Thank you for the reply.Bas Pels wrote:I would suggest you start with a bicket of water from the tank. Measure the pH
To this you add something which would acidify the water, such as oak leaf extract. A little, such as 1 ml. Then measure the pH again. Most likely, the pH is a lot lower, perhaps it went from 7.5 to 6.5. If it is more or less 1 point, calculate how much larger your tank is, and add this amount. Diluted, off course
if it is not more or less 1 point, calculate how much more you would need for the bucket, and add this.
Obviously, you get the point: find out how much of the extract you need to lower the pH 1 point and add this to the tank
Measure the pH and the next day do so again. In almost all cases the pH is back to what it used to be.
That is, the water in the tank is in pH equilibrium with the tank itself, and when the water becomes a bit more acidic, the tank will compensate. Therefore you will need to add more extract the next day. The same amount as the day before.
Were you to lower the pH more than 1 point, the fish might be harmed, so you cannot lower the water pH more than 1 point. Therefore lowering the pH in a tank is Always something which will take time. Lots of time.
I will be turning a tank for South American cichlids into a tank for Tanganjica cichlids soon - pH will raise from 6.5 to 8.0, and although I can do this without any fishes, I assume the pH laise will take me a week. After which the algea will start dying, so it might take a month to repopulate the tank.
So, good question - inquiring how to lower pH. I't's a lot more complicated than most people, including most chemists, would think (I'm a chemist myself, and found out the above about the tank pH equilibrium myself)
I will do this as soon as possible. Instead of oak leaf extract, could I use something like this? http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/p ... catid=4085
As for the nitrates, I posted the tap water issue to my tumblr fish blog and everyone is telling me to get an RO/DI unit. I'm very hesitant to do this as messing around with water chemistry is very unknown to me and I fear I will mess up and kill everything, not to mention all those things that can go wrong during a water change. Speaking of, eventually I will upgrade to a 55g which will be in the basement. That will allow me to use a python hose for water changes. How would I even go about using a RO/DI unit with a python hose? How would I be able to add the buffer salts like this? Not to mention the exorbitant price of these units and their upkeep.
What about a something like this product? http://www.amazon.com/NYOS-Zeo-1000ml/dp/B00SX18VRW
I have plants in my current 20g, but I plan on making the 55g a jungle with a huge amount of plants. Would this help to lower nitrates?