Water Chemistry

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Dolly Sprint 16v, 22 Nov 2008.

  1. Dolly Sprint 16v

    Dolly Sprint 16v Member

    Messages:
    1,611
    Location:
    Cheshire
    Gents

    Could anybody please advise on water parameters for an 217L tropical aquarium Aqua one AR980 tank.

    Current parameters are
    pH = 6.4
    KH = 3
    GH = 3
    Nitrates = 0
    Nitrites = 0
    PO4 = 35 approx.
    CO2 indicator colouration - Lime green 1.5 bubbles per second.

    The reason why I am asking is because I have been advise to increase my nitrates which in turn will reduce my PO4which will assist in reducing the slight algea issue I have. I add Nitro everyweek - instruction say 10ml per 500 ml will increase the NO3 by 2.0ppm and K by 1.3ppm - I add 5ml half the doses is this right or should I be adding more.

    Regards
    Paul.
     
  2. GreenNeedle

    GreenNeedle Member

    Messages:
    2,706
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    The only reason that adding nitrate will reduce your phosphate is that if you are 0 on nitrate then the plants will not be using PO4. adding the nitrate will then enable the plants (after a day or 2) to fully take in their quota of phosphate at which point if nothing else is defficient then the plants growth will reduce the algae. however.........if your phosphate reading of 35 is 35ppm then that is going to take a while to be used up. How have you measured this? and are you sure it is right? cheap test kits for phosphate are notoriously inaccurate even more so than others.

    I would also suggest the nitrate reading is incorrect. highly unlikely you have 0ppm nitrates! Is it a fishless tank? and are you not adding any nitrate at all?

    Can you also add other details, lighting, flitration etc.

    Also if the plants have no nitrate and therefore are unable to use the other nutrients then you are maintaining CO2 @ 30ppm with virtually zero uptake. You are only replacing what is lost at the water's surface and what the algae is using.

    Once the plants start growing I would guess you are going to have to up your injection rate significantly to remain green!!!

    No idea what nitro is but in your size tank I would go for 2ppm added daily as a minimum until oyu are happy that nitrates are in the tank. After this you may find something else is limiting at which point you can correct that. 1 step at a time and then you will work through the problem. 2 or 3 steps together and you have no idea which was wrong in the first place.

    I would start with the nitrates first though and add 2ppm daily. See how the plants go and then we can move onto the next problem if there is one. If all other nutrient solutions are sufficient then you should see the plants start to grow and the CO2 ppm drop which will show as a darker green DC.

    AC
     
  3. Dolly Sprint 16v

    Dolly Sprint 16v Member

    Messages:
    1,611
    Location:
    Cheshire
    Thx for the reply i currently use precison lab test strips bought from aqua essentials.

    i tested my water today prior to doing a 50% water change which i have been advised to do. PO4 readings was between 25 to 50 the test strip are sensitive to 5ppm the colouration of the strip was nearer to 25ppm than 50ppm, so perhaps I should say my reading are at 30ppm rather than 35ppm. The nitrate increments on my test strips start from 0, 10,25,50,100,250 & 500 and my reading is at 0ppm according to the test strips, Nitro is a Nitrate additive (macro plant fertillzer) from Easylife the same firm that make Easycarbo and i am wondering if i should increase my Nitro to increase my nitrate levels to 10ppm. Instruction state 10ml per 500L increase NO3 by 2.0ppm and K by 1.3ppm. I add 5ml per week and I am wondering if this is enough or should I had 50 ml to obtain a reading of 10ppm for NO3. I also add 25ml of ferro (Iron) 25ml of Profito (fertillzer) and 20 ml of waterlife bacterlife ever week for both and 10ml of easycarbo per day apart from Tuesday


    The tank has fish 12 rummies, 12 odessa barbs, 12 cardinal, 12 harlequins, 2 clown loaches 4 x plecs 1 x flyfox and 5 platties with about 10 smaller platties off spring, the plants are growing the tank / plants looks great everybody remarks on how well it looks - but there is a little bit of brush / hair algea which I want to remove. Lighting is 3 x tube 2 for plant growth and 1 for natural light, filter is a tetratec 1200 with rowaphos being added - i was advised that high PO4 is bad that why a add rowaphos, CO2 kit is a dennerle and I am adding 1.5 bubbles per second indicator colour is lime green, if you want any more info please let me know.

    Regards
    paul.
     
  4. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    I'm afraid that domestic test kits simply aren't accurate for this kind of measurements. The best bet is to use the fish's and plant's health as your guide to your nutrient levels or use an EI kind of dosing to make sure you are supplying slightly more than the plants need so that they will grow well. There is an excellent guide on this in the tutorials sections, but basically it means adding enough ferts so that you're adding slightly more than everything to the tank and then using large (50%) water changes each week to reset levels and, more importantly, remove the by-products of fish and plant waste from the system. Trying to chase levels with inaccurate test kits rarely gives good results!
     
  5. GreenNeedle

    GreenNeedle Member

    Messages:
    2,706
    Location:
    Lincoln UK
    not 2ppm weekly!!! 2ppm daily is what you need!!!

    I would discount the phosphate reading that seems way to high to me to be true. There are a lot of fish though so maybe you feed to much etc. I'll leave the phosphate issue alone but I would add 5ml nitro daily if 5ml = 2ppm

    AC
     

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