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I looked into replenish a bit, because I currently use equilibrium to raise my hardness. According to seachem, replenish isn't made for planted tanks and they warn that it "contains higher levels of sodium and chloride that may be stressful to plants". https://www.seachem.com/support/forums/forum/general-discussion/22045-equilibrium-or-replenish

I don't know much of the science behind water hardness, could someone explain why sulphate salts would be more/less harmful than sodium and chloride?
 

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I am putting together the ingredients for the water hardness recipe in the book. Found epsom salts no problem, and of course baking soda is pretty easy to come by.

For KCl, I found salt substitute at the store, but it looked like it had other additives as well. Ingredient list attached, does this seem like it would be okay to add, or should I find a more pure variety?

For CaCl2, I went to a couple places, but apparently most people aren't looking for de-icer in the summer. Is the best way to get this to order online? Is there some specialty store that might carry it?

Thanks!
 

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Thanks for the suggestion @hoppycalif. I actually found a local brewer who carries calcium chloride - apparently it's also used for making beer!

How about the salt substitute? Do those other ingredients seem worrisome?
 

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Hey Jatcar95,

I'm up the coast from you in Seattle and figuring out my dosing as well to harden up the water for my tanks. What did you end up doing and how did you measure out the dry ingredients? Did you end up with a recipe you are happy with?

I have the same nosalt for KCl, and a bag of MgCl and a bag if CaCl. I tried the recipe to harden with Mg and Ca and it worked surprisingly well, I got my GH to 8 (from less than 1) on the first crack, but it was just by pouring some into an API test tube, and eyeballing the level in the tube before combining with water.

Not the most precise method.

I'd love to hear if you made up solutions and if so how you measured it out.
Just moved down from Seattle myself!
Very similar water to Portland, it seems. I ended up calculating the ratios of each chemical as tablespoons per gallon (easy measurements I had laying around, not super scientific), and mixed up a solution that way. I have all the calculations sitting somewhere, I will see if I can dig it up.

I did have one mishap where I confused using a specific amount of the diluted solution vs using the pure chemical, and briefly had a saltwater tank. Oops! Did a 100% water change and retried, everything turned out fine (only had plants + snails + blackworms at the time).

I planned on mixing together all the chemicals in a single jar, so next time the measurements would be easier. Never got around to it though, as I only needed to raise the hardness that first time.
 

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@jongalong yes, it's all about the ratios. I actually used teaspoons instead of tablespoons. Here was the summary I came up with. Note the first three involve distilling into a solution, then mixing some of that into the tank. The last two I didn't do the distillation first (just mixed the correct amount for my 6.5 gallon with an arbitrary amount of tank water, then poured it back in).

Calcium:
Mix 3 tsp CaCl2 with 1 cup water. Dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Magnesium:
1 tsp MgSO4 with 2 cups water, dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Potassium:
Dose 1/8 tsp of KCl per 10 gallons of water.

Bicarbonate:
Dose 1 tsp baking soda per 10 gallons water.

Please double check the calculations, but I hope this makes it a bit simpler :) I think I still did some tweaking at each level to get the exact hardness I wanted. Went through quite a few vials of tests that night!
 

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If you mix the chemicals, you may get a white precipitate (solid particles) that is essentially useless or impossible to work with or measure or go into solution.
Should have known it wouldn't be that simple ;) I will keep them separate then, easy enough to measure each one out given how infrequently I have to use them. Thanks for the heads up!
 
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