New to planted tanks and my water parameters

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Glen Adams, 1 Jan 2020.

  1. Glen Adams

    Glen Adams Newly Registered

    Joined:
    28 Dec 2019
    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Eastleigh
    Hey lads and lasses,

    Ok i'm fairly new to planted aquariums and i'm still learning and getting my head round it all.

    Today i decided to test my water and here are my results -

    P.H - 7.0
    AMMONIA - 0 PPM
    NITRITE - 0 PPM
    NITRATE - 40 PPM
    G.H - 160 MG/L or PPM
    K.H - 11 d

    I don't have fish in this tank yet and i have tested the tap water and i'm getting 30-40 PPM of nitrate,
    i have co2 running 2hrs before lights come on and co2 turns off 1 hour before lights turn off, lights are on for 6 hrs per day and im using a nicrew 11w led light.

    I am having some slight problems with algae

    I'm fertilising the E.I method and this is how ive been fertilising -
    20200101_201533.jpg

    i've been thinking about using a ro system and use Seachem Equilibrium to give me a better start..

    But generally would like to know if im kind of on the right track and take some advice aswell.

    Thanks Glen
     
  2. sparkyweasel

    sparkyweasel Member

    Joined:
    30 Jun 2011
    Messages:
    930
    How long has it been set up?
    What plants have you got, and how are they doing?
    What filtration, and what is the flow like?
    Do you have a drop checker? If so what colour does it show at light-on time?
    Could you post pics of the algae and of the whole tank?
     
    dw1305 likes this.
  3. Plants234

    Plants234 Member

    Joined:
    8 Dec 2019
    Messages:
    97
    Location:
    Canada
    Hi @Glen Adams,

    1) on posts in the forum, people have said (and I don’t have a direct quote here maybe can some guide us) that you can grow plants regardless of hardness (kh + GH). I don’t have experience with water that hard (nor to the last comment), but I would consider the livestock you want to keep and your current plants before going to RO ... you may not need to switch.

    2) With a kh of 11, I am not sure that all of that reading constitutes carbonates (I cannot remember where I read this, but I can dig it up if we need), so the drop checker or ph profile will tell us more, but with a ph of 7, you have 30ish ppm with the ph/kh chart ... going any higher to drastically and without appropriate gaseous exchange leading to sustainable levels of oxygen will gas the fishies (when you put them in).

    Unless you are seeing co2 deficiencies, I wouldn’t go that route (yet). One of the best things to do is dim those lights: I like to perform a water change, remove algae and trim old/dead leaves (I am always afraid they won’t grow back ... lol ... but they do) the best I can and then reduce the lights. Watch for a week (or less); If algae doesn’t come back, you have found the sweet spot (for now); if it does, repeat the process and reduce lights more. If you prefer to drop by 25 percent, go ahead.

    @sparkweasel has good questions that would help further.

    Cheers,
    Josh
     
    Glen Adams likes this.
  4. Glen Adams

    Glen Adams Newly Registered

    Joined:
    28 Dec 2019
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Eastleigh
    so the tank has been setup since 2nd December 2019, the plants i have are 1 Amazon sword, Java moss, Hygrophila 'Siamensis 53B', Cryptocoryne beckettii, Eleocharis acicularis, Java fern (narrow), Bacopa caroliniana but generally all the plants are doing fine, some are growing fast some are growing slow. But i did notice the Hygrophila 'Siamensis 53B' (back left) a few days ago was pointing all its leaves upwards like a Christmas tree tree had been netted up, now all the lower leaves have started to decay.

    I have an Eheim professional 3 (250), the flow seems good as all plants are gentle swaying.

    I do have a drop checker and it appears to be green when lights are on, the longer the lights are on it slowly turns to a lighter green but never to yellow.

    20200104_165802.jpg

    20200104_165809.jpg


    20200104_165818.jpg
     
  5. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Joined:
    7 Apr 2008
    Messages:
    9,203
    Location:
    nr Bath
    Hi all,
    The algae looks like a filamentous diatom, Fragilaria (Synedra). It may disappear of it’s own accord over time.

    Have a look at <“What is this...”>.?

    Cheers Darrel
     
    Plants234 likes this.
  6. sparkyweasel

    sparkyweasel Member

    Joined:
    30 Jun 2011
    Messages:
    930
    Yes, looks like diatoms, they are quite common in the first few weeks and usually die out as the tank settles down and becomes balanced. You can pull out the worst of it out for the sake of appearance until that happens.
     
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  7. Glen Adams

    Glen Adams Newly Registered

    Joined:
    28 Dec 2019
    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Eastleigh
    ok thanks guys! ill let the tank do its thing but how long roughly could it be?
     

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