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Re: [AGA Member] CO2 efficiency in hard water

These seem pretty straightforward questins, so I'll take a
turn at them:

> Questions:
> 1. Does a CO2 system is actually needed in hard water,
> assuming water is
> replaced every 2 weeks and water parameters will not
> really change. PH is
> rather stable.

IN a planted tank the CO2 is a nutrient for the plants,
it's presence has little to do with water hardness.

> 2. Should I target to higher levels of CO2? (well ph will
> slightly drop and
> my crypts will melt...)

23 ppm should be a nice level of CO2.

> 3. Does any of the other parameters in hard water can
> effect the CO2
> dissolved levels ?

NO, for an aquatic gardener's intents and purpose no
hardness or carbonate parameters affect the amount of CO2
in the water. What they affect is the pH which can throw
off the reading onthe CO2/KH/pH table. 

> 4. In hard water levels I know that some plants will have
> trouble processing
> the Macro and Micro nutritients.

Question is?

> 5. FE levels are 0 can there be a process which the FE
> will bind itself to
> other thing rather than to plants?

It's pretty hard for FE not to be cound to something --
which is why chelators (binders) are used in FE supplements
-- because they bind it before other stuff does, but the
plants can still get it from the chelator.

Does your test only test for free FE? You probably want a
test kit that can measure accurately with a range that
maxes out about about 1 ppm. If the plants are not showing
iron deficiency symptoms, forget about the iron levels and
think nice thoughts instead, the iron is fine.

> 6. Is it correct to link between CO2 levels and hard
> water or should I look
> for a new direction?

Only a small percentage of CO2 in the water forms carbonic
acid so only a very small amount can react with carbonates.
The more carbonate, the more CO2 reacting with the
carbonate--to that extent carbonate levels can affect CO2
levels. *However* in the overall picture, that effect is
negligible. CO2 level is essentially a matter of how much
you pump into the water, how fast the water is shedding the
gas, and water temp, which affects how much the water will


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