How do i raise GH, while lowering KH/pH

SeahorseTX

I have a whole-house water softener. My tank is cycled and water quality is fine (0-0-10), but one of my fancy goldfish is belly up during much of the day. I lost an oranda (same tank) 6 mos ago to similar SBD symptoms. Readings using API liquid kit is KH=15 drops (which is 269 ppm, right??), pH = 7.8 (tap is lower), but my GH is reading BELOW 1. It doesn't even show orange at all. How do I get the GH up and KH down some without using chemicals?
I have a 36 gal for fancy golds with rock substrate and mostly artificial decor. The 2 annoying plants have black algae that I have been fighting, so they will soon be in the trash. I also run a UV light because of a green water column algae many months ago, now gone. With this water, my 20 gal tank has sadly killed all guppies I have tried. This is all so complicated!!! Thanks for help.
 

jtjgg

hi and welcome to Fishlore.

you could try the bypass valve or use the outside garden hose.

most water softeners have a by pass valve. most are only plumbed to the interior pipes and does not affect the outside spigots (water hoses). i have heard of some being plumbed into all the pipes.

we have an interior only water softener with a bypass valve, but since my tanks are right next to the backyard door, i just use the water hose to refill.

not sure if SBD is related to low GH water. i do know some factors that lead to SBD are poor water quality, long term nitrate poisoning, infrequent water changes, floating foods, foods with high wheat/corn fillers.

How to Put Your Water Softener in Bypass — WaterSmart
 

SeahorseTX

Thanks jtjgg. I will make a point to test the water from the spigot and compare the readings. Have no clue if SBD is initiated or worsened by stress from water parameters or water changes. I do regular changes, feed quality food and I'm careful not to overfeed. There isn't much poop vacuumed up during cleanings, so I sometimes wonder if I feed enough!
 

LowConductivity

hi and welcome to Fishlore.

you could try the bypass valve or use the outside garden hose.

most water softeners have a by pass valve. most are only plumbed to the interior pipes and does not affect the outside spigots (water hoses). i have heard of some being plumbed into all the pipes.

we have an interior only water softener with a bypass valve, but since my tanks are right next to the backyard door, i just use the water hose to refill.

not sure if SBD is related to low GH water. i do know some factors that lead to SBD are poor water quality, long term nitrate poisoning, infrequent water changes, floating foods, foods with high wheat/corn fillers.

How to Put Your Water Softener in Bypass — WaterSmart
GH up is easy, you can add “stuff”. KH down without chemicals, is going to be a bit more laborious. (I use chemicals to reduce KH)
 

jtjgg

if you do use the outside spigots, remember to let the water run for about 2 minutes, b/c in the summer the sun heats up the pipes and water hose so the first minute or so the water is scalding hot. then in the winter the water will be quite cold for the first two minutes. the new water temp should be within a few degrees of the tank water.

with fancy goldfish, sometimes they just get SBD due to their mutated, shortened bodies.

its ok to feed more, just space out the feedings. instead of a bunch of food all at once, one time a day, you can feed 3 times per day with small amounts of food.
 

SeahorseTX

Thanks so much for your comments! I have ordered Seachem Equilibrium to raise the GH and add back minerals. I appreciate your time & help.
 

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