Crushed coral to stabilize pH?
I see another thread on crushed coral here but didn't want to start a conversation in there.
I have a 65 gallon planted tank, low tech, which has been established for years.
Here is my situation - I recently bought some butterfly fish, and one died within the day of putting it into the tank. I've never had this happen before, so I brought it to the store (reputable LFS) and they tested the water and the pH was 5.0!
Out of the tap it is around 7 or just lower. It is also soft, but I haven't tested it in a really long time, so today I'll get a kit and test KH and GH.
My LFS recommended using Seachem Neutral regulator, but I read about issues with phosphates so have only added one dose.
They also recommended crushed coral to keep things more stable over time.
How much coral should I use? I use an Eheim canister filter, I know that I should put the coral in there. But adding little bits at a time would be a challenge because I'd have to drain, open, and reprime the canister every time. How does everyone do this, and at what point do I consider things to be good? I don't need the pH at 7, but 5 is very low.
Has anyone used the Neutral regulator with very soft water? I would assume the problems with phosphates would be amplified for people who have a higher KH and GH?
Has anyone else had this problem and resolved it? A lot of what I read for coral is for people with african tanks who want the pH above the tap water, but I just want my tank water to stay closer to the tap pH, instead of dropping over time.
I have driftwood in it. I had been using Katappa leaves (only one large one in the big tank, also use them in a 10 gallon shrimp tank and 5 gallon betta tank) but just removed them all when I found out about the pH.
Thanks in advance.