Raising GH with raising phosphates - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Raising GH with raising phosphates

Hi there
I've been having trouble raising my GH. I've been using Equilibrium, which has pot ash content. So as it raises my GH, it also raises my phosphates. In order to lower my phosphate levels for my shrimp I have to a water change which, lowers GH, and the circle continues.

Any ideas on what I can use to get out of this round about?

thanx
richard
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 06:31 PM
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Hi Richard,

Potash is potassium and sulfates. Did you mean potassium instead of phosphates in your original post?

If so, the amount of potassium from this is typically negligible. Potassium also seems to be safer to overdose than nitrates and phosphates.

As you've probably wondered, if this was a problem then lots of people here would be having an issue.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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my phosphates are at 2.5 in my tank after using equilibrium.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xrayguy View Post
my phosphates are at 2.5 in my tank after using equilibrium.
That's a good finding, however, equilibrium does not seem to contain phosphates:

To reach your target of 7.5ppm K you will need to add 2.9 milliliter (equivalent to 1/2 tsp + 1/16 tsp + 1/64 tsp ) Seachem Equilibrium to your 20gal aquarium to yield:
Element ppm/degree
K2O 8.85
K 7.5
Ca 3.1
Mg 0.93
Fe 0.04
Mn 0.02

What you could do to figure out the source is to measure your source water for phosphates, your source water for phosphates after adding equilibrium to it, and your tank for phosphates before you do a change.

Phosphates naturally occur in tap water and from animal/plant waste. I'm interested to hear if the phosphates are truly coming from equilibrium or not!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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tap water phosphate is 0.25
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xrayguy View Post
tap water phosphate is 0.25
Awesome! Now how much equilibrium will you add to how much water and how much does the phosphate rise in that water?

I'm wondering if anyone else can chime in with such an experience.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xrayguy View Post
my phosphates are at 2.5 in my tank after using equilibrium.
That 2.5 ppm is not from Equilibrium.

And in the scheme of things 2.5 ppm is very low PO4. Come to think of it, how do you even measure 2.5 PO4? I don't know of a test kit that would be that accurate.

But in any event, what makes you think you need to lower it from 2.5 ppm? I don't keep shrimp but that does not seem high to me.

If I were you I would post in the shrimp section and see what PO4 levels others have. I know many keep loads of shrimp in EI dosed tanks, which would have much, much higher PO4 levels than that.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-05-2020, 10:59 PM
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The API kit's first color from 0 is .25 PPM (or mg/L). In most of my tanks with shrimp, the macros bring it up to between the 2.0 color and 5.0 color on the color card. I rarely test this value though, and the reagent is technically 4 years expired so not sure how accurate this is.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-06-2020, 12:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
how do you even measure 2.5 PO4?
Hanna can do it precisely (in terms of our hobby) with their low-range colorimeter. Salifert can do it pretty well (you can see not quite 2, but not quite 3 with it). API can't distinguish anything below ~3ppm.
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