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Thread: BIG PROBLEM!! HIGH PH!! FISH DYING!!

  1. #1
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    BIG PROBLEM!! HIGH PH!! FISH DYING!!

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    Saw a few Rummy nose having whiteish rotten like body appearing on them and was shocked when told by Gan the tank PH is probably too high. Did a check last night after replant and was really shock to see PH at 8.5.

    I am really desperate and had to use the PH stabiliser to lower it to 7.5 after dosing 4 teaspoon in my 180L tank. Dosed some more PH stabiliser this morning and check water dropped to 7.0.

    I am using JBL PH tester the one that uses a coloyr chart with interval of 0.5, so my reading may not be accurate.

    1. Can any expert recommend a better tester, but of course not one that bust the pocket.

    Also, to my secomd shock after reading Amano's Nature Aquraium page on Maintaining Tank, he actually recommended NOT to use PH stabiliser!!! But is ok to use Potassium Sulphate to raise the PH is required.

    I know I had posted a message before about high KH after dosing the PH stabiliser, but have to take the risk since the PH is so high and fishes are dying.

    So the second question to the expert is:

    2. How can I lower the PH if it is too high??

    My tank has not been changing water since 3 weeks ago and the Canister filter had not been clean since 3 months ago. Is that the cause?

    Last question:
    3. Is Nitrate level check important?

    I had never do nitrate check at all, is that a possible cause as well?

    Thanks!!

  2. #2
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    I am answering to the best of my immediate abilities and time:

    excessively high pH may well screw up fish (esp those like Gan's tetras which are wild caught). But high ammonia and nitrite will probably do worse..... is your tank heavily planted, set up for long, and the plants thriving???? If so, nitrogen compounds shouldn't be a big issue, unless you have had major deaths or melt-downs recently.

    Are you sure your tetras are not suffering from fungus or other parasites???? Can i recommend you (and all other hobbyists) this book: Tropical Fishclopaedia by Mary Bailey and Peter Burgess click here, which i find very useful in diagnosing fish diseases, treatments, water maintenance and very sensible advice on fish-keeping. It's available in some good bookstores and is well worth its cost of about $30.

    Unless your place's tapwater is at fault, you probably have some water hardening (coral chips, shells, dolomite etc) substance in your tank or filter.

    I think Amano gives good advice in avoiding chemical acidulants to manipulate pH. If you can fix your tank's water using the standard KH/pH/Co2 table it should be much better and more predictable.

    What do you mean by "But is ok to use Potassium Sulphate to raise the PH is required"? I catch no ball.

    The only water softening/ph lower material i would use are peat-based. But local tap water is already very soft and slightly acidic to neutral. Unless your test kits are crappy (and many are - try borrowing a ph Test pen from a LFS or other instead), i can't say for sure why your pH is so screwed. But if it's something in your tank/filter, it's best to start afresh.

    Changing water helps keep the mineral content of the tank from building up (as water evaporates), so changing the water (30-40%) every 2-3 weeks can help, but not if something else is fundamentally wrong.

    I think cleaning filters every 6 months or so is sufficient. but check is your filter media might be the problem.

    Lastly, nitrate will NOT be a problem if you have healthy plants.

  3. #3
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    Errr... SG tap water ranges from 7 to 9pH.

    But regular water change less then 50% will not push pH up too high, as the pH scale is acutally logarithmic. I.e. 50% of 8pH water mixed to 50% 7pH water does not equate 7.5pH. The value will be very, very close to the lower pH, which is 7pH in this case.

    So yes, check what in your tank is raising the pH or KH.
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    Opps typo error at the phrase "but is ok to use Potassium Sulphate to raise the PH IF required"..... it should be IF not IS. Typo..... []

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    Potassium sulphate do not raise PH.

    BC

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    Opps, mistake again. Failed chemistry in Sec school. I think what Takashi Amano wrote in his book is baking soda, but I got the wrong chemistry name here.

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    Sodium Bicarbonate = Baking Soda = NaCO3
    Cheers!!

    Sherwin Choo
    [email protected]

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    Baking soda raises the kH, not pH. kH is the buffer capacity and the lower it is, the more easily your pH will swing. However that's not to say you should raise your kH as high as possible. kH of 3-10 is ok for your community freshwater tank.

    Actually, I have the same problem right now. High pH, that is. My kH is 3 (just raised it to 4). What I did was change 50% of the water and watched the pH dropped to 7.5 (before it was 8.0) and if I keep it up I'll probably find it drop back to 7.0 or somewhere there again.
    Regards,
    Annette Chung

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    ----------------
    On 9/30/2003 7:28:27 PM

    Sodium Bicarbonate = Baking Soda = NaCO3
    ----------------
    Corrections... NaHCO3.

    BC

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    ----------------
    On 9/30/2003 8:00:49 PM

    Baking soda raises the kH, not pH. kH is the buffer capacity and the lower it is, the more easily your pH will swing. However that's not to say you should raise your kH as high as possible. kH of 3-10 is ok for your community freshwater tank.

    Actually, I have the same problem right now. High pH, that is. My kH is 3 (just raised it to 4). What I did was change 50% of the water and watched the pH dropped to 7.5 (before it was 8.0) and if I keep it up I'll probably find it drop back to 7.0 or somewhere there again.
    ----------------
    KH is related to pH. Keeping all else constant, raising KH will raise pH and vice versa.

    BC

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    BC..... thanks
    Cheers!!

    Sherwin Choo
    [email protected]

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    A lot of knowledge here in keeping a planted tank.....

    Thanks all the bros who had advised here.

    Cheers,
    George

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