Water changes with very low pH - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-18-2018, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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Water changes with very low pH

I have a 250 gallon tank soon to come online.
One of the sticking points currently is how to do a 125 gallon water change (50%) with well water that is too soft and with a pH of 5.8 out of the ground. Once aerated the water comes up to pH of 7.7.
I cannot run it through the water heater because the heater is full of water that has already gone through the water softener and calcite bed. Thus, the water now has too much sodium and a dkH of 14.

Apparently I need to heat, aerate to correct pH and adjust levels of the well water: Ca= 15ppm, KH= 2dkH, GH=2~3 dH, Mg= 1.74, NO3=1.5ppm.

The only solution I have come up with is to get a 125 gallon tank and heat, aerate and adjust levels in it then do a water change.

Does this sound like the way to go or is there something easier?
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 12-18-2018, 01:38 AM
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With Ca at 15ppm, Mg at 1.74 a GH of 3 you will need to use a sulfate GH booster such as Equilibrium or Nilocg.com GH booster. In my experience with RO water (TDS of 1) Sulfate GH boosters tend to make gradually make the water a little acidic as plants consume Ca and Mg and leave some of the sulfur behind in the water.

If I am right after the first week with a GH booster your Ph may be close enough to your well water Ph of 5.8 that it will be safe to do a water change without degassing the water. With your KH at 2 you shouldn't have to adjust the kh of your water. So just fixing your low GH may be all you need to do.

The only other option I see it to talk to a well company and ask if there is any way to get the excess CO2 out of your well water before it gets to your house. That way the PH will be close to 7.7 and you wouldn't need the calcite bead or water softener.
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