Feel like I'm chasing my tail.... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 11:36 PM Thread Starter
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Feel like I'm chasing my tail....

I have four tanks that have varying levels of light, pressurized CO2, and dosing ferts (EI). All four are pretty heavily planted. I have been trying to get my CO2 right, but even with all the reading I have done on here, I still don't know if I am there. I use a drop checker on all of them.

All read kh4-5, gh 3-4. I do 60% water changes and when I replace my water it is a 50/50 RODI/tap (well water) mixture. I regularly add either Seachem's Equilibrium or the GH booster offered on GLA's website to the RO water. I also dose a little extra Calcium for inverts. I believe I am doing okay with dosing ferts and by and large most of the plants that I have are doing very well and algae hasn't been a huge problem as of late and really only occurs on the tank I have the highest light.

So this week, 3 of my drop checkers have just turned yellow and not sure if I should adjust down or not, when the setting has been this way for nearly a month but it didn't turn yellow before. I reload my drop checkers at every water change. I have read to keep pushing CO2 up until your fish start showing ill signs and back off a little, but ill-effects can take days to kill a fish...I've done it. I don't like that approach for that reason. Is there another way?

What is the process of getting CO2 right? If there is another thread that outlines the process, please post a link. If I need to post tank specifics, let me know.

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-01-2011, 01:38 AM
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Use this co2 calculator to figure out how much co2 you should be safely dosing...

http://www.fishfriend.com/aquarium_co2_calculator.html

You want about 15- 30 ppm of co2.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-01-2011, 01:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrman83 View Post
I have four tanks that have varying levels of light, pressurized CO2, and dosing ferts (EI). All four are pretty heavily planted. I have been trying to get my CO2 right, but even with all the reading I have done on here, I still don't know if I am there. I use a drop checker on all of them.

All read kh4-5, gh 3-4. I do 60% water changes and when I replace my water it is a 50/50 RODI/tap (well water) mixture. I regularly add either Seachem's Equilibrium or the GH booster offered on GLA's website to the RO water. I also dose a little extra Calcium for inverts. I believe I am doing okay with dosing ferts and by and large most of the plants that I have are doing very well and algae hasn't been a huge problem as of late and really only occurs on the tank I have the highest light.

So this week, 3 of my drop checkers have just turned yellow and not sure if I should adjust down or not, when the setting has been this way for nearly a month but it didn't turn yellow before. I reload my drop checkers at every water change. I have read to keep pushing CO2 up until your fish start showing ill signs and back off a little, but ill-effects can take days to kill a fish...I've done it. I don't like that approach for that reason. Is there another way?

What is the process of getting CO2 right? If there is another thread that outlines the process, please post a link. If I need to post tank specifics, let me know.
That is the best way to "dial" in the co2. If they were yellow with no ill effects, you are fine. Make sure you have enough surface agitation and you will be fine. Both co2 and O2 co exist in the tank, so by adding co2 you are not pushing out the o2. You do not have to push the limits of the co2 if you are getting good growth and no algae.


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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-01-2011, 02:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trixella View Post
Use this co2 calculator to figure out how much co2 you should be safely dosing...

http://www.fishfriend.com/aquarium_co2_calculator.html

You want about 15- 30 ppm of co2.
The calculator works fine if you use distilled water in your tank, with nothing added except some bicarbonate of soda. No drift wood either and very little to no fertilizing of the plants. Otherwise it doesn't work. It will generally give you a much higher number than your actual CO2 concentration.

15-30 ppm is ok for low light tanks, but too little for high light tanks.

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-01-2011, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. I would prefer to get it to the setting I need, whatever that may be, and then not touch it anymore.

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