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Thread: PH problem
10-11-2013, 04:24 AM #1
I have a 20 gallon long and have SUPER HARD, SUPER HIGH PH water. I tried using API's PH down several times, but it has no effect. Any thoughts? If I cannot alter the hardness or PH, is it OK for me to get one or two kribensis cichlids in my tank?
Thanks for your advice in advance
10-11-2013, 06:03 AM #2
PH minus, down or whatever is next to useless anyways. The only way you can make super hard water softer is by removing the minerals that make it hard.
Option 1. Get a reverse osmosis system and use that or buy RO water
Option 2: stick with fishes that can handle super hard water. For a 20g that would mean some livebearers or som shell dwelling cichlids
Kribensis are incredibly versatile and robust fish that will be able to handle very hard water. Just don't expect them to live to a ripe old age and if they manage to breed you're likely to see not that big a yield of fry.
10-13-2013, 12:33 AM #3Banned Discus fish
- Join Date
- Nov 2008
- Vancouver, BC, Canada
I concur with talldutchie, and will just expand a bit as to why your chemicals are not working to lower the pH.
The pH is only one part of two (or perhaps three if one separates GH and KH) issues, namely hardness (GH), carbonate hardness (KH or Alkalinity) and pH. These three are related, though high GH does not mean high pH and vice versa. The pH is "buffered" by the KH to prevent fluctuations. Depending upon the KH of the water, this buffering can be significant, and any attempts by adding "acids" in the form of these pH adjusting chemicals will fail because the KH is negating them, in a sense. But the fluctuations during this is far worse on fish. And, it is possible to keep dosing the chemicals up to the point where the pH buffering of the KH is exhausted, and then the pH can suddenly crash which usually is severe enough to kill the fish outright.
As talldutchie said, the only effective way to lower pH is to lower the GH and KH by dilution. Now, having said that, in water that is already low in GH and kH but high in pH, the pH will usually lower by itself as the organics build in the substrate. And using dry leaves, peat and such can lower it too by adding tannins.
I authored an article which may help to explain all this better, you can find it here: