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PostPosted: Jun 5th, '19, 09:21 
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Okay so I did 4 'trite tests with the API.

Distilled: 0
Tap: 0
Filtered tap: >=5
Treated filtered tap: 2-5

This is my drinking water filter: https://www.aquasana.com/drinking-water ... e-max-flow
I've been using that with RO for water changes. It's rated to remove chloramines, which is why I used it. Last time I did treat it however.

Did filtered tap with Sera: 1 ppm

Tank water with Sera shows >=5


I have samples sitting on the counter for testing in 24 hours.


I’m really glad you suggested that. I would spent a lifetime doing water changes, and not realizing the problem was the replacement water!


Last edited by montecarlo on Jun 5th, '19, 10:30, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Jun 5th, '19, 09:24 
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I don't want to jump to conclusions, but three facts are standing out at me right now, and they don't necessarily point in the same direction:

Tank water by Sera testing higher than filtered tap.
Fish not showing signs of sickness
Filtered water clearly interefering with both API and Sera tests, though API more.


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PostPosted: Jun 5th, '19, 21:50 
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I just called the manufacturer of my undersink filter. They stated in the ion exchange, it is only potassium that gets released. Edit: I asked them to put in a support ticket to escalate to their brainy scientists. The only thing they suggested was that the third party I got the replacement filter from may have used a counterfeit.


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PostPosted: Jun 6th, '19, 11:55 
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Myself, I would stop using filtered water, it's not desirable in aquaponics. You want some carbonate hardness and other elements that tap water usually brings with it.

If Chloramines are your primary concern and reason for filtering the water, then I would suggest a water ageing tank, which is basically a large open topped drum/s etc, which can hold at least 1/3 the water volume of your main system. Ideally, everyone with an AP system, even established systems, should have one.

Put a small water pump in the bottom of the drum, pumping up to a spray bar just above the max water level, so it basically circulates and vigorously aerates the water. The pump doesn't need to be huge, a little 500L/hr, 7-8 watt pump is fine in a 200L blue drum for example, or even in a 2x 200L drum set-up. I've built them comprising 2x 200L drums side-by-side, linked at the bottom, with the pump in one, pumping to a spray bar in the other. You get a 400L aged water reserve from just a little 7 watt water pump.

With good aeration and exposure to sunlight/UV, any chloramines will have disassociated within a couple of days and the chlorine will have gassed off. It doesn't take anywhere near as long as many people quote on forums etc, and I've been told that straight from the mouths of two separate, very experienced hydroponic chemists, one who manufactures and sells a chloramine based product.

After a couple of days you'll be left with some Ammonia, which is good for cycling your system, as long as it doesn't get above 7ppm. Established systems will very quickly take care of any small additions of Ammonia from a water top-up, just be sure to do regular top-ups of small amounts, ie: No more than 10%

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PostPosted: Jun 7th, '19, 07:00 
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I think I’m ready to close the book on this chapter. I’m feeding the fish. They seem happy. Nitrite levels, to the extent I can trust the tests, are falling rapidly. I have two more issues I will post separate threads on and some follow up questions here, but the main issue seems solved.


THANK YOU!!!


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PostPosted: Jun 7th, '19, 07:19 
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Mr. Damage

Yes chloramines are of primary concern. I like the aging tank idea and will get it setup on one of the coming weekends.

Municipal water is very hard, general and carbonate. Indiana has a lot of limestone. My water filter is “supposed” to maintain the nice minerals, but I can see them getting in the crossfire of the potassium ion exchanger.

Would using a catalytic and activated carbon filter be okay for chloramine removal, or do I still risk losing my good minerals?


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PostPosted: Jun 7th, '19, 10:54 
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I wouldn't pre-filter the water at all, it's just more expense and complexity that isn't needed. Here in Perth we're on a coastal limestone plain and our scheme water is also hard, but it works well without pre-filtering. There are many thousands of systems in Perth, with the overwhelming majority using scheme water.

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PostPosted: Jun 16th, '19, 21:20 
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montecarlo wrote:
Okay so I did 4 'trite tests with the API.

Distilled: 0
Tap: 0
Filtered tap: >=5
Treated filtered tap: 2-5

This is my drinking water filter: https://www.aquasana.com/drinking-water ... e-max-flow
I've been using that with RO for water changes. It's rated to remove chloramines, which is why I used it. Last time I did treat it however.

Did filtered tap with Sera: 1 ppm

Tank water with Sera shows >=5


I have samples sitting on the counter for testing in 24 hours.


I’m really glad you suggested that. I would spent a lifetime doing water changes, and not realizing the problem was the replacement water!


So I left the filtered samples on the counter for 11 days and just tested them. They both tested high for ‘trites. The water in the system is fine now, so whatever removed... whatever caused the high readings... must have been a biological process inside the system


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PostPosted: Jun 21st, '19, 07:48 
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In case anyone is curious...

I got replacement filters for my undersink unit directly from the manufacturer instead of the third party Amazon seller. The manufacturer had said that sometimes those are counterfeits.

The replacement filters tested 0 for nitrites.

I hate to think about what I was drinking...


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