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Ph questions

Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: Beginner freshwater : Ph questions
  

S Waterman

Friday, January 25, 2002 - 01:42 am
Ok, I have settled down quite a bit about my water quality. I have used straight (not filtered) tap water with dechlorinator for my last two 20% water changes. I have purchased the Aquarium Pharmiceuticals master test kit and now I have just a couple of concerns. My test results have come up as 0 mitrites, 0 ammonia, and 7.8 on high ph test. With the knowledge of high ph being a concern for ammonia poisoning, I have the following questions:

1) From a previous post, Joyce said to contact water company, test tapwater, and test tank water. Although I have not called the water company, the tapwater test and the tank test both came out around 7.8ph (using 3 different testkits). Living in a highly humid and hot area, I am guessing that my tap water is probably made this way at the treatment facility. As I understand from previous posts and research, bacteria grows best in low ph water. With 3 fish totalling 12" of length, could my tank be understocked to create the nitrogen cycle? I am not using anything but water changes and UGF for filtration. My tank has been running for about 4-5 months now (with these three fish). My water is still crystal clear and has never had any discoloration. The ph and ammonia has never changed since I started the tank. I added "stress-zyme" to be sure of bacteria colonization, but I don't know if it is working because nothing has changed. Also, I boiled a large chunk of driftwood and added it about a week ago, and it has also not affected any tests. I am going to buy the nitrate test for a final analysis, but I expect it to read 0 as well. Also, my tank does not lose any water. It stays the same level from water change to water change. I don't know if that makes a difference, but I thought I would mention it, because in Nebraska, it evaporated fairly quickly.

2) I figured I would just go with plastic plants for this aquarium tank, but I am planning a new tank with live plants. Is this high ph gonna affect the plant growth?

3) Would a biowheel accelerate a nitrogen cycle in a new tank? I plan on introducing an Eheim canister filter to my aquarium tank in the near future. Will this type of filter affect my system negatively? Or, beings everything is reading good (except for the ph), should I just leave it alone?

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I lost half my starter fish after about 2 months (in a

  

joycedonley

Friday, January 25, 2002 - 08:09 am
There is abolutely nothing wrong with ph of 7.8. I kept my fish fine at a ph of 7.6-7.8 for over two years. Just suggest you stay away from Discus otherwise most fish will not have any problems. Angelfish,barbs, livebearers and rainbows should be perfectly fine at that ph and tetras can probably cope although it is not ideal for them. A biowheel is definately great filtration, but if you start changing out your existing filtration you will pull a lot of good bacteria out of the tank and possibly start the cycle all over again! I think for now you are best just leaving the tank alone, if it's not broke why fix it?

  

S Waterman

Friday, January 25, 2002 - 11:24 pm
I think I will just leave it alone for now, and just do what I have been doing. Switching from filtered water to plain tapwater has not had any affect on the tank, so I am going to stick with the tapwater. Is there a way that I can tell if the nitrogen cycle has actually been done? It seems a general rule of about 6-8 weeks, but how can you tell for sure? When I do add the canister filter, I do not plan on pulling out my UGF, so I don't think it will unbalance anything.

  

joycedonley

Saturday, January 26, 2002 - 08:04 am
You can add filters any time you want. Just make sure the current isn't too strong for the fish and that the gph rates aren't too high.Gallons per hour for most community setups (exception being African R lake and possibly a few other fish) I believe are about 5x. In other words as long as the gph is about 5x your gallon you should be fine(no need to be precise). If you get really powerful filters beside the strong current you could possibly get too much oxygen in the tank. Every filter I've seen lists the suggested tank capacity so that's also a good indication. If you read Genesis you should know that the nitrate (not nitrite) indication should let you know whether or not a tank has cycled. That's really the only positive way although I fell six weeks is safe guess.

  

S Waterman

Sunday, January 27, 2002 - 11:16 pm
Ok, I didn't lnow there was a limit. Are ther any more tips on canisters that you may have?

  

joycedonley

Monday, January 28, 2002 - 07:07 am
Yes it's called oxygen saturation and if you stick your hand in the tank and lots of bubbles get on it or also if your decor has lots of bubbles sitting on it could signal this problem. It's really not that common as most people go with the mfg directions on their filters. The cannisters are expensive, excellent filtration, a little tricky to setup. Cannisters are most often used on large tanks.

 

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