Chicago tap parameters and EI - any need to alter EI? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-28-2009, 01:45 PM Thread Starter
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Chicago tap parameters and EI - any need to alter EI?

Hi all -

I wanted to do two things with this thread - sorry for any redundancies, but I was hopeful it may be useful to some living in the Chicago area, in the unlikely event they didn't know about it.

The 2008 water chemical analysis report is available online at (WARNING: PDF):

Jardine serves the northern part of the city, where I reside. For the Jardine water plant, some key parameters are (depending on specific distribution location):

pH: 7.7
kH: 116-134
Ca: 31.0-31.1
Mg: 11.2-11.5
K: 1.9
NO3: .214-.220
PO4 (total, including orthophosphate): 1.087-1.170

I know from reading Barr Report and this site that what used to be considered "excessive" PO4 isn't really the issue it was formerly thought to be, given a decent plant biomass.

But I don't know whether a good deal in excess of 2.0 ppm is inviting problems, in terms of balance with other nutrients. I also may have merely missed this dosing calculation entirely, apologies if I've made a newb error - when I saw that I was dosing 3.27 ppm PO4, I wondered, but went with it, at least for now.

Secondly, I don't really yet know enough about plant metabolism to be able to "parse" how much of an additional "load" from the 50% tap water change on day 1 is used up during the week, to be able to calculate how much to amend early week macro fertilizer addition, if indeed I should amend the additions at all. I'd appreciate any thoughts.

Dosing according to EI, using the Fertilator, without taking into account any additions from tap water, I am currently getting 10.48 NO3, 3.27 PO4, and 10.53 K. At least on day one, according to the chem report, I'd be adding additional ppm of each of N, P, K, per the above ("diluted," of course, by the existing tank water).

Any issues with the tap parameters? Can I safely ignore the additions from tap, and continue with my existing regime (don't want to add another management variable if I don't have to). Thanks.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-28-2009, 04:12 PM
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People have accidentally dosed PO4 as if it were NO3, and not had problems as a result. Phosphate at any concentration that will occur from EI dosing will not harm the tank's occupants or the fish. You can safely ignore the tap water conditions, but if it bothers you, just skip the first dose of phosphate, and dose normally after that.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-28-2009, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Hoppy - glad to know that, one less thing to perseverate on.
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