how much co2 swing is too much? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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how much co2 swing is too much?

Hi,

I have setup a 130 gallon for a week now. The Ph has been 6.5 in the morning and 7.0 at night(before I turn off the lights). Is this too much Ph swing for the fish? (I guess that depends on the fish as well but in general is it too much?)

Also, I have very hard water; 10Kh. At 6.5Ph, it looks like there is 100ppm Co2. Is this bad for the fish?

thanks
cem
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 05:06 PM
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I'm no expert but most of what I have read says not to let the ph change more than .2 in a day. Your's has changed .5 in 1/2 day which seems like alot. Not saying it will kill your fish, just probably better off to reduce the gap in the ph swing.

Mike
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info.

My Ph test kit only measures in 0.5 increments. Do you know of any "precise" Ph kits?

I am not sure if I can reduce the buble rate any further. It is about 1 bubble per sec now but I am afraid if I reduce it further the needle valve may not be stable.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 05:28 PM
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I wouldn't worry about it unless your fishes are showing obvious signs of distress. I think we give fish way less credit than they deserve in the hardiness department. If they were as fragile as we (in the hobby) make them out to be then rivers/lakes would be full of dead fish everytime we had a major rainstorm.

Also, think about fish breeders who induce spawning by doing RO water chages that can be 10° lower in temp, all of which simulates the start of the rainy season for many types of fish.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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Also, when we do 25%-50% water changes in a tank with Co2, I wonder how much the Ph is affected in less than 5 min. My tap water has high Ph 8.5, and the tank is ph7. I think this change may be more detrimental than a gradual change overnight. ??
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 05:32 PM
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there have been several posts lately that have mentioned you should just ignore pH swings caused by co2 all-in-all. Tom Barr mentions the reason for this is that the pH caused by co2 injection is "artificial". Fish are mainly concerned with the pH swings caused by hardness (KH).

Forgot who, but someone on this board mentioned that his/her pH changes by .7 over night. Big change, with no deaths.

Cliff
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 06:06 PM
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I have daily swings of .5-.7, no problem.


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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 07:01 PM
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The Tom Barr and Amano (I think) train of thought says pH swings of any amount due to CO2 being on or off are harmless. If I had a big planted tank full of prize discus though, I'm not sure if I'd want to try it. :\
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hypancistrus
The Tom Barr and Amano (I think) train of thought says pH swings of any amount due to CO2 being on or off are harmless.
That sounds OK, but that could be like saying, "Oh, the pH change is no big deal, it's the massive swing in CO2 ppm that's killing your fish."

IMO these two things cannot be rationally discussed without considering both. And when I've had rapid pH swings, I started killing things. So maybe it wasn't the pH change, and it was the huge change (or increase) in CO2 instead. Either way, it can result in deaths in your tank.

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 09:39 PM
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You really need to get better test kits. I doubt you are getting 100 ppm of CO2 at one bps on a 130 gallon tank. Not with a kH of 10°. Nope. No way. Not going to happen.

If you want accurate get a nice little pH tester. I know that a couple of the sponsors sell them. Or you can get a LaMotte pH test kit but the hardware tester is about the same price.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 10:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfide
Also, when we do 25%-50% water changes in a tank with Co2, I wonder how much the Ph is affected in less than 5 min. My tap water has high Ph 8.5, and the tank is ph7. I think this change may be more detrimental than a gradual change overnight. ??
Doing a 50% water change with tap water in less than 5 min will be detrimental to the health of your fish. Not only because of the change in pH, but because gases might pearl out inside those poor creatures.

A gradual change over night would be going to the other extreme.

I fill my 100 gal tank over the course of 2 to 3 hours, but doing it a little faster would probably not hurt.

Like Rex said... with your tap water pH and kH that high, it's unlikely you get that much CO2 into your water. I have similar water, and with ~2 bubbles per second the pH goes from 7.8 to 7.3. No big deal.

Also, measure pH of tapwater after it has rested a few hours. It might change. Usually it goes up, although in my case, it goes from 8 (tap) to 7.8 after a few hours.


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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 11:02 PM
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It is not the THOUGHTS of Amano and Tom Barr that matters, it is what they HAVE DONE on their tanks. And it is the fact that they have done it on countless tanks that convinced me to do it on mine.

I drain/fill my 100gallon as fast as my python/tap allows. Usually takes about 20 minutes, most of the time is spent on draining since it is a lot slower than filling.


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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 12:17 AM Thread Starter
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I have more questions than my initial question now.

Sounds like everyone has a different way of doing things.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 12:25 AM
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Now that's something we can all agree on!
But I'm like Sha when it comes to water changes. I've occasionally done 80-90% running water changes (drain tank half way then fill and siphon at the same time) over the course of 40 minutes. It's never caused any problems for my fish or shrimp. But this is tap water replacing tap water. so the hardness is basically the same in both.

From what I've read it's the osmotic shock caused by a sudden large change in hardness that's bad for the fish.

—Bill

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 12:29 AM
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Speaking of hardness changes, I have dumped two tablespoons of CaCl2 or CaSO4(dissolves slower) in my 100gallon right after water changes without problems


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