for me.

airspirit 04-28-2003 04:37 PM

I can't drop the system for a week or I'll have a lot of p!ssed off customers in my neighborhood, or I'd try that.

Bikr: I can't find the product you're describing. Any links?

I have two more ideas that I was given from another aquarium shop:

Idea 1: Erythomycin. I really don't want to use this as my wife is DEATHLY allergic to it. They suggested that maybe this is bacterial growth rather than algae ... I don't know, it's worth a shot, I guess.

Idea 2: Deck Algae/Moss cleaner. This stuff is supposed to kill and dissolve the stuff. I'm leery of it until I can read the chemical list and try to figure out what damage it can cause. I may just end up adding this in 25% solution to my loop and running it for an hour or two to see what happens.

I don't know if any of these things will work. Any ideas?

airspirit 04-28-2003 04:45 PM

I think this is what Bikr was talking about:

Looks very interesting. If it indeed breaks down organic materials, this may do the trick for me. I'm going to do more research on this first.

By the way, it appears that ammonia is THE ULTIMATE solvent for copper. That idea is out!

bikr 04-28-2003 04:57 PM

yes.. I'm glad you saw that .. ahah I was just about to dis-reccomend ammonia.. not only will it destory copper but in a closed system , it'll breathe fumes and blow the weakest point , most likely your tubing.. not a pretty site.. that isn't the same brand if I remember correcctly but the L series seems to be the exact same thing --Bikr

airspirit 04-28-2003 05:25 PM

Okay, I talked to a hot tub specialist and I'm going to be picking up some sanitizer solution tonight. It is supposed to kill EVERYTHING ... in fact, it is similar to what surgeons scrub with before operating. I'm going to drain and fully flush my system, run it with some Pine Sol for about an hour, drain and fully flush again, and then load it with distilled water and this sanitizer along with some erythomycin, though I think the antibiotic will get destroyed by the sanitizer ... but I'm going to pull out all stops just in case. Once done and run for a couple of days, I'm going to once again drain/flush, run with Pine Sol, and then fill up with distilled/Hyperlube/sanitizer, and then hopefully be fine.

Tonight I'll try to put up a couple of pics of the stuff before I break it down. God I hope this works. I'll keep you guys tuned in, and keep bringing ideas in case this one turns out to be a flop.

bikr 04-28-2003 05:30 PM

is that stuff antibiotic all together or is it microbiotic --bikr

airspirit 04-28-2003 05:49 PM

Not sure of the difference ... it is used as an antibiotic for humans, though.

bikr 04-28-2003 05:54 PM

well.. the stuff I had that worked well was microbiotic it uses live organisms to kill that garbage.. it's actually bad very bad , the stuff that builds up in your tubing will build up nitrate levels and it's really not good.. these microbes will feed off of it untill it's gone and then it'll all die --Josh

airspirit 04-28-2003 06:27 PM

That stuff will probably die inside the solution I'm going to be using when done. I'm going to leave some of the sanitizer compound in the system during my final fill ... that should keep things dead.

If all else fails, though, I'll try your route as well.

Alchemy 04-28-2003 07:28 PM

My knowledge of inorganic chem is lacking, but my guess is that the sodium hypochlorite oxidizes the copper.

In any case, water/NaOCl is extremely corrosive to metals. So far as I know, industrial chlorine separations plants keep water content very low, or else need to build pipes out of expensive superalloys.

And just in case you have no idea what you're doing, for God's sake, don't put ammonia and bleach in there together.


redleader 04-29-2003 02:01 AM

Not to be a dick, but I think prevention is the key here. Theres probably not going to be something thats powerful enough to remove all your deposits but not reactive with metals. Bacteria are probably the best bet (assuming it really is alge and not something reacting with the hyperlube), but I'm not optimistic.

If you're seriously concerned about this, I would change the tubes (or clean them outside of the system) and then use a biocide powerful enough to deal with microbs before they damage your stuff.

airspirit 04-29-2003 10:29 AM

1 Attachment(s)
I know ... ammonia and bleach will kill you. I'm not THAT ignorant, hehe.

50 feet of tubing is quite a bit to replace, so I'd prefer not to do that. It still wouldn't help deposits that may be built in the other portions of my system. I feel my best bet is to kill it all, flush as much as possible, and then take hardcore prevention measures for the future. Eventually, it will all flush out through multiple flushes ... the pressure and flow is so great in my system that eventually it'll all be scoured off of the walls and be placed into suspension ... or settle at the bottom of my res.

Here are some pics of this nasty stuff:

airspirit 04-29-2003 10:32 AM

1 Attachment(s)
This 1.5ft section of tubing WILL be replaced due to pressure wear (it is creating channels in the tubing's inner wall) in combination with the worst infestation in my system (sorry so fuzzy, but you can still see the red of the mold against the green, and the white is where the channels are etched):

airspirit 04-29-2003 03:00 PM

Okay guys, this is the plan:

1) Full system drain
2) Full system flush (to remove prev. chems)
3) 1.5 hrs. 75% water 25% Pine Sol (antibacterial goodness)
4) Full system flush (remove the Pine Sol)
5) Live bacteria culture goodness (thanks Bikr) for a couple days
6) Add 10% sanitizer, run for a couple more days

At this point the stuff should all be dead and eaten. If it isn't, I have a bigger problem than originally thought.

7) Drain 25%, add 25% Pine Sol, run for 1.5 hrs (pick up as much into suspension as possible)
8) Full system flush
9) 80% distilled, 10% Hyperlube, 10% sanitizer (to keep stuff from growing again)
10) Profit! Oh, this isn't Slashdot ....

I'm going to start tonight ... I picked up the chems at Wal Mart and the hot tub dealer an hour ago. I'll let you know how things go and try to remember to take pictures. Doing it this way prevents me from having to disassemble the system completely, and during one of the drains I'll replace that length of worn tubing. I'm going to flood my downstairs neighbors out.

airspirit 04-29-2003 03:20 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Here are the two chems from Walmart (one enzyme, one algaecide to go with the sanitizer):

airspirit 04-29-2003 03:20 PM

*edit: forgot picture*

airspirit 04-29-2003 03:21 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Here is the other WM chem:

airspirit 04-29-2003 03:22 PM

The enzyme bottle recommends just a tsp at a time, but since I don't have to worry about killing fish, I'm going to dump 80% of the damn thing in there, with the other 20% to go into the sanitizer mix ... though it'll prolly just die, though then again it may do some good.

N8 04-29-2003 06:17 PM

From my experience:

My full time systems get 10 - 20 % automotive antifreeze (Prestone, etc., the green stuff.) and I use 300 psi automotive grade hose (not clear tubing.) The rest is distilled water.

The cooling efficiency is not as good when you add more antifreeze.

The opaque (solid, not clear) hoses also cut down on organic growth (lack of light into the liquid.)

There is minimal growth over time. I haven't run a system more than 6 months without upgrading or taking things apart, but there has not been much, if any, scum to clean up after a 6 month period.

Anytime I do testing, it is usually for a couple weeks with just distilled water. Any gunk growth and I run 10% household bleach/90% distilled water through the system for about an hour.

I have never had a problem with it eating hoses, aluminum, brass, or copper, when run in that concentration for that short of time.

The antifreeze use has poison issues if you have pets and/or kids in the house, so you have to take that into account, or use something else.

I have run systems with the 10-20% antifreeze solution that contain aluminum, brass and copper, and have not had any problems over the years with corrosion.

My $0.03, your results may vary.

airspirit 04-29-2003 07:30 PM

Args ... decisions decisions ... and only 30 minutes before I start! I may just have to add a dilute bleach run before the pine sol. Bill has me paranoid, though.

airspirit 04-29-2003 11:04 PM

1 Attachment(s)
First, I would like to thank you all for your help. It has been greatly helpful, and I have solved the problem.

Let me start with some pictures (56K starts burning now):

airspirit 04-29-2003 11:05 PM

1 Attachment(s)
And another:

airspirit 04-29-2003 11:14 PM

As you can see, the tubing is now crystal clear. The solution to this quite simply was to run a high concentration of cleansers through it.

After much deliberation, I went with the following mixture after draining my system:

50% tap water
40% Pine-Sol
10% Lysol

The reason that I did it this way was twofold. While Lysol mixes readily with water, the Pine-Sol doesn't. Further, I figured that since they both are antibacterial and they both cut grime in different ways, it would be better to run them together to complement each other.

What I discovered was that after about two minutes the coolant went cloudy white. When watching the biotic colonies you could see them MELTING. It was awesome. After two hours, 95% of the gunk was washed off the walls and held in suspension in the coolant. At that point, I worked the hose by kinking it near each remaining patch so the water would scour it off. In the end there is barely any trace of infestation left in my system, and due to the dual cleansers I can be assured that it is dead.

Not being the type to trust, though, I have drained and refilled my system with water, aquarium algae killer, and sanitizer. If this doesn't do the trick, nothing will. So far the water has remained clear.

For all of you that didn't believe that your cooling system could be scoured without mechanical means: YOU WERE WRONG. All it takes is a strong enough witches brew and you can dissolve anything. I encourage you to give this a whirl and see how it works for YOU if you have this problem. I'll prolly check and see if I can write a sticky on this, because this is something that can help quite a few of us.

Tomorrow, I'm going to redrain and fill with distilled/hyperlube/glycol/sanitizer. That should keep me clear and beastie free from here on out.

airspirit 04-29-2003 11:15 PM

On another note, the channelling that I thought I was getting on that length of tubing turned out to be organic buildup ... I was freaking out for nothing! I thought it was due to the high pressures I'm using!

bikr 05-01-2003 12:16 PM

I'm glad it worked out for you man.. =).. Good job..

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:49 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
(C) 2005
If we in some way offend you, insult you or your people, screw your mom, beat up your dad, or poop on your porch... we're sorry... we were probably really drunk...
Oh and dont steal our content bitches! Don't give us a reason to pee in your open car window this summer...