Riddle me this: Floramax vs. PH: RESULTS ARE IN!!
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:09 AM   #1
waterwookiee
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Riddle me this: Floramax vs. PH: RESULTS ARE IN!!


I know Floramax isn't supposed to alter your water chemistry, but I just put Floramax midnight in an otherwise empty aquarium and my PH went from 6 from the tap (unsoftened well water) to 7.6+ in less than 24 hours?????

It is stirred up at the moment, so perhaps has something to do with it. However if that's the case, how can the particulates affect my ph reading but "not the chemistry of my water" if settled out (as advertised)..... Is it likely that the substrate itself is more basic, but will not interact with the water itself? Or is it more likely that my tap becomes more basic over time?..

Last edited by waterwookiee; 01-11-2013 at 10:44 AM.. Reason: New title
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Old 01-10-2013, 11:11 AM   #2
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I now have plain tap, tap with floramax, and tap with a small piece of petrified wood (which was only in the tank for 30 minutes all soaking separately. We'll see tonight.....
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:12 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by waterwookiee View Post
I now have plain tap, tap with floramax, and tap with a small piece of petrified wood (which was only in the tank for 30 minutes all soaking separately. We'll see tonight.....
Hi waterwookiee,

Congrats, that is the correct way to help confirm the issue. Here in Seattle our water comes out of the tap at 7.6 but after sitting 24 hours it is about 7.0.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:43 AM   #4
waterwookiee
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Default And the verdict......

Ok, tests have been run.

Tap water just pulled ph-6.3, gh-5, kh-1
24 hour old tap water ph-7, gh-7, kh-1
Tap water with petrified wood ph-7, gh-8, kh-4

Tank water with Floramax Midnight: ph-7.6+ (maxed out test kit) gh-8, kh-4

Tank water with new substrate (mix of Flourite, and natural standard gravel)
Ph-6, gh-6, kh-1

Found small white grains in the gravel. When put into vinegar, they fizz like an alkaseltzer.

The moral of the story,

1) Floramax midnight is inaccurately advertised. It DOES affect ph.
2) Apparently so does the petrified wood to a somewhat lesser degree.

I'm glad my water is soft rather than hard, however what to do to harden it a bit? Being this is my first foray into plants, is basic sodium bicarbonate good enough?

Last edited by waterwookiee; 01-11-2013 at 11:32 AM.. Reason: Updates
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:05 PM   #5
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I'm glad my water is soft rather than hard, however what to do to harden it a bit? Being this is my first foray into plants, is basic sodium bicarbonate good enough?
Hi waterwookiee,

First, thank you for posting your results. Eco-Complete Floramax has been known to have an effect on PH in the past as well.

When you say you want to raise your hardness are you referring to dKH or dGH? If dKH adding bicarbonate of soda will do the trick; here is an handy calculator I use. If you are referring to dGH, I use Seachem Equilibrium and use their dosing calculator.

Tom Barr, one of the more knowledgeable individuals in our hobby, indicated he didn't worry too much about dKH as long as there was sufficient to avoid a PH 'crash' when using CO2. He did say he targeted a dGH of about 5.0.

Hope this helps!
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:22 PM   #6
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That helps a great deal! Thanks so much for the info. All of my reference is from keeping reefs so I really have to learn all over. Thanks again !
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:32 PM   #7
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I'm currently deciding between floramax and regular sand as my cap. This is very helpful.
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