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Old 03-25-2010, 11:26 PM   #1
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Help! Raising pH w/ Baking Soda - What's the Ratio?

I can't find this great article I read that gives the ratio of tsp/s baking soda to gallon of tank water, to raise the tank's pH.

Does anyone here know the ratio?

I'm really struggling with fluctuating pH levels. The tanks will go from 7.6 to 6.0 within 24-48 hours. It's driving me nuts! I know baking soda isn't the perfect solution, but I need something right now to help stabilize the pH levels while I look for a more long term solution (such as crushed coral)

Thank you in advance for any replies
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Old 03-26-2010, 08:14 AM   #2
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Baking soda will only work for a few hours. I'm going to look and see if I can find the article or quote where jsoong talks about using it. While I try to find it, i do have a few questions. What is your tap ph straight from the tap? What is it after sitting in a bucket overnight? Do you have a tight fitting lid on your tank? Do you have lots of surface agitation?
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Old 03-26-2010, 08:41 AM   #3
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In my 20gallon tank I was adding 1/4 teaspoon per 5 gallons to increase the KH by 2 degrees.

Use that formula to adjust for your tank size. For example 1 teaspoon per 20 gallons to increase the KH by 2 degrees. Increase SLOWLY however over a couple days to avoid problems.
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Old 03-28-2010, 02:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfdrookie516 View Post
Baking soda will only work for a few hours. I'm going to look and see if I can find the article or quote where jsoong talks about using it. While I try to find it, i do have a few questions. What is your tap ph straight from the tap? What is it after sitting in a bucket overnight? Do you have a tight fitting lid on your tank? Do you have lots of surface agitation?
Thank you - if you can find the article, let me know. The tap water's pH runs between 7.6 and 7.8 typically. It was the same after I let it sit since I read your reply. I'm not sure what you mean by a tight fitting lid - I have a cover, but it has areas carved out for the filter. It's not a hood cover, if that's what you mean. Well, my 40 gal. tank has a hood cover. The two 10 gal. tanks have the typical covers that come with a Tetra Fin set up. Surface agitation in the ten gallon tanks is only from the filter; I have a bubble wand in each tank. My 40 gal. has a bubble wand too, and gets agitation from the filter. I'm doing a fishless cycle on the 40 gal. so I stuck an extra bubble stone in there just to increase agitation.
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Old 03-28-2010, 02:27 AM   #5
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Increase SLOWLY however over a couple days to avoid problems.
Since I'm doing a fishless cycle, do I still have to add it slowly? Or will adding it quickly also mess with the cycle?
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Old 03-28-2010, 10:11 AM   #6
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now if this has only become a problem while cycling the tank, dont worry with it. ph fluxuation is completely normal while cycling. If your ph is stable out of the tap, something in the tank is causing it to bounce. either the cycle, or the lack of oxygen exchange. i wouldnt go to baking soda just yet
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Old 03-29-2010, 07:41 AM   #7
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Agreed, I didn't know you were cycling. During cycling the bacteria can cause a host of changes. They require a LOT of oxygen when actively multiplying so we recommend high aeration, especially at higher temperatures. I would not bother with the baking soda, but if you are going to add it SLOWLY still applies as the bacteria can be affected by KH swings.
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Old 03-30-2010, 10:35 AM   #8
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This is the article:
Beginner FAQ: Water Chemistry

It is best to know why your tank is unstable before mucking around with doctoring the water. As others had pointed out, pH fluctuates during fishless cycling, so that is not a good baseline.

At a minimum, you should set out some tap water & monitor its pH over 24-48 hrs. That should give a good idea of what your water is like (without all the ammonia/cycling interference.) It would be nice to also do GH & KH to figure out what is going on before doctoring the water.
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