Time to Get serious with 10G: Need Help - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-27-2007, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Time to Get serious with 10G: Need Help

I have a 10 Gal tank that's been going for a few years now. For the most part the fish do ok, I loose a few here and there, but the plants do not seem to do well. I have tried things but it's just not working.

I think the issues are my water quality and not cleaning the tank as much as I should. I have only a few fish: 4 tetra's and a alge eater.

My tank equipment is a Aqua Clear Power filter 30 with two layers of the foam and the bio ball. The light is a 24" coralife with a 10k 36 watt bulb. I have 2" of flaurite base.

My goal is to stop killing things and have a good looking planted tank.

My Water is :

PH 7.2
Amonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 160
KH 53.7 3 drops..
GH 537.0 30 drops...

For KH and GH I am using 17.9 * number of drops.

From what I read the the PH and Nitrate could be a little lower but it seems like a lot of dosing to get it there. The GH seems to be my biggest concern and I do not know what to do. I am not sure if the Nitrate is ok or not. It is possible to have dead zones in the tank by not moving the water enough.

Thanks in advance
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-27-2007, 07:29 PM
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Your water is too hard for sure. What substrate are you using? Any fertilizers?
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-27-2007, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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The substrate is flourite, and it's about 2" deep. It's only a few years old. As far as ferts go I am using flourish. So is the hard water bad for the plants or the fish or both.

I have not been sticking to a schedule like I should. I am on a monthly schedule at best.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-29-2007, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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I may have read the GH wrong. Once I add 1 drop it turns a very faint green. So I am not sure if that is the reading or not. To get it to turn really green I need 30 drops. I didn't think that KH and GH could be that far apart.

Also, I might have been running my light too long. Close to 10 hours, 5 hours at a time. I have cut it back to 6 hours. I have a 36watt 10k light.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-30-2007, 03:12 PM
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For me the only way I feel good about the water in my tank is to use RO water and add a calc/mag supplement which puts the GH where I want it, but I also live in an area with extremely hard water. Your nitrates do seem a little on the high side which can be a factor in stunted fish growth. I would recommend staying on top of your water changes and then dosing a form of nitrogen which is more accessible to plants (Flourish Nitrogen etc) along with a form of co2 (Flourish excel). Also you may want to consider changing your bulb from a 10k to something between 67k and 87k, IME 10k alone has not been particularly well liked by my plants. Good luck and post some pictures when you feel like you got it right!
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