Raising PH and Alkalinity

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
I cannot seem to get a "desired" PH or Alk according to my test's. Nitrates are a little on the high side but acceptable (25), but I am going to change water. but HOW can I raise my PH a little and the alk. Not a fan of chemicals but should I use a buffering agent?
I have :29G
1 Clown, three nass snails, two Pep shrimp, Red Brittle/serpent star, 30Ld sand, about35-40 lb LR, EMP 400 Bio wheel, two powerheads.

PS Are two 850HGPH heads too much for a 40 G (These are not in the aformentioned tank)?
Picked up two cheap...
 

Sport507

~Just a Farm Boy~
If you disolve 1-1/4 teaspoons of baking soda in hot water let cool the add to you tank it will raise the dkH a little over 1dkh. I would not raise it more than that in a 24 hour period.
 

disc1

-RT * ln(k)
What are the numbers right now? Please resist the urge to chase pH around with buffers or you will get other things way out of whack. Get the alkalinity right, and let the pH fall where it may. As long as it is above 7.8 you're in good shape. If you want it higher than that, try to get fresh air or CO2 scrubber for you skimmer.
 

Dr. Reef

Dr. Reef at ur service
RC Sponsor
what are the numbers right now? Please resist the urge to chase ph around with buffers or you will get other things way out of whack. Get the alkalinity right, and let the ph fall where it may. As long as it is above 7.8 you're in good shape. If you want it higher than that, try to get fresh air or co2 scrubber for you skimmer.

+1
 

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
Well. I Do NOT have a skimmer. I actually did get a CSS for $20, but I will NOT be hanging it on this tank. I may build a sump for a future 40G, but for now no skimmer.
I via one of my powerheads, with the provided tube for the top hole. I read air raises a bit.
But I will get numbers tomorrow when I test again and try to get as close as these test strips will read.
Like I said, chemicals are not something I want to chase around. I am sure it is fine, but lately it has been running a bit low. In the "Undesired" area of color on the strip test chart/
Thanks for the input, I hope for a little more advise.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

Reef Chemist
Premium Member
You need a test that gives you an actual number for alkalinity, not desirable vs undesirable. Even if accurate, and it may well not be if it is a dip strip, you may not agree with the manufacturer about what is desirable. You may not even know what range they consider desirable.

Not a fan of chemicals but should I use a buffering agent?

Alkalinity is a chemical parameter and there is no way to raise it without using a chemical some how. :)
 

tkeracer619

Premium Member
You need a test that gives you an actual number for alkalinity, not desirable vs undesirable. Even if accurate, and it may well not be if it is a dip strip, you may not agree with the manufacturer about what is desirable. You may not even know what range they consider desirable.

Not a fan of chemicals but should I use a buffering agent?

Alkalinity is a chemical parameter and there is no way to raise it without using a chemical some how. :)

^^this
 

acropora1981

New member
chemicals are not something I want to chase around.

Reef tank w/o chemicals isn't really something you can do... its just the nature of the beast. You at least have to add the basic building blocks. Heck even salt mixes are chemical mixes...
 

geccles

New member
+1 on baking soda, cheap & easy to dose. That will fix your alk, don't worry about pH. Be sure to dose slowly & test your alk until you get a feel for how much you need to dose.
 

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
OK Baking soda it is for now. I also have an apparent Phosphate issue (Green hair nuisance algae) And will be getting Pho-Zorb, or GFO of some type to place in my HOB with Carbon. I will get the hang of this if it KILLS ME!
Thanks for EVERYTHING guys@!!
 

Palting

New member
I dunno, man. You seem to have several things out of whack. pH, alk, now phosphate.

It my not be a bad idea to examine your whole system and maintenance. What filtration? What salt? How often do you do WC? What are ALL your parameters, to include SG? This info may help other people help you better than correcting one part at a time.
 

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
I beliueve my system to be ok. several LFS guys have asked that and I told them what I have.
so (Iam not home but will try my best)
29G (Holds 25Gallons of water) With about 30Lbs live rock, 30 Lbs LS, (Hitch hikers include: two small crabs (one is baby goril. I believe) Aptasia (which I X'd) A couple very small Featherdusters)A mussel, a Clam, a couple oysters I believe. Some strange red corals, Smaller than a Pea that have pretty white tentecales that come out at night, a yellow bristle worm, a few apmhipods.)
Three Nass Snails. Twp Peppermint Shrimp (One Molted and I cant find the Molt now) A False Perc Clown, and a red Brittle Star.
Emperor 400 BioWheel. Two small Peng Powerheads, I believe about 150 GPH. And I think I have no dead spot for that brown stuff stopped forming on the sand since I rearranged them.
Last I checked (this morning) My Ammon-0 Seperate test tube kit
Nitrite-0 Nitrate 35. PH 120- Alk 7.6 These are a strip

Been running for about three months. Recently started the Lights on an 8 Hr+ cycle. (Thats when all this algae and Cyo-Diat. Started.
 

Palting

New member
Seems ok systemwise. You could dose alk, RH-F has several excellent articles on it on ReefKeeping. Don't know what salt you're using, or how frequently you do a water change, or what SG you run at, but I've used Reef Crystals and did weekly 15% water changes. I didn't have any alk or pH or calcium issues until 8 months down the line when the corals and coraline really started to consume it. Increased water changes will help alk, phos and nitrate as well. You do use RODI water, right?
 

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
I use distilled. Was told by several people that it is just as good. If NOT then I can get RO water from a LFS in my area SG? Sorry I am still too new to know all the terms. I use Instan Ocean for salt, and will be doing more water changes. I have not done as many as I should cause I have had ZERO issues til now. Just topping off and everything has been fine.
 

Palting

New member
I use distilled. Was told by several people that it is just as good. If NOT then I can get RO water from a LFS in my area SG? Sorry I am still too new to know all the terms. I use Instan Ocean for salt, and will be doing more water changes. I have not done as many as I should cause I have had ZERO issues til now. Just topping off and everything has been fine.

Ok. There are several threads with stickies at the top of this "New to the Hobby" forum. Should give you a lot of info and terms.

SG is specific gravity, measures the amount of salt in your water. Stickies will also give you the range, and a whole lot of other info.

Your tank is 3 months old, and you have livestock, and you say have not done as many water changes as you should. There, in my opinion, lies the problem, and consequently the solution. With the inadequate water changes, you have steadily been accumulating nitrate and phosphate, and consuming your alk and decreasing your pH. I would do frequent water changes, something like 20% every week or more frequently. I would use a salt like IO Reef Crystals, which has a higher alk than Instant Ocean. I woukd keep the SG at 1.026, but that's my preference. This will gradually bring your nitrates down, replenish your alk and fix the pH, and also get rid of your phosphates. Once you've reached an acceptable state, you'll have to decide on a water change schedule among the wide variations seen in this hobby. Nitrates are usually a good measure of how often to do water changes. If your water changes are good enough to keep the nitrates down, they usually are good enough to keep your phosphates and alk in check. At least in a tank this young.

Dosing with chemicals usually is not needed until much later in the life of a reef tank.

Some say GFO should be used as early as you can to keep phosphates in check. But, that usually requires a reactor and associated equipment, and adds to the initial expense unnecessarily in my opinion. Stick to water changes for now.
 
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SoLiD

-=Snake=-
I dose with a BubbleMagus. Works great!

Really??? How awesome... :rolleye1: That answer is a complete waste of your time. There is Not Enough info... Very vague...


Bulk Reef Supply has some interesting products that could help you out. 2 part dosing products and dosing pumps to keep your levels constant. A skimmer could help remove some the CO2 in you water, thus raising your PH. Just keep reading and don't give up. ;)
 

pmgaudio

In Memoriam
See That's why I am here. I have been told SEVERAL good Par's for SG. I was at 1.025, and told TOO HIGH MATE.!, But others said, that's fine. I have it at 1.022, and, "Hey that's a great number", Then, Oh wow that is kinda low.
BAH!
I am GLAD to get all kinds of feed back, but what to do with too much feedback?
Not sure, But I think I will try to stabilize at LEAST my SG at about 1.023 or so.
Do bigger and more consistent WC's, perhaps at the very LEAST a small bag of GFO in the HOB for a week or two at least.
I may even get a 20Gal Rubbermade Brute and keep it full
Seeing as I got a 5 gallon bucket of Instant Ocean for next to NOTHING I will be using that for a while, LOL. (I do have a 38 and/or a 65 I may set up n the next few weeks. WHAT? All this trouble and another tank??? Well I am gonna try. by the time I do I think my present tank will fix these small bugs I seem to have. But in the mean time RC is a HUGE help, Thank you all so far!!!!

O BTW! I totally forgot to mention my three frags. Armor of the Gods Zoo, and two other button ply's. They seem to be doing Great! But I guess I am naive enough to not know what ELSE I am gonna have to put in the water for THEM?!
 
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