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Old 09-22-2009, 01:58 PM   #21
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I agree with capt....the more you swing (left to right), the more acidic or basic you get on the pH level....
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Old 09-22-2009, 02:00 PM   #22
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Yea, last class I took (waaay back when) hydrochloric acid had a ph of near 0.
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Old 09-22-2009, 03:01 PM   #23
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I think what's being meant about the pH of pure, or RO/DI, water is that yes... it *should* be 7.0 by definition, but for all practical purposes it's useless to measure since any slight shift in ion concentration will bugger up the results. Even with highly sensitive electronic stuff, any residue left on the probe, in the test tube, on the surface of the water... anything... can skew the results one way or another.

With regard to the question about shifting pH due to adding top off... thincat nailed it - you're replacing water that has evaporated with your top off. Everything that gives the water its specific pH value was left behind in the tank. So in effect, by adding top off, you're just putting the tank back to where it started from.

One thing about pH... pH will lower due to large amounts of biological activity. This is why the pH of a tank that's cycling will be lower than normal, and often bounce all over the place. There just a lot of biological stuff going on in there. Same if you overload a tank with fish. And same if you're battling algae or cyano...

Just a hunch, but if you find your source of the cyano/algae issue and get over that hurdle, your pH will probably come back up on its own. And adding stuff to raise your pH may be making the cyano/algae issue worse, as Newfound77951 mentioned. You're kind of in a nasty loop, but maybe you're attacking the wrong end of the loop.

Yeah... your nitrates and phosphates are zero, but they normally are if you have a bad algae issue - the algae/cyano is consuming the stuff as fast as it comes into the tank.

I know this doesn't answer your very original question about how to buffer a tank cheaper, but I have a feeling the wrong end of the dog is being chased in this case.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:02 PM   #24
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That is what I am ultimately trying to fix is the algae problem. My ph has always been a little low (7.9-8.1). Even though the ph has always beeen low, my tank has thrived. EVERY coral in my tank right now is growing like crazy. I just dont' get it. I have two different algae problems, but on the other hand, my corals are going crazy. Go figure. I would like to find a happy medium sometime.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:22 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainAhab View Post
Yea, last class I took (waaay back when) hydrochloric acid had a ph of near 0.
The Capt. is correct as to the 7.0. I should have stated that the water is neutral, but typed in 0 instead. RO/DI water is quite difficult to measure the PH. coming directly out of the unit should read ~5.5PH, and If you let it set then atmospheric CO2 will buffer it back up to neutral or 7.0.
+1 for the Capt.
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Old 09-22-2009, 09:53 PM   #26
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so any ideas on the algae problem?
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Old 09-24-2009, 01:39 PM   #27
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My pH seemed to drop last week a good bit and then I realized that I had moved my power head away from the top of the water. Once I repositioned it to agitate the surface, my pH came back to 8.2. Needed some more O2 in the water.

As for algae, how do you feed? I am battling cyano as well. I made a change in feeding about two weeks ago and am seeing some results. I feed every other day now. Each fish gets maybe 6-7 small pellets each. Cyano is still there, but is probably 1/3 of what it used to be.

My nitrates went to zero and sure enough, some hair algae is showing up. I guess PWC(larger ones now) are the only route to go now unless something eats it. I just got some trochus snails today that will go in.

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Old 09-24-2009, 03:03 PM   #28
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Could be the amount of time that the lights are on that is aiding to the algaes growth. Nitrates are ONE of the things that aid in the growth of algae.. but it is not the ONLY thing. Lights definitely play a big part in algae growth. Photosynthesis. Try shortening your light cycle for a little bit and see if that makes any difference to the amount of algae that grows. Cyano sucks doesn't it... :s Hate that stuff. It is such a PIA.

When you said, "As for algae, how do feed?" What did you mean by that? Do you mean how is they algae in your tank fed? Or how do you feed good algae, like chaeto, calurpa, etc.. My take on it was just that algae grows in light.. lol. Still so, i wasn't sure what you meant by that question, so please clarify.
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Old 09-24-2009, 03:07 PM   #29
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I meant feeding the tank, not the algae. Over feeding as a direct cause of nutrients used by the algae. Haha. That would be funny to see someone purposefully feeding their algae. Maybe something to do to someone you dont like.

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Old 09-24-2009, 04:14 PM   #30
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"My pH seemed to drop last week a good bit and then I realized that I had moved my power head away from the top of the water. Once I repositioned it to agitate the surface, my pH came back to 8.2. Needed some more O2 in the water."
What you did by agitating the surface with the PH was removed CO2 from the water and that helped raise your PH.
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