KH poisoning?

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cds333
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KH poisoning?

Post by cds333 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:44 am

According to some random site, the optimal KH for him would be 8-15...

What level of KH is toxic to a F8 puffer?

What KH would be fatal? What KH would be high enough to shorten their life but not show any signs?

And what would be the signs of acute KH overdose?

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Pufferpunk » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:12 am

Fish are not poisoned by the hardness of your water. By using aragonite sand, those levels should remain stable (pH too) at the preferred level for a BW fish.
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cds333
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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by cds333 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:11 pm

I realize that using crushed coral or argonite would be optimal, but what if the starting pH of the water is too low due to extremely high dissolved CO2?

I fear the shock of adding the untreated water would be too much before the argonite had a chance to work.

Assuming that before the water can be added during a water change it must be brought up to a safe pH; if doing so leaves one with a KH of over 30 degrees, this would not be toxic to a puffer?

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Pufferpunk » Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:01 pm

KH cannot become toxic, it is not a toxin. The aragonite should be enough to buffer the water at a safe level.
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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by pufferjw » Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:03 pm

cds333 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:44 am
According to some random site, the optimal KH for him would be 8-15...

What level of KH is toxic to a F8 puffer?

What KH would be fatal? What KH would be high enough to shorten their life but not show any signs?

And what would be the signs of acute KH overdose?
kH does not directly impact your fish, only pH and gH. Rather, kH is the measure of carbonate ions in your water, which prevent pH swings. Most fish are extremely tolerant of high kH, brackish fish especially, so don't worry about it unless it's in the realm of 30 or higher.
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cds333
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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by cds333 » Fri Oct 05, 2018 4:02 am

This is precisely where it is. Over 30 degrees KH, by the time I get it above 7 pH. (Before treatment it is 0 degrees at a pH of 4.5)

Most people assume that a high KH means a high pH; and this is true if you start with normal water. If you start with water that has been made highly acidic by whatever subterranean minerals we have in the area, you end up with high KH with a relatively low pH.

Nobody gets how acidic this water is. People usually think of a pH of 6 to be considered "low". The test kit doesnt even go below 5.8! Just doing a water change could potentially kill some less hardy species from pH shock long before argonite could start to work.

However argonite is just a carbonate if I understand correctly, so even if I pre-treated the water with it, I would still and up with a high KH just the same as if I add seachem products. By the time it got up to 8.0 it would probably be in the 40's.

So either a fish can live in 30-40 degrees KH and this water can be made safe, or it cant and I will have to keep hauling tons of water in buckets (or I find a way to remove the CO2).

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Iliveinazoo » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:07 pm

So you are saying that the water from your tap is pH 4.5 with 0 Degrees hardness? I’m guessing that you don’t drink your water?

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Pufferpunk » Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:49 pm

Yeah, urine is at 6. You really need to contact your water company!!!
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by cds333 » Tue Oct 09, 2018 3:06 am

That is correct. It is from a well actually.

To be fair it could be the API test that is inherently flawed- it may not work at such a low pH; I don't know. I do know their pH test does not work. Also I know that whenever I test my water it shows as <1 GH and KH both. As I start raising the pH the test starts showing KH. Adding Equilibrium brings up the GH as well.

Now remember pH does not necessarily equal toxicity- lime juice is a pH of 2 and it is safe to drink. Its all about how buffered it is; i.e. its pKa value. For reference a 5 gallon bucket takes around 2 - 2.5 tablespoons of Neutral Regulator to neutralize, if that means anything.

This knowledge does not help me at all however because I dont know how any of this equates to fish.

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Iliveinazoo » Tue Oct 09, 2018 5:50 pm

I’ve read in the past that it is impossible to keep a tank stable below pH 6 because the nitrifying bacteria either doesn’t operate effectively or doesn’t build up in sufficient numbers. As you say pH and hardness are generally linked but you don’t always get a high hardness with high pH and low hardnes with low pH. For whatever reason you have acidic water with little mineral content, i would suspect that if you add your water with aragonite or other form of calcium carbonate that your hardness and pH will increase but i very much doubt that the kH and gH would increase to beyond that which a Figure 8 can handle but i think that you should experiment with a small body of water first though to see what results you get.

Aragonite susbstrate buffers water by disolving and I’d be intrigued to find out how quickly a 2cm layer of substrate would dissolve into the water column if you were adding pH4 water. With this in mind I think that you would have to prepare your water to an alkaline level before water changes but to be honest, with your water, i would either consider using remineralised RO or keep acid loving fish.

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by cds333 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:38 am

I have tried using an RODI system; it burns through the media way too fast. A cylinder of mixed ion resin lasts maybe 50-100 gallons. When using only RO, with the incoming TDS at ~80 after the RO membrane it is ~10, but this does not last. 100 gallons later and it is up to 35. Replacing the 5 and 1 micron carbon filters take it back down but it is way too expensive to replace those filters at that rate.

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Re: KH poisoning?

Post by Iliveinazoo » Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:32 am

I've heard that they are a bit wasteful but our LFS does sell RO for a 'fairly' reasonable price so yours might as well?

Will you be doing a trial run of your well water with aragonite or other calcium carbonate in a container to see what result you get and how quick it will act?

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