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Old 09-06-2013, 09:47 AM   #1
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High PH

I haven't been checking my ph so I decided to check it this morning when I did my ammo, nitrite and nitrate. Those readings have been spot on maybe a bit high on nitrates but I figured water changes to bring it down no biggy.
So when I checked my ph this morning I got a big shocker it was 8.4. I just did a water change yesterday. Last time I checked my tap water it was 0 ammo, nitrite, and 0nitrate and ph was 7.4. I did check the water straight out of the tap after I saw the 8.4 so it didn't have time to sit and and aerate for 24 hours it was 7.2. Tank stats are 37g tall lots of live plants 2 platys 5 cardinals and lots of fry. All look to be doing very well behavior and respiration normal. Tank temp is high at 82. What did I do? and how do I fix it? The only thing I have added to the tank in the last 2 weeks is prime. No ferts nothing other than regular water changes. Substrate is standard gravel
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Old 09-06-2013, 11:07 AM   #2
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I use tetra ph minus to lower the ph out of my tap.
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Old 09-06-2013, 11:31 AM   #3
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How slow should I use it so as not to stress the fish out and kill them?
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Old 09-06-2013, 11:45 AM   #4
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You can check your tap KH. It is probably high.

The best way to deal with it is to keep fish that like high PH/KH/GH. Cichlids like that.

Usually that's a thing you must check before you put the fish in the tank, but now it's too late.

Tetras like cardinals like low KH/GH values and acidic ph. A way to not use chemicals is to use reverse osmosis water for water changes. It will result to progressively lower your KH values then PH will progressively drop with WCs.
If you don't want to buy reverse osmosis water for each water change, you can buy a reverse osmoser to your tank, but that's a bit expensive.

You can go low cost chemical solution, use ph down, but this is very strong acid, and it can stress fish a lot if not used properly. But I think if you use PH down, it will raise by the time anyway because of the high KH value.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:02 PM   #5
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I do have very hard water. Just in the last 4 hours since I have aerating water I tested and it appears that it is coming out of the tap like that now. I haven't tested in a about a month can tap water have that much of a change? 7.2-8.4 in a month? It just seems like a lot. I feel like I have just made this problem worse. I have been doing a bunch of water changes since my girls started droping fry, because I knew I was overfeeding because of the babies. Well if they don't make it. It looks like I am going with cichlids.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:14 PM   #6
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I just thought about something. What about adding a co2 system? I have heard that it will lower the ph. I don't know if it will do anything for overall TDS because our city it sitting on limestone.
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:21 PM   #7
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Co2 won't help...

My KH value is 2 (very low). Normal PH is 7 in my case. When I add CO2 to my 30g planted tank for 10 hrs/day at 1 bubble/sec, ph drop at 6.6 before I stop it. CO2 lower PH half the day, and that's a little supplement stress for fishs.

If high CO2 lower my PH from 7 to 6.6 at 2dKH, it will probably do very little to nothing in your case.

The best way to lower KH/PH is to use low KH water when WC. I'm sorry to tell you that in hard water it's best to put hard water fishes.

My pressurized CO2 system cost 400$. A water reverse osmoser will cost less than that.
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Old 09-06-2013, 01:27 PM   #8
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If your fish are and have been doing fine then don't worry about it. Most fish can acclimate to your water's ph and a stable ph is much better than trying to adjust it especially with chemicals which can cause problems for the fish.
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:17 AM   #9
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The platies prefer higher pH, possibly not that high, but you aren't all that far off from what they prefer.

It sounds like there's something else going on. Let your tap water sit for 24 hours and see if it elevates. Another possibility is that you have something in your tank that raises pH. For instance, crushed coral substrate will raise pH. Pretty much any coral decoration will raise pH if it's made of natural coral. I have a crushed shell substrate in one of my tanks that elevates pH.
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Old 09-07-2013, 11:36 AM   #10
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There is nothing in the tank that should raise the ph. I think the base of the problem is where our water comes from sits on limestone and we haven't had hardly any rain. So I think that the water isn't getting diluted by freshwater coming into the system. So I think the ph is just steadily rising because of that. But it's just a theory.
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