I have the worst possible tap water parameters!!! What to do??

  1. The Cichlidae Guy Member Member

    My water has a ph of 7.4 in tap, 8.4 in tanks... and its very hard water not to mention full of chlorine which is just a nuisance lol

    Heres the problem, yes thats good for african cichlids.... I cant stand african cichlids. Okay well why not try saltwater? To much money and time even though I love saltwater. I love new world cichlids. that's all I keep and what do they need? 6.5-7ph, and soft water... Okay so try a ph buffer? Nope water is way to hard. Powder type buffers react with the hardness making my water cloudy, and its to hard for drift wood to even work as a buffer.

    What do I do? All I can think of is get an RODI System but I have no place to set one up, or store water.
     
  2. Dolfan Fishlore VIP Member

    Before going the R/O route, lets try to figure out your water situation. If your tap water has a PH of 7.4 then your tank water should be pretty close to that. Are you testing this tap water after it degasses and sits out for more than 24 hours? Sometimes testing tap water right after it comes out will throw off the readings and give false PH numbers. But if your tap is truly 7.4 after sitting out, then your tank should be around that.

    If your tank is at 8.4 then something is making it go up. It could be your substrate, rocks or décor in the tank. What water treatments are you using? Also let us know all about your substrate and any rocks and décor you have. Hopefully we can figure out and pin point what is the cause of this rise in PH.
     

  3. celizabethh3 Member Member

    Have you let your tap water age before testing the pH? Sometimes letting it sit for a day or two can make a difference in the number. Like Dolfan said, decor and other factors can increase your pH.

    My tank water reads at 8.2 and while I know that isn't ideal for most of my fish (tetras, Corys), they are all doing great. I feel better having them live in that pH rather than trying to lower it and shocking them and/or killing them. Chances are, your LFS has the same pH as you do and they're already used to it.


    Sent from my iPad using Fish Lore Aquarium Fish Forum
     
  4. The Cichlidae Guy Member Member

    PH after letting it sit is around 8-8.4 thats why it is so high. Regular gravel substrate, driftwood as decoration. No rocks. Yeah I tried buffer once a long time ago but bad results so I haven't used it since.
     

  5. Dolfan Fishlore VIP Member

    Ok so your tap water is 8-8.4 and not 7.4. Well that makes more sense. According to your profile your only tank listed is a 10 gallon, is this still the case? If so, you could just buy R/O water at your local grocery store. I purchase 5 gallons of R/O water for $1.50 every few weeks or so to use for top offs and to mix a little in during water changes. For a 10 gallon tank, since it is small, 5 gallons would probably last you 2 water changes, just mixing in 2.5 gallons per water change. I bought this water tote from Seachem to transport the water....

    http://www.petmountain.com/product/aquarium-water-containers/11442-584800/seachem-seachem-hydrotote-water-jug.html?utm_source=googleproductads&utm_medium=cpc&gclid=CPupv6T5u78CFUpqfgodKCYADQ
     
  6. The Cichlidae Guy Member Member

    haha I guess I should update my tank status, I actually am running a 10, 29, 55, and 75 gallon as of now. I have been looking into R/O water for my 10 and 30 gallon.
     
  7. Rivieraneo Moderator Moderator Member

    If you buy your fish from a local breeder or LFS, ask what PH the fish have been kept of raised in, if they have been raised in the same tap water that you use, your fish should be acclimated and used to the higher PH.