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Seachem's pH 7.0 Neutral Regulator works well enough,
but the reason most planted tank keepers don't use it
is because is adds a lot more Phosphates to your tank
water then your plants may be able to absorb, which
could in turn encourage an algae bloom. this is why
most here use common baking soda to moderate pH.
so I would only advise using that Sechem product if
your tank was low light, and did not already have very
a very high phosphate reading.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The reason I asked about the alkaline buffer is because it is phosphate free. I have tried baking soda and haven't been happy with it. Say I start with a ph of about 7, add co2 at 1 bubble per second. What should I aim for when adding the baking soda to keep it at or around 7.

Is it ok to keep my co2 on all the time? I've been told both yes and no. How can i prevent a stressful drop in ph during the night when my lights are off.

Also, how long should I have my lights on/off. I've also got mixed answers on this.
 

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Over_stocked.

Pay attention. Inject CO2. Forget about what the pH is. pH changes caused by CO2 do no harm to fish. You try and hold a certain pH when injecting CO2 you will have very hard water.

For example. You have this crazy idea that you need a pH of 7.0 That means you would have to add baking soda to the water to get it to 8.0 and then use CO2 to bring it back down to 7.0

That would give you a KH of around 6-7°. And that's a bit high if you want to breed the Rams.

Read the water chemistry section of my Guide. Also check out www.theplantedtankFAQ.com
 

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CO2 and lights

I don’t like to waste and if I say to my “green” friends that I pump CO2 that is waste, they will be mad.
The goal is to have enough CO2 when light coming on and coming off.
My system is control by a solenoid valve on simple timer. CO2 coming up 1.5 hour before light on and cutting 3/4 hour before light off.

Light 10 hour

How much is your KH?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Over_stocked.

Pay attention. Inject CO2. Forget about what the pH is. pH changes caused by CO2 do no harm to fish. You try and hold a certain pH when injecting CO2 you will have very hard water.

For example. You have this crazy idea that you need a pH of 7.0 That means you would have to add baking soda to the water to get it to 8.0 and then use CO2 to bring it back down to 7.0

That would give you a KH of around 6-7°. And that's a bit high if you want to breed the Rams.

Read the water chemistry section of my Guide. Also check out www.theplantedtankFAQ.com

I have read it, but I've gotten enough conflicting information to kill a horse.

I just re-read it and it is making quite a bit more sense. Thank you.

Problem one: I have one of a few things going on. I have woken up twice in 2 weeks to dead fish. Now, this morning, the ph was at about 6.7, which for the rams isn't horrible, but it's killing neons like it's going out of style. It also killed my flagfish. Now, is it the ph change, or is it the lack of oxygen from co2 running all night, or is it something else that I'm not finding. My kH is around 3-4(that damn chart isn't that easy to read).


problem/question 2: Right now I don't have money for a solenoid, and until I do, I have to either live with turning it off every night/morning or running it 24/7. The major question here--if I should leave it on 24/7, should I set up an air pump on a timer to gas off some of the co2 during the dark hours? Can harm be done by having the lights on too long?


I'm sorry, I feel like I'm beating a dead horse. I just insist on doing this right, and it seems the more I read, the more info I get that doesn't match up. I'm going to re-read rex's full guide, but if someone could address those topics that I just asked even briefly.


I have soft water, so I have to add baking soda to maintain the 3-4 in KH. Rex, if I am correct, 1 teaspon of baking soda will raise KH 4 degrees in 13 gallons. So, say I have a kh of about 1.3 in a 29 gallon tank, I should add about 2 teaspoons for the whole tank, or around 1 for my water changes?

Could I have killed my fish by moving it too quickly?
 

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I don’t like to waste and if I say to my “green” friends that I pump CO2 that is waste, they will be mad.
trust me, as someone with a lot of "green" friends, they won't care a bit.
green people don't stop drinking beer because fermentation makes Co2,
and they don't stop eating dairy because cows fart Co2 all day long,
or want to kill off most of the human race for exhaling too much.

green people fight against careless and excessive Co2 emission sources,
or against Co2 emissions that can easily be reclaimed for useful purposes.
 

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Problem one: I have one of a few things going on. I have woken up twice in 2 weeks to dead fish. Now, this morning, the ph was at about 6.7, which for the rams isn't horrible, but it's killing neons like it's going out of style. It also killed my flagfish. Now, is it the ph change, or is it the lack of oxygen from co2 running all night, or is it something else that I'm not finding. My kH is around 3-4(that damn chart isn't that easy to read).


problem/question 2: Right now I don't have money for a solenoid, and until I do, I have to either live with turning it off every night/morning or running it 24/7. The major question here--if I should leave it on 24/7, should I set up an air pump on a timer to gas off some of the co2 during the dark hours? Can harm be done by having the lights on too long?

To problem one:
If your PH go from 7 to 6.7, leave everything as is, CO2 is not the problem.
CO2 do not displace oxygen from water.

for oxygenation and keep the quality of your water You need 3 to 5 time the volume of filtration by hour of your aqua. I talk here in reel GPH, not wat is wrote on your filter box (represent filter with no media) I beleive you can divide those number by 2 or 3 to give you the real deal.

To problem two: people leave their lights between 8 to 12 hours. More or less will have probably some impact on the life in your aqua. bad plant growt, stress fish, algae ....
 

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Oh man. I can't say this strongly enough.

pH changes caused by CO2 do not harm fish. Period. Stop. End of story.

If the fish are dying of something it's not pH change.

I have run CO2 all night (and still do on one tank) and I don't lose fish. I have the tanks set up so that I can maintain 25-30 ppm of CO2 all the time.

Neons die easily. How long have you had them?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
To problem one:
If your PH go from 7 to 6.7, leave everything as is, CO2 is not the problem.
CO2 do not displace oxygen from water.

for oxygenation and keep the quality of your water You need 3 to 5 time the volume of filtration by hour of your aqua. I talk here in reel GPH, not wat is wrote on your filter box (represent filter with no media) I beleive you can divide those number by 2 or 3 to give you the real deal.

To problem two: people leave their lights between 8 to 12 hours. More or less will have probably some impact on the life in your aqua. bad plant growt, stress fish, algae ....
I currently have nearly 25x filtration(according to what the labels say). That is plenty of filtration. And no, the currents aren't too strong for my fish. i've diverted the magnum 350 through 5 outputs to help keep the surface of the substrate clean.

It is going from around 7 to about 6 during the night.
 

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following...

Well, you got good filtration, good CO2 (good change of PH)

And, as Rex said in a really discreet maneer

< The problem is not the CO2>

In my case I got some Innesi and Cardinalis neon for over 3 years and they even survive an overdose of co2, one dye lately, I beleive eating a litle spec of acid boric that was not diluted that I ad to my thank.
I kill the poor thing
:proud:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The problem has been solved.

My apartment complex replaced all of the water heaters, water softners, and supply lines to my building (large building, don't even go on the side where they tunneled int he lines.)

There are two water heaters that supply my unit and two water softeners. This changed my water chemistry drasticly and because I hadn't tested my tap water in a while, I paid the price.

I'll have to test every time for a while untill the new system stabilizes out.

It cost me all but one bolivian ram, all of my neon tetra's. I am left with 5 guppies, one bolivian, and one bn pleco.

What are my new stocking options?

Apistos? If so what species and how many in a 29g?
More bolivians?
Any other small cichlds from CA/SA?

I've re-read rex's guide about 10 times now. It's sinking in.
 
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