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  1. Anyone with very large, or many tanks will probably not be interested in this, aside from curiosity maybe, as I doubt this is cheaper than buying RO water. I am writing this purely in case it may help someone else who wants an easy alternative to RO water. I am housebound (have MS) and as such needed to find an easy alternative to RO water if I were to keep Taiwan bee shrimp successfully. I have red cherry shrimp in my 30L FISH tank (neon tetras, ember tetras, endler guppies) and they do well with virtually nil care (or attention since I mastered the TBs) other than dechlorinated tap water (which is needed for the fish anyway) so I won't go any further on that subject. About 3-4 years ago I set up a 15L shrimp tank and tried BRITA filtered tap water, but had no real success with that and so 2 years ago closed the tank down and stored it away assuming then that that would be it, no Taiwan Bee shrimp ever....... but after 2 years of no success, at that point it was a bit of a relief anyway to just be done and out of the way. You will see from the Tap water readings below that in theory the Parameters were pretty good but from my experiences I think you need to go back to NIL (so either RO or the zerowater) and remineralise as I guess that way you know what the tests are picking up is only what the shrimp need - this is only my belief I don't really know, but ie the tap water TDS (Ph, Gh, Kh etc) was ok but what was in the Tap water to make the TDS reading what it was, if that makes sense? I have read on many sites of people trying tap water , as I did, with good parameters but it not working so that is my theory anyway! And of course domestic water supply parameters can change and if there has been any repairs in the system that will change it etc so from my experience only way to go is take it back to NIL and remineralise....... A year ago (about a year after closing down the old shrimp tank) I came across a water filter jug from zerowater (www.zerowater.co.uk), an american product which I believe is available in Australia on Amazon, but may also be in shops out there for all I know). I thought, why not give that ago.... so I set up the old tank Oct 2017 (15L with the back part partitioned of for filter etc so probably 12L of useable aquarium) put some soil in and a few bits of Java fern and moss from the fish tank and ran it with the zerowater for a couple of months. I didn't ever get any Ammonia, Nitrite, or Nitrate reading but did see a bacteria bloom for a few days. I treated the zerowater as you would RO water, so added shrimp king mineral fluid gh+. There is a lot of info on the website about what it removes etc. Tap water PH7, Gh 5-6, Kh 3-4, TDS 174 Zerowater Ph6, Gh 0-1, kh 0-1, TDS 000 I added 6 blue bolts about 6-8 weeks later, then some red ruby and red wine a few weeks later and 3 blue steel in March 2018. All went quite well, though there were a few deaths but that may have been me as I am NO expert, I do drip acclimatise though. April 2018 Eggs started appearing (difficult to see on TB) and by the end of that month shrimplets, woohoo! Time for the new tank, dennerle 35L scapers which I got in May 2018 which I ran for a month with the zerowater, 2 cheap sponge only filters, heater, light, rock, wood, java fern, soil etc, and one sacrificial fish (don't worry he went in the fish tank afterwards as he survived). Then I transferred shrimps a dozen every other day(ish) etc. At this point I was obviously shutting down the small tank and although I had only bought a dozen shrimps originally, when I started removing stuff it turned out I had about 90 baby/juvenile shrimp in the tank, most were probably only days old (probably wasn't wise to transfer them at that stage really but I had too many anyway and wanted to get the old tank out of the way, as it was on the dining table). I THINK WE CAN SAFELY SAY THAT I HAVE CRACKED IT NOW, WITH THE HELP OF THE ZEROWATER FILTER JUG. So closed down the 15L end of June 2018. Daily now I see about 50 shrimps of half to full size in the new setup but haven't yet had any success with babies (though most of the shrimps may not yet be mature enough as I believe they need to be 6 months+), and with the hot spell (unusual for here when tank got to 30 degrees) and with me fine tuning the parameters, done now thankfully PH5.5-6, Gh 4.5, Kh 0-1, TDS 160 (something incidently I probably wouldn't have had to do if I had added the Gh+ from day 1 with the new tank). I will say that I NEVER had any Ammonia, Nitrate or Nitrite readings in the new tank either, but as with the small starter tank there were a couple of days of bacteria bloom. I expect babies will happen now I have stopped messing with the parameters, but there is always option B, set up the old small tank and use as a breeding tank, or C, buy more shrimps???? With the shock of how many babies there were hiding in the small tank, there could well be loads of babies in the new tank that are hiding anyway. I will give that a rethink if there haven't been any babies by xmas, though I have enough anyway at present. The only other things that may now affect babies (ie different than the smaller tank) is, the jets from the filters are a bit strong and circulate the water in the tank more, and I have rock (actually Geodes) in the tank??? I change 2L of water each week, mainly so I can squeeze the 2 sponges from the 2 filters and just clean the glass etc. I also use Fulvic acid, beta glucan and am just starting on bacter ae (hoping that may help babies). As with RO water, top up is pure zerowater and water change is zerowater with GH+ added. Each zerowater filter does about 100L of my water (about 6-8 months worth) but there is info on the website above that shows how many it will do on different TDS basic water etc. The filters aren't cheap at £20 each (I have bought 4 for £50 so much more reasonable, and they don't have a shelf life anyway. They are of course available readily in USA in places like Walmart as it is an American product. If anyone knows where you can get them in other countries it may be a good idea to add it to this string/topic etc to help others, as mentioned before I THINK you can get them on amazon.com.au for Australia. If anyone wants to ask any questions I will do my best to answer, but I am NO EXPERT by any measure. . Update 27 Sep 2018 I am daily seeing babies, in small numbers (all colour varieties), but from the top picture you can see there are a vast number of hiding places anyway, so there must be others. I have also seen a couple of shrimps heavy with eggs, grey, so they must be near birth............... I will keep this updated if there is anything worth reporting, or there seems to be any problems with using the zerowater filter jug as a substitute for RO water but so far (1 year now) all has been very successful. Update 7 Oct 2018 Probably be the last update - unless all goes wrong etc I am seeing lots of babies of varying sizes and patterns now (20 today), so much so that I am going to have to start culling to make room for just the ones I really want to keep, and enough room/food etc for babies! I will try taking one big one out each week when I do maintenance and see how that goes! Any questions just ask! BIG UPDATE 24 MARCH 2020 MORRISONS SUPERMARKETS HAVE STARTED SELLING ZEROWATER HERE IN THE UK! ALSO OCADO SELL ZEROWATER IN THE UK!
  2. s1l3nt

    Issues lowering ph

    Hey all, I've been racking my brain for a while trying to find a solution to my problem and bugging a few other people for their opinions and have come to the conclusion of something strange going on so here I am asking for more advice on here! Firstly some background on the problem.... This is NOT for a shrimp tank, it is for an apisto tank. I am trying to reduce the pH in one of my tanks to be between 5.5 and 6. To do this I am using RO water and drip filtering this (small handful in a cup that water drips through as it fills the drum) through peat moss which brings the water ph down to ~5.8pH , 0TDS with a kh/gh of 0. The starting pH in the tank was 7.2-7.4pH and the starting TDS was ~150, unsure on original gh/kh but tap water was used on the tank prior and that is 3kh and 3gh so shouldnt be far off. Current paramaters are 7.0-7.2pH, 20TDS, 0-1kh and 0-1gh, i will explain below how I got the paramaters to this point. The tank is a bare bottom breeding tank, and has nothing that should effect pH at all in it. Here is a list of things in the tank: - 2 x sponge filters - 5-6 x Marine pure spheres - 2 x coconut cave (originally had 1 coconut and 1 terracotta pot but have since removed the terracotta pot for testing, explained further below). - a bunch of oak leaves, loquat leaves and a few indian almond leaves. - Some java moss, java fern and some anubias. Shot of tank prior ot removing the terracotta pot: I have done 6-7 water changes in total ranging in size from 50-75% and the ph has not moved from what it is while the TDS goes down each time by roughly the same percentage. After the last water change I decided to test the gh/kh also, which came back at 0-1 (1 drop) on the api kit for both gh and kh. last water change was 4-5 days ago now, i have since pulled out the terracotta pot and put it in a tub of RO water and it has had no effect on pH but am going to test gh/kh tonight. pH now remains at 7.0-7.2 (the last water change, of 80%, had a slight effect on pH but could be the pH pen reading slightly out now), and kh/gh is still 0-1. I am considering doing another water change tonight if I get time to fill the drum, again filtering RO through peat but this time using more peat (2-3 handfuls) to get the pH even lower then usual and see if doing a 25-50% water change has any effect on the pH.... I also now need to start re-mineralising the water back to ~50 TDS to bring it back up as the TDS is currently fairly low at only 20... Doing this with Salty Shrimp GH+ at the moment (plans to swap to JayC's DIY mix after this runs out). All testing of pH and TDS is done with an electronic meter (usual cheapies from ebay) but I am confident that the issue is not with them as they measure the lower ph fine. (I've mixed water up as low as 3.8pH previously and it measures fine). Any suggestions for what I am doing wrong or what could be causing the pH to not budge? Thank you in advance for reading the long post and any help/advice offered :)
  3. Hi all, I recently won the FSA RO unit through one of the competitions here on our forum and have promised to do a short write up/review of the product :) However, there is a bit of a delay as I had a bad start to the year health wise so have not felt like doing anything really haha. Feeling mostly better now so here is my short review of a fantastic product! :) Here is a link to the exact model I got from FSA: https://www.filtersystemsaustralia.com/store/index.php/reverse-osmosis-water-filter/aquarium-systems/aquarium-alkaline-drinking-water-combo-r-o-filter-system-di-resin-1-70dialk.html Firstly, I opted to go with the GT1-70DIALK which is the normal aquarium RO filter system but comes with an included attachment for drinking water because my family doesn't like the taste of the tap water so I figured two birds with one stone! No regrets so far. I'll start with the drinking water section, basically the water tastes much "fresher" than the tap water. PH comes out at 7 with a TDS of about 50 from memory (been a while since i set it up and tested, sorry), compared to 7.4ph and 80-100 TDS from the tap. I didn't do any further tests beyond this, and even those were just for fun really... Next up, the thing you actually care about! :D The aquarium RO section! My water to begin with is pretty good, however I wanted to have the ability to adjust pH easily and control TDS in different tanks. i.e. ~100-150TDS in my shrimp tanks, ~50-100 TDS in Dwarf Cichlid tanks, and so on. I will be doing this using Salty Shrimp GH+ minerals for now, but I do plan to use JayC's DIY re-mineralisation mix which he has posted up for us on the forum here. TDS coming out of the RO unit is always 0, with a ph of 7-7.2, gh/kh of 0 so easy to adjust up/down, etc. Airating the drum for a few hours brings the ph down to low 6, and if i drip the water through a handful of peat in a cup I can get the ph down to 5.8 while it fills up while the TDS remains < 5 with gh/kh of 0. I use the straight RO for the shrimp, and peat filtered for apistos. Both are remineralised to desired TDS using Salty Shrimp GH+. The FSA unit is quite easy to set up, and is literally plug and play which is fantastic as I was worried about set up especially since I live in a rental property so was not keen on messing with plumbing and so on. It comes with several attachments to connect to a tap, laundry tap, outdoor tap, etc. I keep mine in the laundry as this is where my breeding rack is. It was quite easy to set up, I had to use one of the adapters to get it to connect to my faucet in the laundry properly but this was not a problem. NOTE: There is a small bag which comes with an o ring or two (cant remember exactly) which needs to be inserted into the adapter prior to connecting to the tap. I did not see this initially and had water leaking through the connection, easy fix and my fault entirely for rushing setup (I was keen to get it going!). My tap in the laundry has a temp of approx 24 degrees most of the time (no hot water line in there) and I get approx 10L of good RO water per hour with a waste ratio of approx 1:1 or so last time i measured it (first 2-3 uses only). At the moment i just let the waste water run down the sink but I plan to hook it up to the washing machine or something eventually so it isn't wasting so much water. Haven't had the time/ability to work this out yet though. It is very easy to use and overall a great quality product, it is stable on its "feet" and so on. It sits on my washing machine which would move a fair bit when on, but it hasn't budged yet haha. (knock on wood i dont jynx myself now!). The taps in the above photo are set to release aquarium water but not drinking water, you cannot have both on at the same time (i assume this would cause issues as stated in the info booklet). When the blue tap is pointing in the direction of the tubing then that is the one that will release water. NOTE: One more thing that took me a bit of time and some questioning (and youtube watching) was getting the grey plug off... There is a small circle which you must press down with one finger (finger nail really) and then pull the plug out. It is quite easy once you know how to do it, before that was not quite easy to figure out having not used RO unit before! haha. I'll get a few photos of the process if anyone needs it! Also don't forget to let all the water run out of the tubing before putting the plug back in to prevent bacteria build up in the tubing. I have only one recommendation for FSA which is to add a little more info on the specs, etc on the website. At the moment it seems to be fairly generalised info between the different RO units which made it hard to figure out the exact details of the model, etc. Apart from that the unit is fantastic and I would highly recommend it to anyone who wants one. They are well priced and do a great job. Thanks for reading and I hope you find the information useful! Sorry about the lack of photos but that really shows how easy it is to set up and use! @NoGi - Feel free to pass on my review link to the guys over at FSA :)
  4. paudie

    RO water question

    Hi everyone This is my first post just a question about RO units. I bought a 3 stage 50GPD unit for making water for my tanks have not see it up yet I ordered different fitting to connect to the water supply and better fittings for the unit itself I also got an extra filter housing. I was thinking of having an extra carbon filter but not sire if I should be using just RO water or RO/DI. I have only neos at the moment but I don't trust my tap water and want to get into fancier shrimp in the future once I get another rack up and running. Thanks for any help in advance Paudie
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