Water quality questions - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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Water quality questions

Moving only a short distance has put us into another water system. To my surprise, pH has shot up from 7.6 to 8.1 or higher, leading me to contact the city about the other values. The local water dept measures water hardness as 70 mg/L without distinguishing between Ca and Mg proportions. The worker I spoke with did not distinguish between dGH and dKH, so I'm unsure which he meant.



I see that the definition of dKH is 17.86 mg of CaCO3 per liter and dGH is 10mg of CaO per liter, but can those be derived without knowing how much of the results were from Mg?


Also the level of Cu in the system is 1 ppm and dissolved solids (TDS?) are 140. Is there any concern for inverts?

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 08:14 PM
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Also the level of Cu in the system is 1 ppm and dissolved solids (TDS?) are 140. Is there any concern for inverts?
If Cu is 1 ppm then you don’t need to worry about the other parameters, this water is not usable.
Back to RO my friend.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 08:18 PM
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Also the level of Cu in the system is 1 ppm and dissolved solids (TDS?) are 140. Is there any concern for inverts?
Yep. Sorry to say.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 08:42 PM
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Pretty sure if copper was .3 higher than that it wouldn’t pass EPA guidance. I sure as heck wouldn’t drink the stuff and certainly wouldn’t put in a aquarium.

If copper is that bad I’d also wonder how many other substances are just barely within safety guidelines as well.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Just called to double-check: Cu is 0.1 ppm, actually closer to 0.09.

No clarification on the Ca vs. Mg issue though.

Once things are further along, I'll get a Sera master test kit to confirm, but I'd like to reassess plant and animal compatibility in the meantime.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 10:41 PM
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I had major problems when my water supply went from a crazy high hardness, something like 28 degree to 6 degree hardness.
The pH went from 8.7 with the hard water to 7.6 with the new water.
Pretty much a train wreck, I had no shrimp at the time, but no fish died.
The crypts melted, I knew that was going to happen, but came back, but all the stems died. Wow what a mess.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 04:29 PM
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O.1PPM of copper is still about 10 times higher than needed in an aquarium. Based on everything I have read that is probably still too high for animals. Because copper levels are typically elevated due to copper pipes most fertilizers on the market only supply about 1ppm or none at all. Which is basically about 1/10 of what is needed. So you probably will get best results 1 part tap water to 9 parts RO water in your aquarium.

Quote:
I see that the definition of dKH is 17.86 mg of CaCO3 per liter and dGH is 10mg of CaO per liter, but can those be derived without knowing how much of the results were from Mg?
GH can be from Ca, Mg, Strontium, beryllium. Strontium and Berylium are generally at trace levels. So the test cannot tell if it is Mg Ca or something else. So the output is often expressed as Equivalent to CaCO3. Which just means that the reading is that same as water with this amount of CaCO3 in it.

KH is also often listed the same way. The only way you can know the Mg levels is to use a Mg specific test. You water company is probably not doing a MG test because they probably are not adding any magnesium in to the water and generally there are no health concerns for Mg levels. Typically there is less Mg in the water than Ca. For areas with high limestone levels in the ground well water is commony about 80% calcium.

I would recommend you that you pay for a lab test of your tap water:
https://www.icp-analysis.com/

or
https://www.amazon.com/ICP-Analysis-.../dp/B071HVPBVD

That would give the best possible information for your aquarium and help you determine if your water is if the water is safe to drink.
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