Cichlid Fish Forum banner
1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok first I will address my lack of maintenance on the my tank, but I'm getting better and have been doing water changes for the past month or two, weekly. It has been taken down, sand sifted etc.. new filter media, no not all at the same time. I tried to keep what biological I could didn't want to disrupt the tank too much.

Awhile back I added some black sand , not sure what kind it was I do not have the bags anymore. I recently added 65lbs of lace rock. I've been checking the water probably once a week if not more.

I purchased a digital ph tester, because I can't make heads or tails out of the color charts, no I am not color blind.

Last night it was the highest I have seen it, 8.8. So I did a 50% water change and removed all of the lace rock. Tap water ph is 7.4

Tested it this morning and it was around 8.5 or about. ( been a few hours and didn't write it down ) .

The question is how do I proceed ? in getting my ph back to manageable levels. I am going to get 2 5gl buckets today. Add some sand in one with normal tap water and give it a day or two and test it. I am also going to do the same with the lace rock.

There is still stuff from the break down of the lace rock in the aquarium, filters.. etc.. if the lace rock is effecting ph, this could still increase it.. but I am no expert by any means.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,006 Posts
What type of fish are you keeping or going to keep?

I'd set the pH meter aside and test for KH and GH instead.

If keeping african rift lake, then you can put the lace rock back, sell the pH meter, and enjoy your fish. pH meters for fresh water tanks are a waste of time and money IMHO. A general idea from the charts is all you needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
GH is soft.. I'm in the middle of transitioning to a harder water source, but need more time to work with it.

KH I guess its also alkalinity is over 300 on the color chart it is blue using the dip test kit..

I have an api gh/kh kit have not used it yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I plan on 5 e.yellows, and about 6 rustys. May add more later.

65gal tank. 3'ft long, not the recommended 4'ft
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,006 Posts
KH I guess its also alkalinity is over 300 on the color chart it is blue using the dip test kit..

I plan on 5 e.yellows, and about 6 rustys. May add more later.
Then like I said, I'd put it back together and go with it. Your parameters are fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So I shouldn't be concerned with the raising ph ?

according to the test strip my kh is high. I guess I need to do more research on kh.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,006 Posts
So I shouldn't be concerned with the raising ph ?
No, if your KH is up at the tap, it'll be fine. It'll max out somewhere. Otherwise, you'll be making yourself crazy trying to constantly adjust it up and down when as long as it's in a reasonable range, they'll be fine. Test KH for a while if this is a first tank using this source water to make sure it doesn't get too low. Once you see that it is being maintained at an adequate level through your maintenance and water changes, you can stop testing it at all. Go ahead and record pH during this time if you like. Just don't worry about the readings unless extreme, like <7> 10. You'll probably find it'll settle out at 8 or so.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm changing to a water without softener.

The kh is the same with both water sources, both come from the same well.

I'm just concerned everywhere you go talks about well this fish likes this ph, this one likes this..

I'll use the api kit tonight and test it, instead of the mordel ( name may not be right ) dip and checks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
642 Posts
As long as you're keeping Rift Lake cichlids like the ones you mentioned above you're golden with your current parameters.

From what I understand, the dip strips are OK for quickie checks, but if you want accurate numbers you have to use a kit like the API kit you have. It's pretty well regarded.

Once a tank is up and running well the only thing I routinely check is nitrates if I'm not adding anything. With my water I use epsom salts to raise GH and baking soda to raise my kH so I also check those parameters even though I have my mix down pretty well now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So I added some of my rocks back in, ph is now 9.1. without the rocks it was steady at 8.8 to 8.9 even after the water change.

It is possible for the ph to get so high it will kill the fish ?

Current fish 2 guppies and 2 plecos.. they seem to be doing ok, but I'm ready to switch to a different type of rock or the cichlid stones.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,422 Posts
I doubt the pH is 9.1
I suspect a faulty pH meter more than anything else. Anyway to check it via another method?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Nothing that goes up that high.

api goes up to 8.6 or abouts I believe. I just purchased the meter and it arrived on wednesday or so of last week, don't remember been too long ago.

ph meter goes up to 14 or 16. So far it has seemed pretty accurate with what api was showing.

I can't explain the jump in ph, just the lace rock has been added.

I'm not sure where to go with this. I can't put new fish into a tank with a high ph an unstable one at that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It was already calibrated for 7.0 ph.

I also could buy some calibration fluid 7 and calibrate it if I needed too.

I just tested my tap water which reads about 7.4 on the api drop tests.

meter reads 7.5 - 7.6
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,422 Posts
pharrix
you need two solutions to calibrate a pH monitor, and that it reads high isn't ok in my book.

Lace rock should not affect pH, though I've seen rock for sale that was labelled lace rock that was not lace rock and did affect pH. My guess is that you have landed on some rock that is taking your pH up into the high 8s and you meter reads high. If I were in your shoes, I'd remove the rock, put the pH meter into a drawer never to use again and do some water changes to slowly bring the water back down to normal ranges...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thanks for your suggestion Number6.

I have the Milwaukee Ph Meter. Here is the description:

The Milwaukee pH Meter is an easy to use pH meter that will give you quick accurate readings instantly. The simplified one step calibration uses pH7 calibration fluid. This test comes complete with a small screwdriver for simple adjusting. Measures from 0.0 to 14.0 ph with a +/- 0.1 pH level of accuracy. The Milwaukee pH 600 measures only 6" L x 1" W.

I am seriously thinking of removing the so called lace rock. It wouldn't be such a big deal if it would continue to stay at 8.8 to 8.9 ( still think this is too high for the fish), but when I do a water change my tap is 7.4. I would have to raise the ph in the new water otherwise I am thinking this could stress the fish out.. but I'm no expert.

150 bucks on the lace rock is kinda irritating. I wonder if the lfs would take it back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thank you who has provided advice on this matter.

I am at a loss to what is increasing my ph. Normal kits show it has a pinkish orange.

I have had nothing but problems trying to accommodate for cichlid fish. Wonder if my water conditions were ever correct for the fish I have in there now.

I have tried several different things. One question if my kh was extremely high would this mean that the longer the water sits I would end up with a high PH. I know its meant to determine buffering, but I am at a loss. I'm very close to either selling my fish equipment or starting over, but I'am afraid that if I just start over I will be right back to where I am.

PH meter shows low 9.x. I am unable to test this and get any level higher than 8.6 or 8.8 without using this new meter.

Or should I even worry about it ???

Meter shows plan tap water with my sand ( I do not remember what type it is ) my ph is 8.5 to 8.6.

I filled a 55 drum I'm attempting to setup a better water change system and I left it running full of water with heater and 2 air stones for circulation and last night I checked it .. ph was in the low 9.x.

I did have air stones in my 65gal but I removed them after seeing that my drum had high ph water in it. My GH for the water in the drum is around 6 I think. and kh is off the charts.

the water I have in my 65gal tank now has a GH 0 and the KH 300+ .

I'm running out of ideas.. and am at your mercy for ideas and/or suggestions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I guess I should mention I'm trying to go with water that has not been through the softener since I run off of well water..

drum = unsoftened water
65gal tank water = softened water.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,422 Posts
pharrix said:
Or should I even worry about it ???
Short answer... no, don't worry about the pH.

pharrix said:
Meter shows plan tap water with my sand ( I do not remember what type it is ) my ph is 8.5 to 8.6.
pH out of the tap is irrelevant. Gases and what not can alter a reading... as you've noted.

pharrix said:
I filled a 55 drum I'm attempting to setup a better water change system and I left it running full of water with heater and 2 air stones for circulation and last night I checked it .. ph was in the low 9.x.
This is what your tap water actually reads at for pH then... time plus agitation allowed the water to reach it's true pH.

Time to go buy Tanganyikan cichlids!!! They'll love that pH and KH. :thumb:
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top