The best natural defence against algae is a healthy dominant plant mass. 70% of a tank's substrate should be planted.
Tanks with large exposed, un-planted areas are far more susceptible to algae, in the same way that fertile open fields invite weeds to grow.
Can I just dose straight into the tank?
Yes, but this approach is alot less effective than spot-dosing or drain-dosing. We recommend spot-doing with the included pipette.
When will APT FIX / APT FIX-LITE not work?
When plants suffer from overcrowding, they weaken and FIX / FIXLITE will not help. An example of overcrowding is shown here:
If your tank looks like the picture below, APT FIX / APT FIXLITE will not make any visible / meaningful difference. You can use a copper-based algicide, which will indeed kill all the algae. However it will also destroy the tank's bacterial colony and other plants. For such a tank, we recommend a reset.
Can I treat cyanobacteria and BGA (blue-green algae)?
Yes. Both APT FIX and APT FIXLITE are effective against cyanobacteria / BGA.
Should I go for APT FIX or APT FIX LITE?
Go for APT FIXLITE if you have algae on Mosses, Liverworts (Riccardia, Riccia etc.) Vallisneria (Tape Grass) and more delicate plants (usually hybrids or rare species).
It is normal for algae to develop resistance over time. Nature is amazingly resilient, and they adapt! If APT FIXLITE does not work, try APT FIX. And vice versa.
How does APT Fix work?
APT FIX contains a proprietary formulation of epoxy aldehydes. The aldehyde components are protein crosslinkers that deactivate algae cells by binding to their proteins. The active component activates in water, but is quickly broken down by biological microbial action, resulting in no bio-accumulation in the aquarium ecosystem in the long run. This enables APT FIX to be a safe and effective inhibitor for various freshwater algae.
How does APT FIXLITE work?
APT FIXLITE contains a proprietary mix of carboxylic acids. These carboxylic acids selectively inhibit various processes in algae cells, while leaving higher order plants undisturbed due to their thicker cuticle layer. The active components react quickly with algae, but is quickly digested by natural microbes, with no accumulation of residues in the aquarium.
How often can I dose?
Both APT FIX and APT FIXLITE biodegrade naturally over 12- 24 hours. So you can repeat the recommended dosage very 24 hours.
I have alot of algae. How do I cover all areas?
Option 1: You can exceed the 1ml per 10L recommendation to cover all areas, and do a large (50%-70%) water change after that. Be careful to use dechlorinated water.
Option 2: You can spot-dose on 1 area today, and another area the next day. Do this over as many days as you need to cover all areas. Generally a single spot-dose will be effective for any particular area. This method is slower can can be used if you are keeping more sensitive livestock.
How do I use it as a 'dip solution'?
If you are introducing new plants, or have taken out your existing plants to re-plant, you can dip your plants in an APT FIX / APT FIXLITE solution before planting:
1. Create a 5% solution by adding 20 parts water to 1 part APT FIX / APT FIXLITE.
2. Dip plants in solution for around 10 seconds, not more.
As usual, remember not to let the plants dry out. APT FIX is generally stronger than APT FIXLITE, though either can be used.
I have algae in my new tank!
The most effective way to avoid new-tank algae problems is to properly cycle the tank before planting and introducing fish. Inadequate Cycling often results in Diatoms ( brown fuzz on the edges of leaves or thin, brownish spider-web like strands) or Green Water ( which is triggered by excess organic waste).
While APT FIX and APT FIXLITE will work against these forms of algae, it is better to simply have patience (in the case of Diatoms) or review the causes of Green Water as we describe in our guide below on the different types of algae.
Will it kill my plants?
Within the recommended dosage, no. The exception? Plants that are already very weak. Both algae and the plants will be similarly affected in such a case.
Avoid spot-dosing APT FIX on Mosses, Liverworts (Riccardia and Riccia etc.) and Vallisneria (Tape Grass) as their cell structures are much more similar to algae than other plants and are therefore more susceptible to being affected. Use APT FIXLITE instead. It is gentler than APT FIX. However, already weak plants may still be affected, even with APT FIXLITE.
I have a very mature tank with lots of algae. Will FIX / FIX-LITE help?
Perhaps. Both FIX and FIXLITE give plants a temporary unfair advantage against algae, and this helps them recover.
However, plants that are already very weak may not benefit. In fact, FIX / FIX-LITE may affect them the same way as they impacts algae.
In a very mature tank, the signs that your plants may be very weak include: a) Very little, or no new leaves over long periods. b) Widespread algae on leaves. c) Melting leaves.
Overall they might still look 'OK' but are extremely fragile. In such cases, FIX / FIX-LITE might affect them the way way they impacts algae.
The algae is gone but my leaves do not appear to be recovering?
As a rule, old leaves do not recover as plants channel their energies towards new growth and naturally discard older stems and leaves. You can rid the older leaves of algae, and delay their deterioration, but the leaves will generally not regain coloration or sheen. For most aquatic plants, long term tank maintenance involves routine replanting of the healthy tops, and removing old stems and roots.
Will it kill fish/ shrimp?
APT FIX / APT FIXLITE do not harm healthy fish, shrimp and other livestock within their recommended dosage. Do not spot-dose directly on livestock. Of course, if you keep very sensitive livestock, you should avoid all products that give you any concern.
The colour of my APT FIX is not clear?
APT Fix should be clear / grey in colour, with slight sedimentation. During production, a purple- blue dye is added as part of the manufacturing process, but fades over time. If your bottle appears purple / turquoise / blue or off-white, don't worry- the colour would fade over time. The efficacy of the product is not affected by the change in colour.
APT FIX-LITE should be slight-pink.
APT FIX / APT FIXLITE should be used within 2 years of opening / first use.
How do I read the pipette?
The included pipette holds 3ml. The volume on the 6 line markers are as follows: