First time I've tested my water - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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First time I've tested my water

I am just about to cycle my first planted tank, having kept tropical fish for a few years I want to take my hobby to the next level and also more seriously.

I have just tested my tap water parameters and can't work out what to do. It's the first time I've tested them in my new house, and it all seems rather high.

PH - 8.2
KH - 11.2 (200 ppm)
GH - 10.6 (190 ppm)

I'll be getting pressurised CO2 soon and from what I've read if I use CO2 at 50 ppm in the tank it will reduce my PH to my desired 6.8 however to keep fish this is probably much too high.

I'm not one for using too many chemicals and so wouldn't want to use a PH down product so is my only option to halve the KH by using a half RO and half tap water mix then use CO2 at 25-30ppm to get the desired PH? Or would it be better to use 100% RO water with some buffering product

If I use the half/half method what happens after a 50% water change? Surely my PH will shoot right up again and all my params will fluctuate for a while.

Or am I just plucking a PH of 6.8 out of the air as an unrealistic challenge?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 08:50 PM
 
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First time I've tested my water

Grab some RO and mix it with your tap water 50/50 - Just a couple of cups each. Test again. If the results are good - Bob's your uncle!

I do this and I just mix the replacement water before water changes.

Kathy
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 09:28 PM
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baby2boy --> actually, that's not too bad. If you're planning on adding Co2 (as most everyone here will recommend), the pH will go down closer to 7.0-7.2. My water parameters are:
kh=10
gh ~ 11
ph=7.2 (with Co2) -- without Co2 its more like 7.8

Don't worry about it -- if you want to bring down the hardness, do what the previous poster said and mix some R/O or bottled water in there. Good luck!

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 09:47 PM
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Also, let your tap water sit overnight and re-test. You might be surprised by what you discover.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 09:58 PM
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OK, then I second it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by baby2boy
I have just tested my tap water parameters and can't work out what to do. It's the first time I've tested them in my new house, and it all seems rather high...
I would also recommend letting some tap water sit out for a few hours and see if those parameters change.
My tap comes out at a pH of around 6.8-7, with a KH of 4.5 or so, but wait 2 or 3 hours and the pH shoots way up, to around 7.8-8. My PO4 doesn't seem to be higher that <1 ppm and doesn't seem to change over time, and I don't see any measurable NO's, but I do have chloramines, which I treat with Prime.


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Last edited by jhoetzl; 03-16-2005 at 09:58 PM. Reason: Hoffboy beat me to it...
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-17-2005, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baby2boy
...if I use CO2 at 50 ppm in the tank it will reduce my PH to my desired 6.8 however to keep fish this is probably much too high.

Or am I just plucking a PH of 6.8 out of the air as an unrealistic challenge?
I have a KH of around 13 (still in the process of discovering that one - see this thread ) and my pH gets as low as 6.8 just before the photoperiod (6.9 after).
This means a relatively high CO2 level of around 50+. Currently I have one Otocinclus sp. and five Caridina japonica in the tank, showing no signs of discomfort. I think you can maintain a CO2 level of 50 if you go easy on the bioload.... I might find problems if I try and put too many fish in there at a later date (tank is 80 litres).


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