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Old 02-28-2005, 05:36 PM   #1
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help with pH plz

well i added live rock last tuesday and there has been no change in any other parameters besides pH. I have been adding seachems pH buffer but it will rise for a while then by the next day it is back down to around 7.9-8.0, but the pH out of the faucet is around 8.3. i've noticed that after i mix it up and have it going for a few days it drops to like 7.8-7.9 i am using oceanic salt at this time and have no idea why i can't maintain pH at a good level. can someone help me? i think i ready somewhere that alk sometimes affects pH or makes it unstable, is this true? also what is alkalinity and if i get a test kit for it what parameters should i be testing for?

also i have plenty of circulation and i dont have the tops on
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Old 02-28-2005, 06:22 PM   #2
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I have read about low ph with oceanic salt. I personally use it and my ph is constant around 8.2. Are you testing the ph at the same time each day?
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Old 02-28-2005, 06:47 PM   #3
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I also use oceanic, and it's improved my water parameters (ph, Alk, Calcium) since switching from Instant Ocean.

You should definitely be testing alkalinity and pH. I'm not sure why you felt the need to add Seachem pH buffer. Alkalinity is what basically buffers your water.
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Old 02-28-2005, 06:58 PM   #4
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I had low pH with Oceanic salt and switched to Kent. Problem solved for me.

What is alkalinity? Basically it a measure of the buffering capacity of your salt water mix. For more info than you care to read check this article...
http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issu.../chemistry.htm

BUT, I suggest you definitely read the third article in that series, The Relationship Between Alkalinity and pH by RANDY HOLMES-FARLEY.

This should start to show you that you have a chemical imbalance somewhere.

How often are you doing a PWC and what percent of volume are you changing?

IME pH out of the faucet will normally fall if left alone for a day. I only use RO/DI water now, both for top off and water changes.

BTW, whose test kit are you using? How old is the kit?
What time of day are testing?
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Old 02-28-2005, 07:24 PM   #5
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i test early morning and throughout the day and at night. i use the cheap test kit, aquarium pharmaceuticals, but our water here is pretty good compared to many places and my lfs use to use ro/di water when he lived in chicago but hasn't since he moved here quite a while ago, and he has a lot of reef tanks setup. he also uses the same salt. i have only done one PWC since setup. It has been setup near a month and i put the live rock in last tuesday and put 2 percs in a day and a half ago. all other parameters are fine but im starting to get a reading for ammonia. i have water running for a water change and am comtemplating doing so but my lfs said to wait a bit before i do so... what do you guys think?
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Old 03-01-2005, 12:24 AM   #6
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What is the ammonia reading?
Let's get back to the basics with a full descriptions of your setup. Tank size, all equipment, lighting, substrate, livestock.

Did you cycle your tank for the past month?
What method did you use?
Are you sure the cycle is complete?
pH can be all over the place during the cycle.

What are the water parameters in your tank; pH, Ammonia, Nitrite,Nitrate, Calcium, Magnesium, Alkalinity
Mix a batch of water, let it sit 24 hours with a ph and heater and then test it. Post the water parameters for that too.

Check your pH late in the day after the lights have been on for a few hours.

You might only be seeing normal startup variations, but adding the clowns and getting a ammoia spike should not happen.
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Old 03-01-2005, 05:18 AM   #7
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well i have a 75 gal tank with a 150 gal pro clear aquatics wet/dry with built in skimmer, NO flourescents, caribsea aragonite as subsrate, and two percs that i added on saturday afternoon. i have had my tank running for about a month but just added live rock last tuesday, 100% cured 20#. i let that run and had no change in parameters... all were zero'd out. then i added the percs sat. everything went well they acclimated nicely and were very friendly. well sunday came and everything still tested out 0. now monday morning i tested and i noticed a tad of ammonia, in between 0-.1 . im gonna do a minor water change and see how it goes, i've noticed that the fish are moving much slower so if worse comes to worse i'll take them back to my lfs and let them chill til i get my tank at a stable level.
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Old 03-01-2005, 05:19 AM   #8
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oh yea i never went through the cycle because my lfs said that i didn't need to since the live rock already had the bacteria i needed.
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Old 03-01-2005, 10:37 AM   #9
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If you had used enough Live rock, you may have been able to skip the cycling process...but 20lbs in a 75 gallon is nothing. You need 75-150lbs of LR for a 75gallon tank, if the rock is going to be your primary filtration.

You are definitely seeing the tank start to cycle. I'd return the clowns and cycle properly.
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Old 03-02-2005, 12:15 AM   #10
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Yep, that's the problem. Not enough rock for a bio filter and you didn't cycle your wet/dry so there's not enough bacteria there yet. Return the fish and cycle the tank. Check out
How to cycle your tank with out the use of fish
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