How to correct ph levels

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by Graham2212, 14 Mar 2013.

  1. Graham2212

    Graham2212

    Joined:
    21 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Johannesburg
    Hi all
    Please excuse the newbie questions... I have a new system that has been cycling for 7 weeks and last week it was stocked with 2 clown fish and a gobie. My ph and nitrate levels seem to be slightly high. How do I bring these levels down a bit? Thanks!
     
  2. AdS Guest




    to hide all adverts.
  3. 459b

    459b Moderator MASA Contributor

    Joined:
    12 Mar 2008
    Posts:
    9,741
    Likes Received:
    785
    Location:
    Cape Town
    What is your ph?
    How are you,kh, calcium and magnesium levels?
     
  4. Graham2212

    Graham2212 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    21 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Johannesburg
    Thanks for the reply! Ph is 8.2, kh is 5dKH / 1.8 meg/L. I'm afraid i dont have a calcium or magnesium tester yet - will go and get tomorrow. Talk about a steep learning curve!...
     
  5. mandarinman

    mandarinman

    Joined:
    18 Oct 2007
    Posts:
    6,377
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    capetown,durbanville
    Ph is slightly low if anything.
     
  6. mandarinman

    mandarinman

    Joined:
    18 Oct 2007
    Posts:
    6,377
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    capetown,durbanville
    Do a waterchange imo
     
  7. Visser

    Visser MASA Contributor

    Joined:
    21 Nov 2011
    Posts:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    45
    Location:
    Willows,Pretoria /Brits
    You mean KH @mandarinman?
    Ph of 8.2 is spot on... (Recommended range is 8.1 - 8.4)
    Your kh is a bit low... Not really concerning if you dont have any corals.
    @Graham2212, you can simply add a kh buffer like aquavitro 8.4
    Just remember that your kh & calcium levels are linked, & if kh is low, your calcium is also likely low...

    The other thing to remember is that your kh is a buffer for your ph. If your kh is low, you will start seeing swinging ph as well. Recommended range is 7-12dkh...
    If you keep a constant kh level within that range, you will never have any major dips/swings in your ph. @carlosdeandrade
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  8. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

    Joined:
    7 Feb 2009
    Posts:
    8,384
    Likes Received:
    286
    Location:
    Joe's Mountain
    Lets start from the beginning and most important parameter. What is your SALINITY. all the other parameters are influenced by that one singular element.
     
  9. Visser

    Visser MASA Contributor

    Joined:
    21 Nov 2011
    Posts:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    45
    Location:
    Willows,Pretoria /Brits
    Do you have a refractometer @Graham2212?
    If not, take a sample to your lfs & ask them to test your salinity for you.
    @Nemos Janitor is right. Salinity is your most important perameter...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  10. Graham2212

    Graham2212 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    21 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Johannesburg
    I just tested the salinity... its a bit low - slightly above 1.02. Am i correct in saying that most of the minerals that are required in a system, are (or should) be included in the marine salt I use?
     
  11. Visser

    Visser MASA Contributor

    Joined:
    21 Nov 2011
    Posts:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    45
    Location:
    Willows,Pretoria /Brits
    No, you get 2 different types...
    Marine salt that is made for fish only tanks. These salts are almost always low in the important parameters...
    Then you get reef salts that is made specifically for coral tanks. These salts are mostly on par with most parameters & normally a bit higher on alk & calcium to help keep up with the calcification demands of corals. They also include trace elements which isnt always in the cheap marine salts...

    If you tell us which brand you use, we can help you a bit more in detail!

    Did you measure with a refractometer or a swing arm unit?
    Salinity should idealy be between 1.021 -1.025 for fish only tanks & 1.023-1.026 for reef tanks...
     
    Last edited: 14 Mar 2013
  12. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

    Joined:
    7 Feb 2009
    Posts:
    8,384
    Likes Received:
    286
    Location:
    Joe's Mountain
    Most should be. It is important to test salinity/Specific gravity and keep your testing "NO" consistent. A good "NO" to pick is around sg 1,026 @20c or s=35

    From your first question, pH & Nitrate. What is the bottom line of you questioning? I get the feeling that something is amiss.
     
  13. Graham2212

    Graham2212 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    21 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Johannesburg
    Thanks visser. I'm using Aquaria's brand of reef salt. I think i was just a bit light with my previous water change! I'm using a swing arm tester - time to upgrade? I must say that forum is fantastic! Very helpful indeed! Thanks people!
     
  14. Graham2212

    Graham2212 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    21 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Johannesburg
    @Nemos Janitor - realising now that maybe i was stressing a bit too much. I was expecting a neutral ph (shows my lack of knowledge in the subject). I was also expecting by now that my nitrate levels be zero or negligible - like my ammonia and nitrite levels.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  15. Visser

    Visser MASA Contributor

    Joined:
    21 Nov 2011
    Posts:
    2,670
    Likes Received:
    45
    Location:
    Willows,Pretoria /Brits
    Im not really familiar with the aquaria salts... Ive heard they are ok, but cant comment on it!
    Yes, a refractometer is very important in keeping your system stable. Its also MUCH more accurate than a swing arm one...
    Just remember that your salinity is directly related to all other chemicals in your system (except for nitrates & phosphates)
    Low salinity = low everything else.
    High salinity= high everything else. Lol.


    Lol, sorry graham, unfortunately it isn't as easy as that!!! (As you have learned today)
    Unlike ammonia & nitrite, it is a lot more difficult to get low nitrate levels in your tank.
    Nitrates is extremely soluble in water & there are only a few ways to succesfully remove it from your system. (It accumulates over time if not removed by a special process)
    You will find the same problem with phosphates.

    I would suggest you read up a bit more on nitrates & phosphates & the whole nitrogen cycle as a start... It will give you some background on keeping succesful marines...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  16. pkc

    pkc

    Joined:
    17 Oct 2008
    Posts:
    632
    Likes Received:
    16
    Location:
    Brisbane-Queensland-Australia
    Your swing arm specific gravity tester, if that’s the one you have is fine. I have been using mine, which my brother gave me back then, since 1980.
    If your aquariums temperature range is from 23c to 27c;they are accurate with in a half point and quick and simple to use at the water change site as well. I have checked mine against two refractometers.
    If you want some extra insight into Ph then google about it and look for something from Randy Holmes at reefkeeping.com, it’s a good one to look at. He seems to have a resonable understanding of this.
    PH is very simple and easy to control. One thing that most are told that is of no concern,but is disruptive to tank life over the long term,this is when your lights are off and photosynthetic life are manufacturing CO2 and not oxygen.This is the main time to allow for PH disruptions, unless you make a mistake that is, then PH can be an issue any time.
    Cascaded waters correctly set up with the assistance of single celled algae somewhere in the average marine aquarium waters enables consistent PH stabilisation, no matter what!
    A phosphate test, which in a parameter test shows phosphorus levels, is very easy to keep at zero and nitrate is even easier to keep at zero.
    They are simple to keep at bay with the use of natural methods and all marine aquariums with sumps have enough room to achieve this.
    The advice on saliniy is very important to adhere to,try to keep it at all times at 1.024 and check it each second day with out fail.
     
    Last edited: 15 Mar 2013
Recent Posts

Loading...
Similar Threads - correct levels Forum Date
Choosing the Correct Heater for your Aquarium General Discussions and Advice 12 Jul 2016
How to choose the correct return pump Pumps and Waterflow 24 May 2016
Correct usage of F/2 Powder General Discussions and Advice 25 Mar 2015
The Importance of correct flow in the marine tank. Idol Marine 16 Jan 2015
The correct usage of an Auto top up unit (ATU). Idol Marine 30 Dec 2014
Selecting the correct plastic for your water drums Test Kits, Controllers, Reactors and Dosers 22 Oct 2013
Correct glass thickness for my cube? General Discussions and Advice 26 Jun 2013