PH Buffered at 8.2 with Relatively Low Hardness - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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PH Buffered at 8.2 with Relatively Low Hardness

So, whatever makes Albuquerque water hard has no trouble buffering the ph to 8.2. After aerating out of the tap for a while, the local water was 8.2 ph, 8 dKH and 12 dGH. I got down to 5 dKH and 8 dGH, but it’s still a stiff 8.2 ph. I keep on seeing fish and plants that are specified for harder water, but lower ph and wondering how that’s possible. But I have realized all hard water minerals must not be created equal.

Does anyone have a reference on ph buffers that goes beyond the typical, “you have phosphate buffers and carbonate buffers?” I’m interested in why my hard water buffers at 8.2, but someone else’s may just be in the high 7’s.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-01-2018, 04:58 AM
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My Boston Tap water has pH raised at MWRA treatment plant to prevent metals from leaching in pipes. It comes out at 8.4 and will test after 24hrs at 7.4, KH and GH at 60-75ppm. No sure why it drops after 24hrs.

In preparation for 150 planted tank next month. So we will see what ADA / Amazonia Substrates and CO2 will do to pH. Also using some Spiderwood which is soaking right now. 6.8 would be nice.

There is a European product from JBL. JBL pH Minus, an Oak extraction that is Phosphate free. Trying to find out more about it.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-01-2018, 07:00 AM
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GH is a measure of the amount of calcium and magnesium in the water. It has nothing to do with PH. They are probably adding orthophosphate to the water to increase the PH. A high ph is needed to to prevent corrosion of lead or copper water pipes. Using phosphate compound works better because it reacts with the metel of the pipe creating insoluble copper and lead phosphates coating that prevents further corrosion.

The amount they add to the water will depend on the water source and the level of corrosion they see in water tests. The distance between you and the water treatment plant and which water source you are closest to will affect PH, GH, and KH.

In the south end of the city I live in the water is soft. Most of the water there comes from a major aqueduct which comes from high mountain 200 miles away. In the north end of town they supplement the aqueduct water with RO and well water. As a result I have hard water and I have installed a RO system.

aeration will not affect minerals that increase PH. The only two ways to reduce PH. Add an acid to your tank. CO2 does this very well but may be limited to a PH drop of only 1 point. However you have to keep adding the acid or PH reducer to prenvent the PH from going back up.

Or you can reduce the mineral content of the water. That means removing minerals from the water or mixing RO or distilled with tap water. The advantage of this methode is the PH won't change much between water changes.

Based on how high your PH is you might have to mix a lot of RO or distilled water with your tap water to get the ph down.
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