Water Hardness Dropping.

kavashy

I have a 20 gallon long tank that has been set up since early April. I just learned how important KH and GH are. I got an API test kit to test my water parameters. The tanks KH and GH are significantly lower than my tap water. I do a 20% water change weekly.

Tap Water:
KH - 7
GH - 14

Aquarium:
KH - 2
GH - 3
Ammonia - 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 10
PH - 7.2


I am concerned that these levels may be too low for the health of my fish. I also want to set up a DIY co2 system and am concerned that a low KH will cause ph swings.


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Zigi Zig

Your water parameters are fine however , and although the three properties are distinct, they all interact with each other to varying degrees, making it difficult to adjust one without impacting the other. That is one reason why is advised NOT to tamper with these unless absolutely necessary. As an example, "hard" water frequently often comes from limestone aquifers. Limestone contains carbonate, which when dissolved in water increases both the GH (from calcium) and KH (from carbonate) components. Increasing the KH component also usually increases pH as well. Conceptually, the KH acts as a "sponge" absorbing the acid present in the water, raising the water's pH. Most aquarium test kits actually measure KH. The larger the KH, the more resistant to pH changes your water will be. A tank's KH should be high enough to prevent large pH swings in your tank over time. If your KH is below roughly 4.5 dH, you should pay special attention to your tank's pH (test weekly, until you get a feel for how stable the pH is). This is ESPECIALLY important if you neglect to do frequent partial water changes. In particular, the nitrification cycle creates a tendency for an established tank's pH to decrease over time. The exact amount of pH change depends on the quantity and rate of produced, as well as the KH. If your pH drops more than roughly a two tenths of a point over a month, you should consider increasing the KH or performing partial water changes more frequently. KH doesn't affect fish directly, so there is no need to match fish species to a particular KH.
 

kavashy

Your water parameters are fine however , and although the three properties are distinct, they all interact with each other to varying degrees, making it difficult to adjust one without impacting the other. That is one reason why is advised NOT to tamper with these unless absolutely necessary. As an example, "hard" water frequently often comes from limestone aquifers. Limestone contains carbonate, which when dissolved in water increases both the GH (from calcium) and KH (from carbonate) components. Increasing the KH component also usually increases pH as well. Conceptually, the KH acts as a "sponge" absorbing the acid present in the water, raising the water's pH. Most aquarium test kits actually measure KH. The larger the KH, the more resistant to pH changes your water will be. A tank's KH should be high enough to prevent large pH swings in your tank over time. If your KH is below roughly 4.5 dH, you should pay special attention to your tank's pH (test weekly, until you get a feel for how stable the pH is). This is ESPECIALLY important if you neglect to do frequent partial water changes. In particular, the nitrification cycle creates a tendency for an established tank's pH to decrease over time. The exact amount of pH change depends on the quantity and rate of produced, as well as the KH. If your pH drops more than roughly a two tenths of a point over a month, you should consider increasing the KH or performing partial water changes more frequently. KH doesn't affect fish directly, so there is no need to match fish species to a particular KH.
Thanks for your quick response. Do you think having a lot of plants or nitrification process may have led to the decrease in water hardness. Should I increase my water changes?
 

Zigi Zig

Hello
There is no such a think as having lot of plants more plants you have more better your water quality to be however it might be more work to take care of it but that's what is all about it..LED has nothing to do with it .. see if you can put some hands on limestone rocks go to LPS and ask I am sure they will have couple types add about 6.lb thru your tank and add 4.lb mixed driftwood. Start with water change once week and monitor your PH. if you hit the mark your PH will stay between 7.3-7.5 and you will notice water quality balance..
 

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