As if...grandson with fish tank out of balance


Bronze Supporter
May 16, 2011
Yes, as if I weren’t having enough water problems with the pool. Little cloudy, combined chlorine too high. Cya too low. ph fluctuating...etc. etc. And my grandson decides he wants a 20 gal aquarium. We have been trying to balance that water for over a month! And I keep getting confused between what’s going on with the two of them!. Happy to say, they are both almost balanced. Ask me what I did where and I really couldn’t say. I don’t understand the chemistry behind any of it. But I at least remember when A happens do this...when B happens do that. THANK YOU TO THIS SITE!


LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
Pacific NW
Is it salt-water? I've heard those are much tougher to deal with, but maybe they didn't use tfp lol.

fun fact: we advocate buying an ammonia test kit for fish tanks if it is suspected ammonia is in the pool. to confirm.


TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
Check out

I got mixed up last summer and accidentally put an Intelliflo pump on my 100 gallon aquarium.

The water flow in the aquarium was 60 miles an hour. Those fish were exhausted trying to swim away from the intake.

When I finally turned the pump off, the fish was swimming so fast that he shot through the glass like a bullet.


TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 16, 2007
A fish tank has to go through a cycle. Its been awhile since I cycled a tank but it converts ammonia to good bacteria that lives in the filter media. If you wash the filter media in tap water, you have essentially killed your good bacteria ending the cycle and you'll have to start all over. If you find you need to clean a fish filter, you should syphen water from the tank into a bucket (only used for fish) and rinse the filter in there. Purchase a good test kit too. If you have gold fish in a small tank, you should consider putting them in a much larger one because of the amount of waste and ammonia they produce. Good luck. I've been thinking of starting a new tank again.