Dosing Vodka to remove Nitrates & Phosphates

Many people have heard by now of marine aquarium keepers using Vodka to control nitrates. The idea of using an organic carbon source to feed bacteria that will reduce nutrients has  gained popularity as more poeople are trying this and using the internet to adveritse their findings.

Dosing vodka to bring down Nitrates and Phosphates and will give you the advantage of more colourful coral and clearer water.

In my own experimental trials I have used 95% Vodka, 5% White Vinegar and 1 teapsoon of Sugar in a container. I would mix this together and leave it in a sealed container for a few days and shake it every now and again.

Why use Vodka, well Vodka is much purer thank other alchol types such as Whiskey, Gin or Brandy. Adding Vodka feeds bacteria that reduces nitrate and phosphate molecules (NO3 and PO4). Reducing phosphates will also give you enhanced calcification and this will aid in the growth of corals. One of the biggest advantages in lowering Nitrate (NO3) and Phospahte (PO4) will be the reduction in nuisance algae such as bubble algae and hair algae.

The addition of Vodka increases bacterial biomass and this is added to fast you can create a white bacteria bloom in your aquarium. It is important to get the vodka dosing addition at the correct level to aid in bacterial growth at a controlable level. This increased bacteria will create your protein skimmer to go mad and removal of the bacteria will be removing the NO3 and PO4 and over time complete removal of all NO3 and PO4 if you dose correctly.

On my Trigon 350 I started off dosing my Vodka mix solution in this pattern:-

Day 1,2,3,4,5 = 0.1ml

Day 6,7,8,9,10 = 0.2ml

Day 11,12,13,14,15 = 0.4ml

Day 16,17,18,19,20 = 0.8ml

Day 21,22,23,24,25 = 0.16ml

Day 26,27,28,29,30 = 0.30ml

Day 31,32,33,34,35 = 0.50ml

I then had zero nitrates so I stopped at this level and add 0.50ml every day or every other day.

I didnt experience any issues at all and I have Vodka dosed for over 12 months.

I use Ozone and this from what I have read aids in the process and keeps the water crystal clear.

This is my own experimental results so follow this at your own risk.

This entry was posted on Friday, June 4th, 2010 at 8:56 am and is filed under Bespoke Aquarium. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.