PH going down somehow, want to figure out why

airfix2
  • #1
so ive noticed that the ph in my 20 high community has been going down slowly but steadily, and im not sure why. i feed the tank sort of heavily (so that my cories get enough food), so im thinking that there might be high nitrates. also, ph started going down after i added spiderwood to the tank. what do you guys think it is, me being a bad fishkeeper, or the spiderwood releasing tannins? also the pH of my tap is 7.6.
 
SouthAmericanCichlids
  • #2
The driftwood definitely, it doesn’t matter if the ph goes down, I’d just do a little smaller water changes so the ph doesn’t swing too much. The only exception would be fish whom need a high ph, and there are very few. What fish do you have?
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
dwarf gourami, harlequin rasboras, cories, and endlers (they were previously in a 5 gallon, and one of the females just dropped a big batch of fry which i am currently trying to rehome).
 
FoldedCheese
  • #4
The wood wouldn't lower the pH unless you have low kH too. It could be old tank syndrome.
 
SparkyJones
  • #5
need a bit more info than what you've given.

What is KH and GH, what is the actual pH in relation to the tapwater of 7.6?
What is the nitrates? is it planted, do you run CO2?
How often do you water change, and how much when you do?
Stocking level?

Spiderwood is not ideal no dead wood really is, for tanks and stock that require the pH to be above pH7, it will eventually get you down to 6ish in time but it's not a huge swing, it's slow.

Without knowing more details it's not really possible to find what's going on.

the more nitrification you have, the faster pH will drop, so if you have a lot of ammonia being flipped to Nitrates, then nitrates are building rapidly and so is acid, and this will lower pH. this is why aquaponic systems aren't self sustaining and pH has to be manipulated and controlled in order to control nitrification. if you don't, the amount of fish kept to produce nitrates will flood the system and dump the pH low and then nitrification will slow, and you won't get the right releases or balance for the plant growth. too alkaline and all of it is as ammonia and overwhelms the biological and kills the fish.
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #6
The wood wouldn't lower the pH unless you have low kH too. It could be old tank syndrome.
should i do more water changes more often to treat old tank syndrome?
 
FoldedCheese
  • #7
should i do more water changes more often to treat old tank syndrome?

Like Sparky said to confirm if it is OTS we need a bit more info and need to know all water parameters. But yes, if it is OTS increased water changes would be the way to go about fixing it.
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
do you guys think that the OTS that my tank might have was possibly caused by the fact that im having a problem with ramshorns in the tank?
 
SparkyJones
  • #9
do you guys think that the OTS that my tank might have was possibly caused by the fact that im having a problem with ramshorns in the tank?
nope. But if you have a ton of snails and die offs of them, and your biological is used to it and can handle the ammonia from the dead snails, then nitrates are gonna build up quick and stack. Normally a lot of snails dying would lead to an ammonia spike and dead fish but it happens,snails die, and yeah the biological filter gets used to the sudden shots of ammonia from dead snails and can handle it and convert them to nitrates.

Most likely if you have OTS, it's because you'd of been neglecting some water changes for a while, and/or overstocked and too many nitrates building up too fast and none leaving the water making it acidic and the pH dropping. dead snails didn't do it though, you still would need to remove nitrates somehow or they just keep stacking up.

Either way, water changes,, and more water changes will fix it and it will get it back in balance and the nitrates back down.
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
thing is, aqadvisor says that my stocking level is at 81% and i do 25% or more water changes every week.
 
Blacksheep1
  • #11
Easy way of knowing if it’s ots, what’s the tank pH.
You say it’s been going down since adding wood , that’s not necessarily a bad thing , but your pH and wc schedule would be helpful to know.
Aq advisor isn’t the be all and end all . You could be fully stocked in a 20G with 10 cichlids. Doesn’t mean they’ll get along or need the same water quality. That’s without factoring in territory..
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
tank is stocked with a dwarf gourami, 6 harlequin rasboras, 6 panda cories, and 4 endlers (hopefully i can rehome them someday). water change schedule is 25%+ every week.
also the ph is now 7.2 currently.
 
Frank the Fish guy
  • #13
You are probably fine. pH fluctuates by 1 point during the day in many systems.

Try measuring pH every hour so you can se it.
 
FishDin
  • #14
do you guys think that the OTS that my tank might have was possibly caused by the fact that im having a problem with ramshorns in the tank?
No, it comes from poor maintenace. If the rams horn population is exploding it's because you are over feeding.
It's difficult to offer advice when you don't answer questions asking for more information.
 
Blacksheep1
  • #15
If tap is 7.6 and tank is 7.2 then I don’t see what the issue is ?

I’d personally do larger than 25% water changes per week but you don’t have a pH problem.

Monitor your feeding to control the snail population.
 
airfix2
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
If tap is 7.6 and tank is 7.2 then I don’t see what the issue is ?

I’d personally do larger than 25% water changes per week but you don’t have a pH problem.

Monitor your feeding to control the snail population.
very good to know. :D. feeding issue is because whenever i drop the cory tablets into the tank, all of the other fish go straight down to the bottom and start eating the tablets. I´m honestly at wit´s end with this issue. ive tried feeding at night, but the other fish still go down to the bottom unless there is food at the top of the tank. any suggestions on this?
 
Blacksheep1
  • #17
Try swapping the feedings.

feed floating food first then drop winking food. If that doesn’t work drop the sinking foods first and feed the floating food in the hopes they return to the top to eat.

if all else fails try big bites or similar in a baster or tube. Drop those then feed floating or visa versa.
 

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