Just getting some feedback on PH - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 03:19 PM Thread Starter
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Just getting some feedback on PH

I have started my first high tech planted tank. It is a 40g breeder. I am currently working through a fishless cycle. I have entered the second phase in which I am working through the nitrites.

My concern is the PH. It's PH before any CO2 is added is around 6.8 which when I start to add CO2 to the mix I believe will drop the PH to an unacceptable level. I added some plants last night and turned on the PH. My PH dropped to around 6.2 and I was seeing some pearling off a few of the plants I had added.

My thoughts are to add a few small bags of crushed coral to my filter to bring the PH up.

I am simply making sure that is a reasonable and safe method of raising PH without adverse effects to the plants and down the road to the shrimp I would like to have in the tank. My goal is to have the PH to be around 6.5 with PH and coming back up to around 7.5 during the unlit periods of the day.

I appreciate any advice one can give if there is a better method to handling this issue.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 03:22 PM
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I wouldnt mess with your ph, its really not that low. Why is your goal to have a ph between 7.5 and 6.5? Most shrimp prefer ph at or below where you are now. It wont hurt the plants any either.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nilocg View Post
I wouldnt mess with your ph, its really not that low. Why is your goal to have a ph between 7.5 and 6.5? Most shrimp prefer ph at or below where you are now. It wont hurt the plants any either.
I had just read that shrimp liked a target of 6.5 and I thought I was to take CO2 down one full point of PH as a general rule. So from 6.8 to 5.8 and from what I heard below 6 PH the bacteria that handle ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates begin to stall.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 04:44 PM
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I guess it also depends on the type of shrimp, but CRS and RCS will do perfectly fine in a lower Ph. Some of the most sensitive shrimp that people keep benefit from a ph in the 5's.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-09-2015, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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Nilocg,

I appreciate the feedback. I guess I will work with it as it is and see how it goes. I appreciate it and also thank you again for the ferts. You are helping make having a planted tank easier.

Hope you have a great day.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2015, 12:38 AM
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pH is not a stand alone value.
Adjust the minerals in the water, and the pH can change.

If you want to alter the pH, you are on the right track with the coral sand, limestone or similar material. But add it to the prep water so that when you do a water change there will not be a swing in conditions in the tank.

You can do this while the bacteria are still growing, see what GH, KH and pH do when you add the coral sand, and how long it takes. The bacteria will prefer more minerals, harder water, and are just fine with you altering things while they are growing.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2015, 05:37 AM
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The problem with adding it to the prep water, is that the pH will be 7+ and the carbonate won't dissolve at any useful rate. One way to work around that issue is to dissolve CO2 into the prep water to make it more acidic, which will help to dissolve the carbonates faster. A mixture of Sodium/Potassium Bicarbonate will be easier.

To be honest, I don't see the small drop in carbonate hardness being any issue. There'll be a small drop in CO2 that matches the drop in carbonate hardness, but if you're that worried, just do the water change with lights out and wait for the CO2 level to return to wanted value before turning the lights on.

If you're aiming for CO2 @ 30ppm with pH 6.5, you only need 2dKH (36ppm carbonates).

Last edited by Audionut; 07-10-2015 at 05:49 AM. Reason: Forgot about bicarbonates.
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