black sand PH problem? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 07:40 AM Thread Starter
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black sand PH problem?

Hey guys,

I have had my 75g tank up & running for a month or so now, and have not been able to keep the Ph down. I have petrified wood & some plants in there, on top of Tractor Supply Black Diamond sand. I have researched this to death before I bought it, and read a TON of people say there were no problems, etc. However, no matter what I do, my Ph will not stay neutral.

Has anyone else run into this? Did I catch a bad batch?
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post #2 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 08:02 AM
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Interested to hear what everyone says.
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post #3 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 08:05 AM
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What is your tap pH and what is the tank

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #4 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 08:12 AM
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It is Coal slag a black, glass matrix alumina-silicate that comes from wet bottom boiler power plants burning pulverized coal. But not sure this would rise or why this would the pH. We don't know how much fly ash may be presnt in the product

R
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post #5 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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jaysee-
Using a brand new API freshwater master kit, my tap water was 6.6 - 6.8 straight out of the faucet, and I verified it by putting it in a container & letting it sit for an hour or so. The tank is showing 7.6+ (forgot to try the High Range test). If I added sand to the exact same container & water I let sit @ 6.6, it started rising to neutral pretty quick, then after another hour was a little darker than 7.2.

rickey-
I am kinda surprised it is doing this too. I will try again tonight, but I've been kinda establishing this trend the past week. That's why I was thinking I may have a bad batch of sand. I'm wondering if this will work it's way out, or if I plain have to change the substrate out?


I've been reading about adding peat moss to lower it naturally, so I'm tempted to try a little of that. Especially if this *may* be a temporary rise.
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post #6 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 08:56 AM
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Water has to sit for 24 hours before you'll get an accurate reading.
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post #7 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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Yea, I guess that is true. But I also can maintain my 37g tank with no issue without the 24h wait, and those numbers don't vary hardly at all when I check things the same way.
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post #8 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 09:55 AM
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Its going to be kind of hard to keep the Ph right at 7.0 that's not really a natural number.
If you put the black diamond in the cup and let it sit and the Ph went up I would say that's you problem. You can do two cups of just straight tap and a cup of of the sand and water and let it sit for awhile (more then a hour to be sure) but its probably not going to change your result. About the only thing you can do there is switch out the sand for something else

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post #9 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 03:20 PM Thread Starter
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That's kinda what I was hoping to avoid.... not only the tear down & re-setup of a tank, but the expense to find new substrate for something that large. I really can't believe I'm the only one to find this, so I was seeing if there were options to fix it.
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post #10 of 11 Old 12-06-2013, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Matt Clark View Post
Hey guys,

I have had my 75g tank up & running for a month or so now, and have not been able to keep the Ph down. I have petrified wood & some plants in there, on top of Tractor Supply Black Diamond sand. I have researched this to death before I bought it, and read a TON of people say there were no problems, etc. However, no matter what I do, my Ph will not stay neutral.

Has anyone else run into this? Did I catch a bad batch?
It is very normal for planted tanks to run high ph. As carbon dioxide is consumed by the plants pH rises. In my tanks both marine and fw I have a just before lights out pH of 8.4-8.8 (purple api high range test kit). Yet even fish like neon tetras and hacetfish "requiring" low ph of 7 or less, live for years and years.

To me it is hardly harmful to any fish if pH is high because of low co2 and high oxygen.


my .02

maintain Fw and marine system with a strong emphasis on balanced, stabilized system that as much as possible are self substaning.

have maintained FW systems for up to 9 years with descendants from original fish and marine aquariums for up to 8 years.

With no water changes, untreated tap water, inexpensive lighting by first starting the tank with live plants (FW) or macro algae( marine)

see: http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...-build-295530/
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