Confused about kH and PH relation - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-10-2011, 06:30 AM Thread Starter
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Confused about kH and PH relation

The other day I added a cup or so of crushed coral to my tank to increase gH and kH since my water is super soft. (Don't worry about the reason)

What I had as a result was an increase of 2 degrees both for gH and kH from 2 to 4 degrees.

When I measured the pH it was out of range for the regular pH test and about 7.4-7.6 with the high range pH test. My regular tap water is around 6.8-7.0 when I let it rest 2-3 days.

Well so I just used this calculator (Link below) and my pH shouldn't have changed that much. It says that it should have changed by only 0.40.

http://www.dataguru.org/misc/aquariu...&pHChange=0.48


What's going on? API test kit expires in 2014. I added the crushed coral with no CO2 on.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-10-2011, 01:15 PM
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I'd be surprised if these results didn't fall well within the error bars of the tests involved, especially considering that there are pH swings throughout the day in a fish tank.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-10-2011, 01:25 PM
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2dKH water based on KH buffer alone in RO I see consistent 7pH range reading.
4dKH I would expect high 7's to low 8's on a chemical drop test.

This is another reason I don't care for adding crushed 'whatever' into my tanks as you can't control the release.


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-11-2011, 12:26 AM
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Despite the claim of your link, pH and KH are not related.
For any given KH the ph will depend on the amount of CO2 dissolved as well.
The amount of CO2 in your water depends on a lot of conditions like aeration, numbers of fish/plants and temperature to name a few.
If you "really" need to control the pH you need another buffer system other than than the carbonate system.

If you play with chemicals you should know some chemisty.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-13-2011, 02:07 AM
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What on Earth could possibly be wrong with a pH of 6.8-7? Are you breeding african cichlids?

If it's your typical aquarium fish, anything between 6 and the low-mid 7's should be fine. Honestly, below 6 is usually fine also, especially in a CO2 injected tank.

I personally feel that higher pH water isn't usually appreciated by aquarium fish less because of the pH and more because of the high TDS usually associated. I have no experiments to back this up, just the experience that the majority of fish could care less about pH.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-13-2011, 11:38 AM
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While we are on the subject of ph. What can you use to raise it? Im at 7.6 or higher when lights and c02 are off, but after 3 hours im at 6.4 and drop checker is bright yellow. Fishies and rcs are all ok. Titration kit puts me at 60-70ppm c02. Im asking because at 6.4 ph the bb basically start becomming inert and i have to rely on them to work at night. I like the c02 lvls im at but not the ph. How do i change this?...

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2011, 01:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
While we are on the subject of ph. What can you use to raise it? Im at 7.6 or higher when lights and c02 are off, but after 3 hours im at 6.4 and drop checker is bright yellow. Fishies and rcs are all ok. Titration kit puts me at 60-70ppm c02. Im asking because at 6.4 ph the bb basically start becomming inert and i have to rely on them to work at night. I like the c02 lvls im at but not the ph. How do i change this?...
If you add an acid the pH goes down. Add a base and the pH goes up.

Try NaHSO4 to decrease pH and Na2CO3 to increase pH.

But if you increase pH your CO2 level will probably go up as well so be careful as you are already way too high in CO2.

Now that i think of it, You should probably just reduce your CO2 level and pH will go up.

If you play with chemicals you should know some chemisty.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2011, 03:53 AM
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If you increase your KH it will increase the pH that your tank starts at and lessen the drop from CO2. That's a lot of CO2 in the tank though.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2011, 12:01 PM
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Its not a lot of c02. My rcs are breeding. Do you think they would if levels were too high? If my mind serves me right shrimp are less tolerable to c02 than fishies yet mine appear happy and energetic. Two females are berried and the males are going nuts to find them
My otos are fine and so are my neons. People often forget theat high c02 is less important than good oxygen levels

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2011, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
Its not a lot of c02. My rcs are breeding. Do you think they would if levels were too high? If my mind serves me right shrimp are less tolerable to c02 than fishies yet mine appear happy and energetic. Two females are berried and the males are going nuts to find them
My otos are fine and so are my neons. People often forget theat high c02 is less important than good oxygen levels
I never let my drop checker get lighter than green. I can grow anything and everything I grow does so way too fast. I cannot imagine why anyone would want to have a yellow DC? Maybe your DC is off. Did you use 4 deg KH water and how did you make it?

My experience with CO2 is that when you go over about 25 ppm, There is an effect on fish behavior. They may not be at the surface gasping for air but their activity slows and they show less reproductive behavior. This happens even with good aeration.

But if you have been doing this for some time (say over a year) and things are working out fine then go for it! and give frequent reports on how you are doing!

If you play with chemicals you should know some chemisty.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2011, 10:53 PM
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two months strong after a tank nuke. ( my son yanked the needle valve wide open)
anyways i've been doing this for two months. mostly in an effort to restart the growth i lost. i lost 80% of my plant mass to algae and disease because i stopped caring for about 2 weeks. so its been a slow regrow process.
that being said i didn't change things when i put fishies in. they are all doing fine. there is no behavioral difference from lights out to lights on period. shrimp are more active at night. my oto's take about 3-5 union breaks a day and my neons flit about the tank regularly, a lot of the time they don't school anymore due to no predation but if there is a loud noise or bump they jump together quickly.

and for the record. BBA can and will still grow even with high c02 levels. im a believer that there is another factor concerning its growth.

im also finally getting good coloration out of my rotala colorata which never happened when i used to keep my dc green. my wisteria has exploded. my crypt wendtii and red variants grow quite lush and full of color. and my ludwigia repens broadleaf has the biggest leaves i have yet produced. so im not saying you can't grow without these levels but i have noticed a difference in my plants

DC solution came from GLA and tested 4dkh

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