Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 09-24-2014, 12:00 AM   #1
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
BRS RO/DI unit and PWC storage

Not quite sure this is where I should be posting. I haven't been on here in some time unfortunately, and haven't been the best aquarist lately. All of which I'm working on fixing.

Anyway, the past few months I have been contemplating n getting a RO/DI unit due to some PWC issues I have experienced with tap water. More specifically well water. I've had high nitrate levels for, well, quite some time now. I've tried a lot of different things including PWC, adding nitrate loving plants, and cutting back on feeding. All to no avail. Unfortunately my well water has decent nitrate levels in it. Lately I haven't been doing water changes to be honest, I'm afraid of throwing my tank into another mini cycle, yet again. Everything has been stable and surprisingly everything has been doing just fine, no problems.

Back to the RO/DI unit. I just purchased the BRS 4 Stage Value Plus RO/DI unit along with a TDS meter to monitor before and after readings. (Not to mention the built in dual line TDS meter that comes with the unit.) My plan as of right now is to store my PWC water in a 55 gal Rubbermaid Brute trashcan. In the summer and spring seasons I will be storing the can on my deck, which is right outside the door where my tank is. In the winter and fall months when it's cold outside the can will be stored in the basement. I will have a heater in the can to keep the PWC water at my tanks temp, along with a Koralia pump in the can to keep the water moving so it doesn't become stagnant. I also plan on using Kent's RO right. In the summer I can just use a pump and pump the PWC water into my tank from the deck. In the winter it won't be so easy. I'll have to pump it out of the can into 5 gallon buckets and walk them up to the tank.

Unfortunately I'm not able to permanently install the unit, so I will be using a garden hose for my water source. Any suggestions or input is greatly appreciated. Constructive criticism is always welcomed.

For what it's worth I have a 120gal tank with the following stocking:
2 parrot fish
2 kissing gouramis
2 blue gouramis
4 tiger barbs
4 green tiger barbs
5 red glass rosey barbs
5 serpae tetras
Banded leporinus
Striped rapheal cat
2 bumble bee cat
African feather fin cat
Rainbow shark
Fire eel
Bala shark

Thanks for the help and input in advance,

Blair

__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2014, 02:27 PM   #2
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Bump to the top for some input.
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2014, 03:13 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
How are you going to get the water from the basement to the tank?

Connecting it to the faucet is no problem, as long as you have the correct adaptor it will work great. That being said, where it rodi unit going to be, outside?
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2014, 05:09 PM   #4
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalto View Post
How are you going to get the water from the basement to the tank?

Connecting it to the faucet is no problem, as long as you have the correct adaptor it will work great. That being said, where it rodi unit going to be, outside?

Basement to tank it'll be pumped out of the brute can into 5 gallon buckets and walked upstairs to the tank. (Pain in the butt I know). Yes, I does come with the connection for faucet and garden hose. Well I'm not entirely sure where it will be kept yet. I most likely will be setting it up and breaking it down each time I make water. (Without taking the filters out of water if possible). I have to see how it can be mounted and what not.
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2014, 06:52 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Anyone else with some input?


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 01:48 PM   #6
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
for those that care or want to help I tested all the water today. Any help getting my tank back on track is greatly appreciated.

Tank
pH 6
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 160
KH 1
GH 14
TDS 750
Phosphate 10

RO/DI from garden hose (well water)
pH 6
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0
GH 1
KH 1
TDS 0
Phosphate 0

Now with everything that is in my tank my pH should be 6-7.5 and my dH should be 10-15. So technically I should get my GH up too, correct?e
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 01:57 PM   #7
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
If your RO/DI system is working properly I would not expect to have a KH of 1. It really should be 0. It is also kind of strange that you have a TDS of 0 and a GH of 1. I wonder if that has has to do with the testing methodology. Either way these values are not extreme and should cause you much practical impact.

To answer your question, your are going to need to do a few things to your RO/DI water.

The pH of your RO water is fairly irrelevant because KH is so low it will change extremely easily. So, you need to do the following:
- Raise KH to stabilize pH.
- Set an appropriate pH for your fish.
- Re-mineralize your water which will raise your GH.

There are a lot of ways to do this. My recommendation would be to use a phophate buffer like Seachem Neutral Regulator. This will set your pH close to 7 and also raise your KH. It is difficult to overdose and is fairly resistant to crashing. To raise GH you could use a product like "Kent R/O Right" or you could just add Epson Salt which would raise the magnesium content of your water.
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 02:04 PM   #8
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalto View Post
If your RO/DI system is working properly I would not expect to have a KH of 1. It really should be 0.

To answer your question, your are going to need to do a few things to your RO/DI water.

The pH of your RO water is fairly irrelevant because KH is so low it will change extremely easily. So, you need to do the following:
- Raise KH to stabilize pH.
- Set an appropriate pH for your fish.
- Re-mineralize your water which will raise your GH.

There are a lot of ways to do this. My recommendation would be to use a phophate buffer like Seachem Neutral Regulator. This will set your pH close to 7 and also raise your KH. It is difficult to overdose and is fairly resistant to crashing. To raise GH you could use a product like "Kent R/O Right" or you could just add Epson Salt which would raise the magnesium content of your water.
Ok perfect. I have Seachem Neutral Regulator already, but I don't have enough for a treatment yet. The bottle doesn't say anything about raising KH. I also have their Alkaline Buffer. I do plan on getting plants back in the tank, and I was told not to use Neutral Regulator with live plants. I'm not quite sure how true this is or not though. I also already have Kent RO Right.

So what I should do is slowly add it to my RO/DI water until I get my parameters where I want them correct? Then do my PWC, and eventually the tank will be the same as what my RO/DI water is that I'm using?
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 02:25 PM   #9
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
Quote:
Originally Posted by PAwrangler08 View Post
Ok perfect. I have Seachem Neutral Regulator already, but I don't have enough for a treatment yet. The bottle doesn't say anything about raising KH. I also have their Alkaline Buffer. I do plan on getting plants back in the tank, and I was told not to use Neutral Regulator with live plants. I'm not quite sure how true this is or not though. I also already have Kent RO Right.

So what I should do is slowly add it to my RO/DI water until I get my parameters where I want them correct? Then do my PWC, and eventually the tank will be the same as what my RO/DI water is that I'm using?
The beauty of a product like Neutral Regulator is that you just add it and wait a little while and it will always be right. Using Alkaline Buffer and Acid Buffer is a PITA because of the time it takes to set and test and get the combination right(This is what I do).

I am not a plant person but I suspect the issue with neutral regulator is that it contains phosphates. You definitely should not use Alkaline buffer and Neutral Regulator together.

The challenge with Alkaline Buffer is that when adding it to RO/DI water which basically has no KH it will set your pH fairly high. Generally, if you want a more moderate pH you need to combine it with Acid Buffer. If you get the mix wrong you end up with swings. Be careful when testing pH as it takes some time to set with chemicals.

If you don't mind a pH of 8+ than adding Alkaline buffer alone should work fine. Of course, it would probably be cheaper just to use baking soda if that is the case.
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 02:29 PM   #10
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
BRS RO/DI unit and PWC storage

Sounds to me like I'm better off with using the neutral regulator. Sounds much easier.

I've been reading quite a bit. A little bit here help and then a little bit there helps. Doesn't seen like anyone has such problems that I do lol. Although I shouldn't have waited so long to fix them either.
Maybe I'll post up in the planted section.

Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 02:36 PM   #11
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
Quote:
Originally Posted by PAwrangler08 View Post
Sounds to me like I'm better off with using the neutral regulator. Sounds much easier.
Way easier. You can always switch to using something else once you are ready to get your plants going.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PAwrangler08 View Post
I've been reading quite a bit. A little bit here help and then a little bit there helps. Doesn't seen like anyone has such problems that I do lol. Although I shouldn't have waited so long to fix them either.
Yeah, nitrate 150ppm tap water really sucks and is not the common reason for having to go RO/DI
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2014, 02:40 PM   #12
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalto View Post
Way easier. You can always switch to using something else once you are ready to get your plants going.


Yeah, nitrate 150ppm tap water really sucks and is not the common reason for having to go RO/DI

Good point. I could switch later.

Well my tap water isn't that bad normally. We have well water though so it's usually all over the place. But nitrate at 160 in my tank is a problem


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2014, 09:09 PM   #13
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Quote:
Originally Posted by dalto View Post
The beauty of a product like Neutral Regulator is that you just add it and wait a little while and it will always be right. Using Alkaline Buffer and Acid Buffer is a PITA because of the time it takes to set and test and get the combination right(This is what I do).

I am not a plant person but I suspect the issue with neutral regulator is that it contains phosphates. You definitely should not use Alkaline buffer and Neutral Regulator together.

The challenge with Alkaline Buffer is that when adding it to RO/DI water which basically has no KH it will set your pH fairly high. Generally, if you want a more moderate pH you need to combine it with Acid Buffer. If you get the mix wrong you end up with swings. Be careful when testing pH as it takes some time to set with chemicals.

If you don't mind a pH of 8+ than adding Alkaline buffer alone should work fine. Of course, it would probably be cheaper just to use baking soda if that is the case.
So I ended up getting Seachem Acid and Alkaline buffer. Since you use this, care to shed any light on using it. Seems a bit confusing. I want to get my pH to 7.0, the ratio says 1:2.0 (acid to alkaline). I am going to be dosing 30 gallons at a time. Alkaline says 1 teaspoon for every 10 gallons, so there's 3 teaspoons (or one tablespoon). The acid buffer says 1/4 teaspoon (how the hell I'm going to measure that I have no clue) for every 20 gallons, so that would be 3/8 of a teaspoon. So should I be using 1 1/8 teaspoons of acid buffer and 6 teaspoons of alkaline buffer to obtain a pH of 7.0?
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2014, 09:18 PM   #14
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
When you combine them you ignore the acid buffer directions and use the ratio.

So you would simply use a teaspoon of alkaline and 1/2 a teaspoon of acid per 10g. So for 30g it would be 3tsp alk and 1.5tsp acid which should set a ph of ~7 and a KH of ~5. Alternatively, you could use 2tsp of alkaline and 1tsp of acid. This should also set a pH of 7 with a lower KH. I would start with 3Alk/1.5Acid and see how it works for you.

It important to note two things.
1 - The recipe only works on pure RODI. If you water is not pure water or close to it you will need a different mix, probably one with a greater amount of acid buffer.
2 - It takes time for the pH to set.
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2014, 11:52 AM   #15
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
So I did as you said and got a pH of about 7.2-7.4. KH is 4 but my GH is still low. It's really hard to tell it's either 1 or 3 if that makes any sense at all. And I tested my RO water after I added everything and my TDS is up to 300ppm. Is that normal?


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2014, 01:26 PM   #16
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
dalto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,104
What did you add to the water? Alkaline/acid buffer primarily impact your KH/pH.

You will need something else to increase GH. I think earlier you said you had RO Right. Did you add some of that as well?
__________________
dalto is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2014, 01:39 PM   #17
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Yup added alk/acid buffer like you said. And added RO right as directed on the bottle.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2014, 02:34 PM   #18
Aquarium Advice Freak
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Bernville, PA
Posts: 266
Ok so I tested my tank today after a 15g water change

TDS 660
GH 11
KH 2
Phosphate 10
pH 6.6
Nitrate 160
Nitrite 0

So pH is coming up already. KH is up a bit and GH is down a little. TDS is down from 750 and of course my nitrates are the same.


Sent from my iPhone using Aquarium Advice
__________________
PAwrangler08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
age, brs, pwc, rodi, unit

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
BRS RODI unit question gthirty7s Nano Reefs 6 01-11-2014 12:52 AM
starting up again. Best way to clean tank, rock and sand after storage arminkropp Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started 2 12-11-2013 05:04 PM
Rodi unit. Di unit qestion Fish-guy General Hardware/Equipment Discussion 1 06-17-2012 03:12 PM
Rock Confusion Pukani, Reef Saver Eco, and Florida Rock From BRS or ReefCleaners LarryS Saltwater Reef Aquaria 50 12-13-2011 01:31 PM
Storage Cabinet and Sump Stand fishfreek DIY Projects 7 07-31-2002 10:51 AM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:00 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2023, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.