[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

KH, pH, Buffering, and Baking Soda...Continued

KH, pH, Buffering, and Baking Soda.

On April 17, I posted to the list the results of an experiment I did with KH
and pH test kits, a bucket of aquarium water, and some baking Soda.   I want
to thank everyone who responded, especially Chuck Gadd, who informed me of
the possibility that the stuff I had been using for pH buffering may have
contained phosphates.

Also thanks to Eric Tulsky, Greg Morin, and everyone else who helped out.

I started this tank a couple of months ago.  First I put in a fluorite
substrate, 120 watts of Florescent lighting, (in a 50 gallon tank,) and
added water.  I put in plants which cover about 30 of the bottom space.

I found that my pH was less than 6.0.  (the lowest pH my test kit will
measure.)   With a pH off the scale in the acid direction, I panicked, and
tried a product called pH UP.  Using only half the recommended dose, the
stuff pushed my pH up off the scale in the alkaline direction.  So I
panicked some more, and tried something called "Proper pH 7.0" which brought
my pH to exactly 6.5.    Since it stayed put using this stuff, I felt it was
safe enough to add fish.

While experiencing a severe algae bloom, I read the Algae Control articles
at The Krib, and learned about CO2.  It was at that point that I did my
baking soda experiment, and asked you about the results, and got some
excellent advise.

So I've stopped using any pH buffer except for the Baking Soda.  My tap
water here has a pH 7.0, KH 0, and Gh 30 ppm.   So by adjusting to a KH of 4
using the baking soda, I can manage the pH, and having gotten DIY CO2
working, (finally after some failures), I can keep a pH around 6.6.  Thus,
according to the charts at The Krib, I've got a CO2 content around 30 mg/l.

I've done 30 to 40 percent water changes every day for 3 days now, to get
rid of the phosphates that I had apparently been using.

Now on to the new problems.  I have been seeing a lot of bubbles form on the
Amazon Sword pant leaves.  I've wondered about these bubbles.   Hopefully
plants giving off O2 from lots of growth. However, there are similar bubbles
forming on the inside of the glass.  I am beginning to wonder if these
bubbles are not CO2 which is precipitating out of a saturated solution.
What do you think?

These bubbles started before I got the DIY CO2 working.

Secondly.  My algae bloom has disappeared.  Disappeared so completely that
my three Siamese Algae Eaters are hiding under rocks, not looking too good.
These are usually the most active fish in the tank, eating all the time.
But the rocks look clean--the algae is gone.  One Pearl Gourami has suddenly
died, he looked very bloated, so it could have been a disease.  Is it
possible that these bubbles on the plants, and on the inside of the glass,
are CO2 bubbles causing problems for the fish?