Comparing Liquid Carbons (and BBA problem)

Discussion in 'Aquarium Fert Dosing' started by Schmill, 2 Jul 2009.

  1. Schmill

    Schmill Member

    Messages:
    30
    Ok, so firstly I was wondering how / if you can compare the various Liquid Carbon products. At the moment I have only looked at the ones that Aqua Essentials Sells;

    Easy Life Easy Carbo
    'Medium planted' dose is 1ml / 50L, (or 5ml for 250L for ease of comparisons)
    £19.99 per Litre

    Seachem Flourish Excel
    5ml / 200L
    £18 / L (Calculated from the cost of £35.99 / 2L)

    AE Design Liquid Carbon
    5ml / 250L
    £14.99 / L

    So roughly speaking I can see that all of these recomend roughly the same dosing, so does that mean that they are all going to be roughly the same 'strength' ?
    In which case is anyone of these going to be better than the other? I don't see how it could be? So do I just go for the cheapest?

    At the moment I am using the AE Design one, but I wanted to see what else was available.

    Also onto the second problem, I am running a 300L (80 US gal) tank, with 2 x 39w T5HO over it with reflectors.
    I am dosing El and also approx. 6ml of the AE Design Liquid Carbon each day before lights-on, but I have BBA on my bogwood and it also seems to be finely on the leaves of the amazon sword, and perhaps getting into my flame moss too.

    What is the recomendation here? I have seen posts about overdosing liquid carbon, but also on almost all of the liquid carbon products there are big bold warnings not to overdose :(
    I noticed that the EasyCarbo actually says that for 'heavy' planted aquariums you should dose at 1ml / 25L, which would be the equivalent of me putting 12ml into my tank instead of the 6ml I do at the moment. I wouldn't class my tank as particularly heavily planted, but would this help to combat the BBA?

    Thanks for any and all replies :)
     
  2. Superman

    Superman Member

    Messages:
    1,804
    Location:
    Cheltenham
    The liquid carbon products are similar if not the same really. None is classed as better than any other.

    Having BBA in your tank means that there is a co2 problem, it could either mean you've got enough in there already and it's not flowing around the tank properly or that you're not adding enough, or both!

    Remove as much BBA manually as you can, try not to "overdose" but if you're not above the 'heavy' planted definition then you should be ok and can look to increase it to that level.

    In the long run, pressurised co2 would be better for you rather than liquid carbon as you have a large tank.
     
  3. a1Matt

    a1Matt Member

    Messages:
    2,498
    Location:
    Bromley
    In addition to Clarks excellent reply you can also 'spot dose'.
    You can apply the carbon (with a pipette) directly onto the BBA. So you would still be putting the same amount in the tank, but just 'aiming' it. Pick a spot to cover and dose that spot daily until you see the BBA dieing off, then move to another spot, and so on.

    Yet another variation is to expose the plants to the air (usually at water change time) and use a sprayer to 'mist' the exposed BBA with carbon. Leave it for a minute or two, then fill up with water as usual. Obviously this last method does not work on substrate!
     
  4. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,091
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    Great posts there by Clark and Matt!

    A small paintbrush is also effective, so you can literally paint the BBA with the liquid carbon product.
     
  5. Schmill

    Schmill Member

    Messages:
    30
    Thanks all, I had actually been using a syringe to 'squirt' the spray bar of my filter with the liquid carbon to kill off any algae that was on it, but I never thought of doing the same thing to the affected bogwood or plant leaves, (I thought it might harm the plant leaves / roots ?)

    I shall give it a go when I put in the next lot of carbon :)
     
  6. Hi,

    I found "accidentally" overdosing Easycarbo much more deadly then Excel. An observation rather then tested. 8)

    Best regards,
    John
     
  7. JamesC

    JamesC Member

    Messages:
    1,276
    Location:
    Bexley, Kent
    Very interesting. This strengthens my thoughts that Seachem have done something clever with excel to make it less reactive but still available to the plants. As Seachem have applied for a patent for the isomer of glutaraldehyde that's in Excel I doubt EasyCarbo and AE's liquid carbon would be allowed to copy it.

    James
     
  8. i was actually shocked by what happened (detailed in my 174L corner tank journal). I've double dosed excel in the past for a week straight trying to get rid of BBA back in the day. All i lost that time was one Amano shrimp.

    I accidentally overdosed, with easycarbo, both my big tank and my 20L arc tank on saturday morning, either through not so accurate measures or forgetting and doing it twice. But the most it would have been would have been a single double dose. 3 hours later death/carnage/Armageddon. Was very surprised.

    John
     
  9. davidcmadrid

    davidcmadrid Member

    Messages:
    115
    I did not overdose it but did the correct dose for waterchange and i lost a few fish. Its one of the reasons I have been on the AE case in particular and stopped using it. Also one of Mollys is really not doing well at all now had her for 2 years no probs. I was hesitant to say what happened untill now but had communicated it to members in private. The reason i was hesitant is it is not the only thing that changed in the tank ( EI ) but water paramaters per DC and LFS sample test for the usual suspects were fine, like i said because it is not possible to identify Aes product as the cause in isolation i am hesitant to say with conviction that it was the dose of AEs product that caused the problem and was indeed hesitant to say it at all.

    It is being discussed in this thread also http://www.ukaps.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=6854
     
  10. The end of my easycarbo bottle is making me more concerned. I'm half thinking it seems to be alot darker, browner, as if it has concentrated over the last year and a bit of having it. meh, speculation.
     
  11. mr. luke

    mr. luke Member

    Messages:
    1,038
    Location:
    Lincoln
    I use a product called flourin multi carbon (i think :rolleyes: not at home to look at the bottle)
    Ive accidentally overdosed x 5 (i do 2x on a regular basis with no ill effects) and nothing was harmed :)
    It does sweet naff all for algae though :thumbdown:
    The tank contains platinum tetras, a femal honey gourami and macrobrachium assamensis (shrimps)
     
  12. plantbrain

    plantbrain Expert

    Messages:
    1,949
    I had a client who started doing this a couple of years ago(did not listen to the CO2 advice, go figure).
    Fried it pretty good, but use it diluted by 1/10th or so for a few minutes.

    You'll toast the plants.
    BBA can be hit often etc, you cannot bring the plants once fried.


    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     

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