Should I dose nitrate/PO4?

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They are both listed as 99% pure. Why not TSP?
Did you read the reviews on the NO3.?

TSP is horrible for a tank. I’ve dosed it several times and will never dose that into another system again. It’s not bioavailable to the coral’s and a cleaner type effect starts to manifest in the system.
 

GarrettT

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Did you read the reviews on the NO3.?

TSP is horrible for a tank. I’ve dosed it several times and will never dose that into another system again. It’s not bioavailable to the coral’s and a cleaner type effect starts to manifest in the system.
Yes. I only saw 2 negative reviews, but they didn’t offer anything of value that would make me question the product.

My Acroporas are responding well to it and have been for quite sometime now. What were you noticing exactly? Cleaner type effect?

Edit: I’ve been using it for about 6 months now and have been adding 0.15 to 2ppm in phosphate per day. Surprisingly, I’m still having to add it, but now it’s closer to 0.08ppm per day.
 
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He had a bad experience with it, but I strongly disagree that there is anything different or undesirable about it if it is food grade or otherwise pure enough.
Randy for sure I observed a cleaner type effect manifest in the tank. I literally watched my Acro’s almost fade completely away until I switched. I did loose a Vivid Confetti and Smurfette Millipora, because they could not easily uptake the TSP. I was dosing up to 0.13 ppm of TSP before I switched. The corals should have been able to uptake some of that PO4 much easier and stay alive at minimal.


To anybody thinking of dosing PO4:

Although the differences may be minimal, they do differ. You can check out their uses. I recommend the reefer to look closely at the product, and its uses before he makes a decision on which to dose. If they want to dose TSP it’s their choice. I’ve been there and done that for the last several years and there’s definitely better options out there.


Let’s compare TSP to a few others and see what they’re used for.


SODIUM PHOSPHATE MONOBASIC

Food Additive / Thickener / Emulsifier / Water Treatment / Magnesium Detection.


POTASSIUM PHOSPHATE DIBASIC

Fertilizer / Food Additive / Buffering Agent / Source of Phosphorus and Potassium / Mineral Supplements / Starter Cultures.

TSP:

Cleaning Agent / Degreaser / Soldering Flux / Food Additive / Painting Preparation (De-Glosser) / Ceramic Glazes / Electroplating Solutions.
 
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Tidal Gardens

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Yes. I only saw 2 negative reviews, but they didn’t offer anything of value that would make me question the product.

My Acroporas are responding well to it and have been for quite sometime now. What were you noticing exactly? Cleaner type effect?

My current system has been perfect for testing different PO4 supplements as the rock has been binding the PO4 now for 7 months. By cleaner type effect I mean there was a complete lack of green algae or algae dusting on the rock or on the glass. The only thing the TSP added was dark brown (almost black algae) on the rock. I also observed blotchy spots where I had brown algae that I’ve never seen before. The corals were not able to uptake it well at all. The PO4 would not come up and no matter how much I dosed I couldn’t get the tank to saturate. I have this all documented extremely well. As soon as I switched it was a completely different story. The tank turned around. Corals colored up very rapidly.


Here’s a pic from the TSP:

DA82A041-439E-40EC-BEB5-794F32BA4935.jpeg
 

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I’ve been using it for about 6 months now and have been adding 0.15 to 2ppm in phosphate per day. Surprisingly, I’m still having to add it, but now it’s closer to 0.08ppm per day.

Exactly what I experienced. 0.2 ppm is a ton of PO4.
 

GarrettT

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Exactly what I experienced. 0.2 ppm is a ton of PO4.
Yes 0.2ppm (2ppm was a typo). It is a ton, I know. Surprising nonetheless. I wonder if something was wrong with your bottle. I’ll use Monobasic going forward, but will say TSP hasn’t given me any problems. My acros are very colorful, now growth? Well I’m working on that lol
 

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Yes 0.2ppm (2ppm was a typo). It is a ton, I know. Surprising nonetheless. I wonder if something was wrong with your bottle. I’ll use Monobasic going forward, but will say TSP hasn’t given me any problems.
No, nothing wrong with it. I have like 3-4 bottles here at the house, and mixed it more than once.

I think the Monobasic would be a better choice although I haven’t tested it yet. I do have a bottle ready to test and it’s on my list:

9649D8EF-0EC5-4ACB-8A0D-B782E5229B80.jpeg


If you want to see what I mean by not bioavailable, pick up one bottle of Phosphorus -N. ($20) Although not cost effective ATM (for me) and I don’t recommend using it until the potency is increased… it is some magic juice compared to any PO4 product I’ve ever dosed. If you have a starving tank, it will be a life saver for sure.

 

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For the most part. 15% KP Aquatics 85% reef saver

So basically a dry rock tank. I keep wondering when my system will stop binding the PO4. I’ve always been on the flip side with tanks leeching PO4. This tank has been a crazy nightmare from the third week.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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Did you read the reviews on the NO3.?

TSP is horrible for a tank. I’ve dosed it several times and will never dose that into another system again. It’s not bioavailable to the coral’s and a cleaner type effect starts to manifest in the system.

That is just totally and absolutely untrue as a general statement.
Phosphate is identical once dissolved.

You experience, if not coincidence, can ONLY be from a purity issue, not a chemical form issue.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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, but will say TSP hasn’t given me any problems.

Of course that is the case. If it is equally pure, and dose appropriately, it will not be any different than monobasic or dibasic sodium phosphate.
 
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So basically a dry rock tank. I keep wondering when my system will stop binding the PO4. I’ve always been on the flip side with tanks leeching PO4. This tank has been a crazy nightmare from the third week.
I fully understand. Really wish I would have waited to reach equilibrium before adding corals. This way I could have just elevated po4 to a much higher level and then just waited for it to drop rather than having to test and dose multiple times a day to keep it within range.
 

KStatefan

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Of course that is the case. If it is equally pure, and dose appropriately, it will not be any different than monobasic or dibasic sodium phosphate.

No, nothing wrong with it. I have like 3-4 bottles here at the house, and mixed it more than once.

I think the Monobasic would be a better choice although I haven’t tested it yet. I do have a bottle ready to test and it’s on my list:

9649D8EF-0EC5-4ACB-8A0D-B782E5229B80.jpeg


If you want to see what I mean by not bioavailable, pick up one bottle of Phosphorus -N. ($20) Although not cost effective ATM (for me) and I don’t recommend using it until the potency is increased… it is some magic juice compared to any PO4 product I’ve ever dosed. If you have a starving tank, it will be a life saver for sure.


What makes Monobasic a better option then dibasic? Really trying to understad the differences between these methods of dosing phosphate.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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What makes Monobasic a better option then dibasic? Really trying to understad the differences between these methods of dosing phosphate.

I'll give the chemical difference. It is super minor.

NaH2PO4
Na2HPO4
Na3PO4

Dissolve them in DI water and the only things present are:

Na+
H2PO4-
HPO4--
PO4---
(and some OH- and H+)

The last three are all forms of phosphate naturally present in seawater, and the exact ratio of all three depends ONLY on pH, with nothing whatsoever to do with where they came from.

Here's a link to a graph:




Thus, to get to these ratios from the starting materials, there is a very small impact on pH and alk.

Na3PO4 raises pH and alk a little. Na2HPO4 is pretty neutral to pH and alk. NaH2PO4 has a tiny pH and alk lowering effect.
 
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Of course that is the case. If it is equally pure, and dose appropriately, it will not be any different than monobasic or dibasic sodium phosphate.
Randy sometimes logic doesn’t match reality for whatever reason. Have you dosed TSP in your own system and compared to other PO4 products?
 

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That is just totally and absolutely untrue as a general statement.
Phosphate is identical once dissolved.

You experience, if not coincidence, can ONLY be from a purity issue, not a chemical form issue.
I highly doubt that Randy. You’re a Chemist and I have much respect for you,
but with all due respect, what you’re saying doesn’t not line up with the effects I’ve seen in my own tank. I’ve tested multiple PO4 products on the market and I find TSP to be the absolute worst of all. I have the data that proves it. I’m not the only reefer that has experienced this either.
 

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I fully understand. Really wish I would have waited to reach equilibrium before adding corals. This way I could have just elevated po4 to a much higher level and then just waited for it to drop rather than having to test and dose multiple times a day to keep it within range.
My thoughts exactly, but my tank tricked me. It was doing fine and then boom!
 
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What makes Monobasic a better option then dibasic? Really trying to understad the differences between these methods of dosing phosphate.
I don’t know that it is, but I do know TSP is horrible for my tank and corals. That’s a fact. When I stopped it and transitioned to another product it was like somebody flipped a light switch. Within a week there was a marked difference in color, water clarity, algae growth, and the PO4 level start to come up.

Currently I’m testing Potassium Phosphate Dibasic and seeing much better effect vs TSP. However, I never want to elevate the Potassium level if I can help it, but will be looking at the next ICP to see how much it’s elevated if any at all. If it’s minimal I can deal with that. If it’s a lot, I’ll change over to Sodium Phosphate Monobasic and start testing that one.
 

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