water question - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-26-2009, 11:54 AM Thread Starter
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water question

hi all, im only new at planted tanks ( im sure youve heard that many times.) just a few questions bout my water, i did a test on my tap water, after leaving it sit over night and air pump going in a bucket, the ph was 7 -7.2, gh 40ppm and kh 30ppm. are these ok? i know the ph is slightly high and the gh/kh are quite low.

I also use diy co2, after making a new batch i measured the ph a day after and it was below 6. big swing in one day! now thats from too much co2 yeah? my rummynose tetras didnt look too happy, how do i stablelise the ph? as i said i use diy co2 with a glass diffuser so its a little hard to control. any suggestions?

I have read that its not really the ph i need to worry bout, more the gh/kh but as this is quite low and surely would drop with co2 aswell? can i use a buffer to harden the water? would it work?
any help would be great guys.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-26-2009, 03:54 PM
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Don't be concerned about the pH. CO2 can't drop the pH enough to harm the fish - they would be dead from suffocation long before the pH drop could concern them.

Plants need calcium and magnesium, so GH shouldn't be too low, and you need to make sure your GH consists of both calcium and magnesium, not just calcium. With your low GH you could just use Seachem Equilibrium to add enough magnesium, or add calcium sulfate or chloride and magnesium sulfate (epsom salts) to get more GH.

We used to believe that KH had to be above some minimum number, but now many people, including me, don't bother with KH at all. Many plants grow much better with low KH, and fish have no problem with low KH.

Neither KH nor GH should change with addition of CO2, but both can drop from the plants consuming the calcium and carbonates in the water, if you don't do regular water changes.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-26-2009, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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thanks hoppy ur a great help. ive mainly keep african cichlids over the years, would the seachem malawi buffer do the same thing? ie up the gh for what i need in my planted tank?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-27-2009, 03:52 AM
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I know nothing about that product, excep what I read here: http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod...awiBuffer.html. It seems to raise the KH and not the GH, but if you keep cichlids what require a high KH then this seems to be designed to provide that.

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