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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I had asked this question in the Flourish Excel thread, but I don't want to hijack it with other questions, so I am starting this thread.

How many of you use Straight tap water in your planted tanks? Are any of you using RO/DI? I used straight tap for my 10 gal at the time with only 15W of light, so algae was never an issue. I soon upgraded to a 29 gal tank that had 110W of PC Flourescents, and when I used tap, I got a serious algae bloom. I wasn't ready to dose CO2 in that tank other then Flourish Excel, so I switched to using RO/DI. The plants I kept weren't really affected (Java moss, Java fern and a few crypts). Now I have a 75 gallon with 220w of PC light and I want to start filling it with plants and want to start using CO2 (from what people tell me I should go with a pressurized unit). I am still using RO/DI, but I would rather use tap then have to keep running to the store to get water. (I am adding an RO/DI unit once my kitchen ever gets remodelled-mainly for my reef tank). However, I don't want to have the problem with algae blooms. Plus I have some fish that come from softer acidic water conditoins (clown loaches, red-eye puffer). I also don't want to have a pH crash if I start dosing the CO2. Please assist.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the replies so far. Of course I am still nowhere close to a decision as there are good arguments on both sides. I may do the 50/50 route. My main concern was for when I start dosing CO2. Right now I don't add anything to my RO water (well, sometimes I add this liquid called electro-right, which is supposed to add electrolytes and some minerals to the RO water), but I would rather have it there already. The Java moss and fern don't care either way and still grow great. Since I want to add a nice forground of Eleocharis, I thought I would have to begin CO2 additions since I have 220W of light. Keep those opinions/suggestions coming!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Thanks Tom, The tap in my area is actually pretty good (Chicagoland-we get Lake Michigan water). It will definately save me the effort of lugging around those water jugs. On another note, is there a water conditioner you could recommend that does not add additonal phosphates into water, while neutralizing chlorine/chloramine/heavy metals?


As for the reef, I have had a 16 gal nano running now for almost seven years and it is thriving. Just a simple Berlin style with live rock, live sand, and skimming, with dosing using B-Ionic. It never was much maintenance (1 gal water change every two weeks with RO/DI).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The water conditioner would be for the FW tank. Since I use RO for the reef, I only add salt-no water conditioners. I've heard a lot of recommendations on Amquel, so that's what I will use. The 29 gal was taken down to make room for the 75, due the fact that my fish were outgrowing the 29. Thanks again.

On a side note-I do remember having my Crypts crash when I switched using tap to go to RO/DI, when I used to have my 10 gallon. I quickly switched back to tap and they recovered.
 
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