PH Swing in an almost empty tank.
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Old 09-01-2013, 06:39 AM   #1
PortalMasteryRy
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PH Swing in an almost empty tank.


I've been monitoring one of my new 5 gallon shrimp tanks using a TDS/PH/EC PPM combo meter and I noticed the ph seems to be swinging from 7.3+ to 7.5+. It is usually lower in the daytime and it gets higher as soon as it starts to get dark. The PH is in line with what you get from the API test kit but I am just wondering why the PH is swinging.

PH 7.3 -7.5
GH 6
KH 2
TDS 150 ppm
Nitrates 0
Ammonia 0
Temp 74.8 - 75

I have been dosing Salty Shrimp GH+ to get to a target GH but my last dose was almost past 24 hours ago. I also do not recall the Salty Shrimp GH+ to affect the PH. Could it be the LED strip is affecting the PH measurement from the probe since the probe is actually in the tank.

The temp is almost constant since I have a temp controller box hooked up to a fan that keeps the temp within 74.8-75 F FYI.

I'll be paying attention to the PH tomorrow as soon as the LED light turns on to verify that it could possibly be the light that is letting the PH probe get the wrong readings.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:15 PM   #2
Mark Fisher
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The accuracy of many of these pH meters is 0.2, so I suspect all you are seeing is the inherent variability of the instrument.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:40 PM   #3
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I understand the accuracy but what I'm saying is it swings after being stable for a couple of hours. I am turning on my light in the bottom row of my rack and I'm curious if the PH reading will swing back to around 7.3+. If it does then the probe reading is probably being affected by the light coming from the fixture.
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Old 09-01-2013, 04:16 PM   #4
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Photosynthesis tends to drive the pH up as CO2 is consumed by plants and algae, but you said you have an almost empty tank.
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Old 09-01-2013, 04:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Fisher View Post
Photosynthesis tends to drive the pH up as CO2 is consumed by plants and algae, but you said you have an almost empty tank.
Yeah it is almost an empty tank. I have 1 IAL and 1 betta plus inert substrate. No plants, no decorations and no CO2. I just moved the probe inside the HOB filter media area. It should be darker in the spot where it is at right now. It looks like the value is stabilizing. When the lights were completely off the PH reading was at 7.53 and when I woke this morning with ambient light coming from outside the value was hovering at 7.48 - 7.49.
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Old 09-01-2013, 05:16 PM   #6
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I think you might be reading into it too much, a fluctuation of that magnitude is hardly significant in the grand scheme of things.
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Old 09-01-2013, 10:17 PM   #7
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Well the reason I want to see a stable PH reading is I wanted to see the best PH for breeding Neocaridina Heteropoda. I'm not just interested in a range. I'm interested in a specific value. I've got 6 tanks than I can assign specific parameters and so far the PH is the one that is doing some weird fluctuations.

I'm going to start putting some aeration in the mix and see if the tanks are absorbing CO2 in the air that is actually lowering the PH. I'm really curious to know what is causing it.
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Old 09-02-2013, 02:42 PM   #8
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You are not going to see a stable pH with a KH of 2.
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