Low ph help - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 09:37 PM Thread Starter
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Low ph help

Hi guys... any ideas what is causing my ph to bottom out (6.4 today). All other parameters are perfect, PH out of faucet is 7.0. I even just did my 50% water changed yesterday. Anything about the following set up that jumps out at you that might be causing it? Only in this hobby for just a couple of months and any help would be greatly appreciated.

16 Gal all-in-one Aqua Japan Cube
GLA pressurized co2 set-up
Kessil led lighting
Controsoil substrate
Local fieldstone (which looks like it might even have a little quartz streak in it)
1 Betta, 2 Amano Shrimp, 2 Nerite Snail
Seachem Products: Prime, Flourish & Stability
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Rob118 View Post
Hi guys... any ideas what is causing my ph to bottom out (6.4 today). All other parameters are perfect, PH out of faucet is 7.0. I even just did my 50% water changed yesterday. Anything about the following set up that jumps out at you that might be causing it? Only in this hobby for just a couple of months and any help would be greatly appreciated.

16 Gal all-in-one Aqua Japan Cube
GLA pressurized co2 set-up
Kessil led lighting
Controsoil substrate
Local fieldstone (which looks like it might even have a little quartz streak in it)
1 Betta, 2 Amano Shrimp, 2 Nerite Snail
Seachem Products: Prime, Flourish & Stability
Co2 will lower your PH but without having a rough idea of how much Co2 is being dissolved in the water column I cannot say for sure. Do you have a drop checker?

Dan
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I bought my wife a Co2 system for Christmas so she doesn't have to listen to me complain about not having one. For those that say I'm selfish I got a Kitchen Aid Mixer for Christmas.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 09:46 PM
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I believe that Controsoil buffers the ph in the water. Your pressurized c02 will also drop it down some, depending on the c02 levels you are injecting in. .6 drop is perfectly acceptable, most hobbyist's will go down 1 full point with no problems whatsoever.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 09:51 PM
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I believe that Controsoil buffers the ph in the water. Your pressurized c02 will also drop it down some, depending on the c02 levels you are injecting in. .6 drop is perfectly acceptable, most hobbyist's will go down 1 full point with no problems whatsoever.
exactly this ^^ I wasn't sure about the substrate.

Dan
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I bought my wife a Co2 system for Christmas so she doesn't have to listen to me complain about not having one. For those that say I'm selfish I got a Kitchen Aid Mixer for Christmas.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 09:53 PM
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API Master test kit would suffice for checking PH levels. Drop checkers are delayed I believe, not that I have any experience with them.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Rob118 View Post
Hi guys... any ideas what is causing my ph to bottom out (6.4 today). All other parameters are perfect, PH out of faucet is 7.0. I even just did my 50% water changed yesterday. Anything about the following set up that jumps out at you that might be causing it? Only in this hobby for just a couple of months and any help would be greatly appreciated.

16 Gal all-in-one Aqua Japan Cube
GLA pressurized co2 set-up
Kessil led lighting
Controsoil substrate
Local fieldstone (which looks like it might even have a little quartz streak in it)
1 Betta, 2 Amano Shrimp, 2 Nerite Snail
Seachem Products: Prime, Flourish & Stability


You get a ph reading of 7.0 out of the tap? Whats the ph if you let tap water sit out and de-gas for 24 hours or so?

Are you seeing an issue that makes you think 6.4 is for some reason too low for your setup? If you're not experiencing any problems then does it really matter what the actual number is?
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Curator of an ever growing fishroom that currently houses 17 tanks(72 bowfront, 2x55's, 2x29's, 2x20 highs, 20 long, 30 long, 38, 7x10's) many of which are planted; and a 55 gallon African Cichlid tank at work along with a few empty tanks here and there to be set up eventually!.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-10-2017, 11:24 PM
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Nothing wrong with low pH btw.
It's good for the plants.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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Dman911... Yes, I have a cal aqua labs' pearl drop checker. I only use it as a rough guideline since I've read that it can take a couple of hours for it read correctly. I have the co2 set to deliver 2 bps and is on from 1 hour before the light turns on to 1 hour before the light goes off for a total of 8 hours per day. The checker of course is on the blue/green side first thing in the morning and doesn't register a balanced ppm until later in the afternoon. As I said, since it takes a while to register correctly I mainly just use it make sure I am not gassing my fish toward the end of the day.

Econde & Dman911... I wasn't aware that Controsoil buffered ph, do you know of a substrate alternative that is just as good for plant growth? Yes, I use the API test kit

Iksdrinker... I hadn't heard of this 24/de-gas procedure until you mentioned it. I will do that and take another reading. I saw that some people suggest you place an air stone in the sample water for the 24 hour period, is this correct? As far as the ph being "too low", i wasn't really sure. I just keep seeing that "7.0 is NORMAL!" and that my Betta prefers 'slightly' acidic levels, so not really sure if I should be worried or not. I don't seem to be having problems with this level but I wonder if I am stressing the fish when I do water changes with a higher ph initially?

Mistergreen... See above, I am ok with it since I don't seem to be having any problems.

Last edited by Rob118; 01-11-2017 at 02:35 PM. Reason: to include everyone
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