Ph Buffer Substrate

GuppyGuy007

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Hi,
I am looking for a substrate, or something, that will naturally lower my Ph levels, so I can get into breeding low PH fish like tetras. Please let me know of any ideas and experience with/about different products.
 

fjh

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@Fanatic i believe coral increases your ph

@fishlover001 you can try peat moss or similar, but why do you want to lower your ph? Usually a ph thats too high but steady is better than having it jump around every WC.
 

TexasDomer

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What's your starting pH, GH, and KH? If they're high, it might be easiest to start with RO water and add the appropriate buffers to get the pH, GH, and KH to where you want them.
 

finnipper59

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fishlover001 said:
Hi,
I am looking for a substrate, or something, that will naturally lower my Ph levels, so I can get into breeding low PH fish like tetras. Please let me know of any ideas and experience with/about different products.
really no substrates that will lower pH. Simply use natural gravel or sand and use filter media such as peat moss to lower the pH level, but be aware that peat will produce tannins that will make your water tea colored. Crushed coral or coral sand will actually raise your ph. There are products available to add to the water that will lower your pH. Years ago I used to raise Discus and there were pH tabs you could add to the water that would automatically set the pH at 6.5 and buffer the water to keep it there. You may want to go online like typing pH lowering media and seeing if there are any products that you can add to your filter other than peat moss to lower your pH levels.
 
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GuppyGuy007

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I think these are all the answers:
I want to lower it to breed tetras
8.2, not sure of the others
Yes, planning on planted
I would prefer not to use chemicals of any kind.
I have something called betta spa that reduces PH because of the almond leave extract in it. Is this considered chemically changing it?
 

Fahn

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There are several types of aquasoil, such as ADA Amazonia and Controsoil, which will buffer pH down to the low-to-mid 6s. This works by stripping carbonates from the water, reducing the KH. The substrates have a finite lifespan and will eventually need to be replaced if what you're wanting is their buffering ability and not just boosted plant growth. Many of these soils are formulated for Caridina shrimp keeping and breeding. In order to keep the pH buffering from exhausting too quickly you'd need to use remineralized RO water with a low KH and decor such as driftwood and leaf litter to add tannins to keep the pH low.

Unless you're keeping wild-caught Amazonian fish, or trying to breed Taiwan bee shrimp, this is unnecessary and can get expensive.
 
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GuppyGuy007

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So do you think tetras could/would breed in that high of a ph. Because if they can, I would have no problems leaving it, I had just read that in order to breed they needed moderately low ph.

Did the aquavitro cause an ammonia spike?
 

Fahn

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75g Discus Tank said:
Not for me. But it's 3x as expensive as ADA in my area.
We sell it at our shop and it's like $20 for a 4.4lb bag, very expensive! I'm an advocate for Marfied Controsoil personally, as I love the small grain size and the fact that it doesn't leech ammonia.
 
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GuppyGuy007

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Ok, let's rephrase this, I cannot spend more than $20.00 per ten pounds of substrate.for the contosoil I see $30.00 for about 3 liters, would that cover a ten gallon?
 

Fahn

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fishlover001 said:
Ok, let's rephrase this, I cannot spend more than $20.00 per ten pounds of substrate.for the contosoil I see $30.00 for about 3 liters, would that cover a ten gallon?
It took an entire 10 liter bag to cover the bottom of my 10 gallon with an inch of substrate.

(Edited for clarity)
 
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GuppyGuy007

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hmmmm, any other suggestions on a substrate, The cheapest i can get is $30.00, and I only have $25.00 to spend
 

Fahn

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fishlover001 said:
hmmmm, any other suggestions on a substrate, The cheapest i can get is $30.00, and I only have $25.00 to spend
You could always cut your tap with distilled/RO water, that's the easiest and cheapest solution. Aquasoils are expensive and intended for heavily planted setups or for keeping sensitive shrimp.
 

TexasDomer

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Before you spend a lot of money on substrate, I'd get an API test for the GH and KH - it's cheap on Ebay or Amazon.

Adding buffers back to RO water isn't hard, and it can be cheaper and more reliable than soils. Everything is a chemical, and chemicals aren't all bad.
 
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GuppyGuy007

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Where would i even get the RO water at? I cannot get driven every week to get water for water changes. If it is ok to add chemicals to raise ph, would it be ok to add chemicals to decrease ph?
I only have test strips for GH and KH, is that ok?
 

Fahn

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fishlover001 said:
Where would i even get the RO water at? I cannot get driven every week to get water for water changes. If it is ok to add chemicals to raise ph, would it be ok to add chemicals to decrease ph?
I only have test strips for GH and KH, is that ok?
Your pH is a non-issue in my opinion, but if nothing else just get several jugs of distilled water. They're like $0.89 each at my local Walmart.

You really don't need to mess with chemical buffers if you don't know what their outcomes will be, not to mention a lot of them will cause pH crashes if used incorrectly.
 
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