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Thread: PH drop problem

  1. #1
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    PH drop problem

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    Dear members,
    I have 2ft tank with some fishes, no plant, no stone and just a top filter with filter wool only (no carbon). Its a 3 month old tank but the PH of my tank always drop to 4 - 4.5 within 2 days after 90% water changed. The temperature is stable at ard 28-29 degree celcius. I only feed them blood worms and sometimes pellets twice a day.
    But whenever I see the fish being stressful and not eating, I know the PH drop again. Changed 90% of water and after 2 days, PH drop again to around 4.5.
    I would appreciate if someone could advise me on this. Thanks !

  2. #2
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    kah hiang,

    what sort of fish are your keeping? If your fish are the sort that tolerate hardwater, you could consider adding some coral chips. If they are soft water then add some sodium bicarbonate. This should buffer your water and prevent it from dropping in ph.

    This however does not remove the root of the problem... which is why does your ph drop? Perhaps you could visit this thread and fill in the relevant information.
    Allen

  3. #3
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    Hi Allen,
    thanks for the reply. I only kept 5 goldfish
    in the tank. I will try your method to increase
    the PH. Could it be due to the filer wool (change every week)
    or the food that I fed them (no left over) ?

    Beginners Info Sheet
    ++++++++++++++++++

    Tank Dimensions (LxWxH): 2ft x 1ft x 1.5ft
    Lighting Intensity(No of Watts) : 13W
    Type of Lighting (FL/PL/MH) : FL
    CO2 Injection Rate (bps) : NIL
    Type of CO2 (DIY/Liquid/Tank) : NIL
    Substrate Used : NIL
    Liquid Fertilizers Used : NIL
    Frequency of fertilization : NIL
    Tank Temperature : 28-29


    Chemical Properties (Fill what you can)
    ---------------------------------------

    Carbonate Hardness (kh): 4 dKH
    Total Hardness (gH): -
    PH : 4 - 4.5
    NH4 (ppm): -
    NO2 (ppm): -
    NO3 (ppm): -
    PO4 (ppm): -
    Fe (ppm): -

    Bioload (Your Fish and Plants)
    ------------------------------

    No plant just 5 goldfish

    Describe your problem :

    PH drop from 7 to 4.5 after 2 days (after water change)

  4. #4
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    I'm finding it hard to think of what the problem is... given that you've got a 4dKH already... Does this 4dKH come from what you add during a water change? Maybe you could explain what you do during a water change and also what you add. It would be great if you could check the ph and kh of your tap water as well.

    Forgot to ask, what filter media do you use in your filter?
    Allen

  5. #5
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    The only problem I can think of is the pH test kit/probe or KH test kit.

    I am placing my bet on the pH test.

    BC

  6. #6
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    actually I have several theories in mind, but need some feedback from kah hiang. Still its hard to imagine your ph collapsing to 4.5 in 2 days with 4dKH water.
    Allen

  7. #7
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    1. ph test not working

    2. goldfish goes to toilet a lot AKA they bomb more then anyone else
    here fishy fish fishy . here shirmpy shirmpy here is my noobie tank(3wk)

  8. #8
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    heheh ph test kit is one of my theories... but I'm assuming it working since he could test the initial value, and then the later.
    Allen

  9. #9
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    Hi guys,
    yesterday went back to change 90 % of the water again and tested the PH shows 7. This morning, test again, drop to 5.5. There is basically nothing in the tank except the fish and the top filter. The filter that I'm using is those normal white filterwool.
    However, I did notice that the flow of the filter is getting slower than before. The top filter that I'm using is equip with a external pump (not submersible type). There are some piping from the bottom of the tank to the filter box, I suspect there might be some blockage by the uneaten food or waste in piping. Can it be these uneaten food and waste in the piping that cause the PH to drop. But I must admit that I did not clean the piping seens I bought the filter (3 months ago)
    If yes, I might need to buy some special brush to get it clean and monitor the PH again. Thanks again guys for the feedback

  10. #10
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    Conversion of ammonia to nitrite and then to nitrate could cause some drop in pH level...but not to that extent of yours I think...kinda drastic for yours???....Any water conditioner you are using? Might be better to find out its contents if you are using one. Try to stop changing so much water and leave it as it is for one week and monitor pH, NH4/NH3, nitrite, and nitrate if possible. []
    Plant Physiology by Taiz and Zeiger

  11. #11
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    KH,

    we still need some input

    1) how big are your goldfish?
    2) whats the kh/ph of your tap water

    Right not my first suggestion is to harden your water.... given the way you've been changing water and cleaning your filter, its highly unlikely that you have an established filter colony. You need to allow your filter media to build up an efficient bacteria colony.

    1) My first suggestions are these... and a quick boost of KH by 1additional degree per day till you reach 7-8dKH. This will buffer your ph more

    2)Get some coral chips and place them in your tank... put them in a netting if you want to be able to remove them later. This coral chips will boost your GH and further buffer your water in the long run. In addition, the coral chips will serve as a medium for your bacteria colony to grow.

    3) Stop changing 90% water! This is firstly quite stressful on your fish, and probably will wipe out what every tiny bits of bacteria colony you have. If you have to, do a 40% change daily rather than a 90% every 2-3 days... even this is excessive, a stable aquarium should be able to survive on a 40% or less weekly water change

    4) Add some salt in the tank... I'm suspecting that your Nh3/4 (though your low ph will probably help) and later NO2 levels are gonna be skyhigh... best to buffer your fishes against NO2 poisoning.

    5) if you have additional tanks, try spreading the bioload out... i.e 2 fish in one tank 3 in the other... see if your ph still drops as rapidly.
    Allen

  12. #12
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    Dear members,
    the PH of my tap water is 7 and KH about 3 dkh. The size of my 5 goldifsh is abt 2 inch each and as what chia2K mention, they really 'bomb' alot. After the water change, I added anti-chlorine (2 bottle cap full for 2 ft tank as per instruction), salt (2 teaspoon as per label instruction). Thanks for the suggestions and I will start to increse my KH and also to add in the coral chips to monitor the PH again. Hope the PH will stablize this time.

  13. #13
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    KH,

    Don't wait till you get a brush for the pipe. Just detach them and rinse them through first.
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