Since I am trying to upgrade all things as I am having ebbs and flows of tail fraying, I thought I would ask a specific question: I have mentioned that my TDS is 100 because I have remineralised my RO with Kent RO Right to that level. I raised it to that level, with a ph somewhere below 6 to above 5, (test solution is not at all precise and ph meters never work very long at low TDS) because I wanted to grow plants in the tank (but don't)and Mike T told me about a year ago that he had at least some of his at a tds 100.

Is that TDS maybe too high and could contribute to fin damage. Obviously, I can put 1/2 the RO Right in and get a tds of 50.
Also I am going to lower the ph a bit....that is to say: take the API Wide range kit color to orangey from bright yellow. BTW these 12 altums entered the country as small quarter size last they are getting bigger,eat like hogs and must produce of quite a bit of non visible waste ( and tons of visible waste).
Hope you have a comment
regards Al

Re: tds

I'm at a loss as to what might be contributing to the fin fray. The fin extensions definitely seem to grow better at a lower tds and pH but even in hard alkaline water the fins should be whole. If its just the fish I would bring the tds down to 50. If you have plants or are wanting to plant the tank then I understand your dilemma. I really do not think it is the tds that's causing your problem. Have you considered a light PP treatment? Is the tank bare bottomed? Any other inhabitants? What are your nitrates at? Water change schedule?

Re: tds

HI Thanks for replying

Tanks is a 120 with about 30 gallons of water in a sump (which could be the problem as I have trouble with it at water changes).Almost bare bottom with a bit of pool filter can see the bottom glass quite a bit. 50% water change every two day..maybe go to 30% daily?. Water is from preheated ,premixed plastic 110 gallon industrial storage tank. RO membrane and filters are new.
Because I believe that the cheaper water test kits do not work well at low ph I have Eos ammonia and nitrite kits as well as API ammonia, nitrite and nitrate kits. Though I could get an Eos nitrate kit (just in case), with all of the test kits I currently have I get no detectible readings of anything ever... in that tank. I other tanks ( not altums)I will detect nitrate.

Thanks for your thoughts

Re: tds

Maybe the problem is in your storage tank? What do you do to keep it sterile? With that kind of water change schedule I can't believe that your nitrates are ever over 5ppm. Have you tried Boyd vita Chem? Have you thought about a light potassium permanganate treatment?

Re: tds

To answer your questions:

1.The storage tanks are two separate side by side vertically oriented polypropelene industrial storage tanks.They are about 4 feet in diameter and 6.5 feet high. They are plumbed out at the bottom,into a plenum , and out to any tank I want through a potable water hose pumped by an Iwaki wmd40.The left hand one is only for the altums, gets only RO into it from the same RO unit. The right hand one has had well water in it though not for some gets RO from a different RO unit. That is for the discus. I do not keep them sterile, don't exactly know how to. They are not open for hand cleaning but I do bring my biggish gas pressure washer into the basement from time to time and blast away, quite effectively through a circular man hole (covered) on the top. THe altum one is always very clean looking though it seems to need a blast now and I will do it this weekend. The discus storage tank has iron stains from when it held well water and just will not come really clean.

BTW this water comes from my personal well, through a large iron remover ( which is basically a pressurized activated carbon tank),through a salt replacement water softener household unit and to the RO units which take out the salt. The prefilters on the RO units are staying clean and not showing iron contamination though,in the past, I have seen lots of iron stain on them. I just have to assume that after the ROs the water is good for use.

I have tried to keep various fish in straight filtered well water before the ROs....most are ok ( TDS 350 and ph8.2). The discus, however, hate it and will not tolerate it at all. They swim around ,about 10 shades darker in color, looking very disgruntled
regards Al

Re: tds

I forgot to answer a couple of questions:
I have never tried the Boyd product.Where do you suggest I place the sump in a bag or maybe in the Ehiem Pro that is on the tank>
Potassium permanganate treatment: My experience with PP treatments in general is that a heavy treatment as JIm Quarles once recommended works extremely well on discus. I'd bet it would kill wild angels at that dosage and Quarles said his draconian treatment was too tough for angels. AS far as a light one is concerned,I never seem to get it to where I consider it heavy enough to I did a light treatment and it had no effect at all. I would do a PP treatment but I would be slow to do it ubnless I knew new information.
Thanks Al