Just how alkaline is my water?! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
Stu
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Post Just how alkaline is my water?!

Since running my CO2, I have constantly checked pH and KH, morning and night to work out the levels I have in my tank.

This has resulted in me burning through 2 KH kits, and I'm now on my third. (pH result derived from pH meter).

Each time I have bought a different KH kit, and each time I get different results!

First I had the Tetra brand........ gave a KH of 11.2 - 11.5
Then I had the Hagen brand...... gave a KH of 10.0 - 10.5
Now I have the Salifert brand.... gives a KH of 13.5

With my pH of 6.83, I could theoretically have a CO2 level anywhere from 41.628ppm to 56.198ppm!

Is there a way to test the accuracy of KH kits? Does anyone have any recommendations on which one I should place most trust in?

As a side note.... I know they all use a bicarbonate indicator at specific molar solutions (to give 1dGH per drop ratio, or 10mg/l CaCO3 per 1 drop ratio) as the reagent.... is there anywhere I could get hold of a bulk supply of this reagent to save me a bit of cash, as with my KH as high as it is, I tend to use quite a few drops!


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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 07:57 PM
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Stu I believe you can boil water to remove all of the carbonate hardness, then ad a buffer to raise it to a known level. that should get you close.


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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 08:03 PM
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Well, I guess the one nice thing about VERY soft water is that I don't waste test chemicals! I'm going to start dosing for buffering this week, so that is about to change.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 08:10 PM
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Doesnt the salifert test allow a low res method. I have a KH kit from salifert. I dont know if they changed it but I thought you could do a 2 ml test as well. Taking this beyond salifert.....why cant you do it with the hagen kit as well. Add 2.5ml to the test vial. each drop will count as 20 ppm instead of 10. It will be very general....but you dont always need an exact.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 150EH
Stu I believe you can boil water to remove all of the carbonate hardness, then ad a buffer to raise it to a known level. that should get you close.
I'm totally not thinking straight tonight. Slightly better than boiled water, I can buffer up a sample of distilled water right?

The salifert just tells you basic instructions, nothing about more or less accurate results, but you are right.... if I halve the amount of water, the drop equivalent doubles.... 2 dGH / drop for Tetra & Salifert, 20mg/l / drop for Hagen.

The thing is, I always like to know as accurately as possible with test kits so I don't mind using this many drops if I can obtain a bulk supply of the solution.


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