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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know people say not to mess with pH, but my tap water is very high. I'm talking around 8.4 high. My betta always stresses after water changes and I noticed as i was pouring out my tank pH test into the sink that the vial water turned blue as it hit the tap water, so i did a tap water test. Blue as blue could be. So then I thought, why not a high pH test, just to see? It turned purple. Beautiful, dark, rich magenta. Now purple is my favorite color, but not in a vial of water that's going into my Franky's tank.

Should I get pH down to fix this? I hate that half his water is ultra basic after a water change. It probably won't balance out with the rest of the water for a couple days...:cry:
 

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Well, is him being stressed the only thing he has been doing during water changes? If so you could use some AQ salt or some Stress coat. As for lowering the pH, I think it would be smarter to lower it as 8.4 isn't the best for Bettas. 7.5 or around there would be safer. I think there are products that can lower the pH, but anyways... Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, "stressed" includes biting his fins and acting agitated for a day or so. I always use API stress coat since his fins are always ragged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have a piece of driftwood that I've been meaning to put into the tank. That would help wouldn't it? What's IAL?
 

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Rooibos tea will help lower the PH as well. I've had good luck with it lowering the PH. make sure it is unflavored Rooibos tea and just drop one bag in for a couple hours after a water change. Take the bag out when the PH is lower. The tea is fine to leave in for a week or more.

You could also get some driftwood and instead of fulling boiling until all the tannins are gone, only boil to remove some of the tannins and then put the drift wood in the tank.
 

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IAL and driftwood release tannins that naturally lower the pH. From what I've read roobios is better at making your water dark than lowering the pH, I would try ial and driftwood first.

8.4 is on the upper end of their range but it shouldn't really hurt them... Unless your pH lowers. Have you tested the rank about 24 hours after a water change? What's the pH?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Before the water change, the tank water was 6.0. I don't know what it is 24 hrs later. I've had my driftwood soaking in conditioned water for a few days. I boiled it beforehand, but it still turned the water brownish.
 

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It's supposed to turn the water brown... If it doesn't, it won't lower the pH.

If you're tank water is 6.0 you don't need to lower it anymore. Before you try the driftwood, I would let a container of tap water sit out for a 24-48 hours and then test the pH... It will have likely dropped. If it does, all you need to do is let your bucket of water sit out (age) for a day or two before you do the water change. That way the pH won't swing, and the swing is what causes the stress.
 

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I agree with letting your tap water age before using it. That's quite a difference between tap and tank, if you aren't adding anything that lowers ph. Do you know your kh? Sounds to me like there isn't much buffering capacity in your water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Okay I'll try aging the tap water, thanks! What's kh?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Okay, I don't have a way to measure either of those right now, but there's probably a lot of calcium in the water atm because I had a piece of coral in there for my snail, which I forgot to take out when he died (took it out yesterday).
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
After a day, the tap water is down to 7.4 or lower (it's still blue, but lighter than the chart, hard to tell), so I'm going to wait another day and see if it will drop any lower. The tank water itself, a day after the water change, dropped from about 8.0 to 6.4.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The pH didn't lower any more than about 7.2, which could be okay. Is there anything I could/should do to get the tap water even lower? Put it in a glass container instead of plastic? Pour it through the driftwood?
 

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I have this exact issue. What could be done for larger tanks? I just started a 75 gallon and theres no way I could age 15 gallons of water for 48 hours.Amaranthia, how are your betta's fins? All three of my boys fins curl and they are all in separate tanks. I thought it may have been related to ph. I don't have liquid kh/gh test but I did try the strips the gh is soft a little less than 75 and the kh is 40-80.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
My betta's fins mostly heal straight, though they have grown back curly before. I don't know how pH or kh affects fins, hopefully a more knowledgeable person can answer that.
Maybe if you just had a few really big buckets or like, a kiddie pool that you could siphon it from, that might work for aging the water? I don't know how convenient your setup is for that though...
 
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