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How to regulate Nitrate

Discussion in 'Are you new to aquatic plants? Start here' started by crystalview, Sep 19, 2008.

  1. crystalview

    crystalview Guru Class Expert

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    I have been told to keep my nitrates between 10 and 20. I have always stayed at 4. So to get them to rise do I just reduce my water changes? I would think this would increase my TDS. I have Discus so I am guessing I would need to keep the nitrates around 10 for them. How?
     
  2. tedr108

    tedr108 Lifetime Charter Member
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    I keep my non-CO2 tank at around 5ppm nitrates (or less), and it does just fine. However, I do not use Excel or Flourish, so probably you do need more. Many people simply dose KNO3 (potassium nitrate).
     
  3. crystalview

    crystalview Guru Class Expert

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    I looked on the seachem potassium bottle and it say's it is K2O Potassium sulfate. Does this adjust the nitrates too?
     
  4. jeremy v

    jeremy v Guru Class Expert

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    Crystalview,

    If K20 is all that is in the bottle, dosing from that bottle will only change potassium levels. You need to have an NO3 in the chemical formula in order for it to be adding Nitrate. Nitrate = NO3

    If you don't have a nitrate source handy, go to your local garden center and look for stump remover. It will most likely be "Grant's" or "Greenlight" brand. It should say on the bottle that it is pure KNO3 (potassium nitrate). That is what most of us use to dose nitrates into the tank. The side benefit of doing it this way is that the same stuff also adds the potassium (K) you need for the plants as well, so you would no longer need that bottle of Seachem Potassium.

    Have a good one, Jeremy

    P.S.- Just so you know, 1/4tsp of KNO3 (stump remover) will add about 5ppm of nitrate and 3ppm of potassium to a 45 gallon tank.
     
  5. crystalview

    crystalview Guru Class Expert

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    EI dosing says to dose with +/- 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week (Potassium Nitrate) Would this mean I would not have to use this if I use the stump remove? Since you say it has 5ppm potassium nitrate, 3ppm of potassium. Would this mean I would still use the +/- 1/8 tsp KH2P04 3x a week monobasic potassium phosphate?



     
  6. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    Stump remover is potassium nitrate, KNO3, so you dose the same as the EI dosage. The KH2PO4 is to provide phosphate PO4, so you do need to dose it too, per the EI dosage chart, if you want to follow the EI method.
     
  7. jeremy v

    jeremy v Guru Class Expert

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    Crystalview,

    I just told you what each 1/4tsp of KNO3 added to your specific tank just so that you would be able to have an idea of what you were actually putting in there. It was not a recommendation for specific dosing, I apologize if that's how it read. I just wanted you to be able to quickly know how much nitrate and potassium you were putting in your 45 gallon tank for each 1/4tsp of KNO3 (stump remover) you dose.

    If you want to try out EI dosing, I would go ahead and dose the full amounts that are recommended for that type of dosing. I am assuming that you are looking at this chart based on your statements and tank size:

    Dosing for 40-60 Gallon Aquariums

    +/- 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week
    +/- 1/8 tsp KH2P04 3x a week
    +/- 3/4 tsp GH booster once a week(water change only)
    +/- 1/8 (10ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
    50% weekly water change

    This chart is the proper EI dosing for a high light CO2 injected tank. You are only using Excel as your carbon source, and you are not high light either. As a result your dosing will not need to be this high. For Excel tanks, it is only necessary to dose to about 1/3 to 1/2 of the levels of the chart above, because plant growth will be slower.

    The easiest way to put yourself in that range of 1/3-1/2 dosing would be to just dose one round of the above nutrients right after a water change and then let that be it for the week instead of dosing 3x a week. That will give you a good starting point, and then as your plants fill in more and you gain experience with EI you can learn how to tweak it from there if necessary.

    Have a good one, Jeremy
     
  8. crystalview

    crystalview Guru Class Expert

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    Ok I got that this time Thanks
     
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