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Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. Default New tank, water modification

    0 Not allowed!
    Hey everyone, trying to set up my first tank since I was a kid. I just got a 75 gallon tank and was hoping to stock it with SA cichlids.

    Got my test kit in the mail today and tested the tap water. It's showing 8.4 pH, 4dKH, and 89 ppm GH/KH. Obviously, that PH is going to have to come down a looong way; I was planning on adding some peat moss pellets to the filtration system and using some PH down solution to bring it to the desired level (around 6.5). Will that be enough, and will the water be stable after that much interference? I'm considering using a product like API Proper PH 6.5, but have no experience with products like these.

    Also having trouble understanding the hardness test results. recommends a dH of 5-12 for these fish, is that the same as dKH? And I believe peat moss would make the water softer, how difficult is it to increase the hardness while using peat moss?


  2. #2


    3 Not allowed!
    I do know that people use peat moss to alter pH but anyone on this forum will advise you to not throw chemicals into a tank to do the same - fish do best in a stable pH - many fish will do OK in a range of pH but sometimes it's best if you just stick with fish that do well in the pH you already have. That's my 2 cents.

  3. #3


    2 Not allowed!
    First of all, compliments on actually thinking about hardness, not many people do.

    Hmm... thing is, there's various ways of measuring this. might be worth a read.
    What you seem to have isn't exceptionally hard. I do wonder what's causing the relatively high ph. I'd advice you to take a water sample and let it sit for 24 hrs before testing.

    If the figures are correct you could soften this a bit by adding peat, leafs and/or elder cones. This will also stain the water brown by tannins. Tannins are a light acid. If water doesn't contain that many minerals they will lower ph.

    Now, if this is enough or not quite enough would depend on what you'd intend to keep. For the easier cichlids like rams it should work. However if you'd want to breed blackwater apistogramma you might as well throw in the towel right now and buy yourself an RO device.
    In any case, I'd strongly advice you to leave chemicals alone and start by seeing what a few leafs or a handful of peat (since I read this I try to avoid real peat whenever possible) in the filter will do.

    Oh, and lastly, sources like aqadvisor (which isn't that good) but also (which is a lot better) will list a range of Ph and dh values because these often change with the seasons and even within the distribution range of the fish due to geology.
    Hope this helps!

  4. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Much appreciated. Just set out some water to test tomorrow and will read through the resources provided. I do know that a LFS sells neutral, purified water. May be able to do water changes with that, but not sure how pricey it would be.

    I was hoping to have rams, geo surinamensis, congos, and possibly a severum. I suppose if the tap water can't be well-adjusted and the LFS water is too expensive, I'd definitely rather have different fish than put them in a bad system. I was really hoping for some positive feedback on a ph buffer, but if it's not safe I'd certainly like to hear that, too.

  5. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Decided to test water out of the brita since it had already been sitting out and it was about 6.8 :) I would think the filtration would affect the hardness more than the ph, is that accurate?

  6. #6


    0 Not allowed!
    Brita filters will take some minerals, lower the buffer and allow your ph to drop. Sounds to me like good water.

    As to your stocking plan, rams and geos could work if the tank is big enough, a severum in the mix.... plenty potential for troubler

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