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High PH

Tommy

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I have had my new planted tank running for about a week and a half to two weeks, the PH is on the high side, I measured it last night and it was 7.6. Measured again this morning it is 8.0. Is there anyway to get the PH down? I have not put fish in yet but I am thinking of putting a bit fresh fish or prawn in to start the nitrogen cycle. Amonia is at 0 as is nitrite and nitrate. Thanks :)
 

Tommy

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The plants will 'eat' all the ammonia .nitrite and nitrate.
To reduce pH add some peat, or leaves or RO water.

Thanks Ed I will get some leaves but what kind do I need? Can I just go outside and get some that's come off a tree? or do you need specific leaves? So if the plants are eating the ammonia etc, am I ok to add a few fish? or am I best off just dropping a prawn in? I have some aquaone bio starter to go in. Sorry for all the questions :)
 

Edvet

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Healthy growing plants will contain a lot of bacteria.
Starters don't do much, you can get the same bacteria from the rootsystem of a healthy garden plant, or rinse a working filter in the tank, or throw in some substrate from a healthy tank. No use in spending money there.
A 6 week old healthy tank with lots of growing and healthy plants will be very resilient, just dont add all livestock at once.
Leaves: not green ones but dried ones, oak, beach, etc Or tropical ones like catappa, guave, magnolia
 

Tommy

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Healthy growing plants will contain a lot of bacteria.
Starters don't do much, you can get the same bacteria from the rootsystem of a healthy garden plant, or rinse a working filter in the tank, or throw in some substrate from a healthy tank. No use in spending money there.
A 6 week old healthy tank with lots of growing and healthy plants will be very resilient, just dont add all livestock at once.
Leaves: not green ones but dried ones, oak, beach, etc Or tropical ones like catappa, guave, magnolia

Thanks Ed :)
 

alto

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I like to start planted tanks slowly, allowing plants to root before adding fish - this is especially important if you’re trying to establish a carpet and want to have corydoras - or other substrate active fish ... even large japonica shrimp can be hell on beginning HC carpets

BUT I also start tanks impulsively after acquiring fish I’ve been longing for that I see in a shop (most local shops won’t “hold” fish even prepaid)

Media from another filter is always my preference but failing that Seachem’s Stability seems to work surprisingly well
BUT it’s important to follow the directions (I still do daily water changes both for plants and my paranoia - my impulse buys are the wild caught sensitive sorts of fish :rolleyes: )

Rather than adding a prawn - rather smelly AND a rapid ammonia dump (which can have an inhibitory effect on some of the bacteria you’re hoping to encourage) - just use fish food as if feeding a dozen small tetras, add this alternate days as no one is actually eating the food :)

If you’ve actively growing plants and small fish load relative to water volume (& plant volume), there’s no reason not to add fish or algae crew a few days after plants ... just a bit tense if your plants suddenly melt ... but nowadays you can then just pick up Seachem Stability ;)
 

Tommy

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I like to start planted tanks slowly, allowing plants to root before adding fish - this is especially important if you’re trying to establish a carpet and want to have corydoras - or other substrate active fish ... even large japonica shrimp can be hell on beginning HC carpets

BUT I also start tanks impulsively after acquiring fish I’ve been longing for that I see in a shop (most local shops won’t “hold” fish even prepaid)

Media from another filter is always my preference but failing that Seachem’s Stability seems to work surprisingly well
BUT it’s important to follow the directions (I still do daily water changes both for plants and my paranoia - my impulse buys are the wild caught sensitive sorts of fish :rolleyes: )

Rather than adding a prawn - rather smelly AND a rapid ammonia dump (which can have an inhibitory effect on some of the bacteria you’re hoping to encourage) - just use fish food as if feeding a dozen small tetras, add this alternate days as no one is actually eating the food :)

If you’ve actively growing plants and small fish load relative to water volume (& plant volume), there’s no reason not to add fish or algae crew a few days after plants ... just a bit tense if your plants suddenly melt ... but nowadays you can then just pick up Seachem Stability ;)

Thanks alto I will drop some food in :)
 

Tommy

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Why are you after lowering the pH ? Is it for some specific livestock you plan to put in the tank.

Ive got some rainbows to go in and I am thinking of putting some Moenkausia Costae, I would prefer the PH to be closer to 7.
 

Tommy

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Update on my PH, the pen meter I bought is not accurate, it is showing the PH at 7.8 - 8 but when I check with my API test kit my PH is 7 so I got my LFS to test my water and it is 7. I did calibrate the pen as per instructions. I will be getting my Co2 kit this week and I will be doing a PH profile, should I still use the pen or can you do it with the API test kit? Thanks :)
 

Tommy

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Can''t you calibrate the pen?

I did calibrate Ed using the buffer powder 250ml water @ 25 degrees, I thought it was accurate as it showed 4 as low PH and 6 as high ( I think those were the values ) but the API tests kits are showing a different PH than the pen
 

Siege

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Don’t put any fish food or a prawn in. Assuming you are reasonably heavily planted' he plants will do most of the bio filteration.

Best to get on with your co2 and ignore the testing, calibrate your ph pen for a co2 profile once it is set up.
ignore the usual test kits.
 

Tommy

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Don’t put any fish food or a prawn in. Assuming you are reasonably heavily planted' he plants will do most of the bio filteration.

Best to get on with your co2 and ignore the testing, calibrate your ph pen for a co2 profile once it is set up.
ignore the usual test kits.

The pen was just calibrated a week ago I don't have any more buffer solution to do it again, could I not just use the values the pen is stating? so if the PH is say 8 before Co2 and then drops to 7 during the day with Co2 on, that is what I am aiming for I think? then it wouldn't matter if the pen was different to the other test kit, or am I wrong? :)
 

alto

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Yes you’re wrong - you have no way of knowing what’s going on with that pH pen - just return as defective

Which model?

How is it calibrated?

You really need a 3 point calibration over the pH range you plan to measure AND an intermediate pH standard to test before determining that a pH probe is working as “promised”

Many cheap pH pens use an electronic single point calibration ...
- so put a point on some graph paper & draw a bunch of lines through it - any of those lines may be what your pH “pen” may be doing
- then put a point at 4 and a point at 6 and draw a straight line, then extend the line to 8 as a) a straight line, then b) as a plateau line - both of these line shapes are very common in experimental measurements
You’ve no way to knowing whIch line your pH pen is following or even if it is a smooth curve

The discrepancy between the pH pen & the test kit pH results from 2 different sources is not encouraging

A pH probe should be calibrated or calibration checked daily so last week’s calibration (which sounds questionable) is like saying it didn’t rain last Thursday, so it won’t rain this Thursday :)

Contact your water supplier for water analysis reports over the last 1-5 years, this will allow you to see trends & fluctuations in water quality
 

Tommy

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Yes you’re wrong - you have no way of knowing what’s going on with that pH pen - just return as defective

Which model?

How is it calibrated?

You really need a 3 point calibration over the pH range you plan to measure AND an intermediate pH standard to test before determining that a pH probe is working as “promised”

Many cheap pH pens use an electronic single point calibration ...
- so put a point on some graph paper & draw a bunch of lines through it - any of those lines may be what your pH “pen” may be doing
- then put a point at 4 and a point at 6 and draw a straight line, then extend the line to 8 as a) a straight line, then b) as a plateau line - both of these line shapes are very common in experimental measurements
You’ve no way to knowing whIch line your pH pen is following or even if it is a smooth curve

The discrepancy between the pH pen & the test kit pH results from 2 different sources is not encouraging

A pH probe should be calibrated or calibration checked daily so last week’s calibration (which sounds questionable) is like saying it didn’t rain last Thursday, so it won’t rain this Thursday :)

Contact your water supplier for water analysis reports over the last 1-5 years, this will allow you to see trends & fluctuations in water quality

That all sounds complicated, I will buy another pen is there a one you can recommend that's not too expensive? that one I bought was only a fiver. :)
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
that one I bought was only a fiver.
I agree with @alto, pH meters aren't straightforward bits of kit, and one for a £5 is pretty much worse then useless.

Have a look at <"A long start, ....">, it explains why a drop checker is accurate, and why it shows what the CO2 concentration was, rather than is.
it is showing the PH at 7.8 - 8
It is likely to be somewhere about pH8, this is because of the carbonate: pH: CO2 equilibrium, basically if you have water with more than a minimal amount of carbonate hardness.

cheers Darrel
 

Tommy

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Hi all,I agree with @alto, pH meters aren't straightforward bits of kit, and one for a £5 is pretty much worse then useless.

Have a look at <"A long start, ....">, it explains why a drop checker is accurate, and why it shows what the CO2 concentration was, rather than is.It is likely to be somewhere about pH8, this is because of the carbonate: pH: CO2 equilibrium, basically if you have water with more than a minimal amount of carbonate hardness.

cheers Darrel

So can you set up the Co2 with just using the drop checker? My Co2 kit has come today so eager to set it up. :)
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
So can you set up the Co2 with just using the drop checker?
<"You can">, I'm not a CO2 user (I don't want quick growth and I can find enough ways of accidentally killing my fish without adding another one), so you would be best getting some practical advice from some-one who is about the pitfalls of the setting up process. I'll link in @alto and @Zeus.

cheers Darrel
 

Tommy

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Hi all,<"You can">, I'm not a CO2 user (I don't want quick growth and I can find enough ways of accidentally killing my fish without adding another one), so you would be best getting some practical advice from some-one who is about the pitfalls of the setting up process. I'll link in @alto and @Zeus.

cheers Darrel

Thanks Darrel appreciated mate :)
 

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