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Ei

Discussion in 'Advanced Strategies and Fertilization' started by Paul, Jan 26, 2005.

  1. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

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    I have just read your EI thread and was wondering, my tap water has a phosphate level of 5 and nitrates of 40, my tank is 120L with 2.2wpg. I dose with seachem Flourish and iron at 3ml every two days and have just got a bottled co2 kit set up and am still trying to get the ph right (tap 7.8) its at 7.4 now.
    Would you recommend dosing anything else? the swords still keep going see through and get yellow patches on them
     
  2. Wö£fëñxXx

    Wö£fëñxXx Prolific Poster

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    Re: Ei

    What is your kh reading?
    What is your mix for C02? and is it producing? increase C02 output if possible,
    Up the dose of flourish (which will get expensive, there are effective alternative's) to 6 to 8ml 3x a week, if you aren't dosing KN03/KH2P04 you probably need some K2S04/Potassium, for the thin yellowing transparent leaves.
    Is your (N03/P04)tap water readings always like that?

    Craig
     
  3. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Ei

    The kh is around 9 and I am adding one bubble every 2-3 seconds, still trying to set it up correctly.
    Yes my tapwater always has those phosphates and nitrates in it

    Paul
     
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Ei

    What type of Test kits are you using?
    Those are somewhat high readings, possible, but very high and most kits are not good at extreme levels for measurement.
    Where are you located?

    If your tap water is really this high in both, that's a good thing.
    You will just do a weekly water change and have some fish for the rest of the NO3 and PO4.

    Then all you will add are traces and as mentioned, K2SO4.
    This is all many Dutch added since their tap water had plenty of NO3/PO4.
    There is no magic water, but without knowing the effects of NO3 and PO4 we would never know what it is about some tap waters, that cuases good growth.

    If you did 50% weekly water changes: this would add 20ppm of NO3 and 2.5ppm of PO4, that would be perfect and plenty of each for a week.

    So if those readings are correct(You can make a stardard reference solution to see if they are), you will only add the CO2, the Traces and K2SO4.

    5mls 3x a week of the traces, add about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of K2SO4 after the water change.

    That's about all you need to do. You will need to add some bakign soda or Ca and Mg for the GH if they are 3 degrees ~ 50ppm or less.

    Otherwise just dose the trace/K2SO4. This assumes the NO/PO4 readings are correct. Call the tap water company up and ask them what the levels are.
    See if those measurements match with your test kits.
    Then see if the reference standard solutions also match with your test kits.
    That will allow you to see if the tap water is rich in NO3/PO4 or not.

    I sort of suspect it is not that rich.

    Also, buy a RO filter and don't drink that tap water if it's that rich in nutrients.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  5. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Ei

    I use API test kits for all apart from phosphates and iron, them them I use Nutrafin ones, iron results are always 0, but have been told that test is hit or miss anyway
    My water really does have those reading, remember a thread called 'phosphates' in another tfc that was me...
    This is the water stats for where I live apparently http://www.stwater.co.uk/APPS/STWInternet/STW0650.nsf/STW_Web?OpenForm&YourWater_T5
    I cannt remember my GH, but last time it was about 260
    I have ordered a load of new plants that should arrive on friday, that should help I hope
    I would get a RO filter, but apparently it will get in the way of her washing powder, so I am not allowed one
     
  6. MartinG

    MartinG Junior Poster

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    Re: Ei

    Paul,
    I'm not too far away in Halesowen. Try this site for easy water filters
    http://www.pozzani.co.uk/
    They have a special aquatics section.
    Martin
     
  7. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

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  8. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Ei

    Too many years of agriculture:)
    Well, RO or water changes and let the weeds remove it.

    I have a number of ideas for you on this.
    Plant filters!
    These will remove the NO3/PO4 at an even higher rate as will your aquatic plants.

    Easy to add to any system for cheap.
    I'll put these up on the gallery, BTW, there are some new photo's up there.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  9. Momotaro

    Momotaro Junior Poster

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    Re: EI

    Speaking of RO, if I may.

    I have been cutting tap water with RO for quite some time. I have been following the EI idea and reading Tom's assessment of some pretty dodgy water. I started to think, "Hey! Maybe the EI can work for my tap!" I don't mind running off RO for my 75G, but the 15G and the 20G? That is just a pain.

    I tested my tap (after sitting for a day):

    pH - 8.2
    NO3 - ~13ppm ( My LaMotte has been reading everything in this range as of late :confused: )
    PO4 - 0.2ppm
    GH - 16
    KH - 8

    I believe it would require dropping the pH all the way down to 6.9 to get CO2 levels down to 30ppm. Seems too big a job for CO2 alone.

    Anyone have any ideas? I am in the process of adding pressurized to these two small aquariums. Should I buy a 20lb CO2 bottle, or should I continue to mix RO and tap? How would you EI those small aquariums, Tom?

    Mike
     
  10. Paul

    Paul Guru Class Expert

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    Re: Ei

    I might get an RO filter and leave it outside, as long as it doesnt freeze, it shoild be ok I guess. Should I cut it 50% with water?
    I ordered a new set of plants recently, so the tank is heavily planted now, I replaced about 80% of the plants.
    If I do weekly changes of with my tap water, why should I do such a big change of 50%?
     
  11. PeterGwee

    PeterGwee Lifetime Charter Member
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    Re: Ei

    To prevent buildup of nutrients to toxic levels while allowing you to dose at max uptake rate to prevent things from running out.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee
     
  12. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Ei

    There's a few things you could do here.
    I'd get RO water for my personal use to drink with tap like that.

    EI works well on small or larger tanks, nothing but scaling it up/down.

    You can blend RO if you chose, I've never found the need.
    It does not hurt,
    Fish might need it for various wild species etc.
    You can also reduce the water changes to 25-30% weekly.
    I would not go below that, water changes certainly help vs none and dosing.
    You can test and try and add just enough, but there is a simple method to test this method: try it and see which gives the better results as far as plant growth and health.

    I would highly recommend CO2 over RO any day of the week.
    It cost less and is easier to work with, allowing you to use the tap water and makes water changes a breeze.

    CO2 will easily drop the pH down to that level, I'd nit worry about the reduction of pH, just get the CO2 good ansd the rest will work out.

    Here's the dilution with the NO3 rich water:

    If you have 100% tap, at 15ppm, after one week of adding KH2PO4, traces and K+(K2SO4), you will have 100% of the water at close to zero ppm of NO3.

    Change 50%, you add back 7.5ppm of NO3, that's gone quickly-2-4 days.
    Now you need to add KNO3 at least 1/2 the week.

    Having 20-25ppm of NO3 is fine.
    That's about where many end up based off my suggestions which are based on plant reponses and algae responses, rather than precisely measured amounts.

    That provides consistency where test kits do not always do that.
    Watch the plants. See how they respond.

    There is a wide range and the upper ranges I'm not sure where the inhibition of "too much" is.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  13. Momotaro

    Momotaro Junior Poster

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    Re: Ei

    Thank you Tom!

    RO is getting tedious. I will be adding pressurized to the two smaller aquariums, so that should handle the pH. DIY is far too inconsistent for me. I thought I was going to have too drastic a drop, but I will attempt it, slowly.

    I am heartened you think my tap is workable! I have one question for you.

    You have directed the addition of K through K2SO4. I add PO4 via KH2PO4 and nitrates via KNO3. Will I be adding too much K?

    Also, while I have your ear, PO4 levels over 2ppm?

    Mike
     
  14. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Ei

    Well some seem to think RO is fun and needed for their alternative methods......they seem to suggest they enjoy this and it's fun in response to my critques.

    I doubt there is such a thing as too much K+..........by itself in controlled conditions K+ can be quite high and with no ill effects. Some have claimed otherwise but I've yet to see nor hear of any research to support this claim.
    It might be related to K+ but some other nutrient or condition is interfereing with their conclusion. I've also had the same plants they claim where effected.

    PO4 at that level does not seem to do any harm, drives the plants nuts, reduces Green spot algae, something I have not had for many years.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  15. Momotaro

    Momotaro Junior Poster

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    Re: Ei

    I have maintained PO4 levels this high and a bit higher in the past. I was struggling with E. stellata and tried maintaining PO4 levels of 2.5 ppm in addition to higher levels of NO3 and daily doses of micros (5ml) in 75G (3 WPG, CO2 about 25ppm). The finicky plant never responded. I went back to lower levels when I pitched the E. stellata.

    I have been slowly increasing levels in the 75G and have seen some positive results. Plants look greener. Riccia is growing and pearling like mad again and the babytears are starting to come around again. I have been managing higher levels with no ill effects! On the contrary, things just look better.

    I do need to start dosing K again though....

    Mike
     
  16. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: Ei

    ES was a picky plant for many but many can grow it well as can many with Rotala macrandra. KNO3 dosing increases seem to really help as well as the traces.

    If the nutrients are not off and you are sure, then the only other variables are water chnages, filter cleanings, trims, substrate maintenance, filter cleaning and CO2..........

    You can rule things out pretty well with nutrients. CO2 is a bag of worms for many..........

    I grow ES in customer's tanks as well as at home, stuff gets huge and large at 2w/gal and 5.5 watt/gal using the same nutrient levels.

    More light = more growth......

    Regards,
    Tom Barr



    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     

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