Hydrogen Peroxide In The Reef Tank

Noahp

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Hydrogen Peroxide In The Reef Tank

Hydrogen Peroxide is a combination of the elements hydrogen and oxygen. Peroxide is an oxidizer which removes electrons from the reactant it is exposed to. How can this benefit a reef aquarist? The first significant reports of hydrogen peroxide as an algae inhibitor was from England during the 1990’s. Barley straw used in waterways in England showed significantly less algae growth. When barley straw breaks down it releases chemicals. One of the decomposition chemicals released is hydrogen peroxide. This was the beginning of how hydrogen peroxide has become a get out of jail free card for
aquarist with significant algae problems.

BarleyStrawPlanter.jpgA.jpg


In the reef hydrogen peroxide acts similarly to the barley straw. When applied directly to an algae it breaks it down killing the algae off. If you watch hydrogen peroxide being applied you can see the release of bubble, Which is the hydrogen peroxide reacting with the algae. This is a great way of killing unwanted algae off of frag plugs or rubble rock. It is a much faster why of destroying these unwanted pest as opposed to plucking the algae away. It must be used with caution though. Many corals seem resilient to it such as zoas. However some of the more fragile corals such as Acropora die back when exposed too long. Dipping of many SPS can be achieved with short dips less than 30 seconds but be aware this is a risk. Using this direct application method can kill unwanted algae such as byropsis and hair algae. The following is a video made to show hydrogen peroxides effect on a frag covered unwanted algae.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4ITUzifk_4 (video made by Justin Credabel I own no rights to it) Hydrogen peroxide dips can be used on whole rocks to eliminate large patches of algae. This can be achieved by removing the rock during a water change, applying the Hydrogen Peroxide to the rock, and rinsing the rock in the previously removed water. This will allow more exposure to the Hydrogen peroxide then if you applied in the tank in very small doses.
Another use for hydrogen peroxide in the tank is in the form of dosing to eliminate cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates. These simple organisms seem to be eliminated through careful and minimal dosing of hydrogen peroxide. The dosing rule of thumb tends to be 1 ml per 10 gallons of water.(Applies to 3% only) The Peroxide should be dosed daily until the problem has been dealt with. This seems to work well for many hobbyists as it eliminates the problem algae and in some cases improves water clarity. Dosing in all cases must be carefully monitored any negative effects must be watched out for and emergency water changes on stand by are recommended. Although hydrogen peroxide is strong against these nuisance algae and bacteria, The problem which is leading to the growth of these unwanted organisms should be dealt with, As opposed to solely using hydrogen peroxide to eliminate your problems. Keeping up with water changes using 0 TDS water from a reverse osmosis unit can help greatly.

GreenHairAlgae3_Thumb.jpg
(Hair algae which can be eliminated with hydrogen peroxide.)


Hydrogen peroxide when it comes down to it is a very useful chemical for the home aquaria. With proper applications it can aid the hobbyist in reducing unwanted algae and keep a tank looking clean.
 
 
 
 
Cited source
Large Barley Straw Planter for Ponds & Water Gardens
http://www.btny.purdue.edu/pubs/apm/apm-1-w.pdf
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) - Momentum98.com
 
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DJ_in_WV

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You might want to add that 1ml per 10 gal is with the 3% solution available at drug store and general stores like walmart. We sure don't want anyone nuking their tanks by dosing or dipping with the 35% solution in the photo
 
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reefkoi

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I've used it as a dip for algae problems, the zoas and palys I tested it on did fine, the chalices, favias and acans I tried all died fast! I would never use it in tank :(
 
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Noahp

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I agree completely it is always a risk with things like this. Many have done this without issues but as has been mentioned above some corals don't take well too it.
 

GR808

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I have 2 tanks. My main tank is a 125 with a few signs of hair algae. I also have a 20 in my sons room with an algae problem. So I figured I'd test the H2O2 on the 20 first. been dosing it everyday for a couple of weeks now and been seeing some difference. Not totally gone but working. Not much affects to coral, although I don't have much in there. So I figured ok to dose the 125. Dosed for a week and noticed my GSP and one of my Zoa colonies have retracted polyps. so I stopped. Got rid of most of the hair algae but you gotta keep an eye out when dosing. I find that if you hand pluck majority of the hair algae first then do a target dose with baster of the recommended amount, it is much more effective than dosing the whole tank. IMO
 

Wy Renegade

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Noahp

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Great input if you all would not mind me editing this and adding what has been said I would love to put it in the original post. I would ofcourse give credit where credit is due but think everything said has a valid point to be placed in the OP.
 
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IotaElwyn

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I tried hydrogen peroxide to clean my filter socks based on a post I read here and while it cleaned them, I also lost a fox faced rabbit fish the next day. Not sure if it was related since everyone else was fine.
 

Dalmatia

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I used it a while back to get rid of hair alage. Did fine but I also lost a clam but not sure it was to that cause I've got at least 6 that were just fine. But the one that died, I've owned for about 2yrs till I dosed
 
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phillrodrigo

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yeah I would like to see some proof other than a goofball type you tube vid before I risked anything like this in ANY tank.
do you see who that video if from. Justin Credible the guy who made it possible to keep goni alive and is a part of Reef gen. Also has gotten the cuddle fish in our aquarium. He's the one who got me into reefing and does alot with our club events.
 

Devon93274

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I had a green hair algae problem twice and I treated with peroxide heavily with no problems. Every morning I squeezed 3% peroxide heavily all over the surface of the aquarium. Every 3 days I did a 20% water change to suck out the waste from algae. I did this for 2 weeks and my tank was clear. All my live stock survived which was: Green star polyps, Kenya tree, neon leather, torch, caps, mushrooms, sand sift, coral banded shrimp, Halloween urchin, bengai cardinal, snails for days, sand goby, emerald crabs, hermit crabs, snow eel, dwarf lion fish, antheis, blue damsle, yellow eye tang, file fish, blenny, maroon clown, Nemo clown, Condy anemone, and a Green carpet anemone. The corals and anemones do react to peroxide. The close for like 15 minutes when doses and then they open as if nothing happened. I would recommend killing green hair algae with peroxide, but I'm no expert, and I could have just got lucky. Many people have been successful with peroxide. 50 gallon tank, heavy flow, 200lbs liverock, bio filter.
 
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