PH swings in planted tank - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #11 of 15 Old 05-28-2013, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for looking at this. No I wasn't considering diluting this water. I read that one dGH equals 10mg. So I took tds 55mg/10ml=5.5 dGH. Not sure if I did that right.

Donetta
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post #12 of 15 Old 05-28-2013, 07:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Donetta View Post
Thanks for looking at this. No I wasn't considering diluting this water. I read that one dGH equals 10mg. So I took tds 55mg/10ml=5.5 dGH. Not sure if I did that right.

Donetta
Let's see if we can clear this up for you. TDS is Total Dissolved Solids; this includes the GH solids but other solids too (if any). So a TDS of 55 is presumably 55 ppm (parts per million).

The GH is 27, which I also assume is in ppm, so this 27 is part of the 55, but the 27 is the hard mineral part (calcium, magnesium primarily).

To convert GH from ppm to dGH, you divide the 27 by 17.9 so you have 1.5 dGH which is very soft. To go the other way, you multiply dGH by 17.9 to get ppm.

The TDS is actually very important for fish, although we tend to consider GH in this light, but a high TDS even with soft water can be trouble. This is why water softeners can be dangerous. They often soften water by using salts to remove the hard mineral salt, so the water comes out "softer" in terms of the GH but can have even more actual salts in it. You can see my article that may detail this a bit better:
Total Solids (TSS and TDS) in the Freshwater Aquarium

Byron.

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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post #13 of 15 Old 05-29-2013, 11:53 AM Thread Starter
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I really appreciate you taking the time to explain all this. The information and article really helps me tie everything together. You're absolutely correct and all the bottled waters I've been reviewing are super high in sodium. After reading the article I understand how my Betta is stressed and it makes since he got fin rot. This also explains how sometimes it appears he struggling to swim through the water.

Everyone kept saying its poor tank maintenance as if the water was dirty, but now I see that poor water quality can come from other issues. As you know I was adding tons of macros, but I was adding too many water conditioners as well...garlic, vitamins, fish protector, extra prime ect. However, I did add indian almonds leaves and I'm glad that's on the good list. From now on I'll add least as possible.

So, I will keep on with my tap/ distilled water combo. Another reason I was hoping to switch to straight bottled water was because I do have brown diatoms as well. It's not all consuming, but it grows back steady after I clean the tank. Do you have any suggestions for this? As you know I'm only dosing Flourish & Trace once per week now. I only have the one Betta. I had Otos, but took them out because of poor compatibility. I can't have Nerite snails because I dosed my tank with panacur. I can't have high water flow because of the Betta. I retested my phosphates and they are .5. I read that brown diatoms are due to high silicates and excess nutrients. Maybe the situation will get better since I'm not over dosing the macros, but is there anything else I can do? I thought about adding Seachem Phosguard to the filter, but here I go adding again

Thanks, Donetta
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post #14 of 15 Old 05-29-2013, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Donetta View Post
I really appreciate you taking the time to explain all this. The information and article really helps me tie everything together. You're absolutely correct and all the bottled waters I've been reviewing are super high in sodium. After reading the article I understand how my Betta is stressed and it makes since he got fin rot. This also explains how sometimes it appears he struggling to swim through the water.

Everyone kept saying its poor tank maintenance as if the water was dirty, but now I see that poor water quality can come from other issues. As you know I was adding tons of macros, but I was adding too many water conditioners as well...garlic, vitamins, fish protector, extra prime ect. However, I did add indian almonds leaves and I'm glad that's on the good list. From now on I'll add least as possible.

So, I will keep on with my tap/ distilled water combo. Another reason I was hoping to switch to straight bottled water was because I do have brown diatoms as well. It's not all consuming, but it grows back steady after I clean the tank. Do you have any suggestions for this? As you know I'm only dosing Flourish & Trace once per week now. I only have the one Betta. I had Otos, but took them out because of poor compatibility. I can't have Nerite snails because I dosed my tank with panacur. I can't have high water flow because of the Betta. I retested my phosphates and they are .5. I read that brown diatoms are due to high silicates and excess nutrients. Maybe the situation will get better since I'm not over dosing the macros, but is there anything else I can do? I thought about adding Seachem Phosguard to the filter, but here I go adding again

Thanks, Donetta
There is much to learn, and we can only do it step by step; recognizing that is a major factor to success, and you are on this road.

The brown algae, if it is diatoms, may well be due to the stuff in the bottled water. It is harmless, except if it clogs plant leaves. Let's see if it subsides with your new plan. I will assume it is diatoms if it removes easily; a form of brush algae can appear brownish too, that is very different.

Byron.

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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post #15 of 15 Old 05-29-2013, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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Hello, yes I do think it diatoms. It does come off fairly easily with a tooth brush, it's irritating because sometimes it's hard to get to. I don't think it's from the bottled water though because I've only been using tap/distilled mix and it's nothing in the distilled water. I'll just clean as much as I can and see what happens.
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