Water Chemistry Fails

  1. Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    Hi all, I have had aquariums for years. After being away from it for 3 years I decided to set one back up. I have a 37 gal freshwater (no live plants) tank. Only aquarium gravel and plastic plants. I have a good filter. I set up the tank with 3 danios for 3-4 weeks then removed them.

    I keep adding fish by 2 0r 3 and they keep dying and dying. I think my water chemistry is a mess (and dont even get me started about my outside pond). I used a ph stabilizer to try to buffer the hardness but phosphates got high.

    It seems my source water is very very soft and acidic! I'm just about ready to give up but I hate to as I have been a successful fisherwoman for years. I have purchased plattys and swordtails. They seem fine- them stressed for a few days - then dead.

    no nitritries
    some nitrates
    ph stays lows no matter what
    tried to use a little baking soda along to avoid the phosphate issue

    I am at a loss.
    Thanks Charlotte
     
  2. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    What is your ammonia? Livebearers need hard water so you may need to invest in a product to remineralize your water. Seachem makes one I believe is called Replenish.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    Ammonia levels were 0. In the beginning, I used Seachem Stability new tank stabilizer. Then API proper ph 7.0 and stress coat. Tried adding a little baking soda gradually. But My source water is so soft. I wonder if I added so much proper ph that is caused problems. No way is that ph 7.0
     


  4. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    Yes, with water like yours there probably aren't enough carbonates to keep the pH stable once you start messing with it. Fish are often adaptable to a wide range of pH values but not to a fluctuating pH. Stop using Proper pH (there isn't one) and test your KH.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    I will. My KH was above mid range because I had slowly added the baking soda. GH was lower. I ordered the replenish but it will be a few days before it arrives.
     
  6. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    What is your KH without baking soda?
     


  7. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    You mean my tap water ? KH is VERY low and GH is about 0. PH around 6.2 :(
     
  8. Aquaphobia

    Aquaphobia Fishlore Legend Member

    Ouch :(
     
  9. bgclarke

    bgclarke Well Known Member Member

    My GH is 3 out of the tap and have to use Seachem Replenish to boost it.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    I have some ordered, it wont be here until Monday.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    The replenish arrived today and I put it in the tank per directions. Wow, thats ugly. How long does it usually take it to clear?
     
  12. bgclarke

    bgclarke Well Known Member Member

    You should only temporarily see a small clear "cloud" and it should dissipate quickly.
    As my bottle got lower, I started getting white chunks that would go away overnight.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    Charlottea

    Charlottea New Member Member

    Thank you