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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2003, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
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I have sofened water so my GH is OK from the tap but KH and PH are off the scale. I'm going to buy DI from the local grocery store because I'm not allowed to instal a RO unit at my 'student/school' home (can i uses an RO system then unhook it and put it back in my bed room? how long dose it take to fill up a 10-20gallon bucket of RO water? befor my house-mates get mad.) With the DI water, can I cut that with my tap water or will the GH then get to low, if I mix down the PH and KH of the tap water to the right levels. I hope i'm making sence.

If I use pure DI and bring up the KH PH with a product called "R/O RIGHT"
will I be lacking nutrients and finally... will a liquid fertilizer give all the micro nutrients I need? :?: :?: :?: :? :?

Long question, Sorry feel free to answer only parts
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2003, 11:11 PM
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I think if the water softener used KCl instead of NaCl you can use the water.

Maybe you could vollunteer to replace the water softener pellets with the more expensive KCl (like $7 vs $6) and skip the RO. Then use CO2 injeciton to lower the pH, if that is really necessary. I've found that in my town, quite a lot of the fish stores have fish acclaimated to our high pH. I do recognize that keeping fish is different that breeding fish so the lower pH might be ciritical.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2003, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
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How much can the pH be lowered by high amounts of CO2?
mine is off the chart of the test strips
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2003, 03:12 AM
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0.8 to 1.0 is the typical amount of lowering of pH I think.

Are you uisng the dipping strips? I hear they are not very reliable, but that may have been because of the range of values they indicate, I don't know.

What chart are you refering to? My AP test kit has a pH chart that goes to 7.6 and a high range ph that goes to 8.8 -- I find it easy to get confused because the incandescent bulbs by the sink make 8.2 look like 8.8. I find that I have to move over to the window and use real daylight to read the colors correctly.

I use DIY CO2 in a 29 gallon tank with HOB filter and one 2 liter gelatine and yeast bottle lasts a month using a DIY vortex reactor, lowering the pH from 8.2 to 7.6.

Check the online suppliers, like drsfostersmith.com and bigalsonline.com for info on flow rates for RO and DI units, they are given in gallons per day as I recall, like 10 or 20. Get some advice on how long the filters last, though, that can get costly.

What is your pH to begin with? Does it change after sitting overnight?
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2003, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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it most likly dose change, but I need to get a more acurate way to test pH and kH because you are right about the strips, I don't realy know what the values are because they don't go high enough.

I don't think using an RO unit that takes a full day is going to work for me because I can't set it up under the sink for good.

once i find out the real values I could use peat to sofen the water
I read that the k from the sofener may be to much for the fish to handle if me water is realy hard to begin with. is that true?

I'v got lost of snow were i live so I'm going to test that tonight
Free water in the winter sounds good!

Thanks for your Ideas!!
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2003, 04:56 PM
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I just tested some rainwater that I had out back, pH 6.6, KH and GH both zero. If I ever get interested in breeding, I may collect rainwater!

I just had a long conversation with a guy that was in the fish store as I was shopping. He raises discus, among other things, and his friend who is just beginning a tank has a rainwater collection set up that has 3 barrels connected for settling out solids. We have so much air pollution here with the refining industry that I would think that one would also need to filter with carbon and chelating agents for heavy metals. You might not have that issue in your area, but the SkepticalAquirist site has some info on how to use rainwater. That might be your best bet.

I don't know the answer about too much K from the softener, but the K will be consumed by plants. I know others have posted that they do it successfully, but you would need to ask around to get any firsthand info, I'm just recalling what I've read.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2003, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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I collected a bucket of snow and when i came back from class the bucket was only 10% full, I thought i would get a little more
But the pH was 6.5 and kH about 2 GH 0 so if I keep filling the bucket It might work as a partial water source
Thanks
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-07-2003, 12:42 AM
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The reason the Ph is high is your KH is high. In order for you to get the Ph lower you will need to lower the Kh. Using Distilled water or R/O water will do that for you. When you get the Kh and Gh down to around 5 dh then you can use the CO2 to lower the Ph. The higher the Kh the more CO2 you will need to lower the Ph to an acidic level. I keep my Ph around 6.8-7.0 using this method.

R/O Right will only raise the GH levels and not the KH. I use this stuff to increase my Gh levels but only once in a while because I do all my water changes with R/O water.

If you use DI or R/O water you will need to replace the macro/micro nutrients because with both of the filtered waters the nutrients are removed. Look in my sig below and you will see what I use to replenish my R/O water. I have been using these products for several months and my plants are doing great.


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