Here we go again with the PH

Ryuki

Active Member
Member
Messages
55
Reaction score
24
Location
Antioch California USA
Experience
1 year
HI everyone, hope all is well with ya fishies :)

So the subject is PH. I have done a quick search in the forum for PH but there are just too many threads and whilst they are close to my questions I find none of them to have definitive answers. I used to have topicals 30 years ago and I don't remember it ever being this scientific.

Anyway my issue is in a few parts but all based around the same subject.

Sooo, I have two main tanks. Both are 55s. One is Goldfish and the other topicals. Also have to 10 gallon spares. The topicals tank is new and still waiting for it to cycle (been 3 weeks so far with 7 Zebra Danios). The PH in both tanks is 7. From observation the Goldfish are hating it (I recently took the coral substrate out of the tank so the PH dropped dam quick and my goldies got sick. The PH now is 7) but the Danios are loving it (Tropical Tank). I've been using ATI Proper PH 7.0 to hold it. It does a good job at keeping it in the 7.0 to 7.2 range. Reason I'm using this stuff is because my Tap water is 8.4. After aging for 24hours it only drops to 8.2. So this is my first issue which arises questions.

I along probably with most beginners and maybe even intermediates are lead to believe that you need to match your PH to your fish's ideal suggested level. I mean why not right? Wether it be a fish store like Petco or a Pro Breeder online, they all post what the ideal PH is for that fish. Yes I understand that a lot of the fish are multiple generations away from their wild ancestors but I'm sure their makeup is still conditioned for certain chemical levels and environment (Its in their genes). So for the fish to look its best (Vibrant colors, etc), Breeding possibility and feeling their best etc, you should get the closest match for that fish or community of fish you are keeping right?

So my fish:
Zebra Danios prefer 6.5 to 7.2 (No worries cause I'm at 7.0)
Gold fish - 7.2 to 7.6 (No worries I guess, only .2 below at 7.0)

So my options at this stage are what?
Option 1: Keep using the Proper PH 7 and hope nothing spikes. I've heard that using these chemicals isn't the best option in the long run and it will come back to bite me in the butt later. Right or Wrong?

or

Option 2: Use the aged 8.2 Tapwater for all my fish (I know this option would be a lot easier for sure but for some reason it just doesn't gel right with me. Also it arises one issue when buying more fish. Acclimation. How in the blazes do you acclimate a Danio sitting in a shop at PH 7.0 to PH 8.2 in my tank. You do it slowly. If I've been reading things correctly you cannot change PH on a fish more than .2 a day. Going from 7 to 8.2 is 6 days. So there is no way you can just keep the fish in the bag for 6 days. He'd be belly up in his own Ammonia. So only option is to have my 10 gallon tank setup at 7 and put the Danio in there and over the course of 6 days raise the PH on him to 8.2

So out of all that blurb above the main questions are:
1)
Are chemical PH balancer's bad or not? (e.g. ATI Proper PH) Also there is the one other factor into spiking possibilities I guess which is KH and GH?. I haven't got my head around that yet. Have only taken readings and have no clue what they mean yet. My Tapwater KH is 4 and GH is 5
2)
How do you acclimate a fish into water with a difference from the bag of more than 1 PH. (Only option use another small tank)?

p.s. Id like to MOVE to a city where the water PH is 7.6 with no Ammonia (Yep our water out of the tap has .5 Amonnia) ^_^
 

Matthew7812

Active Member
Member
Messages
130
Reaction score
67
Location
New York
Experience
5 years
Ok wow ... that was long and I needed to read it a few times. To answer your first question: Yes, you should get the closest match for that fish or community of fish you are keeping.

Second question: chemicals aren't the best option in the long run and it will come back to bite you in the butt later. Right or Wrong? It is certainly possible! I try to use as little amounts of chemicals as possible in my tanks, so consider my advice with that in mind.

As for option 2: I agree with your logic here. You can't QT a fish in a bag for 6 days, but I don't agree you should be letting the PH rise to levels that are uncomfortable in general for the fish. The option to have the 10 gallon tank set up at 7 and put the Danio in there and over the course of 6 days raise the PH on him to 8.2 seems excessive and way too much work.

So, therefore, I would throw option 2 out the window BECAUSE there are ways to naturally lower your ph: driftwood and peat moss for example. (although do research into tannins.) In the meantime don't buy any more fish until you have this figured out and acclimating the fish is easy and unstressful as possible. IMO it is more important to keep the tank stable and maintain it than have the exact ph required. If the ph is jumping up and down, your fish are going to hate you and die.

So in short, buy fish that are close as compatible with your tap water parameters and slowly adjust to as closely comfortable as you can get with natural methods.

I hope I answered your questions because I sure tried my best. I would suggest doing some research into GH and KH and then we can surely discuss that beast of a topic. I think my post is long enough already haha. Best of luck to you, message me back if I can help any more or clear something up.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
OP
R

Ryuki

Active Member
Member
Messages
55
Reaction score
24
Location
Antioch California USA
Experience
1 year
Matthew7812 said:
Ok wow ... that was long and I needed to read it a few times. To answer your first question: Yes, you should get the closest match for that fish or community of fish you are keeping.

Second question: chemicals aren't the best option in the long run and it will come back to bite you in the butt later. Right or Wrong? It is certainly possible! I try to use as little amounts of chemicals as possible in my tanks, so consider my advice with that in mind.

As for option 2: I agree with your logic here. You can't QT a fish in a bag for 6 days, but I don't agree you should be letting the PH rise to levels that are uncomfortable in general for the fish. The option to have the 10 gallon tank set up at 7 and put the Danio in there and over the course of 6 days raise the PH on him to 8.2 seems excessive and way too much work.

So, therefore, I would throw option 2 out the window BECAUSE there are ways to naturally lower your ph: driftwood and peat moss for example. (although do research into tannins.) In the meantime don't buy any more fish until you have this figured out and acclimating the fish is easy and unstressful as possible. IMO it is more important to keep the tank stable and maintain it than have the exact ph required. If the ph is jumping up and down, your fish are going to hate you and die.

So in short, buy fish that are close as compatible with your tap water parameters and slowly adjust to as closely comfortable as you can get with natural methods.

I hope I answered your questions because I sure tried my best. I would suggest doing some research into GH and KH and then we can surely discuss that beast of a topic. I think my post is long enough already haha. Best of luck to you, message me back if I can help any more or clear something up.
HI Matt, the problem is my tap water IS 8.4 straight out of the Tap along with .5 ammonia. How much of that is ionized I need to find out.
But the 8.4 PH I simply don't want. I do have 32gal of water right now in a drum. This is where I pre treat it and heat it before a water change. It is actually dropping PH the longer it stays in there with aeration. I even noticed that Seachem prime helps it drop another .1 or so. So far it's been in there for 24 hours and its down to 8.1. I'll keep an eye on it for another 24 hours and see if it drops more. If I could get it down to 7.6 even I would be happy. Seems to be a good level for most common tropicals.

So I guess my next step is to find a natural way to get it to 7.6 within the drum.
 

Matthew7812

Active Member
Member
Messages
130
Reaction score
67
Location
New York
Experience
5 years
That is awesome you have the ability to have a 32-gallon drum to lower the ph of the water. I didn't even consider that as an option for you to be honest. I know I don't have the room or patience for it haha.

So, seachem prime will neutralize about 1ppm ammonia for 24 hours into iminium salt giving your beneficial bacteria a chance to catch up and convert it.

As for prime affecting the ph level. I have never heard of this happening so I don't believe that is what is going on here. Seachem would need to disclose that information if their product affected ph as well.
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
OP
R

Ryuki

Active Member
Member
Messages
55
Reaction score
24
Location
Antioch California USA
Experience
1 year
Yeah the drum is pretty cool, my wife doesn't think so. It's a 32gal Brute bin from lowes. Had to end up buying 2 (one inside the other cause 1 buckles with the weight of the water)

I know Prime's main function is to kill off the chlorine and it's only. 1 of a difference in PH so I probably read the test wrong.

After 36 hours the tap water levels out at 8.1 (down from 8.4). So only .5 to go to get to my goal. Shouldn't be to difficult :)
 
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
OP
R

Ryuki

Active Member
Member
Messages
55
Reaction score
24
Location
Antioch California USA
Experience
1 year
Was thinking about that but I'd still need to pre treat the water for ph before I add it to the tank right? I mean if I poured it in the tank at 8.4 wouldn't that be a little risky?

Also there's the heating, although I guess I could just hook a hose up to the kitchen faucet and slightly warm it.
 

Matthew7812

Active Member
Member
Messages
130
Reaction score
67
Location
New York
Experience
5 years
Are you using the API high range ph test?

Unfortunately, I don't have any personal experience with these systems. So, I don't want to give you bad information. I am fortunate enough to have an 8.0 tap with zero ammonia which is perfect for my cichlids.

Hopefully someone with. more experience can comment on that issue, but I just thought it might be a good idea to bring it up!
 

Ajackson

New Member
Member
Messages
10
Reaction score
0
In case you may hand a similar thing going on- My tap water is also 8.4 right now, but it was acidic before a cold weather spell hit us. Glad I noticed and didn’t kill any fish, just have had a major issue getting biofilters started. I have been going to a natural grocers and getting reverse osmosis water (25 cents a gallon) to mix with tap water to get a ph where the fish are at. Slowly bringing the fish/water up in ph.
 

New Threads

Similar Threads

Follow FishLore!

FishLore on Social Media

Online statistics

Members online
278
Guests online
3,211
Total visitors
3,489

Aquarium Photo Contests

Aquarium Calculator

Top Bottom