First GH/KH test - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-29-2014, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
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First GH/KH test

I just did the first test on GH/KH

The results are:

GH 11 drops 196.pppm

KH 7 drops 125.3ppm

Can someone tell me if there is a thread that explains what all this means?

I have a 20gal tank which has 2 bettas, nerites, lots of plants and string algae started a few days ago.

Also, I am trying to determine if my well water would be safe for my tanks. Would this test determine that? My landlord says the water is safe for fish, but with the orange color in the bathtub, and having to use iron out to keep it clean, I am not sure. I would be really nice to not have to buy spring water.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 12:53 AM
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GH is a test for calcium and magnesium. Plants and fish need both these minerals. GH of 11 drops = 11 German degrees of hardness, this is fairly hard water.

KH is a test for carbonates. This acts like a buffer to stabilize the pH. High KH generally means a high pH that is difficult to change. Low KH generally (but not always) means a low pH that is easy to change. Other things in the water can control the pH when the KH is low. 7 drops = 7 German degrees of hardness. This is hard enough that the pH will be pretty stable, and probably above 7.0.

This water would be good for most live bearers, many Rainbow fish and other hard water fish, and is just at the edge of the range for certain soft water fish that have been raised in captivity for so long that they no longer need the soft water their ancestor's came from. If you wanted to keep soft water fish you might blend this water with reverse osmosis to dilute some of the GH and KH.

Red coloring on the porcelain fixtures is often from iron, but can be from other things. 2 ways to tell if it is OK for fish:
1) Put some fish in it and see.
2) Get a more complete report from a professional. This might lead to the purchase of a filter targeting the 'contaminants'.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-30-2014, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diana View Post
GH is a test for calcium and magnesium. Plants and fish need both these minerals. GH of 11 drops = 11 German degrees of hardness, this is fairly hard water.

KH is a test for carbonates. This acts like a buffer to stabilize the pH. High KH generally means a high pH that is difficult to change. Low KH generally (but not always) means a low pH that is easy to change. Other things in the water can control the pH when the KH is low. 7 drops = 7 German degrees of hardness. This is hard enough that the pH will be pretty stable, and probably above 7.0.

This water would be good for most live bearers, many Rainbow fish and other hard water fish, and is just at the edge of the range for certain soft water fish that have been raised in captivity for so long that they no longer need the soft water their ancestor's came from. If you wanted to keep soft water fish you might blend this water with reverse osmosis to dilute some of the GH and KH.

Red coloring on the porcelain fixtures is often from iron, but can be from other things. 2 ways to tell if it is OK for fish:
1) Put some fish in it and see.
2) Get a more complete report from a professional. This might lead to the purchase of a filter targeting the 'contaminants'.
Thanks so much for your reply. The PH is 8. What am concerned about are the plants (still in the trial/error stages - lol). I was told the GH should be lower (like 4-6 with livestock). Do I need to lower this somehow to have better success with my plants?
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