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Old 05-05-2013, 05:48 PM   #21
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Sounds like maybe I should go to vacuuming at each water change, rather than every other? With only the five small fish, there really isn't a great deal of detritus showing when the water is agitated with the vacuum. Honestly, I was doing only 1/4 of the bed as I had read and heard from the lfs that vacuuming the gravel too early can result in disturbing the bacterial colonies trying to form in the gravel.

Should I consider doing the 15-20% water change more often than once a week? Just read that somewhere as I browsed around more articles...
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:28 PM   #22
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IMO there are some beneficial bacteria in the gravel. I would vacuum it every other water change to catch the poop the filter dosent. It needs to be stirred once in a while but not all the time
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Old 05-06-2013, 01:50 AM   #23
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Bearchum, back to your RO thing... When you mixed some RO w/ your tap water, did you need to reconstitute still? Or did the percentage of tap water do that for you?
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Old 05-06-2013, 09:44 AM   #24
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Bearchum, back to your RO thing... When you mixed some RO w/ your tap water, did you need to reconstitute still? Or did the percentage of tap water do that for you?
What do you mean reconstitute?
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Old 05-06-2013, 12:28 PM   #25
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Since the RO has none of the necessary minerals left in it, I had read that some needed to be added back in?
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Old 05-06-2013, 01:11 PM   #26
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Since the RO has none of the necessary minerals left in it, I had read that some needed to be added back in?
The tap water you use in your mix should provide enough minerals.
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:01 PM   #27
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Yeah that's generally people who use 100% ro water who have to add minerals and what not back into the water
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Old 05-06-2013, 10:41 PM   #28
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OK, so I have a 36 gallon tank. Twenty percent wc would be around 7 gallons. I did 5g RO and 2g tap (treated w/ a drop of Prime) this evening. Should be OK, yeah?
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Old 05-07-2013, 11:21 PM   #29
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OK, so I have a 36 gallon tank. Twenty percent wc would be around 7 gallons. I did 5g RO and 2g tap (treated w/ a drop of Prime) this evening. Should be OK, yeah?
It's probably ok. I suggest you experiment with the ratio. Get a 1 gallon jug. Put 1/2 RO and then half tap water in it. Put an airstone in it. After 24 hrs test the pH. If it's not where you'd like it, then do the test again, using the ratio of water you think will give you the pH you want. Once you find your ratio, just do your normal pwcs using the ratio and your tank pH will eventually get to where you want it. It's good for the pH to change very slowly. Don't rush it.
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Old 05-09-2013, 07:37 AM   #30
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I will set the experiment up in the next few days (once I get to store and grab some more RO).

Tested the tank pH before wc (8.2) and 24 hrs after (8.0), so that mix seems to provide a pretty gentle change.

The cloudiness looks a bit better with the RO mixture. Wonder if I should stay once per week or increase my water change frequency to once every four or five days?
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Old 05-09-2013, 07:26 PM   #31
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I will set the experiment up in the next few days (once I get to store and grab some more RO).

Tested the tank pH before wc (8.2) and 24 hrs after (8.0), so that mix seems to provide a pretty gentle change.

The cloudiness looks a bit better with the RO mixture. Wonder if I should stay once per week or increase my water change frequency to once every four or five days?
I would do 1x a week. Keep the pH change slow.
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Old 05-09-2013, 11:25 PM   #32
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Weird thing here... I tested the RO I just brought home from lfs. Used API Master kit regular pH test, and it was deep blue (7.6+) . Tried the High pH test, and it came out deep purple (8.8+) !!

Thought RO water was neutral pH. Is test kit unable to check RO pH level? The RO water change I did earlier this week resulted in a lowering of the tank pH by 0.2, so a bit confusing...
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Old 05-10-2013, 02:11 AM   #33
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Either you are testing wrong, have a bad ph kit, or bought some bad ro water
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:44 AM   #34
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Either you are testing wrong, have a bad ph kit, or bought some bad ro water
Check your tests expiration date, test again, buy RO from a different source and see what it tests as.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:00 PM   #35
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Don't think it was any of the above. Done some research, and sounds like RO doesn't provide any particles that the tests need in order to be accurate. Saw lots of similar results from others, where the RO pH was off the charts.

After putting air stone in a 5g RO to 2g tap mixture for a couple days and then testing, the pH showed as 7.8-7.9 on the API test. Not as low as I was hoping, but good for a gradual start for where the tank currently is leveled.

After three wc's with the above mix, the cloudiness is almost completely gone. Wonder if it's safe to do a bit less tap with the RO mix, or will that leave too few minerals in the water?
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:07 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Kov View Post
Don't think it was any of the above. Done some research, and sounds like RO doesn't provide any particles that the tests need in order to be accurate. Saw lots of similar results from others, where the RO pH was off the charts.

After putting air stone in a 5g RO to 2g tap mixture for a couple days and then testing, the pH showed as 7.8-7.9 on the API test. Not as low as I was hoping, but good for a gradual start for where the tank currently is leveled.

After three wc's with the above mix, the cloudiness is almost completely gone. Wonder if it's safe to do a bit less tap with the RO mix, or will that leave too few minerals in the water?
Do you have live plants?
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:15 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kov View Post
Don't think it was any of the above. Done some research, and sounds like RO doesn't provide any particles that the tests need in order to be accurate. Saw lots of similar results from others, where the RO pH was off the charts.

After putting air stone in a 5g RO to 2g tap mixture for a couple days and then testing, the pH showed as 7.8-7.9 on the API test. Not as low as I was hoping, but good for a gradual start for where the tank currently is leveled.

After three wc's with the above mix, the cloudiness is almost completely gone. Wonder if it's safe to do a bit less tap with the RO mix, or will that leave too few minerals in the water?
I would go with the mix of 5gRO to 2gal Tap that you have. If its solving the cloudy water issue and has lowered your pH a little then it's doing what you had hoped. 7.8 is a decent pH. Your fish will be fine with that. I'd rather leave it that way then have to worry about trace minerals and buffering.
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Old 05-21-2013, 02:18 PM   #38
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No plants, as of yet, but am hoping to do a slow intro of one or two shortly.

Just did a wc a few days ago, and pulled a few gallons more than I meant to... Had to refill with about a 50/50 mix of RO/tap... Slight bit of cloudiness reappeared. Hardness of the water showing its mineral content?
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