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RafflesGold Forums > Discussion Area > Green Water, Filtration and Tank Setup
Hamad
I did a water test and my nitrate level is less than 10. There is no nitrite or ammonia, so the water is perfect and I do around 50% water changes every 2-3 days. There's also good filteration and high aeration and heater set at 30C.

But to my shock, the PH/KH are very low and they probably were for awhile because I did not test PH/KH for months as I don't buffer or try to make any changes to it. KH is less than 3d and the PH less than 6.4.

I did a test to the tap water and the results are very much the same. Does this low (but stable) level of PH/KH could have a side affect on the fish?

I notice that my fish usually show stress (very low energy) even though I feed a healthy mixed diet [different pellets, bloodworms, spinach, etc...] also as I mentioned earlier water is great and temperature at 30c which means fish should be more active than this. Could the PH/KH have something to do with this?
Sabine
A pH this low is not good for goldfish, they are best kept at a pH above 7, not in acidic water. Your KH is too low to keep the pH stable in the long run. The KH will fall with rising nitrate levels, there is no such thing as a "stable low KH" when you keep goldies.
My tapwater is also acidic, the KH is even lower (0), so I add baking soda or another buffer with every water change. Otherwise there is a danger of a pH crash which can occur within hours once the KH is used up, and kill the fish.
I raise my KH to 4-5, which gives me a pH of 7.6, that will be held stable there until the next water change is due after ~5 days.
If you use too little soda, you'll end up with pH swings, so please raise KH high enough!
That's just my experience.
Regards
CyberET
don't go too high on the KH ;) just follow as what Sabine recommended, and record down/calculate how much u need to raise the KH to the recommended level
gohks
Hamad,
Add a bundle of coral chips or oyster shells to your filtration or tank will do the job. smile.gif
Hamad
I like the idea of coral chips/oyster shells, perhaps I should look for that. Thank you Gohks!

I read about adding baking soda in aged water and how it's not recommended, so what should I do in this case? I can't do a 100% water change and let these fish go through a cycle again, it will stress them.

Can I remove the fish, do 80% water change and then refill and add the baking soda and balance the KH at 4-5 as Sabine suggested? Would there still be a risk of adding the fish after this?

I guess this explains why the fish are sometimes not doing so well, everything else is done right and this is the only thing "off" that I discovered in my setup. Thank you so much Sabine, really appreciate your response, and thanks CyberET for your reassurance.
gohks
Hamad,
Another thing you can do is before you find those coral chips/oyster shells, acquire pH - UP chemical from store to boost up the PH.
Need close monitoring as pH may crash again, need continuous additional of the chemical to maintain the pH > 7. yes.gif
CyberET
QUOTE(Hamad @ Thu, 11 May 2006 3:55 pm)
I like the idea of coral chips/oyster shells, perhaps I should look for that. Thank you Gohks!

I read about adding baking soda in aged water and how it's not recommended, so what should I do in this case? I can't do a 100% water change and let these fish go through a cycle again, it will stress them.

Can I remove the fish, do 80% water change and then refill and add the baking soda and balance the KH at 4-5 as Sabine suggested? Would there still be a risk of adding the fish after this?

I guess this explains why the fish are sometimes not doing so well, everything else is done right and this is the only thing "off" that I discovered in my setup. Thank you so much Sabine, really appreciate your response, and thanks CyberET for your reassurance.
*


coral chips works too slowly to be effective, but u can give it a try.

pH up chemical works very fast, use with care.

what was it about adding baking soda in aged water u read about?

normally i do water changes with the fishes still inside, so that as i add water, the parameters changes slowly.. but becareful of injuring them if u r using a tube to siphon the water out.

after that, i'll add baking soda after water has been fully filled so that the impact of pH swing is not as great.
Hamad
Can I use the baking soda now instead of the PH chemicals? I checked the closest store and their bottles are non-english and all dusty, look like they've been there for years so I didn't feel ok buying any of that stuff.

Gohks, thanks for letting me know - I will buffer the PH/KH first and then buy the chips/shells and add them to help keeping the levels safe.

So, since I have 200 liters that means I need around 20 tsp of baking soda to do the job (according to link below), should I divide this into 4 by adding 5 tsp every day and testing every night? Also there is no ammonia present, which from what I understand can be harmful with PH swings so this is good.

Thanks again CyberET for sharing your method, I didn't know it was ok to adjust PH (even if slightly) while fish are in the tank.

Calculator Link: http://dataguru.org/misc/aquarium/calKH.asp
Hamad
I didn't notice it says GALLONS on that calculator page [thought it was LITRES], so 55 gallons requires 5 tsp, that means I should add two tea spoons daily to increase the levels slowly till I reach the desired KH. Or can I do it in one day?

Where's the "edit post" button by the way, is it just me or it's gone?
CP
QUOTE(Hamad @ Thu, 11 May 2006 6:49 pm)
Where's the "edit post" button by the way, is it just me or it's gone?
*


You can edit your posts only within a short time frame (15 minutes if I am not wrong) after you have submitted your posts.This is to allow for any corrections that you may have typed wrongly.After that, you cannot edit your posts.
Sabine
Hamad, I do it this way: after syphoning 2/3 of the water out I fill a jug with tank water, add the baking soda and the dechlorinator to the jug, and start my hose to refill the tank. I let the water run into the tank through the jug (let it over flow), so the soda gets into the tank already diluted and well distributed.
After filling up again I test, and add more soda if necessary. I don't add it daily: if the KH is raised to about 4-5 the pH will be stable. No good gained from adding a little bit every day, this may just cause pH swings which will be stressful for the fish.
Fish going through a pH crash will build up a thick slime coat, and will be hanging at the surface with their mouths.
Regards
awrieger
QUOTE(CyberET @ Thu, 11 May 2006 5:05 pm)
coral chips works too slowly to be effective, but u can give it a try.

I agree. With Hamad changing 50% water every 3 days, he'll just be pouring pH6.4 water into the tank and it'll still be around the same by the time he does it again. So little will improve.

I'd recommend using a commercial KH Up product, which is usually Calcium Carbonate. Add it to the new water before adding to the tank if possible. If your w/c method is to use buckets or a container, then calculate how much is needed per bucket/container. If your method is a hose directly into the tank, Sabine's method is a good way.

Don't raise KH any faster than 1 degree per day initially. Your KH out of the tap is about the same as mine at 2.5. I raise it to 5 (so I'm only adding enough for a 2.5 increase), which stablises the pH at around 7.2 to 7.4 with heavy aeration.

All the best. smile.gif
Hamad
Now I know how necessary it is to check the KH/PH levels, the fish behavior has totally changed! They are now very active and no longer seem stressed or like they're about to faint.

I assume the reason why my fish were prone to parasite attacks with failure of all treatments I used [only thing I haven't tried was PP] is probably because they were already stressed out from the very low levels in PH/KH.

Awrieger, unfortunately I don't use buckets but what I do is that I put in the hose and let the water run very low, so it takes about an hour to fill up the rest of the 50%. This, in my opinion, helps avoiding shocks and makes changes gradual. But now that I'm dealing with KH/PH I'll do Sabine's method just to be safe!

Thanks for the tips Sabine! And thanks everyone for the information, it has helped a lot!
fafaho
Hi,

I test my water is around 6.5 ! Same result as tap water !!
Can someone tell me how can bring up the PH beside baking soda ?
I heard coral chip or oyster shell can do that, is it true ?
And how can I get them and use it ?

Appreciate your help ! yes.gif
goldrush
QUOTE(fafaho @ Thu, 17 Jan 2008 2:37 am) *

Hi,

I test my water is around 6.5 ! Same result as tap water !!
Can someone tell me how can bring up the PH beside baking soda ?
I heard coral chip or oyster shell can do that, is it true ?
And how can I get them and use it ?

Appreciate your help ! yes.gif



Before the panic and scrambling for pH adjustment,please do correct calibration for your pH pen or verify the validity of your test kit.Far too often we can misread a pH value without a relative accurate calibration.
bekko
There is nothing wrong with a pH 6.5 unless it is an indication that your pH is falling and could crash. The fact that your pond and tap are the same indicates that your water exchange is sufficient to keep up with the production of acids by decomposition of organic matter.

Goldrush is probably right about the meter/kit. You can check your equipment against a saturated solution of baking soda in distilled water and it should read eight-point-something. Where's CP? What's that number again? Where's that thread?

-steve
goldrush
QUOTE(bekko @ Thu, 17 Jan 2008 1:29 pm) *

There is nothing wrong with a pH 6.5 unless it is an indication that your pH is falling and could crash. The fact that your pond and tap are the same indicates that your water exchange is sufficient to keep up with the production of acids by decomposition of organic matter.

Goldrush is probably right about the meter/kit. You can check your equipment against a saturated solution of baking soda in distilled water and it should read eight-point-something. Where's CP? What's that number again? Where's that thread?

-steve


8.4


Here's where I started and how CP elaborate further with his test:

http://www.rafflesgold.com/forums/index.ph...amp;#entry55267




goldrush
CP
QUOTE(fafaho @ Thu, 17 Jan 2008 2:37 am) *

Hi,

I test my water is around 6.5 ! Same result as tap water !!
Can someone tell me how can bring up the PH beside baking soda ?
I heard coral chip or oyster shell can do that, is it true ?
And how can I get them and use it ?

Appreciate your help ! yes.gif

First and foremost pH 6.5 is fine.

Coral chips or oyster shell can bring up pH FROM 6.5, but both has different saturation points in which the exact figure I am not very sure.I suspect oyster shells brings it up to around 7.8.

Coral chips can be purchased in most LFS, oyster shells you can get from Max Koi Farm.
fafaho
Thanks guys ! yes.gif
I learned something new today !

Last night, I used AP fresh water master test kit to test my 90 gallons fish tank, the PH result came out 6.0 !
I used BS buffer up to 7.0 for temporay.
I think I will try to coral or oyster shell later.

Cp, you have amazing setup for your fish tank ! good_very.gif

This website is great, I always learn something new from you guys.
Thanks again !
Dick Benbow
in being a water keeper I have learned that the bacteria in the filter is happier and actually does a better job in the 7.2-7.4 range. also that the higher the PH the more damage Ammonia can achieve...what do these two consideration have as to weight in keeping goldfish water
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