The new “NA Water”, the water purifying system designed for Nature Aquarium, was launched with a new redesigned package. With the combination of NA Water and a new cartridge filter “Cation Filter (for water softening)”, the water quality suitable for aquatic plants and tropical fish can be realized even in areas where the total hardness of tap water is high.
■ Plant growth and water quality
In Nature Aquarium, it is required to grow healthy plants to realize a beautiful aquascape, and to attain this, various things such as lighting systems, CO2 systems, substrate materials and liquid fertilizers are used. However, aquatic plants sometimes do not grow healthily even if these tools are used properly. Among a number of causes for this, that of the most impactful is the quality of tap water. Although tap water is clean and safe for drinking, it is not always suitable for growing aquatic plants. Problems of tap water include residual chlorine, excessively high total hardness (TH)/carbonate hardness (KH) and pH. Most of them can be resolved by appropriate application of Aqua Conditioner, except for total hardness. Total hardness is a water quality parameter that indicates the concentration of calcium ion (Ca2+) and magnesium ion (Mg2+) in the water. When TH level is measured using Pack Checker TH and it is 50mg/ℓ or below, there is no impact on the growth of ordinary aquatic plants. However, if it exceeds 100mg/ℓ, the plant growth will be affected. Both calcium and magnesium ions are essential nutrients for plant growth as long as their concentration is not too high. Excessively high calcium and magnesium ion levels disrupt plants’ absorption of bivalent iron (Fe2+), which results in poor plant growth and unhealthy leaf color. In the case of secondary rise in total hardness caused by the stone placed in the tank as a layout material, it is effective to install a water softener Softenizer in the aquarium. When the total hardness of tap water is excessively high, the use of a water purifier having water softening effect is the most practical solution.
■ Effects of NA Water
To use Nature Aquarium water purifying system NA Water, connect it to a tap water faucet. NA Water comes with Pre Filter PP5 and Carbon Filter HD30 as the default. With these filters, NA water eliminates impurities in water such as iron rust and at the same time, removes residual chlorine. Carbon Filter HD30 that removes residual chlorine can later be replaced with Carbon Filter HD300 having a longer-lasting absorption effect. Since the tap water passed through NA Water is free from residual chlorine, there is no need to apply Aqua Conditioner Chlor-Off during water change as long as NA Water is used.
NA Water is usually installed for the purpose of eliminating residual chlorine. On top of this function, the water softening effect can now be easily added by using the new Cation Filter as a replacement cartridge filter. Note that the Cation Filter is intended for lowering the total hardness of water only and it is not for producing pure water. As pure water is not required for Nature Aquarium, user-friendly Cation Filter was adopted for the new NA Water.
■ Features of Cation Filter
The total hardness level of tap water varies by area. In Japan, the tap water in urban areas of Kanto and Kansai regions tends to have high total hardness. Firstly, measure the total hardness of the tap water to be used for water change with Pack Checker TH. If the measured value exceeds 100mg/ℓ, the tap water of the area is hard water and thus the use NA Water and Cation Filter is recommended. The
Cation Filter can turn approximately 1,000ℓ of tap water with TH100-200mg/ℓ into soft water with below TH50mg/ℓ. Check for its water softening effect using PACK CHECKER TH (Total Hardness).
When the Cation filter is no longer effective, replace it with a new one or carry out the regeneration of cation exchange resin following the procedures outlined below.
[Cation filter regeneration procedures]
① Remove Cation filter from NA Water.
② Dissolve 100g of refined salt (over 99.5% sodium chloride) into 1ℓ of tap water to make approximately 10% saline solution.
③ Place Cation filter upright (with the packing side up) in a place such as kitchen sink and slowly pour saline solution into the CATION FILTER. Be careful not to allow the saline solution to overflow from the opening on the filter top (saline solution will flow out from the hole on the filter bottom).
④ Once 1ℓ of saline solution has run through the CATION FILTER, pour tap water from the opening on the filter top. When sufficient amount of tap water has run through the filter until no saline solution flows out from the bottom hole, the regeneration of CATION FILTER is completed.
*Cation Filter can be used repeatedly by carrying out regeneration. If sufficient water softening effect is not obtained even after regeneration, replace with a new Cation filter.
■ Operating Instructions of CATION FILTER
①Remove Clear housing on both inlet (IN) and outlet (OUT) sides.
②Insert Carbon filter HD30 into the Clear housing on the inlet (IN) side and Cation filter into the Clear housing on the outlet (OUT) side (Photo A). Do not use Pre filter PP5. (*The Cation filter has orientation. Be sure to insert the Cation filter in the arrow direction and with the packing side up.)
③Make sure that two O-rings are placed in each Clear housing and then install Clear housings to NA-WATER (Photo B).
(From Aqua Journal #261)