hard water - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 03:19 PM Thread Starter
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hard water

my tanks have very hard water im using water conditioner and doing partial changes. and i just cant get it to soften up any ideas.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 04:08 PM
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well from personal exp those water softening pillows do not work.

second

every time you do a water change your just adding more hard water.

third

if you are looking for a sure proof way to soften your water you would have to go either RO or DI water you can get DI from most stores and you would just have to mix them in the appropriate ration to obtain the required results
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 04:12 PM
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Hard water can't be made into soft water without using RO/DI water for water changes, or mixing RO/DI water with tap water to get the hardness you want. Water hardness is due mostly to calcium and magnesium in the water (GH), or carbonates in the water (KH). You have to remove some of those ions to soften the water appreciably.

Some people use peat to improve hard water, but that also gives yellowish colored water. If that is ok, you could put peat or peat granules in your filter and improve the hardness somewhat.

Now, why do you feel a need to soften the water?

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 04:19 PM
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I've tried the softener pillows, conditioners, all that. The only thing that really worked and is still working is changing my substrate to ADA AquaSoil. Now, I don't know hard your water is compared to mine. My GH and KH were 10 to 11 drops and now it is down to 4 or 5 drops (drop checker) and my pH is now a steady 6.8 to 7.0 consistantly.

How hard is your water?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 05:00 PM Thread Starter
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i have a quick dip aquarium multi test kit and and for total hardness(gh) it has 0-74 as very soft 75-149 has soft 150-299 as hard and 300 and up as very hard and it is a definate very hard color
my ph is at 7.2
i have had the tank set up for about a month and have pre rinsed eco complete for a substrate but no plants yet tomorrow is payday!
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dthb4438 View Post
I've tried the softener pillows, conditioners, all that. The only thing that really worked and is still working is changing my substrate to ADA AquaSoil. Now, I don't know hard your water is compared to mine. My GH and KH were 10 to 11 drops and now it is down to 4 or 5 drops (drop checker) and my pH is now a steady 6.8 to 7.0 consistantly.
Aquasoil lowered my KH similar to what you saw, from about 10/11 to about 3.5. However, my GH is unchanged at 13. Are you sure your's dropped? Also, my pH dropped from 8.2 to 7.4
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 11:02 PM
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The only way to really soften water is to use an Reverse Osmosis unit.
Adding peat or peat type substrates will help-some, peat is usually for
the organics not its softening ability.
The substrates that temporarily reduce some readings is just seasonal,
temporary.

Using peat to soften water is to expensive for the amount of profit.

Craig

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 12:18 AM
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are you keeping discus or trying to breed soft water fish? if not soft water is probably not too necessary.

if u really want soft water do what the others have said!
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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i keep loosing my neons and thats the only thing that is really off that i could think of
i have zebra danios, cherry barbs,blood fin tetras and they are doing fine
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 02:28 AM
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sad to say it dude, but in my experience even with perfect water neons and cardinals can still drop like flies . Most of those fish are imported from SE asia where they are bred on farms and kept in lousy conditions. ive gone through maybe 15 neons myself and i only have 4 left. You just have to buy the right batch at the right store.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 03:11 AM Thread Starter
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ok than from what im getting i shouldent worry about the hard ness
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 03:39 AM
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This is good to know. I was wondering about hard water myself, mine is over 10.

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 02:31 PM
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I have 15 neons and my water is off the chart its so hard, trick is as stated above to get a good batch in, talk to you lfs owner ask him/her to hold you a few of them then buy them after they have been there a week or so !
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 04:21 PM
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most fish can deal with hard water or even harder ph than what they originally come from. The trick is stability and acclimation. As long as the fish are able to acclimate to the hardness and higher ph and you keep it stable, the fish should be able to thrive!

you should only worry about the hardness if you are getting wild caught fish that come from specific soft conditions (like wild caught neons) or discus or if you are trying to breed soft water fish. Even then most of these wild caught fish can survive in harder conditions but not discus.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 06:14 PM
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Driftwood will help soften water. I have hard water where Im at also. I use driftwood to help soften the water. It doesn the trick enough for me to happily keep neons fat and healthy.
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