Drop checker goes yellow instantly - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2008, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Drop checker goes yellow instantly

I've been using distilled water in my red sea drop checker. As soon as I add the solution, it goes yellow. Should it do this with distilled water? I don't think there would already be enough CO2 in the water for it to turn yellow.

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2008, 09:16 PM
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You need to use a known carbonate based/distilled water 4dKH solution along with the indicator fluid to use it correctly. It should be blue when you first add the solution to it; green when the CO2 level is OK and yellow when the CO2 level is too high.

You don't use just distilled water, tap water or aquarium water with the indicator solution in a drop checker. You use a known dKH solution. The 4 dKH solution is what many people use plus the indicator fluid.

Some people have tried different known dKH solutions for a particular usage, but 4dKH is the most common.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-03-2008, 04:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Left C View Post
You need to use a known carbonate based/distilled water 4dKH solution along with the indicator fluid to use it correctly. It should be blue when you first add the solution to it; green when the CO2 level is OK and yellow when the CO2 level is too high.

You don't use just distilled water, tap water or aquarium water with the indicator solution in a drop checker. You use a known dKH solution. The 4 dKH solution is what many people use plus the indicator fluid.

Some people have tried different known dKH solutions for a particular usage, but 4dKH is the most common.
Can you explain the difference between indicator solution and 4dkh solution? Im a bit confused about how this works?

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-03-2008, 04:26 PM
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In this context the indicator solution is pH reagent, Bromothymol Blue.

That reagent is added to the 4dKH solution, which is "pure water" with just enough carbonate (baking soda) added to increase the KH to 4 degrees.

If the water isn't 4dKH the whole thing ceases to function as expected.

In the case of distilled/RO/RODI, etc, water it really doesn't have a pH, if it really is "pure" to begin with, which will cause the pH test to register its low point (yellow).
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-03-2008, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by indiboi View Post
In the case of distilled/RO/RODI, etc, water it really doesn't have a pH, if it really is "pure" to begin with, which will cause the pH test to register its low point (yellow).
Not exactly true. All liquids will have a pH of some sort. If the water is pure water, what happens is co2 from the air will react w/ the water to form carbonic acid, making the pH of pure water acidic. pH from distilled water registers around 7 when it's first made, but after exposure to the air it, the pH can get down into the 5ish range. I think that's what you were trying to say, at least with the part of the test to register yellow, with yellow being acidic.


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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-03-2008, 09:24 PM
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Yes, you're right, I didn't quite word that as I should have. In theory pure water has a pH of 7, but in practice it is rarely measurable at 7 because there is no buffering ability, thus as you mentioned atmospheric CO2 will react and drive the pH down.
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