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[APD] RE: Why is my KH increasing?

What substrate are you using?  That is the typical culprit.
Do any of the dry ferts have carbonates in them, such as CaCO3?
Do you have any rocks in the tank?  For example, Tufa rock is pure CaCO3.

I've never heard of snails causing an increase in KH, if so, it is unlikely
that it would occur so rapidly in a medium sized tank.

If all else checks out, buy or borrow another test kit.


> Second, my question:
> My 50 gallon planted tank has been up for only 2 or 3 weeks.  3.8 WPG CF,
> 3' Eco-complete, CO2 about 30 ppm on controller, 18 watt UV, Eheim 2028,
> heavily planted (can only see substrate in a few spots). No fish yet,
> about 100 newly added Malaysian Trumpet Snails and a few accidental pond
> snails.
> My tap KH is 3.4 and when I filled the tank before the plants it stayed
> steady at this level in the tank.  When I added the plants I threw in
> about 50-100 various sized MTSs to start a new colony.  Now when I test my
> KH it is increased, was as high as 11 a few days ago.  I did a 50% water
> change which brought it back to 5 or so, now it is on its way back up and
> was 7 today.  I have been fertilizing with dry nutrients and TMG for
> traces, at ½ the recommended dose.
> So why is my KH increasing?  My tap still tests at 3.4.  The only thing I
> could come up with is the snails I tossed in are dissolving and causing it
> to increase.  I have my CO2 on controller which was set at 6.6-6.7 for a
> CO2 around 30.  When I tested my KH the other day and it was high my pH
> was still the same because of the controller so my CO2 was up around 80.
> No fish yet so no harm done I suppose.
> If it is my snails will it just keep increasing after water changes?  I
> thought the snails would take up calcium and decrease my KH but maybe it
> is just too acidic for them?  And with such low numbers I can't imagine
> them having this much of an effect on the chemistry.  Any other ideas?
> Thanks,
> Tony
> You can see the tank here:
> http://www.plantedtank.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6101
> I think you have to sign up to see the pics though, sorry I don't have
> them anywhere else.

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