New Water Supply - Crazy Water Parameters - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-05-2013, 06:41 PM Thread Starter
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New Water Supply - Crazy Water Parameters

I've had a small fish tank for 25 years and am having my first large tank built for me. I've always tested for pH, Amonia, Nitrite and Nitrite but just tested for kH and gH for the first time. I just moved to a new house and the new water is a much higher pH than my old place.

My new tap water is as follows:

pH: 8.4
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
dGH: 0 (API test kit can't measure low enough so I'll say 0)

I know it's best to leave things as they are for the most part but I'm worried about the kH and gH. kH is so high and gH is so low. Should I be worried? Do I need to add anything like Epsom salts in order to insure that there are trace minerals for the plants?

Btw, my new tank will have pressurized CO2 so I know that should help with the pH and kH, right?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-05-2013, 07:14 PM
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Are you letting the water sit before testing?
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-05-2013, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Lamar View Post
Are you letting the water sit before testing?
No, but I have a well-established 29 gallon that tests the same as the tap water (actually kH was slightly higher).
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-07-2013, 03:27 AM
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Low to no GH suggests that BOTH calcium and magnesium are missing.
Do not just dose Epsom salt, it is only magnesium.

Get a complete GH booster, such as Seachem Equilibrium. It has calcium and magnesium in balanced amounts. It also has potassium. If you look into GH boosters beware of some that contain sodium chloride. This does not belong in a fresh water tank.

It will be very difficult to keep the pH low when the KH is so high. Best way to handle this is to add more GH booster and keep hard water fish.

Other best way is to dilute the high KH water with reverse osmosis until the KH is low enough that the pH will be stable in the range for the fish you want to keep. Then add GH booster to the right level for those fish.

Here is how I set up the water:
1) Set the GH to suit the fish.
2) Set the KH equal (plus or minus a few degrees) to the GH.
3) Let the pH do what it wants. If I am keeping black water fish, add peat moss.
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