Fixing Parameters - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 11-20-2017, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Fixing Parameters

I'm in the process of rebuilding my 90 gal low tech. Plants are doing "alright" just not "great".

DIY root tabs
Daily macro liquid mix (5ml or so)
2x54 watt T5-HO 6500k (bulbs are 6 months old)
Weekly water change 5 gal tap to 5 gal RO.

Plants:
amazon sword - red melon sword - rotala rotundifolia - cryptocoryne wendtii "green" - cryptocoryne wendtii "brown" - cryptocoryne parva - bacopa - red tiger lotus - aponogeton crispus - crinum natans - java fern - java moss - anubias nana - anubias coffeefolia - sagittaria subulata - Helanthium tenellum 'Green'

Sold all fish (changing stocking, going to sort water parameters and get plants going before I get new inhabitants)

Ammonia - 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 160+
Ph - 8.0
kH - 10
gH - 8
Temp - 76

Tap water pH: 8.2
Tap water kH and gH wayyy too high, got sick of adding drop after drop.

My question is: am I on the right track in doing the following:

Begin changing water with RO until the kH drops to 3-4, gH drops to 7-8 and pH to 7 or so.
Bring nitrates down to 20-40 level.
Find a good mix of tap to RO for future water changes keeping kH, gH and pH in check.

My goal is to have decent parameters for neo shrimp and plants, I know they adapt very easily but this tank has just been the biggest headache. I've never had issues in the past, all plants grew fine and all fish were happy, this is the first tank I'm having trouble with establishing properly.

Sorry for the long post, I'm just trying to give as much info as possible. I've attached a photo if that helps.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 11-20-2017, 10:25 PM
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Shrimp and nitrates 20-40 don't mix. You should shoot for <10. <5 is even better.


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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 11-20-2017, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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I understand that ideally nitrates would always be 0, regardless of what is living in the tank. Most of my tanks have hovered around the 20-40 mark on the API kits and have had zero issues with keeping healthy populations of neo shrimp. I figured keeping up with how I've always done things would be sufficient... I'm certainly not opposed to reducing nitrates even more I guess. Is there a difference in toxicity from organically produced nitrate via decomposition and nitrate accumulated from fert dosing?
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