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How to Get Rid of & Prevent Algae in a Fish Tank

How to Get Rid of & Prevent Algae in a Fish Tank

Posted by Artur Wlazlo on 11 Nov 2021

Tank Maintenance & Care

Algae running amok can be a death sentence for your aquarium. But, don’t worry!  Modern Aquarium is here with tips and advice to help you prevent algae from growing and to help you get it under control if it has already started. If you’re ready to ensure your tank is thriving, read on to learn how to get rid of algae in your fish tank and how to prevent it from growing in the first place!

How to Prevent Algae in a Fish Tank

Prevention should always be your primary goal when it comes to algae. Once algae starts to overwhelm your aquarium, it’s tough to get everything back on track. Here are a few of the top tips for algae prevention.

1. Control Your Lighting

Make sure you place your tank where there is little or no direct sunlight. Sunlight promotes algae growth. If you have live plants that need a  lot of light, use a grow light instead ㅡ with a timer to keep it on for 8-10 hours a day.

2. Less Food for Your Fish

Many aquarium enthusiasts overfeed their fish, increasing the phosphate levels in their water and creating an ideal environment for algae. If you want to learn how to prevent algae in a fish tank, you’ll need to feed your fish less or remove any uneaten food right away.

3. Change Your Water!

This is one of the most important ways to ensure algae doesn’t have a chance to grow. Regular water testing and changes keep the nutrients in the water low and ensure there isn’t too much phosphate or nitrate. You should aim for changing 10-15% of your tank water every 1-2 weeks.

How to Get Rid of Algae In a Fish Tank Once it’s There

Keeping algae out is easy with proper tank maintenance. But, once in your tank, do not panic as there are a number of ways that you can control algae growth. Follow the steps below.

1. Keep Live Plants & Algae-Eating Fish

spotted bristlenose pleco fish

Live plants and animals are great algae controllers. With live plants, you’re helping control the nutrient level in your water, as plants absorb many of the nutrients that help algae thrive. For even more aggressive measures for how to get rid of algae in your fish tank, you can introduce algae-eating fish and animals, as well. Try different plecos, including bristlenose plecos, otocinclus, and algae-eating snails.

2. Change the Water

It’s never too late to change your water. Even after you notice an algae bloom, you can still take action! Introduce an extra water change into your aquarium for a few cycles, or until the nutrient levels in the water normalize.

3. Remove Tank Decor for Cleaning

Sometimes, algae may grow on your tank decorations, like driftwood, aquascaping rock, or artificial decor. Remove and clean each piece with a brush (tip: a used toothbrush works well), or remove it from the tank and brush and rinse under hot water to get rid of waste and excess food.

Ready to try these methods and learn how to get rid of algae in a fish tank for good? Modern Aquarium has your back. Browse our products to find exactly what you  need for water testinglighting, and more!