pH rising? Need some sort of explanation here
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Old 09-20-2003, 05:07 PM   #1
Guttboy
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Hi Everyone,

Well I am trying to figure this one out. The pH in my 10 gallon and in my 15 gallon has gone up? My tap water is usually around 7.9 or 8.0. Today it was 7.9. I have done some preliminary testing and this is what I have arrived at. Tests done with Milwaukee SMS pH probe.

Tap water..............7.9
Tap water and Kitty Litter...............7.6
Tap water and play sand................7.9

My 15 gallon is just running schultz aquatic plant soil and water. Its pH is 8.2 just like my 10 gallon.

Does anyone know if pH can rise over time just from sitting?

I will test samples again in 12 hours. These were readings after 1 hour.

Mike :?:
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-20-2003, 07:48 PM   #2
anonapersona
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Tap water will rise as the CO2 gasses out. My tap is 7.6 initially, 8.2 after degassing.
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Old 09-20-2003, 07:54 PM   #3
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Anona....I think that is the situation here....found some aged water sitting under the tank and tested it.....8.3 pH.....That could very well be the problem! Thanks!

Mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-20-2003, 09:45 PM   #4
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Anonapersona!

I think that is it! The other tests came out normal.

pH with the sand is about 8.0 now
pH with the litter is still around 7.7 ( i think it has a bit of acidity to it)
pH with just water is now 8.3

With that being said I think it is safe to say it is offgassing and achieving its normal pH. My 100 gallon does not notice this because it is heavily dosed with pressurized co2.

Thanks again everyone...you learn something everyday! Was fun conducting my little experiment and also starting a DIY CO2 project....will post that later for everyone to see.

mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-20-2003, 10:29 PM   #5
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And I am watching the experiment with Kitty Litter closely, I picked up a bag of Walmart Special Kitty Litter (in the red bag, "new look-- same great litter") and I have a bag and a half of the Schutlz Aquatic soil (which I hated in the pond, BTW) and a half a bag of pool flter sand.

I really like my Flourite and don't mind going 100% Flourite in the new 59 gallon, but I may cut it some with some other things.
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Old 09-21-2003, 03:33 AM   #6
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One thing to watch that has been discussed on APD in the past is that there are times with the Profile/Turface/Schultz Aquatic soil has affected water chemistry. There was a batch that caused pH to go though the roof and also leached a lot of phosphates.

I guess I look at it this way. With all the money that I put into a tank, the substrate might run 5% of the total budget. So it's not that big of a deal to use a quality substrate.
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Old 09-21-2003, 03:59 AM   #7
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I coudn't agree more Rex...

ph , gh , and kh aint gonna mean squat if your substrate sucks... I mean lets face it fella's, if substrate wasnt important to plants then they wouldnt grow roots ! :roll:

Its one thing to experiment with different sub's in a small test tank or a quarantine tank but I surely wouldnt rely on cheap stuff in a large tank that I gave a hoot about. :lol:
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Old 09-21-2003, 05:33 AM   #8
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I have to agree with you both buck and rex....However, This 15 gallon is being done on the cheap as well as the 10 gallon. Hopefully by testing these "cheap methods" individuals are using I can hope to verify for people if they work or dont. Plus its fun to experiment with them and see. Bottom line is in my opinion if you give plants light, fertilization, and a source of CO2 they will do fine. Adjusting these values to achieve a balance that works is the hard part. Will keep tinkering and let you know how it goes!

Mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-21-2003, 04:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Hopefully by testing these "cheap methods" individuals are using I can hope to verify for people if they work or dont.
It is impossible to test and verify which conditions are the conditions that made the difference unless ALL conditions remain a constant.

In other words you would need to use the exact same tank size, lighting size, water parameters, plants, fish, temperature, ferts, etc. EXCEPT the substrate being tested to be able to say "Yes this substrate is better or worst."

I guess it is all what you expect from your tank... one that survives or one that thrives...
Not to mention that at the first sign of trouble someone who has gone the lesser road is asking "Why dont my plants look like those or what am I doing wrong ?"

The first lesson my daddy taught me as a youth...

Dont bring a knife to a gun fight !

:hehe:
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Old 09-21-2003, 05:13 PM   #10
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Well Im still going to try this. People can take what they want for the data or not. I guess ill start posting "USE AT OWN RISK. OWNER ASSUMES NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR TANK" :lol:

I do think however that by testing the different substrates that I got in My bag will tell me what is good or bad to use.

Others may look at this and test their substrates prior to using them.

Mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-22-2003, 12:42 AM   #11
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I wasnt trying to say " Dont do it ... :lol:

By all means you should try them, any time I get an opportunity just to mess around with something new I definately go for it

Over the years so many different substrates have been tried but it always comes back to the popular "expensive" sub's because they just cant be beat for growth.
I just cant seem to remember any award winning tanks boast "kitty litter" for a substrate... :hehe:
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Old 09-22-2003, 02:48 AM   #12
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Well, the warning was timely enough for me.

Trying new things in the experimental 10 G tank is find, but not on the newest biggest tank just set up in the den!

Think I'll limit the experiment to trying to decide on whether to add some onyx sand in the front or not.
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Old 09-22-2003, 06:05 AM   #13
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Well......

Kitty litter pH after 36 hours is 8.0
Tap water pH after 36 hours is 8.2
Sand pH after 36 hours is 8.2

There you have it.

Mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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Old 09-22-2003, 05:48 PM   #14
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Wouldn't it be easy to take a tank, seperate the bottom with acrylic pieces into several sections, try a bunch of different substrates? And do one low light/fert/CO2 and one high light/fert/CO2 tank that way? And test for example plain gravel || flourite/onyx || profile/Schultz || gravel+kitty piss absorbent || soil || gravel/laterite etc? And plant the same plants in every section?
Not sure if that has been done already, at least I don't remember any study that proves you need an expensive substrate for an award-winning tank. In these "now I use this and it has made all the difference" experiences often substrate was not the only thing that had been changed.
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Old 09-22-2003, 10:44 PM   #15
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Wasserpest...

I tend to agree with you. I would think that most tanks that are outstanding are due mostly to the care and efforts of the fertilization schedule and the attention to detail. There are many posts at the Krib and other places where people have spectacular tanks with odd substrates. There are many people here that recommend blasting sand, pea gravel, playsand etc and have good tanks.

Bottom line is what works with some folks might not work with others and vice versa. But stating that "product x" will make your tank spectacular is not correct also. It may help....but prob wont hurt.

Like I have said before....in my 100 gallon....what do I have...FLOURITE and Gravel! I went this way because most of the people have recommended this. In my 10 I have sand, kitty litter, and peat. In my 15 I have 100 percent Schultz aquatic plant soil.

So....testing the cheap stuff on my small tanks ....expensive stuff in my 100 gallon show tank.

Ill keep the data coming!

Mike
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100 Gal Planted, two Filstar XP3, Milwaukee SMS 122 pH controller, Milwaukee reg/bubble, compressed CO2, reactor 1000, 7 WCMM, 12 Ottos, 14 neons, 1 SAE, 3 German blue rams, 2 Florida Flag Fish

10 Gallon...20 Endler's live bearers planted, peat/kitty litter/sand substrate

15 Gallon...Just Schultz Aquatic Plant soil
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