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Old 05-23-2012, 06:06 PM   #1 
Yuukio
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Problems with my tap water?

I just set up my old 5-gallon tank today. I've started up a fishless cycle on it and plan to get a betta once it's finished. I've had a couple in the past. (:

Anyway, I tested my water straight from the tap today and was pretty horrified when my ammonia test showed 1ppm of ammonia. My pH test was also high, giving me a reading of 8.2. So, what do I do? Obviously, I'll have to get a water conditioner that removes ammonia to deal with that, but what about lowering my pH?

I've heard that Indian Almond Leaves can lower pH, but I'm really not thrilled with the idea of my tank looking like it's full of tea. Could I just add bottled water to the tank until the pH is more like 7.6?



Second question. My last bettas both had issues with their fins. At the time, my water's quality was much better, but I think it may have been rather hard. Their fins became very thin and would tear easily. One was a crowntail and his fin tips curled pretty badly before eventually tearing. It wasn't fin rot, because it progressed far too slowly and no amount of water changes would help.

Could hard water cause this? If so, what can I do to prevent it this time?
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:20 PM   #2 
LebronTheBetta
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Since it's a Fishless Cycle, can't the Filter just clean the water with the Ammonia?
Of course it's Dechlorinated, but can't you use that as a Source? I'm not sure for the Water Changes, though. Sorry about that. You could mix the Tap Water and the Bottled Water to see what it Outcomes.
For the Ph, you could also use a Ph Drop. You could find them in a Pet Store.
Be careful, though. You are also adding more Ph to lessen the current Ph.
Don't use too much. Like 2-4 Drops would do. But it will vary.
I have Hard Water. My Crowntail seems to be fine. I'm not sure if it causes weakness, though. If your treating them, Aquarium Salt and 78F-80F will heal it quicker, and Very Clean Water should do the Trick. Sorry that I can't Answer most but, I hoped a helped you a bit.
Good Luck with Cycling!!! ;)
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:24 PM   #3 
Micho
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Don't mess with pH, Bettas can withstand a huge range of pH. Messing with water chemistry is never a good idea unless you really really need to. A pH of 8.2 is quite high but your Bettas will be able to tolerate it. You could use bottled water, if you're really concerned about the pH but really that'd be a waste of money, in my opinon.

And yes hard water will cause CTs fins to curl, I'm not too sure about the fins being thin, because my water is pretty hard but I haven't noticed it. You can dilute your water by using bottled water like you mentioned (but some brands of water bottles have minerals in there to enhance the flavor) or using purified/distilled water which would be cheaper since it comes in huge jugs and doesn't have a brand name. Beware though, do not just fill your tank with just distilled water it's pretty bad, since it lacks mineral it'll actually suck out minerals from your fish along with having no buffering capacity it'll cause pH swings which could kill or stress your fish out.

So, 50% distilled water with 50% tap water will get your hardness in half, 75% distilled water and 25% tap water will cut your hardness by 3/4. Got it? So I suggest you use this route to make your water softer. And it might lower your pH as well.

Hope that helped. :)
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:49 PM   #4 
Yuukio
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As I understand, hard water and high pH go hand in hand. So yeah, I figure "diluting" my tap water with some distilled water will help both problems.

Hmmmm, I'm gonna try replacing a gallon of the water with distilled water and see what happens. Hopefully a single gallon will be enough. It won't be too expensive to buy a single gallon of it weekly.


As for the previous fish with their fin issues. I tried treating them with aquarium salt multiple times, but the condition of their fins continued to decline. I also tried very frequent water changes and finally a fin rot medication. None of it had any effect. ):
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:50 PM   #5 
Cattitude
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Puka shell (aragonite) substrate may help with your hard water and pH. Here's an example: http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...uctId=11147302

It's used in both marine and hardwater/freshwater tanks. It also helps with ammonia, nitrates etc.

For the ammonia in your tap water, Seachem Prime and Top Fin water conditioners both neutralize ammonia, as well as chlorine and chloramine. I'm sure other brands do as well, check the label of the one you're using. I particularly recommend the Prime because it's very concentrated and you only need a drop or two per gallon. If you use a water conditioner that gets rid of ammonia along with the puka substrate you shouldn't need to mix with bottled water.

*Disclaimer: I've never kept fish in hard water, so I've never personally used the aragonite substrate. Perhaps someone who has can add their feedback.
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:15 PM   #6 
MyRainbowBettaFish
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i have high ph readings just like yours, and i have a betta with no problem. In fact, he THRIVES in my tank. As long as you acclimate your new betta properly, (Congrats by the way and welcome to the forums!) he/she should have no problem adapting to your water parameters.



Good Luck!
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:16 PM   #7 
Olympia
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Aragonite won't lower hardness or pH, just raise it more.
Can you leave just a bowl of the water sitting out for 24 hours and retest it? It'll tell us more about your kH.
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:16 PM   #8 
MyRainbowBettaFish
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Micho View Post
Don't mess with pH, Bettas can withstand a huge range of pH. Messing with water chemistry is never a good idea unless you really really need to. A pH of 8.2 is quite high but your Bettas will be able to tolerate it. You could use bottled water, if you're really concerned about the pH but really that'd be a waste of money, in my opinon.

And yes hard water will cause CTs fins to curl, I'm not too sure about the fins being thin, because my water is pretty hard but I haven't noticed it. You can dilute your water by using bottled water like you mentioned (but some brands of water bottles have minerals in there to enhance the flavor) or using purified/distilled water which would be cheaper since it comes in huge jugs and doesn't have a brand name. Beware though, do not just fill your tank with just distilled water it's pretty bad, since it lacks mineral it'll actually suck out minerals from your fish along with having no buffering capacity it'll cause pH swings which could kill or stress your fish out.

So, 50% distilled water with 50% tap water will get your hardness in half, 75% distilled water and 25% tap water will cut your hardness by 3/4. Got it? So I suggest you use this route to make your water softer. And it might lower your pH as well.

Hope that helped. :)


I totally agree, well put Micho
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