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Okay..... I've gotta ask it!
What is the red line, hose looking thing going down and through the rocks in there? :-?
 

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Oh.... fill water? :?
Wow, pure Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtered water to fill the tank with?!!
Goodness! :eek:
I've used RO as a source of makeup/evaporation replacement water. NOT the prime source! And yes, those riverine biotope 'Black Water' type aquarium folks are all about using RO water. But, whew... African Cichlids? You're gonna be using some serious additives to buff up the PH and General Hardness of pure RO water. And for a relatively smaller tank, with a heavy stocking load of fish?
I see a lot of Water Changes ahead, to dilute that Nitrate buildup.
Is your tap water quality so bad locally (Nitrates, etc...), that you have to utilize a home-built RO system to ensure the water is safe to use for your freshwater tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Auballagh said:
Oh.... fill water? :?
Wow, pure Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtered water to fill the tank with?!!
Goodness! :eek:
I've used RO as a source of makeup/evaporation replacement water. NOT the prime source! And yes, those riverine biotope 'Black Water' type aquarium folks are all about using RO water. But, whew... African Cichlids? You're gonna be using some serious additives to buff up the PH and General Hardness of pure RO water. And for a relatively smaller tank, with a heavy stocking load of fish?
I see a lot of Water Changes ahead, to dilute that Nitrate buildup.
Is your tap water quality so bad locally (Nitrates, etc...), that you have to utilize a home-built RO system to ensure the water is safe to use for your freshwater tank?
Now you have me worried :eek:

As I have been keeping Marines for so long the RO was the normal way to go then going to add Seachem Cichlid Lake Salt then add a Buffer to adjust the PH and KH

Is this approach wrong ?
 

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Oh no, you're not exactly wrong with this!
But with the RO, you might be just over-working it a bit. One of the beautiful things with fresh water aquariums is the almost UNLIMITED SUPPLY of (cheap!) water the keeper has available to keep water quality high in the tank. Because of that, using dechloramined stuff right outta the tap is typically the way most of us go.
Minor adjustments to water chemistry are made that way to the tap water. That is, to adjust a naturally soft water source? A bit of Epsom salt could be added to boost up general hardness, plus maybe a touch of baking soda to drive up the PH a little. And usually, that's about it. And, with a lot of fish in a smaller aquarium? You may be pushing some serious amounts of water in water changes to flush out and dilute Nitrate buildup in the aquarium.
So, keeping things as simple as possible for that work, will make it easier to do, and much more sustainable in the long run.
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However you DO want to test your tap water. It's important to know what you are starting with. The only real problem that people sometimes face after testing, is when Nitrates are found in their tap water. That makes it tougher to keep them diluted out of the aquarium and kept at 20-30 PPM levels, if there are Nitrates already present in the water! In those unique cases, providing RO water to the aquarium is sometimes the only real way you can beat a problem like that.....
Does that help?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Auballagh said:
Oh no, you're not exactly wrong with this!
But with the RO, you might be just over-working it a bit. One of the beautiful things with fresh water aquariums is the almost UNLIMITED SUPPLY of (cheap!) water the keeper has available to keep water quality high in the tank. Because of that, using dechloramined stuff right outta the tap is typically the way most of us go.
Minor adjustments to water chemistry are made that way to the tap water. That is, to adjust a naturally soft water source? A bit of Epsom salt could be added to boost up general hardness, plus maybe a touch of baking soda to drive up the PH a little. And usually, that's about it. And, with a lot of fish in a smaller aquarium? You may be pushing some serious amounts of water in water changes to flush out and dilute Nitrate buildup in the aquarium.
So, keeping things as simple as possible for that work, will make it easier to do, and much more sustainable in the long run.
-
However you DO want to test your tap water. It's important to know what you are starting with. The only real problem that people sometimes face after testing, is when Nitrates are found in their tap water. That makes it tougher to keep them diluted out of the aquarium and kept at 20-30 PPM levels, if there are Nitrates already present in the water! In those unique cases, providing RO water to the aquarium is sometimes the only real way you can beat a problem like that.....
Does that help?
This is all because I have my Marine Head on always paranoid about using tap water :roll: I feel from now on it is tap water plus chloride remover

My problem now is cloudy water even after cleaning all the gravel first I added some lumps of Filter floss in the sump weirs over night and its cleared 50%

Now I believe its time to add a Bio starter for the sump
 

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What is bio starter? I would skip bottled products and cycle with ammonia. There is an article about this in the Cichlid-forum Library.
 

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Oh yeah... and yes, the bio starter thing is something that does sort of work. But, you really don't need it! I mean, using that stuff ($$$) may help to shorten the time it takes a bit (One or two days?), in initially cycling/establishing the filtration for your aquarium. But, honestly the beneficial bacteria that live naturally in the wild are gonna do just fine for you. Just give 'em some time and the help they will need in growing out the numbers required, to safely stock your tank with fish. Here's how the 'magic' works,

https://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/ ... _cycle.php

It really only requires some good quality water test kits, ammonia, some work in performing more frequent water changes, and a nice bit of patience in testing, adding ammonia, testing, water changes. Rinse & repeat again and again, until your water test kit numbers confirm your beneficial bacteria colony is up to scratch in your filtration. :)
 

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Before you start using tap water test it for ammonia and nitrates. Many cities use chloramine, like mine, and actually add like 1ppm ammonia to the water. It makes keeping sensitive fish difficult without a water filter.
 
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