I’m presently using R O water. Maintaining 3dKH, 4-5dGH my controllers are set maintaining the pH to 6.26 – 6.4, 6.14 – 6.5 respectively on my two injected tanks. The low tech tank GH is the same and 2dKH is self sable at 6.8 – 7.0 pH without CO2. I am experiencing near continuous breeding in all the tanks containing adult fish. I NEVER had any breeding in 10 years living at this house and had repeated fish kills and plant problems. Angels are not as water quality sensitive as Discus and my well water killed them on a rotating basis.
Currently my results are regardless of husbandry practices without softer water fish died. With it my tanks remain overfilled for over a year and getting even better.
Using R/O only when you have the 'water from hell'
on Sun Mar 08, 2009 11:44 pm
Chosen to play mad chemist
Hello and as with most HELP/advise/comment if you care too,
Situation as follows; I live in west central Florida with tannic lakes and wetlands all around my property. A Kinetico water system is installed to make my well water usable in the home. Pressure varies 40 to 65 psi off the well. I set up an RO unit to use for my four aquariums.
All are freshwater planted tanks, two are CO2 injected. Keeping angels as the primary species.
Well water leaves iron colored stains on everything, the magnetic sprinkler valves stick and head nozzles plug once a year at a minimum. The water spots heavy deposits as it dries. Basically water from hell. Well water drawn into an open bucket with a sponge filter/aerator running for 2hrs. reads as follows;
kh 196.9 ppm
gh 179 ppm
iron (off the scale) Hagen Nurtafin test kit.
Nitrate, Nitrite, Ammonia 0.0
While the numbers don’t look completely wacked the sponge is packed with orange ‘dust’ when squeezed. Fish had a Russian Roulette chance when purchased prior to last year. Plants just shrank and withered out even the ones from the local swamp. Currently (started last year) using distilled water 100%. RO Right and Seachem products to remix. Fish losses are way down, almost nonexistent but water changes are a transportation pain and getting ever more costly with distilled now .94 per gallon. Maintaining ferts and doing weekly 50% water changes mandated a change.
Water treated through my Kinetico RO system (uses salt for regen)
gh 35.8 (I believe this is a false reading not seeing the sodium)
Nitrate, Nitrite, Ammonia 0.0
The following were tested at my work location water lab.
hardness 10 ppm
iron 0 < .1 ppm
Maximum Turbidity 1.0 NTU
Maximum Chlorine .02 not visible
I’ve already purchased; 105 gal storage tank, float switch, ASO, check valve, ¼” tubing, swaglok valves, connectors, a couple of pressure gauges for inlet and outlet pre-filter monitoring, TDS dual monitor. A booster pump for maintained pressure. From the Barr report and other sites DI is not needed. I internet researched for about 3 months off and on to try and self educate.
System installed and flushed TDS inlet to the RO varies 176 – 196 (monitored over two weeks) and outlet TDS 1 so clean water is here.
Now to adding the dirt back.
KH I have covered with baking soda, but GH is the concern going forward. Kent freshwater R/O right does both GH & KH but I'm not sure the content address's plant mineral needs at all. Seachem Equilibrium (been using it) is GH adjusting only as I believe is Grumpy’s GH Booster.The forums and websites have little information other than similar in makeup. Seachem based on mixing to 3dGH and 90 gallons needed weekly a 600 gram container will last no more than two months. Does Grumpy’s add enough elements or do I need to supplement for the basics of GH starting with water of a zero content?
Seachems Guaranteed Analysis
Soluble Potassium (K20)23.0%
Calcium (Ca) 8.06%
Magnesium (Mg) 2.41%
Soluble Iron (Fe) 0.11%
Soluble Manganese (Mn) 0.06%
Using Grumpy's at a cost of $7.00 for 2 lbs. like everything else is WAY under Saechem. I haven't received my first fert order yet which will include the GH booster I'm just wondering long term if it contains the 'total' mineral balance needed by my water weeds or if something will yet end up missing?
Links to follow up threads here fine tuning the chemistry.
First post deals with plant growth rebounding.
The second had to do with false pH readings based on CO2 injection and fish not reacting to it..
What the future holds for my tanks time will tell. Plants are growing better than ever before. Fish are spawning like rabbits. Algae is less. Next to no mineral deposits on my glass tank covers week to week.