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How do i find out what my KH is.

Lee iley

Member
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Hi chaps, not posted for a while, I am just getting my tank set bk up and getting my head around the parameters again. I have done a water report from my supplier.

The hardness Clarke is 5.67 will this be ppm? My PH is 7.21, it says my water is mod soft. I am in the North West (preston)

Just want to know how I find what my KH is?

Cheers Lee
 

plantnoobdude

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Joined
17 Mar 2021
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1,175
Location
uk
API KH test kits are fairly reliable from my experience. always test correct kh when making my nahco3 solutions, for dropcheckers.
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
14,910
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Thanks darrel, how do I find out my KH?
It is likely to be about 5 dKH / 5 dGH. The hardness is from limestone (CaCO3), and that gives 1 dGH (from the Ca++) and 1 dKH (from the 2HCO3-).
API KH test kits are fairly reliable from my experience
Yes, they measure alkalinity rather than carbonate hardness, but they should be pretty accurate.

cheers Darrel
 

Aleman

Member
Joined
28 Mar 2022
Messages
88
Location
Blackpool, UK
Forget the water report, United Utilities switch water supplies frequently, which can lead to wildly different parameters. I have had water lab tested throughout the year and seen swings in alkalinity (near as damnit carbonate hardness) from 20ppm (Haweswater) up to 138ppm (Some borehole)

The only way to know is to test it yourself, I have found the Salifert Total Alkalinity test kit to be accurate and repeatable, and it also agrees with the lab reports as well. You can also titrate it yourself using methylorange and an acid of known concentration ( I've used 0.1M hydrochloric), or titrate to the pH 4.3 endpoint. The calculation from amount of acid used to ppm or dKH is trivial, although I can't recall it now off the top of my head.
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Forget the water report, United Utilities switch water supplies frequently, which can lead to wildly different parameters. I have had water lab tested throughout the year and seen swings in alkalinity (near as damnit carbonate hardness) from 20ppm (Haweswater) up to 138ppm (Some borehole)

The only way to know is to test it yourself, I have found the Salifert Total Alkalinity test kit to be accurate and repeatable, and it also agrees with the lab reports as well. You can also titrate it yourself using methylorange and an acid of known concentration ( I've used 0.1M hydrochloric), or titrate to the pH 4.3 endpoint. The calculation from amount of acid used to ppm or dKH is trivial, although I can't recall it now off the top of my head.
Will this give me my KH reading? Or does KH not really matter? I know it's not important for plants just bothers me for the live stock I want to keep.
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
14,910
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Forget the water report, United Utilities switch water supplies frequently, which can lead to wildly different parameters. I have had water lab tested throughout the year and seen swings in alkalinity (near as damnit carbonate hardness) from 20ppm (Haweswater) up to 138ppm (Some borehole)
Yes, it is difficult when you <"get a mixed supply"> from your water network.
The only way to know is to test it yourself, I have found the Salifert Total Alkalinity test kit to be accurate and repeatable, and it also agrees with the lab reports as well. You can also titrate it yourself using methylorange and an acid of known concentration ( I've used 0.1M hydrochloric), or titrate to the pH 4.3 endpoint. The calculation from amount of acid used to ppm or dKH is trivial, although I can't recall it now off the top of my head.
<"Acid base titration"> will give you an accurate answer, but I'd actually suggest a <"Conductivity meter">. It requires the assumption that the extra ions (that it is measuring) are from dissolved limestone (CaCO3), but that is a reasonable assumption in most cases.
Or does KH not really matter? I know it's not important for plants just bothers me for the live stock I want to keep.
I'd suggest just a datum conductivity range, it will be somewhere near to the top conductivity reading that you get from your tap water.

You can just add a <"remineralising salt"> to bring the tap water into the datum range. I have a <"consistent hard tap supply">, but the rain-water I use is <"variable through the year">. I just use our tap water as the "remineralising salt" in the winter, when the rainwater is nearer to DI water.

cheers Darrel
 
Last edited:

Aleman

Member
Joined
28 Mar 2022
Messages
88
Location
Blackpool, UK
Will this give me my KH reading?
Yes
Or does KH not really matter?
Well that depends :D
I know it's not important for plants just bothers me for the live stock I want to keep.
Actually, for some species, it is important for plants ... just take a look at the "Lean Dosing" threads πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜…πŸ˜‚

It's important for the livestock I want to keep as well, I'm going down the "Amazonian Style" biotope route, so low GH and KH is a given, and I just hate the variability of our supply. It's not too bad from Haweswater, or even the reservoirs in the Forest of Bowland (Moorland run off), but when they switch to borehole sources, to "preserve" the reservoir stocks, the KH and GH rises dramatically. Most fish that are tank bred will adapt to different KH, but wild caught, or "sensitive" species are more demanding ... breeding also may well require more demanding control of the parameters.
 

Aleman

Member
Joined
28 Mar 2022
Messages
88
Location
Blackpool, UK
<"Acid base titration"> will give you an accurate answer, but I'd actually suggest a <"Conductivity meter">. It requires the assumption that the extra ions (that it is measuring) are from dissolved limestone (CaCO3), but that is a reasonable assumption.
Cheers Darrel πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘, I'd actually forgotten the conductivity meter option, Strange when you consider I have 5 of them on my RO system πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜…πŸ˜‚ :O
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Hi all,

Yes, it is difficult when you <"get a mixed supply"> from your water network.

<"Acid base titration"> will give you an accurate answer, but I'd actually suggest a <"Conductivity meter">. It requires the assumption that the extra ions (that it is measuring) are from dissolved limestone (CaCO3), but that is a reasonable assumption.

I'd suggest just a datum conductivity range, it will be somewhere near to the top conductivity reading that you get from your tap water.

You can just add a <"remineralising salt"> to bring the tap water into the datum range. I have a <"consistent hard tap supply">, but the rain-water I use is <"variable through the year">. I just use our tap water as the "remineralising salt" in the winter, when the rainwater is nearer to DI water.

cheers Darrel
Thanks darrel, so I can just use a normal TDS pen to monitor the KH?
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Yes

Well that depends :D

Actually, for some species, it is important for plants ... just take a look at the "Lean Dosing" threads πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜…πŸ˜‚

It's important for the livestock I want to keep as well, I'm going down the "Amazonian Style" biotope route, so low GH and KH is a given, and I just hate the variability of our supply. It's not too bad from Haweswater, or even the reservoirs in the Forest of Bowland (Moorland run off), but when they switch to borehole sources, to "preserve" the reservoir stocks, the KH and GH rises dramatically. Most fish that are tank bred will adapt to different KH, but wild caught, or "sensitive" species are more demanding ... breeding also may well require more demanding control of the parameters.
All this just blags my head haha.
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Cheers Darrel πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘, I'd actually forgotten the conductivity meter option, Strange when you consider I have 5 of them on my RO system πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜‚πŸ€£πŸ˜…πŸ˜‚ :O
Do you use your tap water then? You are only 15mins drive from me. So our water must be nearly the same.
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Forget the water report, United Utilities switch water supplies frequently, which can lead to wildly different parameters. I have had water lab tested throughout the year and seen swings in alkalinity (near as damnit carbonate hardness) from 20ppm (Haweswater) up to 138ppm (Some borehole)

The only way to know is to test it yourself, I have found the Salifert Total Alkalinity test kit to be accurate and repeatable, and it also agrees with the lab reports as well. You can also titrate it yourself using methylorange and an acid of known concentration ( I've used 0.1M hydrochloric), or titrate to the pH 4.3 endpoint. The calculation from amount of acid used to ppm or dKH is trivial, although I can't recall it now off the top of my head.
I have found a salifert test kit on amazon for 12 pound does sound about right for the price? We're did you get yours from? Does the water report from untied utilities not tell you your KH level?
 

dw1305

Expert
UKAPS Team
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
14,910
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Cheers darrel, what is datum conductivity?
It is just a <"range of conductivity values">, derived from your water, where plant growth and fish health are acceptable. I use ~ 80 - 140 microS, but if I used our tap water (about 17 dKH, 17 dGH) it would be more in the range 600 - 700 microS.

Every-one will have a different range, dependent upon the conductivity of there initial water.

cheers Darrel
 

Lee iley

Member
Thread starter
Joined
19 Aug 2018
Messages
383
Location
Preston
Hi all,

It is just a <"range of conductivity values">, derived from your water, where plant growth and fish health are acceptable. I use ~ 80 - 140 microS, but if I used our tap water (about 17 dKH, 17 dGH) it would be more in the range 600 - 700 microS.

Every-one will have a different range, dependent upon the conductivity of there initial water.

cheers Darrel
Will a normal TDS pen do this reading or will I need a different pen?

Cheers Lee
 
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