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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently added some guppies to a 10 gallon tank, with the intention of using the fry as feeders. I had fry within 24 hours and learned guppies are cannibalistic. :eek: The male died the next day so I tested my water and found the PH to be at 6.4 I did a water change (40%) and retested next day and was still at 6.4 Tap water tests at 7.3, I add Prime for a dechlorinater and test again at 7.3 I used Proper PH 7.0 (my target level) and get no change. I used PH UP and get no change. I do more water changes (with the 7.3 tap water) DON"T use Proper and get no change. Take water to pet store to make sure it's not me or test kit, it tested 6.4 HELP!!!!!!!!!!! Why is it going down that far and why can't I get it to come back up. The samething is happening to my 55 gal tank with no negative affects to date. I'm not 100% sure the PH level killed the guppie but.....? FYI I've tried different amounts of Proper, half as much , too much etc. I'm boggled!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's actually a decorative cave about the size of a softball. I thought about the "stuff" in the tank but tried here first. Think maybe I should replace or clean the "stuff"????
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Tank and gravel are 8 months old not sure type of gravel, generic color gravel bought at Walmart I believe.
 

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when you WC, do you gravel vac?

also what fish did you have it for the last 8 months.

Can you give us a complete water perams.... not just the PH

What type of testing kit are you using?
 

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I'm going to guess it may have something to do with sediment in your gravel, or possibly that fake rock thingy. Your tank may also have a low buffering capacity. Rather than buying the pH up stuff, just get some baking soda and very slowly add it to your aquarium over a period of time. Remember that pH is based on a logarithmic function, so going from 6.4 to 7.0 is actually quite a drastic change. If you can get ahold of a good buffer like calcium carbonate, that should also help out with keeping your pH at a good level, rather than randomly dropping and rising. Also, I've tried the proper pH stuff, and I never had any kind of a result with it, and I later found out it's bad for aquarium plants. DIY aquarium chemistry has always worked best for me, but it might be due to actually studying way too much chemistry in college. I was only a few credits away from minoring in chemistry -_-;
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I always vac with WC PH 6.4 Ammo 0 Nitrite 0 Nitrate 40 I've had neons corys pleco guppies I use an API test kit
 

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use cation when addeding baking soda it changes the KH and GH of the water and makes a major swing up with the pH. 1/2 a teaspoon in a 55 gals will raise your KH up one point. you will need to get a KH kit at your LFS before doing this
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Kula..the decorative cave has been in the tank since day 1 so i'm hesitante to think it's the culprit, but I'll pull it out and do a WC anyway. Proper PH has always worked for me, kinda wondering if I have a lower PH bottle mislabeled as 7.0 You didn't say how much baking soda to use , how often etc. Thanks for the tips!!!!!!
 

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I think the reason why Proper pH never worked for me was because it's actually just a buffer, but since I have hard water which contains plenty of calcium carbonate, it never really did anything. I think you'd be safe adding about a teaspoon of baking soda once every night to the 55 gal tank, but be careful and use less with the 10 gal tank, then check the pH of the water in the morning. Just keep doing that until you get the desired pH. And definitely get something that measures the hardness of your water. I use those test strips that measure hardness, nitrates, nitrites, pH, and buffering capacity. They're kind of expensive, so you might want to call around to some pet shops to see if any will do a test for free.
 

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Kula a teaspoon of baking soda every night in your tank will cause havic. I have to use baking soda in my tanks becuase the the KH of my water source is 2, and I control my pH with injected Co2 in that planted tank. Before adding the baking soda I would get what I called pH lock, my pH was locking at 6.2 and then after 4 days start to drop. The additon of 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda increases my Kh, I increase it to a a rating of 4 KH, that increaced the pH to from 6.2 to 7.8 and the injected Co2 into the water drives it down to what ever I set it for with the pH controler. In other tanks that I do not use Co2 to control pH I use Seachem pH Nuetrel Regulater that is intended to make your tank water set at 7.0 pH, however the Kh is still reading 2 in those tanks and the pH woulld drop to 6.2, I add 1/2 teaspoon to those tank and the Kh reading is 3 and the ph holds at 7.0. I don't not add baking soda every night I add it when i do water changes and only after I tested the tank with KH test kit. than I make the adjustments.. Water chem. is tricky and should always be advised with caution when telling someone to mess with their. IMO if he was to add a teaspoon to his tank every night he would end up with a tank full of death. You say that you use test strips and they are expensive to buy, that maybe so but they are not what is required for fish keeping, they are unreliable, they are effected by any humitity that is in the air each time you open them, it is better to use a complete liquid freshwater testing kit.

In your reply you state "but since I have hard water which contains plenty of calcium carbonate, it never really did anything" that a big statement because you are advising some to do some thing you have never done. Every water source is different from state to state area to area to town to town, and you must understand your water source before tring to alter it.
 

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Yeah, that's why I let them know why I add baking soda, and my experience with it. And I do know every water source is different. As far as buffers go, I actually do have quite a bit of experience and knowledge.
 

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Not questioning your knowledge or experience.... was addtion to your info. You may know but others do not. I was just including a warning of caution when fiddling with water chemistry. Must fish will grow accustom to what ever water source you have as long as you dechlor. the water and it not so far off the pH scale either way.
 

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Alrighty, I thought you were being mean to me! Sometimes I forget other people don't totally understand water chemistry >_<
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
djrichie That was a lot of "stuff". I'm an idiot so I read it 3 times and I'm still not sure what you're talking about. You spoke of KH, I don't know what that is or what the level SHOULD be. I think your suggesting a test kit for that, a PH lock, inject Co2, a ph Neutral Regulator, and how do you control KH? I've always been told large changes in ph like you refered 6.2 to 7.8 is very dangerous so I'm a little concerned with that.
 

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Carbonate hardness (KH) is the measure of bicarbonate and carbonate in the water. KH is basically the buffering capacity of your aquarium, Kh helps prevent sudden drops in pH. The production of Nitrates will slowly reduce your ph, but a proper KH will keep a more stable ph. Everything I have found says a KH of 4 is good. Yes, quick large swing in pH is very stressful to the fish, thats why when you do something to your tank you do it slowly. do it during a WC and a stress coat. The main tank i had this problem with was a custom 55 gal tank tall and flat, and it has Co2 injection system with Co2 reactor and ph control so as I added the baking soda over a period of a week the Co2 just kicked in and held down any major swing.... I would add it very slowly over a period days, just don't go and make a 0 KH reading 4 in 10 mins.....
 
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