My water parameters: (need help!) - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 13 Old 02-22-2010, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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My water parameters: (need help!)

I got the Tetra water test kit today! :D

Unfortunately, it was the bearer of bad news.
I have another topic on the plant forum, where I talked about me trying to fix my PH.
I used jungle tank buddies to try to fix the PH, and I'm pretty sure it killed the filter bacteria!

PH- 6.0
GH- 28
Kh- 3.5
Nitrite- .08 mg/l
Ammonia- 1.5 mg/l

I did a 40% water change IMMEDIATELY, and I'm planning on doing the w/c's until the ammonia and nitrite is 0.
I'm putting the PH problem on the back burner- if it went to 7.5 now, the fish would die from ammonia.

Any other ideas on what I should do?

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post #2 of 13 Old 02-22-2010, 09:35 PM
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Are you saying that if your pH goes up your fish will die? I do not think so. Keep your water changes up.
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post #3 of 13 Old 02-22-2010, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Well not that the PH change would kill them, but I've heard that Ammonia is more toxic at a higher PH. (lower ph it becomes ammonium, which isn't quite as bad)

I could be wrong though. I have dolomite now, but I'm going to wait until the ammonia and nitrite are in their proper place before I add it.

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post #4 of 13 Old 02-23-2010, 04:45 AM
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You're spot on. In acidic water ammonia exists as ammonium, which is much less toxic to fish than the ammonia ions that exist in basic water. I think holding out on the dolomite is a very good idea.

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post #5 of 13 Old 02-23-2010, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
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So... I guess I should just keep doing w/c's until the ammonia is 0 and nitrites are 0, or close to it.
Right?

And then I can fix the PH.

On a side note, the java moss has died, but the java fern is growing like crazy. (and I thought it was a slow grower!)

Would overly-powerful lights kill the java moss? I have 20 watts (full spectrum CFLs) over the 10 gallon tank...

Should I even worry about the hardness being so high? It will probably go down with the W/c's...

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post #6 of 13 Old 02-24-2010, 05:26 AM
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How dead is the java moss, exactly? I'm not 100% sure that it will die under "too high" lighting but I suppose it's possible.

But yes, I would keep doing water changes to keep the ammonia and nitrite down (you do have fish in the tank, right?).

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post #7 of 13 Old 02-24-2010, 08:11 PM
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Here is the link to that other thread, which I think is important to bear in mind as there has been some fiddling going on with the water chemistry with pH adjusters and chalk and you don't want incorrect advice for lack of all the facts. Not saying any is incorrect, just cautioning.
http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/a...ffering-37481/

I agree, don't fiddle with the dolomite and pH until the tank is cycled.

On the moss, it could be light (it does better in less light) but more likely the calcium from the chalk. Mosses cannot assimilate carbon from carbonates, and an excess of calcium is detrimental as I mention in the other thread. Once the tank is cycled, then slowly work on the pH and the plant problems should resolve themselves.

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The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #8 of 13 Old 02-25-2010, 01:00 PM Thread Starter
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It seems that the bacteria weren't dead- just damaged.
I added a little bit of the *gunk* from another tanks bio filter,
Two days later, my ammonia and nitrites are 0.

Also, I'm glad I checked-
The "dolomite" that the hardware store sold me is actually dolomite lime.
Glad I didn't dump it in the filter...

Have to go find some dolomite :-/

and btw, I think I got most of the chalk out of the water with the W/C's.
The aponogeton has 5 new leaves in about 2 days. :)

Would crushed coral work the same as dolomite?

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post #9 of 13 Old 02-25-2010, 01:11 PM
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I was just gonna say if you can't find dolomite go get some crushed coral to use there; so yes it does work the same way.

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post #10 of 13 Old 02-25-2010, 01:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redchigh View Post
It seems that the bacteria weren't dead- just damaged.
I added a little bit of the *gunk* from another tanks bio filter,
Two days later, my ammonia and nitrites are 0.

Also, I'm glad I checked-
The "dolomite" that the hardware store sold me is actually dolomite lime.
Glad I didn't dump it in the filter...

Have to go find some dolomite :-/

and btw, I think I got most of the chalk out of the water with the W/C's.
The aponogeton has 5 new leaves in about 2 days. :)

Would crushed coral work the same as dolomite?
I have always assumed it would, but I have seen elsewhere that it will not raise hardness. Dolomite gravel should be easily attainable from a fish store, in a very small bag. I agree, dolomite lime is a different critter.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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