OK, who's got well water and a question... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 01:55 PM Thread Starter
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OK, who's got well water and a question...

I've got well water. It's good, pH 7.0. No negatives like high nitrate/nitrite. I don't have my gh/kh before me but it was fine when I checked. When I do 30% waterchange every week or two, I run straight from my sink tap into the tank via python. I've run planted, fairly low light/low tech for a year (a little 20g) and am setting up a 10g shrimp only and a new 30g. I've used Excel to bump the carbon up on the 20g, which has a 40W compact flourescent. I've not used ferts, trying to just let it mature and stay low input. However, I recently got BBA going in there, ... yikes, I'm working on it with cleanup and 2x recommended excel daily. Here is my big Q: OK, the plants do better if I supplement carbon (e.g., excel or CO2, which I'd rather not do). However, my well water must have a lot of CO2 when it comes from the tap, right? So rather than do yeast, or even do Excel, what if I found a regimen of daily addition of X ounces of well water, say in the morning just before the lights come on - to basically use it like a daily CO2 addition, either with or without Excel supplementation? Also, thinking my water changes might be the reason I got BBA going - being addition of 30% well water, which is a sudden, substantial "change" in Co2, which favors BBA? Any thoughts appreciated... I know I may need to do more frequent, small water changes and use ferts in the substrate, which I"ll start doing but just wonder about this well water/CO2 theory. Comments appreciated.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 02:55 PM
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Hey "OAKLEY" ....I am having the same issues with my well water. I have been experimenting with it since I started these planted tanks. I also have a fairly good ph of around 7.0 to 7.2. I started using Aquasoil Amazonia for my shrimp tank to lower the pH a bit and to keep the plants fertilized without using any ferts if possible. Low tech is what I was wanting. I did notice that my GH and KH were pretty high though without the Aquasoil. Around 12 or so. With the Aquasoil the GH and KH went down alot. To about 4 or 5. My shrimps like it now and the algae is minimal.

With my 55 gallon, I have hair algae that won't quit!! It's really getting out of control. I have pressurized C02 at 1 BPS only with the lights on and all the lights in both tanks are on for 8.5 hours. I am seriously thinking of just tearing it all the way down and starting over either with two new 20 gallons or just with the old 55 gallon and new Aquasoil and no C02 at all. I want to go all shrimp anyway. So, it's hard to say what is really causing the problem, but I do notice, along with your findings, that after a decent water change, the plants pearl and everything seems happy.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
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Interesting. Good luck with your algae problem, I have a BBA thing going in my 20g, the only tank I have running at the moment. It's in quarantine with a 2x excel regime to limit it. Bums me out. Maybe we should be well-water buddies. Let's see, I'm novice but the pearling is because photosynthesis is kicked in, maybe due to the sudden flux of CO2-rich well water straight from your tap? Right?

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 04:35 PM
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More than likely what you are expericening is that your well water has a lot of disolved minerals more so than CO2. I do water changes once every 3 days 25% and I have Swords growing in very poor lighting conditions because of the excesss mineral in the water with no added ferts. Not to mention Vals and some other things that are all supposed to be highlight plants. What maybe causing the pearling is actually a burst from the increase in avaiable minerals when you do your water changes. I don't get BBA here but I do get button alage.

You can have your water tested call your local health dept and ask them what are the steps. Let them know you are wanting to see what the CO2 content is also and see if they can test for that. I bet you will find it is low and also it will have to be tested at the tap not in some jar you carry in.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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So I assume your high minerals are because it's well water, right? Interesting about your sword growth in very low light, no ferts. That's actually what I'd like to do, and have been doing, but had been wondering if I should use ferts. My lighting is 2 wpg from a pc bulb. What's your lighting like?

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 06:37 PM
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haha...you guys aint got squat on my well water!

My Ph is 8.0 out of the tap. Phosphates are at about 10 ppms. Not .10, but 10.

Nitrates...holymackeral.

My cousins live a mile from me, and their water is the same, but the Ph is about 8.5.

If you go up only about 6 miles north of my house, the well water has a Ph of somewhere near 8.8

Needless to say, I use RO/DI water on my plant tanks, and a mix of RO/DI and well on everything else.

65 gallon low tech planted
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 06:40 PM
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Like less than 1 wpg regular plant flourcent bulb.

Yea I'm on a well and have been most of my adult life. The minerals come from the ground your well in is drilled into. So it will vary from well to well.

My water is about perfect fro palnted tanks with high disolved minerals and very little Nitrates, PH of 7.2 from the tap.

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Last edited by Sounguru; 09-23-2008 at 10:23 PM.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-23-2008, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. Fishbguy1: I understand your pain- grew up on wells in limestone in SW Ohio. Hard, hard, hard. Sounguru: encouraging. I don't have parameters for my well yet, but I plan testing this fall. Had to drill it last year when the old one died. I do know this: it's fairly soft and about pH 7.0. My area here in the Appalachians has acidic geology and "not real hard" water - I love not having really hard water, though I know it's got some mineral in it. Nice not to really worry about chlorination...

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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-24-2008, 11:19 AM
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Yes, I am very happy with not worrying about chlorination. I believe the pearling is from the all the minerals from the ground. My well water comes down from about 400 feet so from what my well people tell me is that this water is very old and clean. I don't use ferts anymore and I am seriously thinking about ditching the C02 also. Still troubleshooting and seeing what works best. I took out one light on my 55 gallon and now I am down to 2 wpg. I need to find homes for my fish now.
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