Help with lowering my ph

DanMolstad

I set up a 75g planted tank about 3 weeks ago. I have 10 celestial pearl danios and some rams horn snails. My tap water has a ph of 8.2 kh and gh are both 7. I’ve done a couple 10% water changes with ro water and my ph is still at 8 and kh and gh are 6. Am 0 nitrite 0 nitrate less than 5. Any suggestions on how to lower my ph.
 

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jake37

What is the ph of the tap and why do you want to lower it ?

I set up a 75g planted tank about 3 weeks ago. I have 10 celestial pearl danios and some rams horn snails. My tap water has a ph of 8.2 kh and gh are both 7. I’ve done a couple 10% water changes with ro water and my ph is still at 8 and kh and gh are 6. Am 0 nitrite 0 nitrate less than 5. Any suggestions on how to lower my ph.
 
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DanMolstad

8.2
 
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travisnrg

Pretty sure you can add vinegar to drop the ph. Ive done it...
If you want plants, run co2, it will lower ph.
 
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Nick72

You will need to lower your KH before you can lower your PH, as your KH is buffering your high PH.

It is possible, but it's a pain. Why would you want to lower your PH?
 
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jake37

Before op lowers his ph it should be understood why he wants to lower the ph. In general fishes are able to adapt to a range of ph but they are not very tolerant of ph changes. If the op lowers his ph then he will have to ensure that any new water he adds to his tank has this new ph which is a pain.
 
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DoubleDutch

Agree with Jake. A stabil one is more.important for most fish than a lower one.
 
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SamanthaJane

No sorry, it won't.

OP is trying to lower his PH.
you're a 100% right, he wants to lower his PH however crushed coral will stabilize his PH at 8.2 and is actually way more important.
But again yes my reply was not an answer to lower pH so, agreed!

No sorry, it won't.

OP is trying to lower his PH.
 
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Sorg67

You water is almost identical to my water. Mine is pH 8.2, KH and GH 7 or 8 and TDS 165. I read about the parameters of some of the shrimp and fish I have and some places say they want pH between 6 and 7.5. That makes me concerned.

However, I have been advised that most tank bred fish are very tolerant of a wider range of pH than a lot of resources suggest. And that mineral content (hardness) and TDS are more important than pH. The osmoregulation process requires a certain mineral content and it is easier for fish that prefer low mineral content to adjust to high mineral content than the reverse. Meaning that most fish will adjust to your high pH and moderately hard water. People with low pH and soft water may have a greater need to adjust. In addition pH is often unstable in soft water that is low in mineral content that buffers pH.

A risk you have in doing water changes with RO water is that you will dilute your buffers which could make your pH unstable. And you may dilute minerals which you plants or fish may need.

I am doing some experiments in a bucket to adjust my pH. So far I have not messed with it in the tanks. I have found that messing with pH is difficult. That is why so many people recommend against doing so. You end up with fluctuating pH which is worse than high pH.

For my water, I found that it took mixture of 25% tap to 75% distilled to get my pH down to the low 7's. GH, KH and TDS change proportionally, but pH does not.

The 25% / 75% mix left my GH lower than I wanted it so I would have to remineralize the mix a bit. I decided that if I was going to use 75% distilled, I may as well use 100% distilled and mix it up to my exact specifications.

I bought a jewler's scale potassium carbonate and Equilibrium. And I am currently playing with my mixture.

If you are going to use something other than your tap water, you must determine what you are going to use and then use that consistently so you do not end up with fluctuations. For example, if I decided that I was going to use a remineralized 25 / 75 mix. I would make the 25 / 75 mix in a bucket. Add the minerals and use that blend with every water change. I would write down the exact formula so that it is consistent. The first few times, I would test the blend before putting it in the tank.

Perhaps I would transition over time with small daily water changes until the tank was completely transitioned to the new water. Then I would monitor closely for a while to make sure I was keeping the parameters stable.

The more I play, the more I think I will probably just live with my tap water. My fish seem to be doing fine. I am enjoying learning about messing with the water. But once I learn how to do it, I will probably be over it and i will not want to make my water change process more difficult.

What I have learned is that if you are going to mess with pH, you have to go all the way and really understand what you are doing. If you do not, then you are likely to do more harm than good. I do not yet fully understand what I am doing therefore, I am sticking with messing with water in buckets for now.

I may free up a 10 gallon tank soon and might play with that for a bit. But after I have satisfied my curiosity, I will probably just use tap water unless I want to keep particularly sensitive fish.
 
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DanMolstad

Thank you all for your help. I’m trying to do a mixed community tank and read it should be around 7.6. I’ll leave it for now and see how the fish handle it.
 
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