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Old 11-14-2014, 11:46 AM   #1
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ph and crushed coral / fish safe lotion

So if anyone's seen my other recent thread, catastrophe struck last night when the ph in one of my tanks crashed. I've been keeping fish for a while now and it's never happened. In fact, I've just never had much trouble with ph.
My fish are doing ok now...so far and the ph is back to normal...for now, but I've been doing some research on the situation so that I have something to do other than freak out
I've come across crushed coral and I'm wondering how to use it. Do I just toss a bag in my canister filters and leave it? Or is it only for when there are problems? It seems from what I've read that it just generally helps your water stay buffered? But it also raises ph when it's too low, so if it just keeps going then of course it wouldn't be something to use all the time. If it is something I can just toss in the filters and leave though, does the effect wear off? Does it need to be replaced? And if so, how often?

On a side note, I've been doing so much work with tanks with this ordeal, and it's all cold and dry outside, so my hands are really dry. Just thinking about it now because it hurts to type lol. But I'm afraid to put on lotion in case something happens, like another crash, and I need to shove my hand in the tank and pull out a fish to transfer to Medical (oh I have a whole room for that now lol). Lotions can have some crazy chemicals in them and the last thing I want to do is cause additional problems. Anyway, sorry if I sound crazy - maybe just sleep deprived but IS there some lotion I don't have to worry about using? Or, again, just crazy and don't need to worry about it?
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Old 11-14-2014, 12:17 PM   #2
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What kind of fish are you keeping? Personally, I would not add crushed coral unless you were targeting a fairly high pH. Crushed coral does not raise your pH only when it is low, it raises it unless it is already very high. It essentially dissolves into the water very slowly which will increase KH and pH.
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Old 11-14-2014, 12:57 PM   #3
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I have also been doing some research of crushed coral for PH buffering and raising the PH in a tank using it, i planned on using it in my Mbuna tank but i think ive changed my mind and plan to use white sand and put the coral in the canister filter. But i was wondering how much i would need. Still reading on it, also the KH and Gh play a large role in the overall scheme to, still learning.
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Old 11-14-2014, 03:07 PM   #4
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If you're certain your pH issue resulted from low KH, coral may not be the answer.

If you do have low KH, coral can be helpful in raising that. Raising KH can also raise pH.

Some people stick it in their filter, some in a sock in the tank, some mix it in the substrate if they're certain they won't need to remove it.

How much is inexact. I'd add some in a sock and check KH, and add or remove until you've got the correct KH.

My only experience is adding it to a 29 with a KH of less than 1 degree. I got 1 cup in the filter and 1 cup in a sock in the tank and still didn't get KH up to 3. But it's unusual to have such soft tap water.


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Old 11-14-2014, 03:44 PM   #5
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pH shouldn't crash due to low KH unless you are not doing sufficient weekly water changes. Rather than address the symptoms, you are much better off to address the issue. Water need to be changed out on a regular basis. Depletion of KH resulting in a drop in pH is only one of many different types of elements which are depleted over time. Add crushed coral to the tank will not replace those other elements.
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Old 11-14-2014, 08:07 PM   #6
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I have had a sudden PH crash when my water company decided to change how they did thinks. They usually fill it full of lime and suddenly they stopped doing that. I have a ton of buffers in all my tanks now and the PH stays around 7.6. My KH and GH are high but it doesn't cause any problems for my mollies, neons, guppies, and Beta. My invertebrates seem to love it. You can add seashells, limestone, oyster shells, or coral to help keep it steady. You can put it in the filter, hang it from the filter under the out take, or put it in the tank. I have a lot of all of those in my tanks.
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Old 11-14-2014, 10:30 PM   #7
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ph and crushed coral / fish safe lotion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wy Renegade View Post
pH shouldn't crash due to low KH unless you are not doing sufficient weekly water changes. Rather than address the symptoms, you are much better off to address the issue. Water need to be changed out on a regular basis. Depletion of KH resulting in a drop in pH is only one of many different types of elements which are depleted over time. Add crushed coral to the tank will not replace those other elements.

Low KH absolutely results in pH crashes if it's low enough. Here in the rainy Pacific Northwest many of us have a KH of 1 degree or less. Practically distilled out of the tap. And soooo .... PH crashes, often even with daily water changes.

KH = ability to buffer acids. No buffering capacity = acidic tank.


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Old 11-14-2014, 10:44 PM   #8
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Regarding lotion ... I've stuck my hands in the tank often with unscented lotion that's fairly low in freaky chemicals. Cerave is my fave.

But if you want to be 1000% sure you can look up the ingredients. I think there's a site ... Pesticide action coalition? Something like that. I've actually used it to check chemicals in lotion and stuff because I have allergies to some chemicals. They say what's toxic to fish. Beautypedia.com discusses lotion ingredients too but doesn't have fish specific info.

A lot of the "natural" ones could be worse for fish, than an unscented normal one, as they have so many essential oils and fragrances.


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