pH drop

Discussion in 'pH' started by Faber1790, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. Faber1790Valued MemberMember

    My water had a stable tap pH of 7.2 that would drop to 7.0 in my tank. Recently the tap dropped to 7.0 and the tank to 6.8. That was around a month ago. I've been monitoring my pH daily and was shocked to find my 10g has dropped to 6.0! I triple checked before I could belive it as our area has hard water (I got luck with around neutral). Since that is the lowest the api master test kit goes I'm worried it might be lower. There is nothing in my tank that could be lowering my pH except aeration, which I think is unlikely. I have an aquateck 5-15 filter with sponges on the output and a very weak airpump. Any ideas as to what is going on? My fish seem fine, but that is a big drop. I'm going to order A gh/kh test asap to check that. Should I add anything to bring my pH up?
     
  2. klutz10154

    klutz10154Valued MemberMember

    I actually had that happen not too long ago and lost one of my mollys because of it. the local lfs had what they call magic balls they keep the ph at 6.8-7.0 at all times but you'd have to put more than recommended to get your ph back where it should be in a safe amount of time. they recommended that we use ph power to raise the ph and then the balls to keep it there. I know alot of people on here don't recommend using the powder mainly because it raises it too quickly. what I did was put the magic balls in then added small amounts of the powder daily until it was back at a safe level. i now check my ph of water goign into the tank during every water change. I hope this helps. we have really hard water in our area as well and now due to weather conditions lately they've been messing with the water to try and make it safer for use to drink. but it makes it alot worse for the fish :(
     
  3. Jahnikar

    JahnikarValued MemberMember

    Funny that you posted this, because I was coming onto the forums to post practically the same thing! I've had some mysterious deaths in one of my tanks and did a water test tonight. Found out that my tank water is sitting at 8.4 and my tap is coming out at 7.6! :eek:
     




  4. OP
    OP
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    Faber1790Valued MemberMember

    Thank goodness I haven't lost anybody (knock on wood). I think I may add some crushed coral to my filter to raise it. I'm going to wait to do anything though until I test the gh/kh. The weird part is it's just the one tank. My other is still 6.8. I do check pH before I add water during a change, but I have no room to store water except basement and I have no desire to lug a 5 gallon bucket up water up 2 flights of stairs for water changes. I will if I have to, I just figured a .2 pH difference of 10-15% that I change twice weekly probably didn't matter.
     




  5. Eienna

    EiennaFishlore VIPMember

    Best to leave it alone. A stable pH is more important than any specific number unless it's below 6. When the molly was lost it was probably because of too quick of a drop.

    IF you decide to raise it, be careful that it doesn't shoot up the other direction. A little crushed coral may be the best way to go.
     
  6. OP
    OP
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    Faber1790Valued MemberMember

    I agree with leaving it alone and would much rather do that. But I have no way to tell if it is below 6. Should I just watch the fish and go off their behavior? Another problem is water changes. With my tap pH 7.0 and it only aging to 6.8 that's quite a big difference. Of course, I guess a 10-15% change wouldn't really be affected too much... Well I definitely won't change anything yet. I'll keep an eye on it and get the gh/kh tests and go from there. I will not use any chemicals on my tank to change it.
     
  7. Aquarist

    AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Good morning,

    Link below on pH that you may find helpful:
     

    As mentioned above, it is better to maintain a pH level than to try and pinpoint a certain level via frequent water changes. pH is going to naturally drop over time. Sudden changes, especially drops, in pH can be fatal to your fish. This is one reason adding chemicals to alter your pH levels is not recommended. They are unstable and can lead to a pH crash resulting in fish loss.

    If your pH falls below 6.0 then beneficial bacteria needed to sustain the cycle may go dormant and you may see an increase in Ammonia/Ammonium.

    Most fish for the home aquarium can adapt to the pH we have to offer right from the tap.

    Ken
     
  8. matsungit

    matsungitWell Known MemberMember

    I always suspect KH depletion on any strange ph drops aside from a lower ph on tap. I think those magic balls are nothing but caked baking soda. Baking soda is cheaper and equally effective if you know how to calculate the dose.

     
     
  9. Eienna

    EiennaFishlore VIPMember

    It's the same amount of settling drop you had before. I think tap pH changes seasonally anyway, doesn't it? You've got a .2 difference between 7.2 and 7.0, and between 7.0 and 6.8. I don't think you have anything to worry about.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    F

    Faber1790Valued MemberMember

    I wasn't worried about the .2 change. What I'm worried about is in 24 hours my tank dropped from 6.8 to 6.0. I know fish prefer a stable pH over an ideal one. I haven't seen an increase in ammonia since the drop so hopefully my cycle is safe.

    Thanks for the link, Ken. Very informative.

    I tested the pH daily and it is still 6.0 and I decided I couldn't wait any longer to do a water change. I aged some water to 6.8 and added very slowly so it wasn't a shock to them. I also did a very thorough gravel vacuum in case maybe that was the culprit. After the water change my pH is 6.4. So I guess I'll continue monitoring it daily and hope it settles.
     
  11. Eienna

    EiennaFishlore VIPMember

    Oh, I didn't see that piece of information.
     
  12. catsma_97504Fishlore LegendMember

    Welcome to the forum!

    Definitely do not attempt to adjust the pH in you 10G tank!!! I suspect the reason it is so low is because it has yet to stabilize. If I am understanding correctly your profile indicates that this tank has only been running for about 2 months.

    What exactly is stocked in each tank? Your profile is very confusing trying to figure that out.
     
  13. OP
    OP
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    Faber1790Valued MemberMember

    My pH is back up to 6.6. I think it dropped because it went 2 weeks without a water change (I was out of town) and when I did a water change when I got back it dropped. I didn't add anything to bring my pH up, just did a few small water changes.

    I have the neons and cory in 10g. I know both need bigger schools and the cory a bigger tank. I'm working on both.

    Thanks for all the advice :)
     




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