Lowering Ph Help

Discussion in 'pH' started by oodelally, Jun 16, 2018.

  1. oodelally

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    I recently bought two amano shrimp that only lasted two days in my tank. Luckily my lfs will replace newly bought fish that have died. They test your water first, and won’t replace them until the water is considered safe.

    When I brought my water in they said my ph was too high and that’s probably what killed the shrimp even though everyone else seem fine. I’ve been trying for days to lower the ph with ph down but it seems like it’s stuck at 7.8. I’ve only been adding one dose when it’s been more than 24 hours so it doesn’t stress the fish. Today I instead put in Tertra easy balance plus to see if that helps at all.

    I would try driftwood but I don’t have the room because I have so many plants. I haven’t been able to put fertilizer in the tank for a while and have been afraid to mix it with the other stuff, but could it maybe help? The ph used to be better so I was thinking maybe the lack of fertilizer raised it.
  2. FishFor2018

    FishFor2018Well Known MemberMember

    i had the same problem except i didn't have a planted tank. I tried lowering the PH for 3 weeks and it wouldn't work. I ended up just taking out everything (including all water) and cleaning it and then when i got my new water to the correct PH (took about 30 minutes) i just put the fish back in as if they where new fish going into a tank. Im not sure about the plants but that's what i did.
    Hope it helped! Good Luck!
  3. Lorekeeper

    LorekeeperWell Known MemberMember

    Messing with your PH with chemicals is NOT a good idea. I'd almost put money that a high PH didn't kill your shrimp. Most things we keep in our tanks can adapt to a wide range of PHs, and usually if you're somewhere between 6.5-8.5, you'll be fine. You just need a stable PH. By adding that chemical, you're possibly throwing the PH into a swing that could wipe out your entire tank.

    Personally, I'd stop adding the chemicals, and do a few small water changes over the next few days until your PH returns to normal levels. Then, go back and try to explain to the LFS. Or, go to a different one. That's a nice policy for your store to have, but I believe they're misguided here.

  4. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    Doesn’t water changes raise the ph though? I read that “newer” water has a higher level than “older” water. All the other levels seem fine. I do normally do a small water change every few days because my tank is right next to the kitchen sink and it’s easier than the bigger water changes weekly.

    I was using safe start with my water changes and the ph seemed fine then but I don’t remember what it was. I bought easy balance about a week before I got the shrimp but the lady at the store said that shouldn’t have raised the ph.

    I want to stick with this store since it’s the only one close that sells amano shrimp and I would have to spend the money again if I switched anyway.

  5. snowballPLECO

    snowballPLECOValued MemberMember

    People throw way too many useless chemicals into their tanks, only USEFUL one is Prime when you do WC. If your tank is cycled you do not need anything extra other than some prime or whatever dechlor you happen to use. Captive bred fish can adapt to any pH for the most part, the key? Consistent pH.. a consistent pH is the best pH.
  6. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    Aren’t most amano shrimp wild caught because they are so hard to breed?

    I’m afraid that going from a tank in the lfs that has a lower ph level to one with a much higher level will harm the shrimp.

    And it doesn’t seem like it’s always been this high, so lowering it would probably help the consistency though I never really kept track of it before.
  7. Lorekeeper

    LorekeeperWell Known MemberMember

    Water change water CAN have a higher PH than your tank water. However, it will usually be fairly close. Out of the tap, my water is around 7.9-8.1 depending on the time of year. Once it's been in my tank for a week, it settles to a consistent 7.8. So while yes, water change water will be a bit different, not drastically different.

    Easy balance is honestly yet another chemical that you don't need. Safe start is good to use while cycling, but there's no point in adding it to a cycled tank.

    As for the PH difference between your tank and the store's, that's why we acclimate. Just dropping shrimp into your tank will likely kill them; when I kept RCS, I'd do a drip acclimation. That's the best, IMO, and has the best success rate.
  8. AquaticJ

    AquaticJFishlore VIPMember

    At the store I work at, when we get shrimp, we float them like any other fish and release them. We don’t do anything special to tank water.
  9. Lorekeeper

    LorekeeperWell Known MemberMember

    Honestly, I feel as if all fish should be drip acclimated as well... or maybe that's just the reefer in me.

    Either way, with shrimp, and slow acclimation is the way to go.
  10. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    I’m not so much worried about acculmating the shrimp when I get them, I’ll use the drip method and I usually float and put in a little tank water at a time. But I can’t get them in the first place if the ph stays this high.

    I was using the safe start as a water conditioner essentially, it seemed like it was working better than the actual WC I had. It was left over from when I added a fish and it said I could use it with water changes so I did. I was under the impression easy balance was the same thing except not tailored to new tanks/fish.

  11. Lorekeeper

    LorekeeperWell Known MemberMember

    Your store has a great policy, but when they're misinformed, it may be best to look elsewhere for this particular purchase. Messing with your PH will truly bring about nothing but trouble.

    As for the safestart, I don't believe it actually gets rid of any chlorine in your water. In other words, it doesn't really make your tap water safe. Most of us here use seachem Prime, for it's ammonia neutralizing abilities.
  12. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    Unfortunately this is the only store I can get them at unless I find one out of town. And I already paid for them, I really don’t want to spend another $10 if I don’t need to. They said I can take my time lowering it so I don’t stress the fish, but it hasn’t budged after almost a week.

    My chlorine has always been at zero when tested, which is why I thought it was working just as well. I’ve have been thinking about buying those gallon jugs water they sell in stores, there are a couple different kinds like distilled water and they are under a dollar. I just don’t know how I would get it to be the same temp as the tank.

    Thanks for the continued help!
  13. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    Now one of my ghost shrimp has turned white and it was fine 3 hours ago.

    Maybe I should just mix my tank water with some from my empty qt that has a ph of 6.6 and bring that in...
  14. chadcf

    chadcfValued MemberMember

    My PH is 7.8 - 8.0. Never had a problem, I have 5 amano shrimp and 1 red cherry shrimp (had 3, I think the other two got eaten) that have done just fine in the water. The only amano shrimp I lost escaped the tank, none of them have died in the tank. I didn't treat them any different than fish when I added them, my usual process is to float for 20 minutes, and then every 10 minutes add maybe 1/2 cup of tank water, do that 3-4 times and then add them to the tank.
  15. DuaneV

    DuaneVWell Known MemberMember

    Your PH isnt killing the shrimp. Youve got something else going on somewhere.
  16. OP

    oodelallyValued MemberMember

    Okay, I just checked the ph in my tap water and it’s 7.2, and I have a cup of it sitting out I’m going to test tomorrow morning.

    But at this point, since I remember it being lower than the 7.8 before now, I need to lower to get it back to stability. The spike seemed to happen after I ran out of safe start that I was using a little bit of each water change.

    Since it seems that’s the case, how can I lower it? Preferably naturally and slowly. Almond leaves maybe?

    As for the ghost shrimp... I’ve yet to get any that have lasted month. I get them from petsmart and they are feeders so I know they are already under a lot of stress when I get them and sometimes they are already a bit cloudy. I’m only really concerned about this one because it was so abrupt after adding easy balance. I’ve heard they die off easily at first but if they last a month they are hardy.

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