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Discussion Starter #1
I've had a 30gal setup for about 4 years now and it currently has a couple of cory's, two otto's, serpae tetras, and some platy's.

I was bored with the gravel substrate and decided to switch to sand. I saw aragamax in a display setup and really liked the texture and color of it. The "specialist" there said it was fine for freshwater setups so I went ahead and picked it up.

After rinsing it thoroughly I gradually introduced it into the tank. I removed the old substrate a little at a time so as not to get rid of all the good bacteria all at once.

Now it is all aragamax and the fish are doing fine. However upon searching about aragamax (yes, I should have done this before buying it) I've found it raises the pH some and is not recommended for non-cichlid freshwater setups!!

Has anyone used aragamax before in a freshwater setup? Should I get rid of it immediately?

Thanks in advance,

Tim
 

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I haven't used this before, but how long have you had it in the tank for and have you noticed any great difference in your pH reading?
 

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I suspect it would. Luckily, there's an easy way to check for that. What is your ph, gh and kh? And how long has it been in there for?
 

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I suspect it would. Luckily, there's an easy way to check for that. What is your ph, gh and kh? And how long has it been in there for?
It has been in for only a week and the pH has gone from 7 to 7.5 so far. Note that I can only measure in increments of .5. What are gh and kh?
 

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Only in increments of 0.5? Are you using strips? You're better off with a liquid test kit, it's more precise, accurate (two different things), and lasts a lot longer. If your pH continues to rise you will probably have to pull the sand and replace it with conventional sand or gravel.

Then go back and kick the guy at the store in the shin for giving you really bad advice.
 

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Only in increments of 0.5? Are you using strips? You're better off with a liquid test kit, it's more precise, accurate (two different things), and lasts a lot longer. If your pH continues to rise you will probably have to pull the sand and replace it with conventional sand or gravel.
I'm using a liquid test kit, however the comparison colors given are only in increments of 0.5. I can kinda guess for colors that fall in-between, but its just a guess. I'll keep monitoring and let you know.

Then go back and kick the guy at the store in the shin for giving you really bad advice.
Definitely will do that!
 

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What test kit are you using? I'm using the API and I have increments of 0.2.

There's nothing wrong with using this type of sand IF you're keeping African cichlids. However there's a lot wrong with using it with any other type of fish.
 

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Well, the platies won't mind the higher pH, but your other fish will. It likely won't kill them, but they prefer softer, more acidic water than you're going to have with that sand. Whether you choose to keep it or not, just be sure not to replace it all in one go, and be very careful about doing water changes as big pH swings are very dangerous.
 

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What a complete pain! I've learnt my lesson and don't even bother asking advice from fs anymore. good luck getting it sorted.
 

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I wouldn't preclude taking any advice they ever give you, just always remember that you're likely dealing with minimum wage employees and all the extensive training that usually entails and that the goal of a LFS is to make money first and foremost.

Also always research everything prior to making a purchase. That goes for everything in this hobby. Impulse buying is a great way to get a TTK (Total Tank Kill) event.
 
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