Should I be concerned over slight pH changes?

KrissyBunnie
  • #1
I have a tank that's been cycled for about a month and a half, 3 months old.

After introducing the tetras, the pH went from 7.6 last month, to 7.7 this month, and now it's 7.8. should I be concerned about this at all? I plan on adding Driftwood this week. I know that will lower it a little. I just want to make sure I shouldn't be concerned over the slight changes.

I'm assuming the pH will continue to rise over time until I get something to reduce it?

Todays parameters:
Temp: 77°F
pH 7.8
NO²: 0
NO³: 8, 1 after 25% water change one hour ago. Will do another tomorrow. I was behind because the holidays please don't judge lol.
Ammonia: 0
 
carsonsgjs
  • #2
The driftwood won’t have any effect on your ph, based on where your level is right now. Your ph shouldn’t continue increasing either, unless there is something in your tank that could be causing it such as crushed coral/aragonite or other rocks that aren’t inert.
 
KrissyBunnie
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
The driftwood won’t have any effect on your ph, based on where your level is right now. Your ph shouldn’t continue increasing either, unless there is something in your tank that could be causing it such as crushed coral/aragonite or other rocks that aren’t inert.
What about seashells or marbles? I use the GloFish gravel, that's all pet supplies Plus had and I'm not going to lie I do kind of like it lol. I also have a ceramic vase, but it's been sealed
 
carsonsgjs
  • #4
What about seashells or marbles? I use the GloFish gravel, that's all pet supplies Plus had and I'm not going to lie I do kind of like it lol. I also have a ceramic vase, but it's been sealed
Seashells are made of calcium carbonate, so may increase your gh and kh, and therefore ph, over time. I’m not familiar with glofish gravel though (don’t have glofish over here) so I’m not sure if that is inert or not.
 
KrissyBunnie
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
Seashells are made of calcium carbonate, so may increase your gh and kh, and therefore ph, over time. I’m not familiar with glofish gravel though (don’t have glofish over here) so I’m not sure if that is inert or not.
Thank you for the information :)
 
mattgirl
  • #6
If you run the pH at different time during the day you will probably get different readings. These slight variations happen in all tanks. As carsonsgjs points out, the seashells will raise the pH slightly.

They will very slowly dissolve. When you think about it. Imagine how full the oceans would be if they didn't dissolve over time. I actually keep them in my tanks along with crushed coral to keep my pH stable.

Your weekly water changes should keep the pH in your tank close to the same as it is straight from the tap.
NO³: 8, 1 after 25% water change one hour ago. Will do another tomorrow. I was behind because the holidays please don't judge
I am not sure what you are saying. Why do you need to do another water change tomorrow?
 
TheEcoAquarist
  • #7
What's the pH of your tap?
 
KrissyBunnie
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
I am not sure what you are saying. Why do you need to do another water change tomorrow?
Sorry I'm not sure why I'm just now seeing this part of your reply. At the time I thought NO³ being 8 was pretty high, but I just learned it can get to 20.

What's the pH of your tap?
That's a good question. I'm not sure, I'll check it when I get home.
 
ruud
  • #9
Do you have a planted tank? If so, expect deviations to occur depending on the time of the day you conduct your measurement. A daily swing from 6 to 10 and back to 6 again, caused by fluctuating co2 concentrations, is not uncommon in nature. In planted tanks, somewhat less dramatic fluctuations are typical also.

Note that ph fluctuations caused by co2 fluctuations should be seen differently then those caused by kh.
 
mattgirl
  • #10
Sorry I'm not sure why I'm just now seeing this part of your reply. At the time I thought NO³ being 8 was pretty high, but I just learned it can get to 20.
Gotcha, a high of 20 is a good number. Even higher isn't something to be overly stressed about. As long as I see orange in my test tube I consider it good enough. :)

I agree with ruud about the pH. Be sure you run the test at the same time of day. If you run it first thing in the morning one day and then mid afternoon the next day you will more than likely get different numbers and think there is a problem.
 
KrissyBunnie
  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Do you have a planted tank? If so, expect deviations to be higher depending on the time of the day you conduct your measurement. A swing from 6 to 10 and back to 6 again, caused by fluctuating CO2 concentrations, is not uncommon in nature. In planted tanks, somewhat less dramatic fluctuations are typical also.

Note that ph fluctuations caused by co2 fluctuations should be seen differently then those caused by kh.
I have about six medium plants in it right now. I'm working on getting more but my lfs doesn't have a lot of options.
 
ruud
  • #12
I have about six medium plants in it right now. I'm working on getting more but my lfs doesn't have a lot of options.

In general, I would not make too much a big deal of ph. Focus on kh instead. If you manage to get this within a certain range, you also control ph (with the exception of co2 influence of course).
 
KrissyBunnie
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
In general, I would not make too much a big deal of ph. Focus on kh instead. If you manage to get this within a certain range, you also control ph (with the exception of co2 influence of course).
I've been trying to get my lfs to carry kh testers. So far they only have the API Master test kit.
 
mattgirl
  • #14
I've been trying to get my lfs to carry kh testers. So far they only have the API Master test kit.

In my humble opinion you don't have a problem with your pH that needs to be "fixed". I really think you are concerned about something that is normal. Knowing the kh/gh number is important in some cases but since your pH isn't plummeting I have to think your kh/gh levels are fine even without testing them.
 
ruud
  • #15
Knowing the parameters of your tap water for most suffices. From there, you can tweak a little with gh and kh, based on a reliable source (not chemicals). Adding to this, a decent water flow and surface agitation; for most fish keepers, that's all they need to do. It is a fairly simple hobby :).
 
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