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SST 12-23-2007 02:20 PM

cycle finished but ph still low, what to do?

I've just finished cycling a 5 gal. tank. Unfortunately, I had to do it with my betta. He's survived! and is actually regrowing some of his fringes that he lost when I didn't know better and was doing 100% water changes in a 2 gal. tank.

I'm concerned because my ph is still low, at 6. I'd like to add a mystery snail to the tank but I know that the ph is too low, that they need much higher.

How do I adjust the ph of this tank, slowly, so I don't hurt my betta?

My master test kit (liquid) doesn't have the test for gh and kh (I think that's what they are called--alkalinity and hardness) and I'm a bit broke right now to go out and buy those two tests.

What to do?

5 gal tank
sponge filter
heater (around 80)
gravel and glass beads
plastic plants
ph: 6
nitrites: 0
amnonia: 0
nitrates: 5
one male crowntail betta

I know from other boards that people put calcium in the tanks for their snails. Would that help increase my ph?

My plan is to add one golden apple snail to this tank, and when I can, I'll get a 10 gal. and add another snail and some african dwarf froggies.


Age of Aquariums 12-23-2007 02:28 PM

Your LFS should have a chemical to fix that. If not, try Foster & Smith.

fish_4_all 12-23-2007 03:12 PM

Use crushed coral as substrate. It will raise the GH, KH and pH. Test the ph of your tap water. I will bet it is low also. The crushed coral will slwoly raise the levels and will keep them pretty steady as long as you add a little now and then. I was able to keep my snail tank at a pH of 7.8 by adding it and my tap water is 7.0

SST 12-23-2007 03:16 PM


Since it's a newly cycled tank, would replacing all the substrate at one time be harmful? Does the sponge filter have enough bacteria to compensate?

SST 12-23-2007 03:23 PM

and another question:

Is this what I'm looking for?

Is there a cheaper way to get it?

fish_4_all 12-23-2007 03:40 PM

It looks similar to simple crushed coral but I have never used it. I get my cushhed coral from the LFS and they don't even have salt water fish.

Actually you could just add some crushed coral to the current substrate. I added about 1/4 cup of it every month or so in my snail tank and never had pH fluctuations. This was for a 10 gallon.

And on a side note, as far as I have been able to find, when you add crushed coral it will change your GH KH and pH to a specific point and then keep it there. As far as I know it will not continue to go up and up just because you keep it in the tank long term. My never did fluctuate after it reached what seemed to be the end point.

SST 12-23-2007 03:44 PM

Cool beans! Thanks!

Lupin 12-23-2007 09:02 PM


Originally Posted by Age of Aquariums
Your LFS should have a chemical to fix that. If not, try Foster & Smith.

We don't suggest the use of chemicals.

SST, your water conditions would have suited the licorice and chocolatre gouramis.:wink2:

SST 12-23-2007 09:07 PM

Yeah, but I did everything bass ackwards. :roll:

Now I know for the next time. I'm scouring Craig's List and Freecycle for a 30 gal. tank and a 10 gal. tank. Hubby is so not happy with me! :lol:

SST 12-23-2007 09:09 PM

Oh...and I'm avoiding the ph adjusting chemicals.

Chocolate and licorice? Both favs of mine. Might have to look into that. Imagine, a theme tank full of fish named after things I love to eat. LOL

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