View Full Version : Having problems with Alk & PH readings

01/02/2008, 08:34 PM
I have an 85gal tank with an 18gal capacity sump/refugium, (half filled), total water volume of approx 85 to 95 gallons, (estimated since I don't know how much water is displaced by the rock and sand). The tank has been running for about 2wks now. The ph is low, can't get an exact reading however I am approximating in the range of 7.7 to 8.0. I have been getting confusing results on the alkalinity. Using a Salifert Test Kit I first got a reading of around 2.29 meg/l. I then added approx 40ml of alkalinity per 2part solution, (baked baking soda). I also added Nitromax nitrifying bacteria to help the cycle process. 2 days later, today, I tested again & the ph seemed unchanged and I couldn't get a reading on the alkalinity. First I thought it was too low then maybe too high. I took another test using fastest/Seatest kit and got a reading of 3.0 meg/l. I'm confused. Would the nitromax effect results? Why didn't the ph change?

01/02/2008, 09:16 PM
If there's still decay ongoing in the tank, that process will lower the pH and temporarily consume alkalinity. I would just wait for a few weeks of zero ammonia, and work from there.

I don't think the Nitromax is going to do any harm or change the test results.

01/03/2008, 06:11 PM
What is your calcium? Low ph is typically a co2 problem.

04/08/2012, 01:25 AM
I had this problem to. I couldnt get my PH above 7.7. I tried everything, Balance, Buffers, etc and nothing would bring it up. I eventually did a water change because of all the garbage I added and the PH went up. I was like WTH. THen for unrelated reasons I tested salinity and noticed I put more salt in than was needed to reach the same levels that were in the tank before. THen it hit me, I added more salt over the course of two weeks and my PH was at 8.4 when I was finished.

Then I learned that for FOWLR tanks the salt doesnt have to be at reef levels. Ive since let the salt concentration decrease due to the benefits lower salt levels have on the propogation of Ich and other diseases. My PH is back below 8 but this time I no longer care. lol