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Old 04-07-2013, 11:39 AM   #41 
dude
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I think your first priority is to get a heater and cheap electric/socket/plug timer switch so you can turn the light off at night and some time during the day. Others might disagree with me but in regards to the common, easy to keep plants I mentioned and the moss ball you were considering I think they will do fine for a while even with a basic light source. Spooky Tooth mentioned Eldodea which I agree would be good and very cheap plant to use and it will grow in almost any tank conditions with any light available. It generally just floats at the top too so you don't have to plant it and it doesn't get in the way of cleaning your sand.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:39 AM   #42 
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Cool!! Ok eldodea added to my list!!!
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:22 PM   #43 
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Just went to petsmart, and got three live plants, a moss ball, and a heater. They didn't have the plant you recommended, and I must mention, that I had tin foil covering the filter cartridge, and after 4-5 days, it was this - close to being completely rid of the algae and good bacteria has begun to grow back now.
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:23 PM   #44 
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And I also got a water test kit. I was on. A budget, so I got the test strips instead.
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:30 PM   #45 
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The test strips are not as accurate as the liquid. What kind of plants did you get
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:18 AM   #46 
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The test strips are better than nothing and I use them occasionally when I very quickly want to see at a glance what is going on in a tank. Well done for getting something even though you are on a budget, many people wouldn't bother at all. What were the readings?
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:07 AM   #47 
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All seemed fine, the ph was a bit high, but surprisingly enough the nitrate levels were normal.... I'm not sure if it's inaccurate, or it really is right but there seemed to be nothing wrong. For the plants I got a tropical fern, water wisteria, and Amazon sword. They all look fine, but leave it to petsmart to go and kill half of each plant...
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:50 AM   #48 
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You say nitrates are normal, what was the reading? I have heard 40ppm is OK but I think that's high. 20ppm is OK and ideal is less than 15ppm. In nature nitrates would be close to 0 and any rises would generally be temporary. If your tap water is showing anything above 15ppm then that will affect things to a certain degree.
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:27 PM   #49 
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Ok, there are two nitrate levels. The first is between 20 and 40, and the description says (NO3). The second one is at 0.5 and says (NO2)- I don't know if the numbers help or not, but that's all it says.
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:35 PM   #50 
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NO2 is nitrItes, NO3 is nitrAtes. NitrItes can be deadly in any amount but .5 is high. The water should be changed if you see .25 nitrItes immediately.

Edit: that's also a little high for nitrates. You want to keep those under 20 ideally.

Last edited by AyalaCookiejar; 04-09-2013 at 06:38 PM.
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