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Old 07-31-2007, 05:08 PM   #1
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Aquael canister filter with UV sterilizer built in

Hope someone can give me some advise. I have a 37 gallon tank. A satellite lighting system with 2 dual bulbs. Each dual is a 6500/10000 with 65 watts - so I have a total of 130 watts.
I just purchased a canister filter - an Aquael 250 plus with UV sterilizer.
I have a planted tank with a few angels, tetras, polka dot cats.

I have placed fert tabs in the gravel substrate. And am now using Flourish Excel and Flourish trace. I hadn't fertilized and I am now growing algae on some of the plant leaves and a little on the glass.

This is really a new tank set up as I had to break it down to move here - it was down a week.
My question......

The UV sterilizer while killing algae will also kill all bacteria both bad and GOOD? Is that right? How would it cycle correctly? Do you have to wait for the filter media to grow the bacteria as all that would be in the tank would be would be killed by the UV?? How often do you use the UV? ALL the time, once a week?

I have been reading but can't find answers to my specific questions.
My ammonia and nitrate are 0
pH is 7.0
I have a Hydor CO2 tank with turbo diffuser
GH 5
medium water

Also, Is there anything else I can do to halt the algae at this level - before it gets crazy?

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Old 07-31-2007, 07:25 PM   #2
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I responded to your other post too -- you have high light levels! For ferts, you need nitrate, potassium, and phosphate. Flourish Excel is a good fertilizer but you'll go through it quickly at that size tank. Pressurized CO2 would be better. Your nitrate is 0 - that is going to cause algae to form. Your plants are using it up faster than the fish can produce it, so you'll have to supplement it.

You can consider a lower lighting level -- many plants will grow well at roughly 2-2.5 WPG. Others have put together very nice low-light tanks of around 1.5-2 WPG.

I have never used a UV sterilizer but I would not run it until your tank is cycled. I remember the instructions on the bag of Bio-Spira saying that you should turn off UV sterilizers. While the bacteria is free-floating in the water (as it would be after adding Bio-Spira) the UV sterilizer could kill it. You may not be using Bio-Spira, but until the bacteria gets a good hold in your filter media, I would not run the sterilizer. I don't know what the frequency is for using it after cycling, but I imagine it would be all the time.

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Old 07-31-2007, 07:40 PM   #3
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Hi...thanks for the response. My fault - I meant the nitrite is at 0. I don't know what my nitrate level is but I have a feeling I will be back at the LFS for a test kit in my near future. I do have a CO2 system with the small tank. I run it with a KH of 5 and ph at 7.0. Comes out of our tap here at almost 8. So I think the CO2 is good. Yeah I haven't heard any other comments about how and when to use the UV. I was looking at old posts and those were mainly discussing the types to buy. I do have Seachem Flourish and for trace I got Plant Fuel by Florida Aqua Farms. I am hoping these supplements will show signs of balancing the tank shortly...I think you are very right that I am in need of supplements.
thanks again for your thoughts. Now I just need to find out about that darn UV light...lol
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canister, canister filter, filter, uv sterilizer

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