How Is My Water Chemistry?

Discussion in 'Aquarium Water' started by chrismd, May 19, 2019.

  1. chrismd

    chrismdNew MemberMember

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    Happy Sunday eve everyone!

    I’m stoked...and confused!

    I’ll start this by noting I’m in the middle of a fishless cycle. 6 weeks in or so, and under the softened water (pH ranging from 6.2-6.4) were at a point where 4ppm ammonia is being fully processed to nitrates in 2 days.

    We are on a well and use a water softener I’ve recently discovered is terrible for freshwater aquariums. But I learned to bypass this with ease today so we’re on well water!

    But I’m a bit confused as evaluating to the quality of the new water. Here’s what I’ve got (forgive the ppm, I used my pool chemistry set for calcium and total alkalinity):

    Calcium hardness: 40ppm
    Total alkalinity: 130ppm
    8.4 pH
    ammonia: 0.25ppm
    Nitrites: 0
    Nitrates: 5ppm

    So my questions:

    1. I’m in the middle of a fishless cycle. My pH before was 6.2-6.4, so I assume this pH is better for the cycling? I did a near full water change (down to to gravel) to replace the softened water with the regular well water.

    2. PH over all - is this ok for a freshwater tank?

    3. I have high alkalinity and low calcium - is this a problem?

    Just wanna know if I’ll have any challenges moving forward, really.

    Thank you!
     
  2. Coradee

    CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

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    Welcome to Fishlore hope our members can help you today
     
  3. Skavatar

    SkavatarWell Known MemberMember

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    1. bacteria are more effective at processing ammonia at or above 7 pH. too acidic and they won't be able to process the ammonia fast enough to keep your fish safe.

    2. 8.4 pH is ok for some fish (like goldfish), it will depend on what you're planning to stock. you don't have to just use 100% softened water, or 100% well water. you can mix different ratios of softened water and well water. but a word of caution with water softeners that use salt, i haven't found any conclusive information on whether or not any of the salt/sodium gets into the water.

    3. 40ppm GH is slightly hard, and 130ppm KH is moderately high. the higher KH will keep your pH stable, preventing it from crashing or swinging much.
     
  4. OP
    OP
    chrismd

    chrismdNew MemberMember

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    Thank you!

    Dang it, seems I’ve set myself WAY with the water change. No ammonia is currently being processed, Apparently my water changed may have wiped out the bacterial colonies

    I don’t plan on stocking anything crazy. It’s a 15g column tank. I was going to do a community tank with some nanos: some boraras, some endlers livebearers, and after a year maybe some shrimp and mini otos.
     
  5. Skavatar

    SkavatarWell Known MemberMember

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