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View Full Version : PH has dropped a bit-need advice please



Cichlid_Man
11-11-2006, 04:13 PM
Hi all!
As most of you know, I have a 75g tank with 12 cichlids in there.
10 are Mbuna and 2 are Utaka??(is that right spelling?)

Anyway, I have crushed coral substrate and 3 tuffa stones which are supposed to help keep PH up.
My PH has gone to 7.6, not terribly low, but I like it at 8.2.

Is there any harm adding a teaspoon or so of baking soda, or should I invest in the Malawi/Victoria buffer/enhancer???

Just for the quick fix till I get to town...is baking soda OK?

Lady Hobbs
11-11-2006, 06:04 PM
I hate meds and think the baking soda idea you have is good. However, I AM NO EXPERT. Are you aerating the water? Brings it up for me when I don't want the higher pH.

Cichlid_Man
11-11-2006, 06:10 PM
I am aerating the water.
Maybe the darn quick cure played around with the PH.

I had to use it just in case there were gill flukes.

The special buffer stuff for cichlids is supposed to be great.

It is not a medication, it is right from the lake where the fish are from...I think?

I don't think baking soda will harm anybody till I can get to town, but I will wait for more responses before I put it in.

Lady Hobbs
11-11-2006, 06:36 PM
Could very well be. I used Water Clarifier one time and it showed my pH at around 5 when it's always a stable 7.6. Some of that stuff can also give a false reading. Possibly you should wait until that stuff leaves the tank to judge it better?

NorthernBoy
11-11-2006, 08:47 PM
I use Sea Chems Malawi Buffer and it works well. You should check you alkalinity(kH). If it is too low it will be difficult to keep pH stable in your tank. Your kH should be above 120. Mine is always really high (about 280-300) so my tank maintains a pH of 8.4. You can try a the buffer, that will help to raise your pH.

Cichlid_Man
11-11-2006, 11:23 PM
I use Sea Chems Malawi Buffer and it works well. You should check you alkalinity(kH). If it is too low it will be difficult to keep pH stable in your tank. Your kH should be above 120. Mine is always really high (about 280-300) so my tank maintains a pH of 8.4. You can try a the buffer, that will help to raise your pH.


Thanks to all for your replies.

I just got back from town and they didn't have the Malawi buffer, but they did have a cichlid PH buffer called Proper PH by American Pharmaceuticals.

I am confused with the directions.
It says it is designed to give a predetermined PH of 8.2??
1 scoop per ten gallons of water.
The way I read that it means no matter what your PH is, you add 1 scoop per 10g's of water and you get 8.2??
I think I will add a little at a time unless you tell me different...

BTW, my GH and KH are both well above 100....
Thanks as always!

Lady Hobbs
11-12-2006, 02:56 AM
Joe, I wouldn't mess with your pH now in the middle of cycling. You'll get some ups and downs in the pH now anyway. Once you're done cycling and do your big water change, you may have everything right where you want it.

Did you get the Stress Zyme? I use it every week now after doing my water changes. I think it works just fine.

What are your water parameters now anyway? And just what are you going to put in that big ol tank of yours?

Fishguy2727
11-12-2006, 03:47 AM
A stable ph of the unideal pH is better than it jumping around, so use the buffers slowly so it doesn't move too quickly. The Proper pH is supposed to be pretty good, so that is not a bad second choice at all. Baking soda will bring it up, but it won't be stable. Which causes jumps which are more harmful than the pH not being perfect, so I would not use baking soda.

Cichlid_Man
11-12-2006, 04:38 AM
A stable ph of the unideal pH is better than it jumping around, so use the buffers slowly so it doesn't move too quickly. The Proper pH is supposed to be pretty good, so that is not a bad second choice at all. Baking soda will bring it up, but it won't be stable. Which causes jumps which are more harmful than the pH not being perfect, so I would not use baking soda.

What I was most concerned about was too rapid of an increase of the PH...
I wasn't sure what the directions meant when they said to add 1 scoop per 10 gallons of water. If I would have added 7 scoops, my fish would be dead.

So, I decided to go slow and guess what?
I added 1 scoop, pre-diluted, and the PH went from 7.8 to 8.4...
I read that cichlids like it as high as 8.4, but I hope that wasn't too drastic.

The directions should be modified.

Anyway, I think they will be ok, and as you say, proper ph willl keep the ph stable, unlike baking soda.

Have a good night!

NorthernBoy
11-12-2006, 07:33 AM
When you say well above 100 for your test results what do you mean? You should have a minimum of 130 for a kH reading. is that well above 100 for you. 130-300 is ideal and the higher your alkalinity the higher your pH can be stabile.

Cichlid_Man
11-12-2006, 01:07 PM
When you say well above 100 for your test results what do you mean? You should have a minimum of 130 for a kH reading. is that well above 100 for you. 130-300 is ideal and the higher your alkalinity the higher your pH can be stabile.

I should have posted the numbers.

I have 143.2 for KH and 125.3 for GH, and the PH is at 8.4 which I have read is fine for Malawi Cichlids.

What do you think about those numbers?
If they need to be raised, what do you do for that?

The chart that came with the test kit shows 50-100 is ideal for cichlids, but charts aren't always exact...