Watering Down Fertilizers - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-22-2013, 08:51 PM Thread Starter
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Watering Down Fertilizers

I want to set up an automatic fertilizer dosing system but it would require me to water down the fertilizers. Would this affect their usefulness in any way? I'd be using Seachem Excel and Flourish. They would be sitting in their watered down form for awhile as well.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-22-2013, 09:00 PM
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Are you watering down flourish and excel? It shouldn't hurt anything but why would you do that?
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-22-2013, 09:04 PM
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Does anyone know if Excel loses it's potency due to light exposure, mixing with water, or some other condition? I know I have heard repeatedly that it only lasts a day or so in the aquarium, so something causes its loss of potency.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 01:42 AM Thread Starter
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I would be watering them down and they would have to be diluted so it was on a constant drip. If it was pure fertilizer I would be overdosing to the max. Would the excel lose it potency, or would the plants just use it all?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 02:10 AM
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Diluting Seachem products with water should have no effect.

In regards to Excel degradation. The two main components influencing glutaraldehyde degradation rate are PH and temperature. The higher the PH or temperature the faster the reaction occurs. Glutaraldehyde reacts to amino acids in proteins, primarily lysine. The result is glutaric acid and CO2. I have heard light degrades glutaraldehyde. The manufacturers suggest storing in a light proof container so there is some truth to this. The only concrete information I have found is that glutaraldehyde degrades under exposure to low wave lengths of light such as UV. I've yet to read any studies suggesting higher wave lengths degrading it although this certainly does not mean it won't. Simply keep it in a container that blocks light. Here are a few links about glutaraldehyde in case you can't sleep and want to torture yourself by reading this chewy information lol

An article about Glutaraldehyde from union carbide (DOW), (this one is easier to read)
Aerobic and Anaerobic Metabolism of Glutaraldehyde in a River Water-Sediment System
glutaraldehyde properties
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 02:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Zorfox, I'll try and read those articles. Would I have any problems keeping both the excel and flousih mixture in the same container?
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 04:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JellOh View Post
I want to set up an automatic fertilizer dosing system but it would require me to water down the fertilizers. Would this affect their usefulness in any way? I'd be using Seachem Excel and Flourish. They would be sitting in their watered down form for awhile as well.
I am curious, why would you need to water them down to use them with a doser? They are already in a liquid form. Just set the doser to dose the amount you would if you were doing it manually.


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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 08:23 AM Thread Starter
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I be making my own doser as I am a poor freeloader with too much time and not enough money. I haven't been able to find anything cheap enough that would only dispense a tiny amount of liquid.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 11:15 AM
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Thanks Zorfox, I'll try and read those articles. Would I have any problems keeping both the excel and flousih mixture in the same container?
Short answer, I'm not sure. Many people use a small amount of excel as a preservative in their trace mix without problems. However, mixing such a large ratio seems prone to problems. Seachem does not recommend mixing excel or it's iron with any other product.

"Excel and Iron both have the ability to precipitate other products. Therefore, both of these should be dosed individually, and are not to be combined with other products."
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-23-2013, 11:50 AM
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I be making my own doser as I am a poor freeloader with too much time and not enough money. I haven't been able to find anything cheap enough that would only dispense a tiny amount of liquid.
That is understandable but, I am still having a hard time understanding why you are needing to water down a product that is already heavily watered down and in liquid form ready to dose wether it be a purchased pre-made doser or a DIY version.

A doser is nothing more than a peristaltic pump used to transfer liquids. At the same cost you could make one you could purchase a 1.1 mL pump and a cheap timer to run at the time of day for a set length of time to the amount you need for $20-25.


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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-26-2013, 05:59 AM
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That is understandable but, I am still having a hard time understanding why you are needing to water down a product that is already heavily watered down and in liquid form ready to dose wether it be a purchased pre-made doser or a DIY version.

A doser is nothing more than a peristaltic pump used to transfer liquids. At the same cost you could make one you could purchase a 1.1 mL pump and a cheap timer to run at the time of day for a set length of time to the amount you need for $20-25.
im guessing he is going to be making something that uses gravity as the driving force. What Im picturing is something similar to how most people drip acclimate fish, but in this case itd be fertilized water dripping into the tank


thats just my assumption, seems like the easiest way to do it
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-26-2013, 10:12 AM
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i have too heard about the automatic fertilizer dosing system but due to not aware with the proper facts to go good with it, i have not taken any steps further yet


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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-28-2013, 08:52 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I'll be trying to use a drip acclimation set I have to dose the tank. I'm just waiting for the set to come in. It only count about $3, so if it works then it will be much more cost efficient.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-28-2013, 11:48 PM
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If you really want to save money, buy dry ferts and mix them with water. You will accomplish your goal of diluting the ferts to the desired levels and it will be WAYYY cheaper. For the same price as a bottle of seachem, you could buy dry ferts that would last you for about a year or two.


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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-29-2013, 12:27 AM
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Yes, I'll be trying to use a drip acclimation set I have to dose the tank. I'm just waiting for the set to come in. It only count about $3, so if it works then it will be much more cost efficient.

Well then that makes more sense as I am sure you're trying to extend the amount of liquid you have so it last longer vs just dripping straight for the bottle. One thing to keep in mind though is Seachem products are already really watered down. So you may lose potency of these products by adding more water to it preventing you from get the results you're looking for as you will probably have to dose more to make up for the watered down solution. In theory it doesn't seem like you would be saving anything.

If you're going to go this route I would highly urge you looking at doing dry ferts. It will save you a lot more money in the long run vs buying commercial ferts and you will have a better concentration.


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