View Full Version : PH buffer?

05-16-2003, 05:42 PM
did i read somewhere that you can put small amounts of bakeing soda in your tank to raise the ph??

my tap water is natural about 8.3 (oh yah, you're jealous) but it seems that in my african tank i can't keep it higher then 7.6, i have a few oceanshells in my filter (crushed coral idea) to buffer but it doesn't seem to help.

ps. i have a horse, no money, can this be achieved cheeply?

05-16-2003, 05:59 PM
7.6 should be more than fine unless you're keeping wild caught, difficult to keep species. Keep it simple......... and stable. Attempting to fine tune water parameters is a trap we all fall into sometimes, and it causes more harm than good most of the time.

FishoPhile J
06-03-2003, 09:15 PM
i don't think the sea shells in the filter are gunna make much of a difference... i tryed the same thing for awhile and didn't see any changes untill i mixed crushed coral in with the gravel. at the lfs, the coral went for about 3.50/lb, so i only spent alittle over a dollar and it was more than enough to raise the hardness and ph. also, if you have alot of driftwood, it could be lowering your ph.

06-04-2003, 04:16 PM
no i don't have driftwood.... the only problem is that the only crushed coral around here is in 20 pound bags and i don't have any money for fish suplies right now.

06-04-2003, 06:02 PM
as long as the ph doesn't drop below 7, your fish should be okay.

06-14-2003, 06:54 PM
baking soda is a natural buffer

06-15-2003, 05:31 PM
Hi all,

I don't know SGM, I think I will have to take exception to your response about a ph of 7.0 being OK.

Believe me I am not comfortable writing this because you seem to be the Goddess of good advice.

I would be hesitant to keep my Malawis at anything below 7.5 and even then I would probably not sleep well at night. I like to keep mine at a steady 8.2. Best for the fish and best for me(emotionally speaking).

I am one of those people who have fallen in to the PH perfection trap, also the Nitrate compulsive syndrome.




06-15-2003, 08:43 PM
matt, you are correct in that 7.0 is not the normal ph for malawians, however, many people keep and breed them at that ph...and they thrive. i keep mine at about 8.3, but these fish are extremely adaptable. reesa pie's fish are in no danger as long as the ph doesn't drop below neutral. you should never hesitate to question me or anyone else...nobody knows it all.

06-15-2003, 10:00 PM
My question is rather, why is the pH dropping in the first place. Granted, after water changes etc. it does initially drop and then reset (so to speak) but if the water comes out of the tap at 8.3 what is going on to make it 7.6?

Reesapie, I would test the water from the tap in some kind of container about 2 hours after it has been sitting. That will give you a more accurate reading. My water coming out of the tap is 7.6, but allowed to sit out for a few hours on its own, it goes down to 7.3. I know there is a reason why, and I read it on this forum, I just can't seem to find it right now. If I do, I'll let you know.

A cheap buffer is baking soda, but it will make you crazy, because a teaspoon per gallon rule just doesn't work here.

SeaChem's Malawi/Victoria Buffer is under $10 for enough to buffer 200g. Depending on how many tanks you have and how often you do water changes, this should last quite a while. And since it has stabilizers, the pH doesn't fluctuate like regular tap water does.