Co2 in a low PH tank - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 12 Old 03-14-2013, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Byron View Post
Wood will contribute to the pH lowering but is unlikely the main cause. The breakdown of organics in the substrate is the prime cause because this is where most of the CO2 is produced. This is why in natural (low-tech) planted tanks you want to leave the substrate alone (i.e., don't clean it) so the CO2 will be available for the plants. More below.
Based on the info that Aurie provided, it sounds like the tank was just set up so it's unlikely that the water chemistry is already being altered by biological activity. The other tank that was established and did not contain driftwood had a pH slightly higher than the tap, not lower.
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post #12 of 12 Old 03-14-2013, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by funkman262 View Post
Based on the info that Aurie provided, it sounds like the tank was just set up so it's unlikely that the water chemistry is already being altered by biological activity. The other tank that was established and did not contain driftwood had a pH slightly higher than the tap, not lower.
True, but I think there is more going on here.

Back in post #1, a pH of 6.4 for the tap and the tank is mentioned. Now the tap is higher. Assuming testing is being done correctly, there may be variation in the tap pH.

Also, I have found in my 7 tanks that the pH can be different, even though I carry out comparable maintenance in all of them. The plant and fish load impacts, as may the substrate (if it is different).

My 70g was running for 2 years with Flourite substrate, and the pH remained around 7 to 7.2. About a month ago I tore it down and replaced the Flourite with play sand. With tap water at 7 to 7.2, this tank after just one week was reading 6.8, and after 3 weeks is now reading 6.4 to 6.6. It has a fair amount of wood, all of which was in the old setup.

My 33g is loaded with wood (see photo attached). But the pH is stable around 6.4 to 6.6, and this tank has been running like this for more than 2 years now. Also play sand substrate.

Byron.
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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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