seachem equilibrium question - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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seachem equilibrium question

Is it necessary do dose SQ after a WC? im thinking of dosing my two tanks with this after a WC but it will be costly for a 135gal and a 75gal so is there some kind of dry ferts that equals the seachem equilibrium?

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 02:27 PM
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Whether you need it at all depends somewhat on your water source. If you're using pure RO, Equilibrium adds back in calcium, magnesium, and potassium. If you are doing a blend with tap water, or straight tap, check your water provider's analysis report, add only what you need. The individual components can be had cheaply from places like Greenleaf Aquariums, aquariumfertilizer.com, etc.

I do a 50/50 RO/tap blend -- per my city water report, that gets me 23ppm Ca, 2ppm Mg, and 1.5ppm K. I add Epsom salt (local pharmacy, $3 for a 4 lb carton) to get Mg to 7ppm, and K2SO4 (like $8-$10 per pound from several dry fert dealers, GLA, aquariumfertilizer.com) to about 10ppm.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 02:31 PM
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Hi kenshinH,

Unfortunately there is no 'dry' alternative however the active ingredient in Seachem Excel is glutaraldehyde and there are less expensive alternatives (1/2 the price or less).

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75 Gallon, 2X55W AH Supply CF 8800K, 1X 59W Fluval Plant (3.0); 45 Gallon Tall, 1X 46W Fluval Plant (3.0); 30 Gallon Long; Fluval F&P 2.0; 20 Gallon, 1X26W AH Supply LED; all with CO2 & (Calcined) Montmorillonite Clay
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 07:01 PM
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Kenshin is talking about Seachem Equilibrium not Excel. The dry version of Equilibrium is Calcium Sulfate potassium sulfate, magnesium sulfate, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 09:15 PM
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Not at all necessary if you're using tap water that is not too soft, as it will likely have a reasonable mineral content, so KH and GH will be maintained at acceptable levels.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 09:22 PM
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Hi Zerodameaon,

Opps, my error! I also make my own Seachem Equilibrium equivalent because my water here in Seattle is very soft. I use Tom Barr's recipe for GH Booster:

When he did his talk in Seattle a few years ago he stated that the formula for GH Booster is basically (Seachem adds a little Mn and Fe) 2 parts K2SO4 (Potassium Sulfate); 1 part CaSO4 (Calcium Sulfate aka Gypsum); and 1 part MgSO4 (Epsom Salts) by volume. I dose it the same way I used to dose Seachem Equilibrium. I got the K2SO4 and CaSO4 on Ebay and the MgSO4 at the local drug store. Making my own costs about 1/2 the cost of Equilibrium.

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75 Gallon, 2X55W AH Supply CF 8800K, 1X 59W Fluval Plant (3.0); 45 Gallon Tall, 1X 46W Fluval Plant (3.0); 30 Gallon Long; Fluval F&P 2.0; 20 Gallon, 1X26W AH Supply LED; all with CO2 & (Calcined) Montmorillonite Clay

Last edited by Seattle_Aquarist; 12-24-2014 at 11:53 PM. Reason: ..
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-24-2014, 09:36 PM
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KenshinH: What are your water parameters?

Seattle_Aquarist: That is some good info, SF has soft water as well and this will help a lot.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-25-2014, 12:01 AM
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Hi zerodameaon,

The readings do vary some over the year but typically from the tap my water comes out:
PH = 7.4 (after 24 hours)
dKH = 2.0
dGH = 4.0

Tom Barr indicated he doesn't worry too much about his dKH as long as he can keep his PH / CO2 stable and that he tries to target a dGH of about 5.0. Along with GH Booster I do add a little NaHCO3 (Bicarbonate of Soda / Baking Soda) to get my dKH up to 3.0-4.0. BTW, Tom Barr is from the Bay Area as well and has soft water also.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-25-2014, 04:51 AM
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Smile Seachem Equilibrium Analysis, Not Tolstoy, but

Hi ,

Looked at Seachem Equilibrium, I have used this in the past; I guess I figured it was a lot of money for water, I wish I had analyzed it. Oh well…

Based on Seachem’s information Equilibrium seems to be primarily Potassium sulfate, gypsum, Epsom salt, with a little Iron(II) sulfate, probably ferrous sulfate heptahydrate and a tiny amount of Manganese(II) sulfate, probably manganese sulfate tetrahydrate.

The Potassium sulfate K₂SO₄ is particularly interesting since K⁺ does not play a role in general hardness, in fact many water softeners trade two K⁺ ions for each GH ion, usually Ca⁺ or Mg. There seems a long time ago to have been a misunderstanding about water hardness in the aquarium community. Anyway K⁺ makes up 19.5%, 195000-ppm of Seachem’s Equilibrium.

Gypsum, Calcium sulfate dihydrate, CaSO₄⦁2H₂O, this is likely the white stuff folks mention seeing, as gypsum is essentially insoluble, it works in our systems, since no salt is totally insoluble, so at 20℃ about 2.4-grams per liter. The Calcium ion, Ca⁺ makes up 8.06%, 80,600-ppm and definitely adds to the general hardness.

Epsom salt, Magnesium sulfate heptahydrate, MgSO₄⦁7H₂O. The Magnesium ion, Mg⁺ makes up 2.41%, 24,100-ppm. This is in the typical proportions we see in general hardness.

Ferrous sulfate heptahydrate, FeSO₄⦁7H₂O. Iron(II), Fe⁺makes up 0.11%, 1,100-ppm.

Manganese sulfate tetrahydrate, MnSO₄⦁4H₂O. Manganese(II), Mn⁺ makes up 0.06%, 600-ppm.

The big winner though seems to be sulfate, SO₄⁻ coming in at 53.14%, 531,400-ppm. While a little sulfate is necessary, this seems excessive

Honestly I think Calcium chloride and Epsom salt are sufficient, the K⁺, Fe⁺ and Mn⁺ you will dose anyway and K⁺ does not add to hardness. The Epsom salt provides plenty of sulfate and sulfate does not add to water hardness.

Since I have not tested Seachem Equilibrium myself, I base my calculation on information provided by Seachem. As to the specific hydrates, I guessed, based on availability and cost.

Total sulfate levels could be somewhat higher depending on hydrates used. Unless Seachem chooses to change its policy and be forthcoming about its ingredients. This is the best I can do without actually buying a bottle.

Respectfully,
Joe
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Last edited by JoeRoun; 12-25-2014 at 04:54 AM. Reason: depending
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-25-2014, 11:56 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zerodameaon View Post
KenshinH: What are your water parameters?

Seattle_Aquarist: That is some good info, SF has soft water as well and this will help a lot.
I don't know my two water parameters are, I'll call my city water after Xmas, what parameters do I ned to get from them?
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-25-2014, 12:18 PM
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In aquariums it is GH, General Hardness and KH, Carbonate Hardness.
Water companies might call them something else.
GH might be broken down to Calcium and Magnesium.
KH might also be called alkalinity.

These may be measured in any of several ways. Make sure you understand which units they are using.

You may be able to look up the info at the web site for your water district.
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