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Re: ph crash!
LandRover47 at aol_com wrote:
> I know I`ve seen this on the list before. While doing water changes to get
> ready for vacation I`ve had a large ph crash. I use a mix of rain water and
> my tap water that is treated with AMQUEL. I was changing about 50% in each
> tank. Most tanks are 2 1/2 gal. with either a foam filter or a box filter
> with floss and lava rock. The water mix is right aroung 7.0 ph. Don`t know
> what my hardness is. Any help will be greatly recieved.
You need to know your alkalinity (KH) and overall tds (to avoid shocks to
If the alkalinity (often incorrectly called carbonate hardness) gets below 4
degrees, a pH crash can happen easily. To raise it, just add some baking
soda until the kit reads 4 degrees or a little above. Basically, the
bicarbonate forms a part of a buffer system that holds pH stready in the
Killys don't seem to care much about the pH, and few suffer acidosis if the
pH does crash. If you have an uncycled tank (or one with no plants), they
sure can die from nitrite toxicity when the pH goes well below 6. Otherwise,
it usually isn't much of a big deal.
It sounds like you might skip the rain water and its associated pollution,
for your tap water must be nearly unbuffered to drop from 8 to 7 with just
rain water. It is possible it is also very soft. A combination GH/KH test
kit would be a wise investment, I think. Most of us add rain water or RO
water only because we have hard tap water, and want it softer.
Many of us have discovered that osmotic shock is really tough on fish being
transferred from higher total dissolved solids (tds) water to lower tds. One
of the $15 meters from Hanna Instruments can do wonders to avoid such
Wright Huntley, Fremont CA, USA, 510 494-8679 huntley1 at home_com
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