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Re: DI again -uhg!

> hello...
> my LFS has all but insisted i use my "tap water purifier" DI unit to do water
> changes because they say there is Silica (and a bit Phosphorous) in the tap
> water and this will cause an algae bloom. Anyone have an opinion on silica as
> it effect algae growth?
> alos, if i use the DI water, which is the best "bottled mineral" solution to
> add the necessary minerals back into the water for the plants and fish?
> -john guild

These things are not good for a salt reef set up. **Most LFS** are salt
folks and know little about plants. But for the FW plant set up these two
are not a problem except for the misinformed as this LFS seems to be. "All
but insisting" part worries me. I'd get my advice on plants elsewhere. They
are not speaking from experience. Silicate/silica actually can cause some
slight outbreak of diatoms(brown algae in the very beginning) but this is
very easily controlled by otto cats(they love this stuff). I've had many
tanks that never got this at all even in the start up phase. There's loads
of Silicate in our water. So for the cost of the DI unit you can have a much
longer lasting premanent control for any suspected silica problems. This
tends to only happen in the start up of planted tanked, not in older tanks.
You don't need to have DI for that. P has been beaten to death on this list
lately and every so often it happens again in cycles on the APD. Plants will
use P up if you give them what they want. CO2, light and nutrients. P
limited is fine- not P absent. There's a big difference.
Test your tap water and get a water report from the local supplier of tap.
Then tell folks what these are here on the APD and they will let you know if
the LFS is misinformed or not.
Si is not an algae causing nutrient in the long term. Small amounts of P are
not as well if you have good CO2 and lighting etc. A "small amount" sounds
like it is not much and would actually help your tank more than hurt it. Ask
your water supplier and tell us.
Tom Barr