Aerating water raising pH

Jrobber

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bass master

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well neutral water typically has pretty low CO2 levels and so more aeration wont really drive off much CO2 at all unless you are actually injecting CO2 into your tank, also unless you had very stagnate water where high levels of CO2 could build up just from waste then adding an airstone probably wouldnt have much of an affect on the pH IMO, any surface movement from the filter, powerheads, etc would probably already be enough to drive off most of the excess CO2
 

Nutter

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Yes having an airstone can raise the PH levels but it depends on a few other things. Firstly having higher levels of co2 in the tank than in the atmosphere, (not common without co2 injection), how much surface disturbance there is from filters, how many plants & fish are in the tank.

Generally the answer is no an airstone will not raise the PH within an aquarium but it is possible under certain circumstances.
 
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Jrobber

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Well, the reason I ask was I had a HOB filter with 160 GPH, a power head with 160 GPH and a Tetra Whisper 40 attached to a bubble wand. Since I have installed it, I noticed my pH level readings were more purple than usual. I took a sample to the LFS, but the kid said it looks like 8.2, which is normal for my tank. However, my girlfriend and I disagreed after checking again later that night. Yesterday, I did another test and it looked more like 8.6 so I turned off the air pump and began reading today. I tested again tonight and it looked just like 8.2 according to the color card.

I don't have real plants in this tank I am talking about, just fake plants, gravel, a couple decorations and fish. I think I am going to keep monitoring the pH level for a couple days just for reference purposes. I'd really like the pH to be lower than 8.0 for a new tank I am going to be setting up in a month or two which will house (hopefully) live plants and different fish than I have now.

I could be spazzing out about something not so important, but I kind of think I over did it with aeration because I wanted to make sure my tank was as healthy as can be. Could this be the cause of my higher pH levels or am I misreading the color on the cards? The world may never know.
 

ryanr

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Do you have KH readings for your tank?

KH (carbonate hardness) acts as a buffer, and kinda locks pH levels at a certain level.
Overtime, the KH level will drop as the buffer gets used up. If you have really low KH levels (probably under 3 dKH), your water may be more prone to pH swings.

See if you can get a measurement on KH.

Also, try to measure your pH at the same time each day to give a truer pattern.

Have you tested your tap water?

If I had pH's that high in my tap, I'd be going straight to the LFS and over to the cichlid tanks (but that's just me)

Anyway, let us know what you find out.
 
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Jrobber

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The thing is my tap water is around 7.4-7.6 so knowing that, I would lean towards the increased aeration causing my pH to increase.

Unfortunately, I don't have any of the tests you asked about Ryanr, nor do I have the required tank size for cichlid. Trust me if I had a larger tank, cichlids would be swimming in my tank right now.

UPDATE:
Well, after 24 hours without the air pump running the pH level is right on the money 8.2. I'll check again tomorrow, but I'm still confused as to the readings I was getting. It totally looked like 8.6 to me, but I have been wrong in the past.
 
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pinky93

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When I read this post, I thought I found the reason to my high pH so I reduced the aeration. I was wondering if a sudden change in the pH would negatively affect my fish?
 

bass master

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Hey guys, usually it is better to post in your own thread so you can get more responses.

Aeration will not in itself cause high pH. Tap water often has excess CO2 in it that lowers the pH, aeration speeds up the process in which CO2 leaves the water and helps raise the pH to where it actually is. If your tank water has stayed at a consistent pH for a few days, aeration will not change the pH of your water.
 
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