Tap water Specs - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 12 Old 12-21-2012, 02:33 PM Thread Starter
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Tap water Specs

Following is what I received from the Greater Cincinnati Water Works in reply to my inquiry as to average GH, KH, PH. Not sure whether this is what I need. Please review and advise. Thanks.

Frank

Hi Mr. Obermeyer,
You receive your water from the Richard Miller Treatment Plant (RMTP).
We use slightly different terms.
The average Total hardness for RMTP is 132 milligrams per liter (mg/L) as CaCO3.
The average Total alkalinity is 75 mg/L as CaCO3.
I believe the Total hardness is equivalent to GH and alkalinity is equivalent to KH.
The pH is 8.6.

Additional information that you might find useful:
Milligrams per liter (mg/L) is the same as parts per million (ppm). The two terms are used interchangeably.
There are 17.1 mg/L for each grain per gallon (gpg).
The average Total hardness for Miller water is then 132 mg/L or 7.7 gpg.

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post #2 of 12 Old 12-21-2012, 02:55 PM
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post #3 of 12 Old 12-21-2012, 04:18 PM
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I don't know what you are after in terms of fish/water, but I can say that your GH at 132ppm is roughly 7 dGH. This is at the upper end of the "soft" range. Well suited to soft water fish and live plants. Near ideal, in fact.

The KH/Alkalinity at 75ppm is roughly 4 dKH. This has no effect whatsoever on fish or plants, but it does act as a pH buffer to maintain the pH at the level in the tap water. But not being high, the pH may well lower in the aquarium due to the organic processes. Which would certainly be better, with soft water fish.

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 #4 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 05:04 AM Thread Starter
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Am I misunderstanding, or is a PH of 8.6 awfully high ?

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post #5 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 05:49 AM
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Am I misunderstanding, or is a PH of 8.6 awfully high ?
That was my thought as I read your post. Some municipal water treatments plants concerned with lead pipes (pre 1900) would increase pH to help minimize lead leaching into the drinking water. I'd be curious to learn if the pH of 8.6 is naturally occurring or artificially adjusted.
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 06:48 AM Thread Starter
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That was my thought as I read your post. Some municipal water treatments plants concerned with lead pipes (pre 1900) would increase pH to help minimize lead leaching into the drinking water. I'd be curious to learn if the pH of 8.6 is naturally occurring or artificially adjusted.
The water quality report only shows that PH is adjusted twice during the purification process. It doesn't mention why or in what direction. The report says that there is no detectable lead in the water delivered to the customer.The report also says that they will begin using UV light in the process shortly. It will be interesting to see how that effects additives, water quality, etc.

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post #7 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 07:16 AM
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I am always glad that I am on a well. I used to live in town, for about 12 years, and even then I carted well water from my parents' house for Drinking and cooking. If I could have carted it for showers I would have as that is as bad as drinking it.

Do I need to condition my well water seeing as there is no chlorine in it?

I am under the impression that it is the chlorine (or more accurately the chloramine) that the conditioners are for. I know it is hard water but I am not going to chemically adjust it, just pre-mix it to reduce the levels. I think that adding a conditioner that is not for chlorine may just chemically mess with the specs. I don't really want to add anything if I don't need to.

Jeff.


Total years fish keeping experience: 7 months, can't start counting in years for a while yet.

The shotgun approach to a planted tank with an LED fixture

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post #8 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 07:55 AM Thread Starter
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Jeff, that's funny. I have friends on well water and they only use it to bathe and wash clothes. They use bottled water for cooking, etc. I would think that you'd need to have your water analyzed to see what treatment is needed. That would be for you and your family more so than for aquariums. There shouldn't be any of the water purifying chemicals to treat; however, there could be microbial concerns.

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post #9 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 08:32 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron View Post
I don't know what you are after in terms of fish/water, but I can say that your GH at 132ppm is roughly 7 dGH. This is at the upper end of the "soft" range. Well suited to soft water fish and live plants. Near ideal, in fact.

The KH/Alkalinity at 75ppm is roughly 4 dKH. This has no effect whatsoever on fish or plants, but it does act as a pH buffer to maintain the pH at the level in the tap water. But not being high, the pH may well lower in the aquarium due to the organic processes. Which would certainly be better, with soft water fish.

Byron.
Byron, just goes to show you. The anecdotal information for this area has always been that we have hard water. I was going by that and decided to get the actual numbers after seeing so many suggestions on the site to do so. My primary concern is with the PH. First, it seems to greatly limit the variety of species for which I could provide a healthy environment. Second, it seems to run contrary to the hardness of the water. Any thoughts ?

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post #10 of 12 Old 12-22-2012, 11:02 AM
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I would think that you'd need to have your water analyzed to see what treatment is needed. That would be for you and your family more so than for aquariums. There shouldn't be any of the water purifying chemicals to treat; however, there could be microbial concerns.
We had our water tested when we bought the house and everything was fine. Our geographic location is pretty good for water quality if the well is deep enough.

Besides, I think people get sold on water treatment systems that they often don't need.

My tests came back last week that told me what I already knew but quantified it for use with the fish. No nasty bugs, that was all that I might have been concerned about.

Jeff.
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Total years fish keeping experience: 7 months, can't start counting in years for a while yet.

The shotgun approach to a planted tank with an LED fixture

Small scale nitrogen cycle with a jar, water and fish food; no substrate, filter etc
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