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Discussion Starter #1
Here is my setup

Freashwater 65 Gallon Tank
Well established
eheim Canaster Filter.

My PH is very low (acid) off the scale of my tester. My Tap water is nutral so I am not sure why once in the tank it goes so low. I have been changing lots of water the last week but it still stays high in the tank. Any new fish I try to add seem to die in a few days. Maybe due to the PH shock.

I have live plants in the tank and a small wood stump decoration I bought from a fish store that is actually plastic molded I would think.

My tank is in the basement. So temperature and light are well controlled.

Is there anything I can try to raise the PH?
 

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You can take baking soda and mix it with water and make a solution to raise the ph. Just add maybe a teaspoon to a gallon of water and then pour an ounce of that diluted solution into the tank and retest in an hour or so. See how much it changed, then do maybe another ounce once or twice per day for a few days till the ph rises to where you want it. Or buy a commercial buffer product to stabilize it at 7.0.
 

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i may be able to further address the matter if you tell me :
What species are or where in the tank, wat gravel do you have (this can be very important) also what are your nitrate and ammonia levels.
It appears something is continually causing a chemical catylist therefore returning it to a low ph. what filter media are you using? What fish are you aiming to keep (species names please! )
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Here is what I can tell you

Fish - Neon tetras x8 (they like higher PH so they seem happy)
black Knife fish (large)
1 angle fish
Zebra fish x5
a few other assorted fish
fish dont seem hungry these days so i only feed what they can eat.
I think my tank is underpopulated as new fish seem to die

i have gravel I bought from the reputable aquarium store. I dont much more about it.

My ehiem filter is right size for my 65 gallon tank. First layer is the plastic mini 'tubes" then a course filter pad. Next the ehiem brand substrat and toped by the fine filter pad. (should i use the carbon pad i never have??)

My amonia levels are nitrate levels are "safe". One other note is my Alkalinity is Zero.

My tap water is great.

For the last two weeks I have been changing 25 percent of the water every 2 or 3 days but not much change in the PH yet.

i just want to keep standard community fish (molly's / tetras / etc)

thanks for any help!!!!!
 

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I have issues with the water coming from my tap as well, but it is almost 8.0 Thank you town for making the water drinkable but really cruddy for fish upkeeping. It's a pain when I need to do daily water changes for my fry/ growout tank.
When anyways, when I started my community tank last year, the ph was 7.6 and it slowly dropped and I didn't lose any fish due to the pH change. As long as the fish are in there as the pH is slowly dropping you should have no problems. The only issue might be when you are bringing in new fish into the community and slowly add the tank water to the floating bags.
Right now my pH is 6.8 and the fish are doing fine. Even with a 50% water change this past weekend, my pH only went up to 7.2.
Not sure if this helps, but I tried.
John B
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks. Over the weekend I added a air pump/bubbler to help add CO2. CO2 goes hand in hand with Alkalinity and PH. After water change my ph started to come up! Guess I found the problem. Now I can slowly correct the PH towards nutral. This will be better for the fish I want to keep and better for my bio filter.
 

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James,
How is your lighting system for your plants? I found Amazon Swords to be very good as well as anubias and wisteria (once I increased the wattage due to the distance the light has to travel to the substrate)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I dont know the name of the plants I have but they grow like weeds. Every couple of weeks I have to cut them back. If I can get things healthy again I wll add a few more and will look into the ones you mentioned
 

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I have heard (and I am about to start trying) that crushed coral will help raise PH and buffering for freshwater aquariums. You could put some in your filter media basket, that way you don't need to keep adding something every time you change/add water.
 

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I'm having the opposite problem as Jamesg5000. I have a 55gal. freshwater community tank set up with about a 90/10% Sand blasting sand and Dolamite mix. The PH is hovering at 8.5-9.0 despite daily treatment with acid buffer at a dose to reduce it by 0.2 and 10% water changes every week with water at 7.0. My water is naturally pretty hard. Does anyone have any idea what might be causing it? I have a hunch that I may need to change out my gravel. If that's the case, anybody have any suggestions as to what to pick?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
My issue was not enough CO2 in the water...maybe you have too much? Do you have a bubbler? My plants also lower the PH I found out so I cut them back. Perhaps adding some live plants will help.

Want to check if you gravel need changing? Maybe you can fill a large pot with water and check the PH. Then put some of your gravel in and check PH again in a few days. Just a thought.
 

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If you could include all water reading, as will as the what you have in the tank... not the fish but decor. As far driftwood lowering the ph there are not enough tanins in the woof to lower it that much. As far as plants go, I have never com accross a plant that is live that would cause the ph to drop, as they generally increase the Ph as oxygen will raise Ph and Co2 will lower it, and that will require a injected system. You seid it was will established tank mean how long has it been running. You problem is based on water chemistry, and not being there I can not see.

One thing you should look at first and for most, is your test kit. I fyour using dipping strips, throw them away and buy a complete water kit. dipping strips are easily affected humity and will give false readings. If you are you a Drop style kit check the date on the bottle...... they maybe exp'd
 

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The only things I have tests for are general hardness, carbonate hardness, ph, no2 and no3. Everything is nominal except for the ph obviously and the carbonate hardness is up a little. As I said earlier, the substrate is mostly sand blasting sand from the local concrete supply place (I've been using this stuff for a while now) and a little bit of dolamite limestone for some change in texture. As far as decor goes, I've got a bunch of slate and Granite whith the few live plants that have survived the spike (Amazon Swords and Java ferns.) I had my test results verified at my fish store (that fish place) and they found the same thing. This is actually the second time this has happened: I set the tank up about 9 months ago and everything was fine for six months or so, then the PH spiked to 8.5-9 for two weeks. I treated it as I am now to no avail, then one day it was fine. I moved to a new apartment a month ago now, and of course had to do a pretty big water change 80% or so, and now it's back up again. This time it dosn't seem to be going down.
 

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I'm going to say:there you problem your sand has limestone and other things in it and it cuasing your ph problem..... you just can't use any sand. it has to to be inerit. take some of the sand dry it out and pour vinager on it. if it fissies up than you know you can not use it. If it from a locally obtained than it has coral and everything else you can have in it. 9 times out of 10 it something you added to a tank when your ph goes hay wirer. I know it been running fine for awhile but it sometime takes time to break the materials down, like sand stone.... if you put it in the tank it will be perfect and then in a year or so you will just fine it crumbled up in to a pile.... at that point with will effect the water chem. and you will have to break down and start over. I personally would use a sand that designed for aquariums, not just something I can pick up from the hardware store. I know people who have tried to save and use pea rock from there, only to find over time that it has a chem. coating on that breaks down causing there tank to go crazy. remember these are living animals we are choosing to house in our homes and it it our duty to give them a safe home.
 

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I have read that bogwood can reduce you ph levels also as can peat moss.... If you want to raise you ph levels you can add crushed coral but this is not a quick fix.... Although it is a non chemical way of raising you ph level it does take some time and is a slow process.. Hope this helps ya~~~Erika
 

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I'm another with the low PH levels. I have live plants and rock as decorations. I used slate, sandstone, green quarts, and strawberry rock. Having read up on all of them I am assuming they are safe. I use pebbles and a substrate growing medium on the bottom.

The tank is relatively new still (about 4 weeks), so I'm still working on some cycling issues. The Bio-Spira got things well under way though. Everything is testing within safe parameters currently. Well except the PH. It isn't dangerously low 6.6-6.8. I'd still like to get it to neutral 7.0.

I've used the PH UP product, but I'm a bit hesitant about PH shock if it goes up too quickly. The slow advance using crushed coral intrigues me. I also though about adding one of the rocks recommended for ciclid tanks needing high PH. The LFS calls it "Holey Rock" so I'd like to identify and read up on it before sinking it in the tank. Anyone have experience with it?

The fish seem happy, but I've noticed the live bearers seem to be holding off birthing fry. Could that be the PH?
 
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