Ph Dropping!

Discussion in 'Plant CO2' started by Nellie75, Apr 10, 2017.

  1. Nellie75

    Nellie75 Valued Member Member

    55 gal
    0 Ammonia
    0 Nitrites
    6 PH from 7.6
    15 Nitrate

    6 Angel fish
    5 black skirt tetras
    7 neon tetras
    6 ottos
    1 small pleco

    48" Finnex Planted 24/7 LED
    Penn Plax 1000 Canister filter
    Aqua Clear 70 HOB
    CO2 is about 2 BPS

    Just started my CO2 about a week, yesterday I did a 15 gallon water change to raise my PH a bit without shocking the fish.

    Is there anything I can do to stabilize the PH drop?

    For today I dosed some baking soda to bump up the PH.
  2. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    From what I've read, a ph drop from CO2 isn't anything to worry about, because it isn't a drop from a decrease in water hardness. Stable KH and GH are more important. Using baking soda is too sudden of a change.

    Are you using a drop checker?
  3. OP

    Nellie75 Valued Member Member

    Well I only dosed baking soda for the amount of 10 gallons.

    I'm using the API liquid test kit, so I shouldn't worry about the PH drop? Seeing the PH go from a light blue to light yellow scared me.

    I just googled what a drop checker I do not have a drop checker, I have a bubble counter that's outside the tank.

    Last edited by a moderator: May 22, 2017
  4. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    Bubble counters don't tell you how much CO2 is in the tank, it just tells you how many bubbles you're injecting. The CO2 levels depend on the type of diffuser, surface agitation, tank size, plant uptake, etc

    I suggest you get a drop checker. You don't want to inject too much and gas your fish. A drop from 7.6 to 6 or lower does seem a bit much.
  5. PilotWhale

    PilotWhale New Member Member

    So, I added CO2 and I killed 9 fish. pH dropped 1.2, from 8.0 to 6.8. I'd be careful. Do it slowly, not like how I did it.
  6. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    The ph drop is normal. Perhaps you injected too much?
  7. Dcchillin

    Dcchillin Valued Member Member

    I'm getting ready to start injecting co2 on my 20g next week. Howuch pH drop should I expect? I haven't really been able to find any info on this and I want to make the transition as least stressful for me and my fish.
  8. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    Depends on your KH and other buffers in the water, but I think a drop of 1 is typical. It's not really stressful for fish because the ph drop isn't a result from a change in osmotic pressure.
  9. Dcchillin

    Dcchillin Valued Member Member

    Ok, thanks mak. Any advice on some further reading on this topic?

    I know my kh is 5/6. I mix my own from ro so it can be adjusted if need be. I'm setting everything up later this week so I'd like to get prepared.
  10. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    You might know all this already, but here are some good solid basics:

    Tom Barr's website might have more on CO2 in planted tanks.
  11. Dcchillin

    Dcchillin Valued Member Member

    Thanks bud!

    If I'm reading that chart right, my current water parameters of 5kh/7.6ph means only about 3.7mg/l of co2 in my water? Or is this chart not applicable to liquid co2?

    If it is it might explain my miserable results so far.
    Last edited: May 22, 2017
  12. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    Liquid CO2 isn't really CO2 at all, so CO2 charts, drop checkers, etc don't apply.
  13. ashenwelt

    ashenwelt Well Known Member Member

    So for clarity, it's chemicals that some plants will break down for CO2, but not free CO2 for the test kits.
  14. -Mak-

    -Mak- Well Known Member Member

    I'm not sure what exactly it does, but even if it does release CO2 (which I don't think it does) it's not enough to register on a test.
  15. ashenwelt

    ashenwelt Well Known Member Member

    I believe it is Polycycloglutaracetal which has carbon for photocynthesis... but is a pain to break down. I just did a little research and found a nice article on it.


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