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Old 04-15-2005, 01:24 AM   #1
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Does Driftwood Really lower Ph?

Today I purchased a piece of Malaysian Driftwood that is about a foot tall and a foot wide (9 bucks at PetCo.) in my 55 gal. with a ph of 7.4. It sinks allready. I was wondering if anybody had any luck lowering their ph with driftwood and if so, how big of a piece of what kind of driftwood in how big of tank and how much did it lower your ph? Thanks as always for the good advice.
Please include
1. Type of Driftwood (if known)
2. Size of piece, or how many pieces
3. Size of tank
4. How much did it lower your ph?
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Old 04-15-2005, 02:02 AM   #2
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confirming that it does lower ph, so does peat moss. i have never had driftwood myself
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Old 04-15-2005, 02:13 AM   #3
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it does lower PH
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Old 04-15-2005, 02:17 AM   #4
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Yes, Driftwood does indeed lower pH ... mine has dropped from ~7.9 to 7.5ish
Quote:
1. Type of Driftwood (if known)
Mopani wood
Quote:
2. Size of piece, or how many pieces
Umm ... about medium sized pieces ... and i have 4 or 5 pieces.
Quote:
3. Size of tank
50 US gallons
Quote:
4. How much did it lower your ph?
as i said a pH of ~7.9 to about 7.5ish

Now one thing you have to remember is that you need a significant amount of wood for it to make a MAJOR difference
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Old 04-15-2005, 02:39 AM   #5
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Nope, dont need a major difference, I would really just like to get my 7.4 or 7.5 right around 7.0 or 7.1. Like I said I have malaysian so if anybody knows if this lowers it please chime in. I will update with results in my tank for a few weeks. I have coral which is raising it so they may just cancel each other out.
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Old 04-15-2005, 11:08 AM   #6
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I have driftwood in all my tanks and the pH is still always 7.0, same as it was before the driftwood. I was pretty surprised about that, I guess maybe if I really wanted to lower my pH I would just add more wood, but I wasn't really trying to adjust it in the first place- just really liked the way it looks. If the wood doesn't work out for you maybe you should try the peat.
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Old 04-15-2005, 11:32 AM   #7
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1. Dunno. Pic.
2. ~8"x2.5"
3. 17g system volume
4. 7.0 before, 7.0 after, +/- .2. ~1month.

Other: no visible tannis leached. Heavy CO2 injection has dropped pH ~1 point, which may have something to do with lack of change from driftwood?
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Old 04-15-2005, 12:05 PM   #8
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Here is a pic of my 75g. When it was first set up...ph was @ 7.2. After one week, ph measured @ 7.0. Yes, there is a ton of wood in there but I don't know if it is the reason. I compare this to my 30g and it's almost the same (and it's only one small piece in there). I will be testing later today...it may be lower...

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Old 04-15-2005, 12:06 PM   #9
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Bogwood lowers mine ... I aint sure if this is what use call driftwood .... I dont think it is though
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Old 04-16-2005, 12:17 PM   #10
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In both of my 10 gallon tanks I put two medium to large pieces of driftwood collected from the wild. The tannin leaching is significant. The pH dropped from 8.0 to 7.6 in both tanks. I haven't tested in a couple weeks. If it's dropped more, I will let you know.

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Old 04-17-2005, 02:00 AM   #11
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The tannins are actually tannic acid (thus the reduction in pH) so boiled driftwood that is all prepared may not have as great an effect as an unprepared piece. On the other hand tannins make your water yellowish brown which not everyone loves the look of.

Trade off I guess.
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Old 12-12-2013, 11:08 PM   #12
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Interesting, I have to agree with the last post. My driftwood had no impact on my pH, but I boiled and soaked it a lot before I put it in.
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Old 12-13-2013, 11:50 AM   #13
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It's the tannins that lower the PH Pre soaking and boiling help a lot with new wood. Old wood won't have as much of an effect. Also the type of wood makes a huge difference. A piece of malaysian can turn your water to tea to where a piece of manzanita you can barely tell usually. Generally darker wood is going to give you darker water which will effect your PH more.
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Old 12-13-2013, 07:51 PM   #14
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Not all DW lowers ph but bogwood definitely lowers ph. The tannins that leach from some DW is a major contributor to lowering ph.
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Old 12-14-2013, 09:29 AM   #15
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My woods lower ph even though they no longer leech tannins. I put it it down to the natural breakdown of the wood over time, especially as plecos rasp on it and plants take root on it. Just my theory
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Old 12-14-2013, 09:31 AM   #16
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I just got a piece of Malaysian for my pleco and no visible tannis at all.
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Old 12-14-2013, 11:20 AM   #17
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It depends on the carbonates in your water to start with. PH won't lower significantly if you have really high carbonates as they act as a pH buffer. My tanks have lots of wood in them. My pH is 8.2 with GH of 12-14 and KH 14-16. My pH have remained exactly the same (when tested at same time of day--it does go down a bit by morning in a planted tank) until recently until I started using a small portion of deionized water with each water change.
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Old 12-14-2013, 11:49 AM   #18
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I have 3 medium size pieces, they don't leach tannins so I assume they are not decreasing ph. I guess the bacteria on the wood could have an impact but I think this is outweighed by the bb. My kH may be masking anything I guess.
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Old 12-14-2013, 07:48 PM   #19
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My aquarium wood isn't driftwood per se; I got it out of the back yard from tree trimmings. They do seem to be lowering the PH of my aquarium, however.

Type of wood: One is apple and I think the other is hazelnut.

Number and size of pieces: They are both large. The apple is about 24" long, 12" deep and 18" tall, with the base of the branch being 2" in diameter. The other is slightly smaller: 28" long, 18" tall but 8" deep and with fewer branches overall.

Size of tank: 50 gallon

How much did it lower my Ph: Here's the tricky part. I'm comparing it to the 29 gallon I had before, which had different substrate as well. I added about a gallon of small river rocks to the 50 gallon, as well as Petco aquarium sand along with the driftwood. Everything else was the same between the two. The Ph of the 29 gallon was 8.2ish. The Ph of the 50 gallon is 7.4ish.

I did not boil the wood - I let it sit in water for about two weeks, and then poured boiling water over it a few times.
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Old 12-15-2013, 02:22 AM   #20
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I did not boil the wood - I let it sit in water for about two weeks, and then poured boiling water over it a few times.
Had the wood aged (to dry out the sap) before you soaked it?
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