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Re: Muriatic Acid

> Date: Thu, 17 Sep 1998 01:39:27 EDT
> From: MarkyTkd at aol_com
> Subject: Hydrochloric Acid or Another way of Lowering pH
> I remembered that someone had mentioned using Muratic (Hydrochloric Acid) to
> lower pH. I believe it was Wright. Where do I get this acid and how to I add
> it? I have tried peat, pH down, CO2 injection, adding about 10 gallons of RO
> water to my 100 gallon tank (making it 90 gallons of tap water and 10 gallons
> of RO water), and none have worked. I might see a drop of .1 or so but by the
> next day, it is gone. I have a pH of 7.4 and I need it around 6.8. My fish
> start losing color when the water is alkaline. Does anyone have a way of
> lowering pH?
> Mark


Wish I had your problems. I'm trying to raise mine from 5.5 to 6.8.
Muratic Acid is used by masons to clean tile and etch. Try a building
supplies store or someone who sells tiles and masonary supplies. If this
doesn't work. Any high school or university chemistry lab would have
some. Getting it from them is another issue. I'm sure if you spoke to
someone in the biology department and explained what you're trying to
do, they would ablige. Otherwise you can by it from a chemical supplier
like Aldrich Be careful with this stuff and be sure to use a proper
storage bottle. I've seen it each through plastic, cork, steel drums

I'm not sure I would go the HCl route. HCl is a strong acid and, unless
the buffering capacity of your tank water is good, you may drop the pH
too far and too fast. You're trying to go from 7.4 to 6.8. This is a
fairly small change (At least it would be for me. I've seen my pH
fluxuate that much over one day) I use Calcium Hydroxide to raise my pH
and I add 0.5 grams of crystals to the sump of my 130 gallon and the pH
changes almost instantly from 5.5 to 6.5. Doesn't take much.

Your other alternative would be to try a milder acid, like acetic
(standard 5% vinigar). It might take a little longer to lower, but you
won't have to worry about the pH shock to the fish. I'm no chemist and
all of this is from experimentation, so take this for what its worth. I
believe someone said recently they never experiment on their tank
directly. There's merit to this.

Jason Daniels