Nano water changes... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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Nano water changes...

Both my nanos are consistently at 0-0-0 for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates. That being said, are water changes still required? The plants should be absorbing any ferts I put in, but I continue to do 25% water changes every week or so on both tanks. Wondering if this is needless. I top off every day or other day with RO.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 06:03 PM
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I would continue the WC weekly. It is a way to keep the TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) at a level you can keep your shrimp happy. That is if you’re keeping shrimp. I made the mistake in not doing the water changes due to good levels. I lost a lot of shrimp because my TDS was in the 500-600 range.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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Using pure RO water, I can't imagine I will get much TDS build up but I will continue with periodic WC's. Our tap is in the 1200 range for TDS.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 06:27 PM
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i guess that depends.

In terms of the plants...if you are doing EI method for dosing ferts; which will require you to "reset" your water. Also if you are using RO in lieu of tap, you would want to monitor your pH since you might need to boost GH or re-mineralize your water. This ecomes even more important if you are injecting CO2 wherein the buffering capacity of your RO might be close to zero.

In terms of fauna, it depends on how stocked is your tank. My 20L for instance is overstocked 175% of my filter capacity. This will require major waterchanges on my part for the health of the fish. Check out aqadvisor.com, it may help you inform what you decide to do.

If you were trying to go low tech "el natural" walstad, wherein you are relying on the waste and respiration of your fauna to provide the necessary nutrients for the tank, then you would have to match the plant mass (as the primary bio filter) with the waste/respiration generated by the fauna, etc. if you achieve this balance, then in this case you wouldn't have to change your water for 6 months.

In terms of plants, I find that waterchanges contributes more to the "look and clarity" of the water/conditions in your tank rather than what your plants actually require (dosing fert dosing aside)

In terms of fauna, I find that waterchanges can only be positive because it ensures a utopian like environment for the fishes. Frequent waterchanges eliminates the possibility of other bad stuff to develop that can harm your fish (spikes in water chemistry, ICH strains, etc.).

For my own tanks I am doing 50% waterchanges every week primarily to reset nutrient levels/GH in my tanks. Basically I find that my tanks look much cleaner with the waterchanges. The only drawback is its a lot of work, but if you miss a w/c here or there, as long as filtration is at capacity (mechanical or not) I don't think the inhabitants don't seem to mind either way.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-12-2011, 08:59 PM Thread Starter
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Any suggestions on how to re-mineralize the water? Tapwater has the following properties. Ph of 7.5+. 451ppm Ca/Mg hardness. TDS of 500ppm. CaCO3 hardness of 1250ppm.

That being said, I use RO water. Can I just add some tap to the mix with some Prime? Water looks perfect as is in terms of clarity, but I am running Purigen in my tanks.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 12:09 AM
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dude 1250ppm... that's hard! lol. i think they refer to anything over 500ppm as "liquid rock", your use of RO is duly justified.

i would continue using RO in your case for w/c and topping off. i think the simplest method for remineralizing water is dry dosing GH booster per barr's EI recommendations. this way you can incrementally increase GH based on your tank volume. it seema mixing your tap adding prime and all those steps may be more trouble than its worth.


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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 12:36 AM
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Texas has that nice hard water with the high TDS, another member here has a TDS of 1100 and wants a Discus tank so you know the filtration is awesome. Even with RO you should be adding a gH booster to add the basic micros, a dose of micros from Plantex CSM+B, and a dose of macros, and your TDS should end up in the 300 to 400 range. If you are dosing daily in a Nano you need to be doing a 50 to 80% WC each week, because is easier to make a mistake and you have no volume to hide it in. I have a nutrient rich soil but don't dose at all with no C02 I don't need to dose and I don't want any rapid growth.

GLA has the best gH booster IMO
Plantex CSM+B would be you second move
and I think I would leave macros out all together.


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 01:44 AM Thread Starter
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How often should I add the gH booster? I assume it should be part of my weekly water changes? I also assume it has instructions on how much to add to a RO water. Currently have root-tabs as I am focusing on stems/mini Dutch style. Dosing with Rootmedic 1 step otherwise.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 06:57 AM
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General Dosing Guideline for High Light and Well Planted Aquariums
(wolfenxxx)

10- 20 Gallon Aquariums
+/- 1/8 tsp KN03 (N) 3x a week
+/- 1/32 tsp KH2P04 (P) 3x a week
+/- 1/32 tsp (2ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change
+/- 1/32 tsp GH booster 1x a week (after water change)


20-40 Gallon Aquariums
+/- ¼ tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- 1/16 tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- 1/16 tsp (5ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change
+/- 1/16 tsp GH booster 1x a week (after water change)

40-60 Gallon Aquariums
+/- 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- 1/8 tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- 1/8 (10ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change
+/- 1/8 tsp GH booster 1x a week (after water change)

60 – 80 Gallon Aquariums
+/- 3/4 tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- ¼ tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- ¼ tsp (20ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change
+/- ¼ tsp tsp GH booster 1x a week (after water change)

100 - 125 Gallon Aquarium
+/- 1 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- ½ tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- ½ tsp (30ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change
+/- ½ tsp GH booster 1x a week (after water change)


EI target ranges
CO2 range 25-30 ppm
NO3 range 5-30 ppm
K+ range 10-30 ppm
PO4 range 1.0-2.0 ppm
Fe 0.2-0.5ppm or higher
GH range 3-5 degrees ~ 50ppm or higher
KH range 3-5

This is the guide I use (I tweaked a little to clarify GH booster dosing) as summarized by John N of APC forum, table by Wolfenxxx, and of course Plantbrain's target EI.

Obviously you will dose more or less depending on desired EI target levels, plant needs and/or growth rate.





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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Now just to find something that measures 1/64ths of a teaspoon.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 03:12 PM
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I actually have 3 tiny spoons with a 1/8, 1/16, & 1/32 so a 64th is not very much and I would say a half of a baby aspirin in size.

You would add gH booster after each water change, to make thing easy you could go to Home Depot and buy a 5 gallon bucket with a lid, I would use a large measuring cup to make accurate markings on the bucket in half gallon increments up to 5 gallons, I would make up a 5 gallon batch of water and use it for water changes to avoid making tiny measurements.

There is some important wording in thefisherman's post, high light and well/heavily planted and I'll add with CO2, to even need dosing and weekly water changes.


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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-13-2011, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
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5 gallon bucket is a great idea. Thanks.
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