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Phosphates always high?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by fishtk75, Nov 22, 2006.

  1. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    I checked my water it is zero phosphates.
    Substrates is 50/50 flourite and eco-complete.
    Not adding any plant food.
    I do weekly WC.
    But have high phosphate tests over 10 ppm. I used differant test brands comes out the same.
    Is it the fish foods or what?
    I do not feed alot.
    Is there if it is the fish food a brand that has no phosphates in the food?
     
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I do not think the test kits are liley high, there was some contaiminated EC, but other wise the PO4 is not going to be 10ppm with routine Weekly water changes if you are doing 50%.
    If the tap water is clean(call and ask them), and you doa 50% water change, the level should be then 5 ppm.
    You may also use RO/Bottled water to check also to be sure.

    If there's no drop from the test kit, then it's suspect.
    Another issue: is there something wrong in the tank to begin with?
    I always have to ask this because folks obsess about things that often are not issues, are assumptions/fears make them issues.

    It also has a good method, fix things that show the tank has issues(say you see BBA and we approach it by adding more CO2. Many folks test their CO2 and come up with 100-200ppm ranges but the fish are fine, others go anything over 40ppm, their fish are gasping.

    Having two cheap test kits at high upper resolution ranges does not give me a lot of test kit confience.

    Those test kits in the 0-1, 0-3ppm range are best.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  3. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    Please tell me the test kits you are talking about as brand names so I look for them.
    Price of the tests will not be the problem if the test kits show me the right reading then.
    I have well water and the test was almost zero but I need a good test kits to be sure.
    I took some media out out in a glass jar used zero PO4 water cleaned out the dirt let it set for three days read high reading.
    But as you said I need a good test kit.
    That is why I asked if the food is making go up?
     
  4. colonel

    colonel Guru Class Expert

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    Just thought I might share a bit of info that I have learned along the way. No amount of testing every got my plants to grow well.... I have chased that around for a long time.... hung up on ppm's and what this guy adds to his tank... and what that guy says is a good level for this.

    I have found the most beautiful tanks are the ones run by people who could care less what there leves are and dose by what the plants are saying. I did this for a while in my tank and plant health wasn't to the point I wanted it to be however it was the best it had been in a LONG time... then I got away from it because I felt that i was adding to much of this or that.... and there was no way that my tank could need that much.

    Well guess what the plants started to suffer.... but the test kits said levels were good. Lesson learned.... Im through with that, going back to trusting the plants.

    I would recomend dosing a fairly balanced mix of all the nutrients your plants need.... if you still really feel that the test kit is right and you have high Phosphates.... then dose everything else N, K traces etc. and that will help the plants to use up the excess P....

    At any rate what I'm trying to say is that don't get all to caught up in ppm values and what the "ideal" level is, and what you *think* your test kit is saying.... Tom has said it over and over, and it truly is a lesson to be learned and a skill to be aquired.... but the plants don't lie.... its the best way to go about things;)
     
  5. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Lamott and Hach are the brands I typically suggest.
    Hanna has pocket testers which are much more accurate(but I still calibration references against them!!!!).

    So there are some in 50-60$ range and some in 180$ range.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  6. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    Thank you very much for that insite colonel.
    I read and leaned more and more that over workings things will not make it better.
    I am going to do WC and maintence but not add anything.
    The fish and the plants growing better with out adding plant foods.
    Needed to know if high if high levels will be bad for somethings.
    I am going to sit back and enjoy the tank.

    thank you again tom,




    Do you think that CaribSea have a something that if you have bad lots they will replace it?
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Yes, they will replace it.
    That assumes that is the issue to begin with.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    thank you again
     
  9. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    Tom,
    Thank you here for helping me with this problem.
    I e-mail them and they said they will replace it with new Eco-complete or any thing that is on there web site to get me going again.
    So I am not go with Eco I am going with Super Naturals Rio Grande.
     
  10. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    What other way do you all keep PO4 low?

    I am asking is there any other things besides WC?
    I know colonel said and I am not worry too much about it.
    Just asking Tom and all what other things to watch out for that makes PO4 high some the algae does not get bad.
    I tested my food I use the PO4 was over 10ppm.
     
  11. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Well testing food is something quite different.
    And the test kit is in question as well as in what context is that 10ppm reading?

    Example: did you measure the food by placing it(and how much did you add here? how many grams of fish food?_) in a small 100ml sample and then used a test kit water sample.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  12. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    Tom,
    I see so I did not do that I took a pinch and put in a pint of water.
    Now as you said 100ml is that amount of water in jar to soak food in?
    How many grams of food to put in 100ml of water?
     
  13. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    It's an arbitrary amount for both.
    You might add 1.000 grams of fish food(dry) to a 1 liter voume of a water and soak for for 24 or 48 hours.

    Just as long as you are consistent and measure the same stuff.
    Note, this does not address bacterial breakdown, plant uptake, uptake by the fish themselves into protients and growth etc, just total leached from the food in absense of all that.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  14. fishtk75

    fishtk75 Prolific Poster

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    Thank you Tom
     
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