Phosphate issues with E/I - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 12:43 AM Thread Starter
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 187
Phosphate issues with E/I

I'm dosing E/I in my 75 gal tank. But I have a problem with it that I don't understand. By the end of the week my phosphate is really high (10-20ppm)

My tapwater phospate is .05 ppm according to my AP test kit. Even underdosing by a little seems to jack it up there. I have been dosing 1/4 tsp on macro days. Even tried decreasing the amount by "not quite" filling the measuring spoon. I can't seem to find the smaller spoons either.

Now I realize that test kits aren't always accurate, but the test doesn't "kinda" max out, it gets there right away.

Any ideas on this? I typically feed once a day and I keep it limited in amount.

Do I dare just quit dosing PO4 and see what happens?
dogdoc is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 12:59 AM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
my phosphate + nitrate are steadily increasing as well. not sure why. i have root tabs too. maybe that is why. i'm planning to do a 1/4 water change tomorrow and will not add fert excempt trace elements.
mistergreen is offline  
post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 187
I don't have any root tabs, just eco-complete.
dogdoc is offline  
 
post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 09:16 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Anthony's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Covington, LA.
Posts: 1,072
How high is the nitrate rising in relation to the phosphate. Phosphate tests are known to give false readings and if your phosphate is getting that high with a nitrate measurement of say 5-10ppm you should be having algae problems.

40 gallon SeaClear Acrylic, 192 watt Orbit Lunar PC, Filstar XP2, Filstar XP1, JBJ Regulator, Rhinox 5000 glass co2 diffusor, 9 watt UV sterilizer, Hydor Inline Heater, Pool Filter Sand substrate
Filstar pimp #53

How comes shoppings so stupid, looks at all this stuff I haves, what do I do's with it.
Anthony is offline  
post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 09:32 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,015
I have seen no evidence that phosphate in abundance leads to algae. Too little phosphate can lead to GSA, but no one has shown that too much leads to any form of algae. That is one reason why it is safe to follow the EI dosing guidelines - the 50% water change once a week removes any excess of any fertilizer long before any problems would occur.

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 09:43 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
turbowagon's Avatar
 
PTrader: (40/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Silver Lake, NH
Posts: 784
1/4 tsp added three times a week to 70 gallons of water is only 9.5 ppm, assuming NO uptake from the plants.

Either your test kit is wrong, or the phosphate is coming from somewhere else.
turbowagon is offline  
post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-25-2007, 10:37 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
Anthony's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Covington, LA.
Posts: 1,072
Hoppy: Wouldn't an imbalance like 5 ppm nitrate to 20 ppm phosphates cause an issue? I know a high phosphate amount in relation to a balanced nitrate amount doesn't cause problems. In fact I've witnessed better coloration this way. That's why I questioned what the nitrate measurement was too.

40 gallon SeaClear Acrylic, 192 watt Orbit Lunar PC, Filstar XP2, Filstar XP1, JBJ Regulator, Rhinox 5000 glass co2 diffusor, 9 watt UV sterilizer, Hydor Inline Heater, Pool Filter Sand substrate
Filstar pimp #53

How comes shoppings so stupid, looks at all this stuff I haves, what do I do's with it.

Last edited by Anthony; 01-26-2007 at 05:00 AM.
Anthony is offline  
post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-26-2007, 01:51 AM
 
PTrader: (59/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 3,254
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
Hoppy: Wouldn't an imbalance like 5 ppm nitrate to 20 ppm phosphates cause an issue? I know a high phosphate amount in relation to a balanced nitrate amount doesn't cause problems. In fact I've witnessed better coloration this way. That's why I what the nitrate measurement too.
Anthony, Hoppy is correct, but so are you.
Hoppy is right in that there has been no evidence of PO4 abundance leading to algae....none, It was once thought that it did, but that is not the case.

However....

You are correct in the ratios being important, but the limiting factor is Nitrates....NO3 should be at a higher concentration than the PO4 optimally, but again, depending on the Carbon concentration, the plant only uses so much, so as long as you have enough, that is fine...excess is drained out when you do your water changes.
Same holds true for PO4...if you have excess, it simply will not be used, and will reset when you do your water change. That is the principle behind EI...even though your ratios aren't perfect, have enough of all that the plants need, and reset the parameters during your weekly water change. Testing is good for one reason if you dose EI. If you want to fine tune your regimen as to dose what you need so there is no excess....this is a long process and requires testing and watching your plants to see if there are noticible signs of deficiency over time. Again, EI eliminates the need, and the ferts themselves are not that expensive....your time taken to fine tune all of this is more prescious....so dose em up and take the tankwater from your waterchanges and water your terrestrials with it! They will apreciate it!
fresh_lynny is offline  
post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-26-2007, 01:56 AM
 
PTrader: (59/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 3,254
Quote:
Originally Posted by dogdoc View Post
I'm dosing E/I in my 75 gal tank. But I have a problem with it that I don't understand. By the end of the week my phosphate is really high (10-20ppm)

My tapwater phospate is .05 ppm according to my AP test kit. Even underdosing by a little seems to jack it up there. I have been dosing 1/4 tsp on macro days. Even tried decreasing the amount by "not quite" filling the measuring spoon. I can't seem to find the smaller spoons either.

Now I realize that test kits aren't always accurate, but the test doesn't "kinda" max out, it gets there right away.

Any ideas on this? I typically feed once a day and I keep it limited in amount.

Do I dare just quit dosing PO4 and see what happens?
doc doc

Many if not most home tests for PO4 stink IMO. You cannot rely on them to determine PO4 concentrations. IMO dose your EI and watch your plants...if it aint broke don't fix it.
My PO4 out of the tap is high here, and I still dose PO4...I don't have algae and my plants are flourishing....
fresh_lynny is offline  
post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-26-2007, 07:59 PM
 
PTrader: (22/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 890
I don't dose any Nitrate at all and dose plenty of Phosphate in my 10 gallon. I find that the fish and shrimp poop provide enough nitrate and that excess phosphate has no ill effects on anything in the tank. In fact I have to feed the tank algae tabs in order to keep the otto's and RCS from starving.

IMO I wouldn't worry at all about the high test readings even if they are accurate...

-Ryan
wood is offline  
post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-26-2007, 10:06 PM
Planted Member
 
dipan's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 189
Check this thread regarding eco-complete and phosphate levels...
dipan is offline  
post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-27-2007, 01:59 AM
 
PTrader: (59/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 3,254
dipan....I know this all too well as I had this issue too...water changes over time allowed these levels to level off, but all told it never did anything other than show a high reading on my test kit...
I didn't have algae, fishdeath or plant growth stunting...so all told, keep doing water changes and it will level off.
fresh_lynny is offline  
post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-27-2007, 09:22 PM
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,315
I realize that phospahtes arent the cause of algea in our plant tanks, but what about in non-planted tanks? When we have an imbalance and the phosphate is high, its usualy the lack of other nutrients to cause the algea, since without the other nutrients the plants cant take up the phosphates. But with no plants and no intention to keep things at any particular level, and one ended up with really high phosphates, would algea ensue? And would the level of phosphate have anything to do with it (ex, the same imblance of parameters, except the phoshpates are 0, would algea still result)? I havent really had a non-planted tank in a while so I am curious.
crazy loaches is offline  
post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 01:53 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
Betowess's Avatar
 
PTrader: (27/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Skagit County, Washington State
Posts: 3,199
Too much phosphates will trigger a bunch of algaes, like common fuzz. Too little will result in GSA as previously mentioned. How much is too much? It depends - on lights, fert ratio, CO2, plant mass, and fish load yadedada... If you don't have GSA, you probably have enuf PO4.





Three Tanks...Eheim 2128 & XP3-90G, Eheim 2128-65G, Eheim 2232-25G.... Tek 4x54 watt T5-90G, Aqualight 96watt PC 65G low tech, 65 watt Aqualight-25G.... Hydors-90G & 65G ... Flourite in 90, 65, & 25 Gallons, .... Auto Water Change/Auto dosing on 90 & 65 gallon..... AGA member......
Betowess is offline  
post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-28-2007, 04:03 AM
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,315
To further my curiosity here... assuming one had a non-planted tank, and got GSA, would it be beneficial to then add phosphates even without plants? Or would the addition of phosphates only help against GSA in the presense of proper ratios of other ferts aloing with plants to suck em up? I havent had GSA in a long time (since I started EI atleast) but just curious what would happen in a non-plant tank. Guess I am just wondering because I had GSA pretty bad before I started doing the co2/fert/heavily planted tank. And there are still a ton of folks who use phosphate removers to rid themselves of algae in the low tech non-planted aquariums.
crazy loaches is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome