Tropic Marin NP-Bacto-Balance takes a different approach to carbon dosing that will not only maintain balanced levels of nitrate and phosphate but will eliminate some of the hassles and risks you get with other carbon dosing methods on the market. It contains a very special blend of carbon sources that only targets those beneficial bacteria that reduce phosphate in your aquarium along with ideal nutrients to prevent starving your tank. This means, algae and harmful bacteria will not make use of the carbon source but you can still maintain optimal nitrate and phosphate levels. 

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How To Use NP-Bacto-Balance

NP-Bacto-Balance is the primary additive in Tropic Marin's Carbon Dosing Method. Plus-NP or Elimi-NP will be used first to introduce the specialized carbon source and either raise or lower nitrate and phosphate levels to the ideal level.  Once the ideal level has been reached, NP-Bacto-Balance will take over and maintain those nutrient levels without starving out your corals or requiring constant adjustment. 

First, test your aquarium's phosphate and nitrate levels. NP-Bacto-Balance should ONLY be used on aquariums with phosphate levels of 0.03 - 0.1 ppm and nitrate levels of <2.0 ppm. Dosage is based on your tank's maturity level with older tanks, presumably stocked with larger corals, requiring a larger dose. 

  • New Tank Dosage (<1 year): Up to 0.25 mL per 25 gallons of aquarium water daily.
  • Maturing Tank Dosage(>1 year):  Up to 0.5mL per 25 gallons of aquarium water daily.
  • Mature Tank Dosage (>2 years): Up to 1 mL per 25 gallons of aquarium water daily.

Add daily to a high flow area of the tank, like into your powerhead or return flow. It is best to dose in the morning just after the lights have turned on but you can safely dose NP-Bacto-Balance at any time throughout the day should you forget. Test your phosphate levels weekly to ensure they're staying within range.

Tropic Marin Carbon Dosing
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Tropic Marin Carbon Dosing

Tropic Marin has designed a unique and comprehensive carbon-dosing solution that involves three different additives. The specialized carbon source contained in all three additives targets ONLY beneficial, phosphate-loving bacteria. You will not run the risk of promoting growth among annoying algae or harmful microbes like you get with other carbon-dosing products. 

  • Elimi-NP: Lowers phosphate and nitrate levels. Carbon Souce + Zero Nutrients
  • NP Bacto-Balance: Primary additive. Maintains low phosphate and nitrate while also providing sufficient - balanced nutrients to prevent starving your tank. Carbon Source + Balanced Nutrients
  • Plus-NP: Increases phosphate and nitrate levels. Carbon Source + Extra Nutrients

Step #1 - Use either Elimi-NP or Plus-NP to adjust your phosphate levels to the ideal range: 0.05 ppm phosphate.  If your levels are high, use Elimi-NP or if your levels are very low or undetectable using hobby grade test kits, use Plus-NP.

Step #2 - Once you have tested phosphate in the ideal range, switch over to dosing NP Bacto-Balance which will then provide both a sufficient carbon source to support the bacteria as well as critical levels of nitrogen and phosphorous to avoid starving your corals. Continue with NP-Bacto-Balance moving forward to lock in those optimal levels of nitrate and phosphate without having to constantly worry about adjusting your dosage or feeding harmful organisms.

Step #3 - Test your phosphate levels weekly. Should you start to see levels rise or fall again in the future, discontinue NP Bacto-Balance.  Switch over to either Elimi-NP or Plus-NP accordingly to get back in balance before continuing again with NP Bacto-balance.

SPS Corals

The result will be ideal balanced levels of phosphate and nitrate. You will not need to make constant adjustments to your dosage and will not run the risk of starving out your tank when used as directed.

Focus on testing for phosphate when dialing in your dosing but monitor nitrates as well. Nitrate levels should be maintained at <1.0 ppm or a similar low range. You can take additional measures (filtration, water changes, etc.) to lower nitrates should they be extraordinarily high for any reason. 

**Pro Tip: Carbon dosing focuses on bacteria that consume phosphates, which is why you see a drop in phosphate. That bacteria is then consumed by your corals and other invertebrates as an optimal source of nutrition, providing phosphates they could not normally acquire in your tank. This increased nutrition within the corals and inverts then promotes a higher metabolic rate which results in a higher uptake of nitrates. This is how the nitrates are lowered. Just remember bacteria lower phosphates, corals lower nitrates.

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