Not sure what to do next - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2010, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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Not sure what to do next

I'm using the Redsea Turbo setup with DIY CO2 on a 29 gallon tank. I have a 2xT5 HO light fixture. I've noticed a difference in my plants since switching from the Redsea crap to the DIY but it's nothing dramatic. I think the thing to do next is to lower my PH but I'm not sure how to go about it. Right out of the tap if I remember it was about 8.3. Oh, I'm using Flourish tabs and was using Excel. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2010, 09:40 PM
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Water out of the tap at 8.3 sounds very high. That's about what SW is.

I'd say first get a new pH test kit and retest your tank and tap water. You need to know where you are first. Then plan your course of action. For example, if your tap water is 8.3, water changes are not going to do a thing. However, if the tap water is 6.5, water changes will lower pH very nicely.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2010, 09:45 PM
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Probably no real reason to mess with the Ph, but with a Ph that high I am guessing you have a really high Gh/Kh and that is probably the problem. RO/DI. I used to buy water from the grocery store dispenser. That is another option. Some LFS will sell RO/DI water.


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2010, 11:09 PM
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I don't think there is any need to mess with your pH. If you are not seeing much of a response from your DIY CO2 I would suggest putting some effort into increasing CO2 levels and circulation in the tank. You probably have too much light for the amount of CO2 you are providing.

You may also see better response if you start dosing the water column. For starters you don't appear to be dosing any micronutrients at all. Get yourself some Flourish comp or dry CSM+B which will dose micros. I would also augment your fert tabs with Nitrates and Phosphates either liquid (expensive) or dry (cheap). T5HO lighting is intense and it drives the plants to want plenty of fertilizers and CO2 or they don't do well. There is a "dosing regimes" sticky at the top of the Fertilizers and Water Parameters forum that will help you figure out how to dose your tank.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-30-2010, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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My PH has been tested several times by different LFS's. This was before using DIY Co2 though. As for water circulation (left that part out), I have an AC 30 and a HOT Magnum with custom spray bar on the tank (plenty of circulation!!) Not to mention the pump from the Red Sea Turbo.

Captain_bu, as for the rest of your post, none of that was English to me
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-31-2010, 09:28 PM
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Captain_bu is talking about your fertilizer regime, and if it's greek (that stuff can be _really_ confusing--I'm with you), it's well worth spending a little time with the stickies/faqs in the fertilizer forum, b/c that will make more difference in the results you see than anything else. It took me a really long time to get my head around it all (and no claims to have completed the process!) but fundamentally it seems to me to boil down to choosing one of the proven systems out there and following it very precisely till you start to see how it works w/i your own setup.

Good luck!
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-01-2010, 11:41 PM
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As a fellow Floridian, I'm pretty sure your water is liquid rock. But unless your goal is to spawn some blackwater fish, or you're dying to propogate some Toninas or Erios, it's probably fine just as it is.

My guess is that your CO2 levels aren't where they need to be to keep up with T5HO lighting since you're only using DIY CO2 rather than pressurized on the tank. If you don't want to spring for a pressurized CO2 setup, you might try setting up 2 bottles on either end of the tank, and also getting a drop checker with a 4dkH solution in it to get a better read on your actual CO2 levels.

And then you also need to get a balanced fertilizer regimen going- which means you'll need to work out the "chemistry soup" of dosing ferts.

An Option B would be to lower your lighting... which would lower your plants' demand for carbon and other nutrients.





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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the replies people. I will leave my PH alone then and start reading up in the fertilizer forum. Time has been rough for me lately. Worked almost 70 hours in 5 days but have today and tomorrow off. Want to start reading what I need so I can order all of it.

If I were to get a Co2 setup and stop using DIY, how much would I be looking at if I wanted one for the 29 but will work on a 75/90 gallon? I could swing the money, just don't know what the hell I'm buying!
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 02:55 PM
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A good pressurized CO2 setup will put you back $200-300.

And you could use the same system on a 29gal as a 90gal.





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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 03:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
A good pressurized CO2 setup will put you back $200-300.

And you could use the same system on a 29gal as a 90gal.
this is the biggie. Everything else you ever buy for aquariums (just about) will not transfer when you upgrade to a larger tank. filters, powerheads, heaters, etc will all have to be upsized to get what you need. A decent Co2 system seems like a huge expense (and it is) but it'll be with you for a lifetime. (and be the single best purchase you can make for a planted tank)


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my 75 (the old tank)
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-05-2010, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jargonchipmunk View Post
(and be the single best purchase you can make for a planted tank)
I bet it is. My problem right now is finding the time to read up on what to buy and how to do it. Not to mention I just plain old hate reading. I'm a hands on learner. I rather live in a fish store for a week to learn what I need to do. Maybe it's just the chemistry of it all that makes it hard for me to comprehend. I just need to take some alone time and just get down and dirty in the forums if this is what I really want (it is).
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