Low PH and KH - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2020, 03:21 AM Thread Starter
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Question Low PH and KH

Hi, this is my first planted tank. It's a 7 gallon cube. My KH has dropped to 1 GH is 166 according to API test. I did a 25% water change and have the same result. Out of the tap the PH is 7 and the GH and KH max out the API test, it never changes color with and I didn't want to waste solution. I don't have a liquid PH test yet, but the seachem PH alert reads the lowest (5.3 i think) and the API test strip reads the lowest (6.0 I think). I have a drop checker and the solution started out blue but now it stays green. I'll try to provide as much additional info as I can.

Substrate: Fluval Stratum
Lighting: Fluval Nano 7 hours of light
Ferts: Seachem plant dosing schedule
CO2: Fluval 45g. I set this at the same time every day an hour before light and off an hour before dark. 1 bubble per 2 second. I work from home and monitor throughout the day.
Decor: small piece of driftwood and Indian almond leaf

The plants are doing really well. Crypts melted but suddenly had new growth. Getting some pearling as well.

I don't want to start adding stuff to target a specific PH necessarily, but I do have a betta who is still doing well, building bubble nests and patrolling the territory. I don't want to hurt my betta but I'm not sure what to do. I have some seachem acid and alkaline buffer on the way just in case.

I'm not sure what to do. Any help is greatly appreciated!
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-07-2020, 04:24 PM
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You are using an active substrate which is designed to lower your Kh and Ph so dont add anything that will mess with your ph. A Kh of 1 is fine with an active substrate. I highly suggest going to Dennis Wong's 2hr Aquarist website and read the entire section on CO2, especially the article on using active substrates with Co2. It will ease your concerns.

I assume your hardness of 166 is in ppm, which is 9dgh, which is fine. What you should do? Read the entire website mentioned above; you are doing fine.

On your bubble rate it seems low, however I personally have never set up a tank that small so i dont know for sure. I would buy a Ph pen versus a test kit and learn about the 1 degree drop in Ph method of measuring co2.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-11-2020, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the info! I had never saw that site before. Extremely educational and eased my concerns. I'm just going to keep doing weekly water changes and sticking to the routine. If the plants and the betta are happy then I'm happy, and I'm not going to try to start adding stuff to alter the PH and KH.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-13-2020, 02:15 AM Thread Starter
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Betta Patrol

This is what it's looking like so far. My first aquascape.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-13-2020, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffreyD View Post
This is what it's looking like so far. My first aquascape.
You are on your way. Next stop is likely a bigger tank 🙂.
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