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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Did a test today:
6.8 ph
No ammonia
No nitrites
Less than 20 nitrates maybe less than 10 (still yellowish orange at 10 min.)
1-2 on gh changes on second drop
1-2 on kh changes on second drop
502 on tds
The water is really clear no debris lying around mechanical media changed weekly.
I have been using ro/di with replenish and neutral/discus buffer to get it where I am aiming for. I also use seachem ferts: fundamentals & enhancers twice a week each. Are the seachem products doing this?
Been reading on the importance of tds in aquarium water and have been checking the water before it goes in and its less than 20 from my lfs often less than 10. I do water changes often about 10% a week with a 20% change every third or fourth.
The load is about 1/2" of fish per gallon of water all very small dwarf cichlids apistos and rams. The tank is well planted but not heavily (imo) planted. The tank is established but half the fish are new arrivals (around 10 days now).
 

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I bet they are. I believe the buffers are mostly phosperous. Look into peat moss oganic. Do away with all the sea chemical products

What are u aiming to get at?

Soft water fish?

Check into salty shrimp booster, pure ro, and your Kindle much set. Tds don't play that much role except soft water inverts, same plants, fish same but not much else. Levels seem reasonable but my advice is do away with all the products
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Ok what do you use to get your ph up when using rodi water how do you fertilize etc.
The tank is stocked all dwarf south american cichlids looking to keep it where it is maybe .2 either way wouldnt mind a bit more minaral content. How do you make rodi water ready for the tank?
 

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RO water has close to no minerals, all tests should read close to 0.
You are adding too much and not removing enough.
Do larger water changes and use RO with just enough baking soda to make KH 3deg. And enough GH booster to make GH 3 deg. I use Seachem equilibrium, but you could make your own that does not contain potassium if you want. Then test the water. Add only as much fertilizer as you are willing to remove with water changes.
 

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Don't get hung up on the absolute TDS number, worry about the delta between whatever your source water reads with added ferts and micros and the tank reading. This will indicate a build up of solids and tell you that a water change is due.

Any mineral additive will increase TDS, that is what they are. If you add that many minerals in your water change water, without top off with RO, you may be increasing the TDS without realizing it.

If you are happy with the Seachem products, use their acid and alkaline buffers together to target a specific ph and record that TDS reading as your "water change" TDS. Then calculate the TDS for the Seachem fert program you are dosing and add that "dosing" TDS to the water change TDS to get a benchmark. Then all you need to do is add a multiple of the dosing TDS to the benchmark and that number is the tank target you want to stay below, in order to avoid an excess of nutrients. That margin could be more or could be less depending on other factors, so you can experiment with the margin. PPS pro starts at 1x dosing TDS increment beyond the water source which indicates that the daily dose is greater than the daily uptake by plants so the TDS rises above the benchmark. For example, if the daily dosing adds 50ppm to the water change TDS of 200ppm, your benchmark is 250ppm. So 2x the nutrients would be 300ppm, 3x would be 350ppm etc etc.

PPS-pro is much easier to maintain as the numbers have been worked out by Edward, but you can call Seachem and ask them how to determine dosing PPM by adding a specific amount of whatever nutrients you are using to a specific volume of water.
 
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