Altering Ph

Altering PH, GH and KH is not necessarily a good thing.

by fballguy

Changing the Ph by using chemicals can and will cause more harms than good. Fish adjust to almost any Ph just fine. There are Ph raising chemicals and Ph lowering chemicals out there. These chemicals only work for a short amount of time before the Ph reverts back to how it was originally. Because of this, you will be constantly chasing the Ph levels trying to get the Ph that you want. The Ph will be in a constant up and down state, and this is much more harmful to the fish than if the Ph was just left alone in the first place. A constantly changing Ph will hurt the fish's immune system, and make them more prone to disease. Because of this, disease outbreaks are very common in aquariums with a constantly changing Ph. Most fish will adapt to the Ph of almost any tap water. The exceptions are 1)Delicate fish like a few South American cichlids, or very hard water fish like African cichlids, and 2) Tap water with a very low(5.5 or lower) or a very high(8.5 or higher) Ph. There are much safer ways to change Ph, and keep it stable. These ways will be described below.

To raise the Ph, it is simple. All you need to do is add seashells, crushed coral, or limestone. These will dissolve in water, and raise the Ph. Because they are always in the aquarium, the Ph goes up, and stays stable. However, changing water will then alter the Ph because the aquarium water has a higher Ph than the tap water. So it is best to do water changes more often, and in smaller amounts.


To lower the Ph, all you need is a piece of real driftwood, or some peat. Peat can be put under the gravel, or in bags inside your filter. It will release tannins into the water that will lower Ph. Driftwood will also release tannins into the water. Neither of these 2 ways will last forever, because the tannins will run out eventually, so keep a close eye on your Ph, and change to new peat or driftwood when Ph starts to climb again. Driftwood will last a lot longer than peat, but peat is cheaper and easier to change out, so it is your choice.


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